I Almost Died (probably not)

Driving home the other day, I feel something on my right arm. I look over to see what it was and notice a caterpillar, but not just any caterpillar, an American Dagger Catepillar (the little fuzzy hairs on them are toxic and can/will detach and stick in you). For some reason I thought I could brush it off my right arm and out the driver side window. Of course that didn’t work and it landed on my leg (I was wearing jeans). I don’t think I’ve ever pulled over that fast. I waited a second or two for some cars to pass, hopped off and brushed it off my leg, meaning it’s now been on my arm and I’ve touched it with (the back of) both my hands.

Hopefully any reactions that it can cause happen soon after since I haven’t noticed anything in the 36 hours or so since it happened, but for the rest of the day I was very careful not to touch any other part of my body, specifically my face or eyes. I’m assuming it’s about the same as getting a bunch of fiberglass in your skin.

To make matters worse, when I was little, a leaf fell on my head, when I brushed it off, it stung me (it was a bee). Ever since that, nearly 30 years ago, I still have hard time brushing unknown things off my head for fear that they’re bees. For the rest of that day, every time I felt something on my, I was worried it was another one.

And, FYI, I know all they do is cause an allergic rash, in some people. I’m well aware that I wasn’t going to die.

Of course, a few hours later I (as a pedestrian) nearly got hit by a car, but that’s another story.

I’m glad I recognized it for what it was. IIRC, I saw a picture on facebook and knew right away what it was.

Here’s the picture of it that I took after I knocked it off my leg.

PS, toxic or not, I’m really not keen on any bug that large crawling down my arm, especially while I’m driving.

Why, oh why did I read this? I soothed my bug and spider fear by thinking of cute, fuzzy caterpillars. Not.any.more. My days of carefree walking around looking at them are now over.

Oh wow! I’ve never seen a caterpillar that looks like that in real life.

Glad you’re Ok.

Oh that looks brutal. Who’da thunk a caterpillar could be so bad?

Yes, glad you’re okay.

To make it worse, my daughter is about to go ‘up north’ (ie, to someone’s cabin in the woods). She gets huge welts from mosquitos, never though i’d have to warn her to leave caterpillars alone).

When reading the first line I was thinking you were probably going to get so distracted that you quit paying attention to the road (I think this has almost happened to me once or twice with wasps in the car).

I, of course, would never get distracted by a caterpillar (being in blissful ignorance of its dangers).

No problem, I do what I can.

I happened to practically veer off the road right by a police station. If a cop saw me, I was wondering how I would explain that “THERE WAS A CATERPILLAR ON ME!!!”, cause, like, anyone is actually going to believe it’s posoinos. Reminds me of an episode of Live PD (like Cops, but live) where the cop rolled up on a guy on the side of the road, with a shirt around his head/face and in full-on panic mode because there was a moth in the car (to which he had a phobia).

That episode of LivePD is exactly what I thought about when you talked about driving and pulling over. Disturbing.

I knew from the thread title what the situation must be; I’m just glad it wasn’t a spider!

I found one of these hideous monsters in my yard the other day. Now if that just happened to wind up on my arm, it would kill me dead whether I was driving or not! :eek:

Oh look how pretty they are when they grow up.

Blech! Not pretty enough.

In one of Stephen King’s novels, he blithely speculates on how many traffic accidents/deaths are caused by, say, a spider descending from your visor right in your face, the driver freaks, runs off the road, crashes into a tree/bridge abutment, is killed and then Mr. Spider brushes himself off and continues on his merry way. I never thought of that before reading that passage and now I can’t un-think it. Thanks, Steve-o!

We had a tussock moth caterpillar invasion back in April, supposedly the worst in 20 years. Thousands and thousands of them dropping down from trees and crawling all over the place. (pics from my neighborhood park) Very creepy and kind of scary because skin contact can result in a nasty allergic reaction.

I don’t blame you for wanting to get that thing off you posthaste. One day my husband was mowing the lawn when suddenly his arm began to burn and itch. Turns out this guy was hanging out on a leaf on one of the lower limbs of a tree, and he merely brushed by it as he was mowing. We found it still sitting on the leaf.

Looking at those pictures made me think of an old Dave Barry column. Bats, caterpillars, and of course, dung.

I was thinking of reading this thread yesterday, as I ran over one of those yellow caterpillars with the riding lawn mower this morning.

And again, as I backed over it to make sure.

I was with a guy from Australia a couple of weeks ago, and he described that in the area where he grew up, people drove old cars and knew to check under the visor before getting in. For Huntsman spiders. Which like that cozy warm spot, apparently.

I googled, because I wanted to know how common it is…and yes, there are videos. <shudder>

Holy Freakin’ Nightmares! It has its own stewardess! :eek::eek: