Kidsmoke.

In the two hours I’d been staring at this quarter-sized spider on my ceiling I’d built him up to epic proportions. He was the van-sized arachnid with dripping fangs to my cowering lady in distress. In the fantasy I’m wearing a silky slip and ’50s-style coif à la some dated horror movie poster. But today I’m playing both victim and gutsy dame who saves the day.

“I need to kill it,” I tell the phone, eyes never leaving my eight-legged adversary. “But I want to do it from as far away as possible.”

“I don’t know what to tell you,” he replies. “I usually go for a paper towel, but when you wad it up you feel the crunch.”

Too intimate.

I grab an old copy of InStyle, apologizing in advance for the spider juice I’m about to smear across Scarlett’s smiling face. Roll the magazine, approach the intruder and, eyes open, take a swing.

He slow-motion crumples, slow-motion floats to the floor. I can see his body up close — with all limbs tucked tight, just the size of my little fingernail. He was so much smaller postmortem. Still. He’s flushed down the toilet just in case. I don’t want any back-from-the-dead and out-for-revenge spider crawling across my eyelids while I sleep.

Back at my vantage point on the couch, there’s no sign of a struggle across the room.

Friday night.

This is not demographically correct. It’s Friday night. She is a single, twenty-something female in possession of a certain number of tight jeans and jewel-tone cardigans. This is TGIF, this is date night or girls’ night out. This is NOT the night to catch up on vacuuming and Russian lit.

But she’s going to wash dishes in men’s boxers and an oversized  T-shirt, listening to obscure dance remixes as loud as her consciousness of the sleeping next-door neighbor permits. The boxers are covered in little pink and yellow and navy blue cars. British taxi-style sedans. She’d like to meet a man who’d pick up the same pair. He probably listens to Yeasayer alone on Friday too.

Later, she’ll hook one careless leg over the back of the couch during a movie. Cerebral foreign drama, perhaps — in the original Swedish with English subtitles. Tonight, though, “He’s Just Not That Into You” looks more promising. This week there might be a vodka tonic on the coffee table. There might be a tired cell phone, buzzing with a few “wisss yo wesre heeire”s. Yeah, me too, she mutters. Who’s to call her crazy for talking to herself tonight? (Next-door neighbor’s snores are just audible during a lull in the film).

She’s not sad now. ‘Melancholy’ would even be pushing it. She’s accustomed to this. She’s thinking of tomorrow’s weather and visiting that new coffee shop and painting her fingernails sky blue — she’ll grab the polish from the bathroom before Leading Lady finally decides to just kiss him already.

That’s the best part. She smiles.

Since last Friday…

I realized how in love I am with my friends and family.

I flirted with a dozen cute hipster boys then went to bed early.

I added to my Dream City requirements. It must be “a hotbed of young people” and have dance parties at modern art galleries, perfect puppy-walking paths and and the correct ratio of used book stores to local food cafes.

I added to my list of Dream Boy requirements, thanks to advice from a wise uncle and a paranoid stranger named Rebecca Salgado. He will be someone I can trust to make the right choice in a lousy situation, someone fun (comfortable with hiding in the bed of a pickup truck traveling down nighttime city streets), someone who treats me right — whatever that means.

I was a daughter, sister, niece, preschooler, listener, go-getter, scorned woman, driver, word-maker, dissatisfied, coffee fiend, tourist, reader, walker, Walker, early-riser, hugger, and hand-holder.

I’ll take another weeklong layoff now.