Greetings from the House ‘O Scorpions

June 7, 2007 | 22 comments

So guess what was on the wall by my bed last night? That’s right. A scorpion. In my bedroom. Right by my bed (which, as I mentioned, I strongly prefer to be a scorpion-free zone). Had I turned out the lights just a few moments earlier, I would not have seen it scurrying up the wall, where it would have undoubtedly gone to the ceiling and then promptly fallen off when it was right over my bed (you laugh, but this actually happened to my uncle!)

My husband suggested that we should ask around to see if our neighbors are having scorpion issues as well. What, I ask, could possibly be gained from this? What if they say no? When my nextdoor neighbor says, “Gee, no, I’ve never seen a scorpion in my house!” is when things start feeling all Amityville Horror around here.

As I was lying in bed awake last night, in between fits of frantically brushing myself off every time the sheet or my pajamas brushed against me, I spent some time calculating the odds that one would actually see a scorpion if it were in the house. My house is 1, 900 sq. ft. The scorpions are a few inches long. According to my calculations, the odds of being in the right place at the right time to actually see one of these things is about one in a zillion. And since I’ve seen TWO in my house in the past THREE days, this means that our home is teeming with them.

I see even the most common household objects differently now that I know that I’m living in some sort of scorpion Four Seasons. Some examples:

One theory here is that these things were somehow planted by the local exterminator company. Because, let me tell you, I am not what they call a “price-sensitive” customer right now. As soon as I hit Publish I am going to the first exterminator whose contact info I can find and tell them to just get in their truck and start driving and I’ll give them all the details while they’re on the road. (Very typical me that I’d blog about before actually doing something about it).

Another theory is that this is God’s plan to change the way I feel about roaches. They seem like the most darling little creatures right now, perhaps something one even might want as a household pet. When we first moved in I hoped we wouldn’t have a roach problem like many people around here do. Now the possibility of seeing Brother Roach on my wall seems almost charming. They don’t have stingers. They don’t have pincers. I’ll take roaches over scorpions any day.

[Cross-posted to my other blog, because I just can’t say enough about this.]


  1. Anonymous

    Greetings from a recovering House ‘O Scorpions to your House ‘O Scorpions.

    I, too, live in Central Texas. We, too, have had problems with scorpions. (Hate to tell you, but at our house, we’ve all been stung in bed. And more than one time.)

    The summer of 2001 was our worst. Then we found a company in Austin that guarantees it will kill your scorpions. They come every month (year-round) and treat the outside of the house. On the very rare occasions that we have one in the house, they come and treat the inside of the house for free. It wasn’t originally in our budget, but, as you can understand, it soon became a necessity.

    Best of luck with your uninvited guests. (For the record, I have NO problem killing things that sting me. I, like many who have posted, believe they are the result of the fall.)


    P.S. – I LOVE your blog!

  2. Jeron

    Awww HAYLE NO! I’m freaking out just reading about it all over again. After you call the exterminator, go out & rent *A Good Year* with Russell Crowe. Not one of his more memorable films, but in the movie he inherits a French chateau & vineyard from his deceased uncle. The place has scorpion visitors in the morning hours, but the vineyard keeper’s wife puts out lavender in a box to keep them away. Worth a try?

  3. Patrick

    Here is some possibly useful info for you. Unlike other stinging insects like ants and bees, the scorpion can control the amount of venom he injects into you. He can either make it a mild sting or send you into convulsions, depending on his mood.

    This suggests that keeping the scorpions in a good mood is beneficial. In fact, they are probably already fairly happy with you because you are providing them with food and shelter. Try to stay on their good side until the chemical strike is complete.

    If you can’t wait for the exterminator, go to Self-Chem and buy a product called Cy-Kick CS. Mix it with water and spray everywhere. It works very well for me.

  4. Jennifer F.

    The scorpion can control the amount of venom he injects into you. He can either make it a mild sting or send you into convulsions, depending on his mood.

    Patrick – I am going to pretend I didn’t read that.

    Every time I find out new information about scorpions it gets more horrifying. (The latest was that they’re nocturnal — imagine how many more I’d be seeing if I were up all night!! I now just picture my house being a scorpion playland while I sleep).

    Maybe this is all a bad dream and I’m going to wake up any minute now.

  5. Jennifer F.

    Oh, and Susan –

    Hate to tell you, but at our house, we’ve all been stung in bed. And more than one time.

    I’m going to pretend I didn’t read that too.

  6. Darwin

    Look on the bright side, if they’re nocturnal, maybe you can fool them by leaving the lights on 24/7…

    It always worked with the monsters under my bed.

  7. Stevie

    I have no scorpion knowledge but just have to say that as bad as I feel for you and your situation, you are cracking me up! It’s nice to take a morning sickness break for a little scorpion humor!! Seriously though, I’d be freaking out. I’m praying for a scorpion free house for you very soon!

  8. Anonymous

    sort of reminds me of when i lived in louisiana–i could hear the “palmetto bugs” (nice way of saying “those gigantic roaches”) crawling around my books and papers next to my bed–at 3am, and not being able to sleep until i found and killed said creature. but a scorpion is much worse.

  9. Anonymous

    I hate scorpions. We found a big one on our wall last night too. Summer is the worst time.

    We rarely find them in the house … just a very occasional one in the summer. This is the first one I’ve seen since last August, and I think we saw a grand total of two last year. But that’s because we pay the Bulwark people to come spray every month. (First, they treat the inside of the house … then they keep them under control by treating only the outside.) I consider this a non-negotiably necessary expense of living in Central Texas.

