Daddy longlegs: there is one piece of information every child will know | Helen Sullivan

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There is only one daddy longlegs – and it is looking at you right now from the corner you forgot to dust

The daddy longlegs spider looks as though it was drawn very quickly on a sheet of paper by the hand of God (the hand of God is the MC Escher drawing of the hands drawing themselves) and then – perhaps after that sheet of paper was photocopied a few billion times, warming each spider up a bit – sprang off the page and into at least two corners in every home in Europe, Africa, North America, Asia, Oceania and South America – but not Antarctica, because they don’t like the cold.

Googling the daddy longlegs is a mistake, because this creature you never get too close to, and which looks pleasantly enough like a semicolon on eight spindly legs, is suddenly magnified. Now it looks like (don’t click – don’t do it!) a pitch pipe mated with a lobster.

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