When I was little, my nextdoor neighbor used to have a pool. It was one of those cheap rubber water balloon pools, but they had it buried underground, as if it was a conventional concrete pool.

Well, after they took the pool out, there was a nice, gaping hole in the yard in which we could wrestle and wail on each other with sticks. The hole remained a part of my neighbor's yard for at least a year, until they decided to build a wooden deck over it.

Now, this hole had been a central part of our childhood routine for quite some time, and we weren't about to abandon it because it was covered with some wood. So what did we do? We burrowed under it, that's what we did.

We began our excavation in late winter. By the time spring rolled around, we had a nice system of trenches and secret passageways, with a cozy 1'4" of headroom to spare.

Enter mid-Spring. Onward, came the bugs. Anyone who has lived in Florida in the spring knows that it's home to the most diverse and terrifying population of bugs known to civilized man. It wasn't long before we were at war with the black widows.

We fought them in the trenches! We fought them with roman candles and bottle rockets! We fought them with spraypaint, smoke bombs, firecrackers and homemade flame-throwers!

Our weapon of choice was a Bic lighter and some expired Lysol. The roaring blue flame licked away any spider webs, and the smell of cooking arachnid seemed to permeate the air following any expidition into what we called "the mines".

Naturally, we lost the war. Our supply of pyrotechnics had begun to dry up, no small thanks to the partial fireworks ban imposed on Pinellas County, Florida. That, and my friend's dad yelled at us after he thought the deck was on fire. I guess that when your porch appears to be billowing smoke, it's cause for alarm.