    That being said, if I didn’t have small children it wouldn’t be such a tremendous big deal. All the adults in my family have been stung multiple times, and it’s not as bad as you might think.

    My husband never lived near scorpions until he moved here in 1994 … the first time he was stung, his arm blew up like a balloon. The second time, it still hurt a lot but didn’t swell up. By the fourth time, he says it’s no worse than a fire ant bite.


  10. Anonymous

    I grew up around scorpions in inland North Florida, and got nailed a few times. The worst was the one in my boot.

    Now I live in the Bahamas, and more than once I’ve gotten up in the morning to find squashed scorpions in the middle of the floor on the path to the bathroom. It isn’t too hard to fill in the blanks on that. Makes one a believer in sandals, for sure.

    On the bright side, scorpions eat roaches.


  11. Rebecca

    Okay, I think this is just the most shocking thing I’ve read in a long time! (I don’t read much 🙂 I had no idea. I can’t even imagine having scorpions in my yard, let alone in my house. I freak at spiders! Now I’m thinking at least they have webs and tend to high corners. I’m thinking the mosquitoes in the back yard are a blessing! Jennifer, you are brave.

    The things you just don’t know about when you live on the east coast…

  12. Martin

    Oohhh … scorpions woes. BTDT, we’ve been through that here in Oklahoma as well.

    We finally had to cave in a hire a pest control company to spray in and around our home monthly. Between the scorpions and the brown recluse spiders under our children’s beds, the stuff we were buying at the store just wasn’t doing the job.

    Speaking of which, we’re due to have another spray … we’re starting to see scorpions again. I just haven’t been able to figure how those little suckers get in our home. Maybe they do a mad dash when we open the door!

  13. Anonymous

    Jennifer and all of you,
    This is AWFUL! I can’t sleep with a spider in the room, these things would be unimaginable. There are lots of things about living in Canada that are really annoying, but not seeing scorpions sure isn’t one of them. Love those winters!
    Hope you’re rid of the invaders soon.
    I love your blog, too.

  14. The Opinionated Homeschooler

    You have convinced me: another Central Texan here, and yesterday I had to evict a cottonmouth from my house. I’ve lived here most of my life and I know the friendly ribbon snakes, rat snakes, and assorted garden snakes. And I know what the local vipers look like, too, and THAT WAS A COTTONMOUTH. Eight months preggers, a four-year-old in the next room, and a frantic cat; armed with a broom, a large tupperware container, and some idea of snake behavior. Gone! But I will never sleep well again. Must blog while the trauma is still fresh.

  15. The Opinionated Homeschooler

    That first sentence should have had the words “to blog” in it.

  16. M.E.

    Gosh, I thought I had a problem with black ants getting in the house. Not fire ants, just plain old picnic ants. They no longer seem so bad to me…!!!

  17. Anonymous

    Hate those scorps! My husband says they are better than roaches, but personally, I disagree. They are so scary looking! Having grown up in rock houses in Central TX, I’ve been stung at least ten times. The most memorable: one in my tights when I was about 10 years old. It stung me three times before I could get them off. And just last year I stuck my hand into the washing machine to pull out the wet clothes. And BOY was that scorpion mad! The spin cycle had him all raring to go. At least they don’t hurt too badly — be sure and put baking soda and water paste on the stings asap — it seems to help! Good luck!

  18. Anonymous

    Oh yeah? Well even sunny San Diego has the pesky blighters. My husband killed a large one last night wearing flip -flops (my husband was wearing the flip-flops). I stepped out of bed on one…feels just like a sewing needle going through your toe. Ouchy. I just picked more lavender to cover my threshold with, after reading all of these horror blogs. Yikes!

  19. Anonymous

    OMG..I have an extreme fear of scorpions..I just moved to Arizona from New York and the thought of scorpions plagues my mind all day long.I’ve had my house sprayed two times before my furniture even got here in hopes that I never see one. I had no idea other states besides AZ had those creepy critters. I heard that you should cut up some of the screen material and put them inside your vents, so the scorpians cannot fall out. Havn’t tried yet but my husband is working on it for his

  20. sugarbabebladin

    I live in Central Texas. Scorpions rule in our newly built house. I have found that they run faster from Lavendar oil than they do me. I go around after seeing the first few and spray lavendar water around the corners of the house (just like pesticide). Watching the ones caught on the inside freak out is hilarious. I've actually dropped a few drops of lavendar oil on one. It acted like they do when you get them with pesticide.

  21. Anonymous

    Hey, my mom is an avid reader of your blog and has sent me the link a couple of times. Most recently she is sending it to me because of your scorpion issues. We are new transplants to Phoenix, AZ. I've never had to deal with scorpions before. Unfortunately, I do now. I have researched them until I am blue in the face but I've learned a couple of things. 1)They are pre-historic, and they are tough little buggers. Find a pest guy who specializes in Scorpions. 2)In Provence and southern Italy, they use lavender to prevent scorpions. I've spent hundreds of dollars at L'Occitane buying dry lavender. It cannot hurt. Have your husband go thru the entire house and put screening materials in all of your airvents, this will prevent them from "dropping" onto your bed. Remove all dustruffles. Scorpions can only crawl up "porous services". Put mason jar's under each of the legs of the baby crib. That way they cannot reach the actual crib. Lastly, have the black light service. It is worth every penny, because if you can find the male who is impregnating the females, they will eventually all die. There is only 1 male to about every 30 females. Good luck, stay calm, wear slippers and pray!

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