Is the story about the South American Blush Spider true — or is it an urban legend or hoax?
If you haven't already heard about it in the news, here is what happened.
3 women in Chicago, turned up at hospitals over a 5 day period, all with the same
symptoms. Fever, chills, and vomiting, followed by muscular collapse, paralysis,
and finally, death. There were no outward signs of trauma. Autopsy results showed
toxicity in the blood. These women did not know each other, and seemed to have nothing
in common. It was discovered, however, that they had all visited the same restaurant
(Big Chappies, at Blare Airport), within days of their deaths.
The health department descended on the restaurant, shutting it down. The food, water,
and air conditioning were all inspected and tested, to no avail. The big break came
when a waitress at the restaurant was rushed to the hospital with similar symptoms.
She told doctors that she had been on vacation, and had only went to the restaurant
to pick up her check. She did not eat or drink while she was there, but had used
That is when one toxicologist, remembering an article he had read, drove out to the
restaurant, went into the restroom, and lifted the toilet seat. Under the seat, out
of normal view, was small spider. The spider was captured and brought back to the
lab, where it was determined to be the South American Blush Spider (arachnius gluteus),
so named because of its reddened flesh color. This spider's venom is extremely toxic,
but can take several days to take effect. They live in cold, dark, damp, climates,
and toilet rims provide just the right atmosphere.
Several days later a lawyer from Los Angeles showed up at a hospital emergency room.
Before his death, he told the doctor, that he had been away on business, had taken
a flight from New York, changing planes in Chicago, before returning home. He did
not visit Big Chappies while there. He did, as did all of the other victims, have
what was determined to be a puncture wound, on his right buttock.
Investigators discovered that the flight he was on had originated in South America.
The Civilian Aeronautics Board (CAB) ordered an immediate inspection of the toilets
of all flights from South America, and discovered the Blush spider's nests on 4 different
planes! It is now believed that these spiders can be anywhere in the country. So
please, before you use a public toilet, lift the seat to check for spiders.
It can save your life! And please pass this on to everyone you care about
There is no such airport as Blare, no restaurant by that
name and according to the Medline database, the Journal of the United Medical Association
doesn’t exist and Beverly Clark has never published in a medical journal. And there
is no spider genus Arachnius making the Arachnius gluteus nonexistent.