A couple of years ago, my best friend Red, my cousin J, an old friend C, and I were walking through a small wooded area in the wee hours of the morning (trying to find a short cut home that ultimately got us lost), when C went into absolute freak out mode. He screamed at the top of his lungs, repeatedly smacked his face and arms, and shortly thereafter began to remove his clothes. Red, J, and I just stood there watching him with amused looks on our faces.
We had all been walking in a single file line down a trail, with C bringing up the rear, so it didn't occur to us that he, being the tallest of us all, had found a spider web that the three of us were lucky enough to miss. C is terrified of spiders after being bitten by a brown recluse many years ago, so every time he comes into contact with anything that might be a spider web, he is convinced that he is being attacked by the nasty little fiddlers again.
It took a half hour for him to be convinced that he wasn't dying, but there was no way in hell he was going through the rest of the wooded area not crouched to the point that he was shorter than us.
That is how I act when anywhere in the vicinity of snakes. I cease to be human. I spent quite a few years living in the country and was told many times how to act when I come into contact with snakes, but my few encounters with them have proven that the advice is useless. This doesn't apply only to poisonous snakes either. My step-father loves to tell the story of my meeting with a grass snake that was no longer than his foot. That little fucker made me afraid of our own back yard for months. I didn't care that it couldn't kill me. It was a snake, and that was all I needed to know.
This is why I have absolutely no desire to see "Snakes on a Plane". This is also why I will never likely visit the Everglades - at least willingly.
Apparently,there are quite a few Burmese pythons roaming around out there. They are not native to the area, but due to some Americans love of exotic pets, they have been able to call the Everglades home for a few years now. It seems that some people like the idea of owning a Burmese python until they realize that they can grow to over 20 feet long and get to over 200 pounds.
Eek! Little facts like that make it not matter that they don't have fangs! They actually have the ability to wrestle around with an alligator and not lose. The article talks about a dead python found with a six foot gator's legs and tail protruding from it's split open guts. The python was only 13 feet itself!
That tells me that I could easily be swallowed by one! There's an idea I'd rather not entertain!
It is thought that these not-so-little buggers were released into the wild by people who bought them when they were babies, only to realize that they don't stay babies forever. Now they are multiplying. The article interviews a man whose job it is to remove as many as possible from the Everglades. He has removed over 150 this year alone.
I really can't get too mad at people who own wierd pets. I myself have 3 hermit crabs. However, my babies will not get any bigger than my hand, and the worse pain they can give is to make me feel like I didn't wear green on St Patty's Day. Burmese pythons, on the other hand, can eat you. Why on earth would someone want to call one a pet?! And if someone absolutely has to have one, why not take it back to the pet store when their mind is changed?
I see no need to give those of us who are already terrified of snakes a new one to watch out for!