How are you? I am fine.
Now down to business. This is a cease and desist letter.
I’m sorry that it’s come to this, but you leave me no other choice.
I yet again must insist that you stop being snakes. I understand that snakes have made great strides in the fields of mice eating and horror movie atmosphere. But that does not excuse your obvious blood-thirsty nature.
Only today, I found myself being chased out of the park by a garter snake that clearly had a taste for human flesh.
Granted, the garter snake did not chase me in the sense of coming near me at all. But it was there on the public path, refusing to let me feel safe passing, or feel safe staying anywhere in the park. Or even anywhere in the outdoors due to the snake’s threats of physical violence. I was forced to run flailing and screaming away.
So I must insist that you evolve immediately into something else. Preferably something fluffy. There is a shortage of panda bears. Wouldn’t you rather be panda bears?
If you ignore this request, I guarantee that I will continue to be terrified of you.
You’ve been warned.
Anonymous (I’m afraid the snakes will egg my house)
I don’t like snakes.
The best place I ever lived was Hawaii. They don’t have snakes in Hawaii. Not only that: they have an entire agency whose job it is to make sure there aren’t snakes in Hawaii. That agency put public service announcements on TV that said “Remember to keep your eyes open for snakes and if you see one, call us right away.”
These commercials touched me. I felt like I had been deputized by the Anti-Snake Department and I took that responsibility very seriously. When I would go out with friends, and we were walking outside, I would scour the ground looking for snakes. I was always extra vigilant around known snake hang-outs: in apple trees, on airplanes, and hanging around Disney villains.
Thankfully I never saw a snake. But I felt so much better knowing I was prepared if I did.
Here’s what I figured would happen if I had ever found a snake:
The Anti-Snake Department was #1 on my speed dial. I would call them and say, “THIS IS NOT A DRILL!” Their high-tech GPS detection devices would lock into my location. Within moments, black helicopters would fill the sky above us.
Out of the black helicopters would jump agents in their specially designed anti-snake suits that protect against both snake bites and acid venom spit (because I can’t remember if I saw that in a movie or a documentary about snakes). Of course, the agents would have an extra suit in my size. They have to keep their Deputy Snake Hunter Agents safe, too.
Now being seasoned professionals, they’d have sent an appropriate number of agents to handle the threat. I’d say about 100 agents per snake seen, with more waiting at the base to be deployed if needed.
Then they would dispose of the snake using the only proven 100% effective snake-disposal technique. It’s a 5 step process:
- First you decapitate the snake. That’s why the agents would be equipped with chain saws.
- Then you shoot the snake. All 100 agents would do this, just to be sure they really hit it.
- Then you use explosives to blow the snake pieces up.
- Then you light the remains on fire.
- Then you carefully gather all of the ashes, put them in a rocket, and send that rocket off to a distant corner of space.
That seems like the most logical approach to me anyway.
I still have that number in my phone even though I haven’t lived in Hawaii for years. I’m hoping that the Anti-Snake Department’s “No agent left behind” policy applies to deputies, too.
July 9, 2016 at 8:30 am
I like snakes if they’re seasoned well and served with beans and guacamole.
July 10, 2016 at 6:11 am
Yes, Florida has non-indiginous Burmese Pythons that are destroying the ecosystem, and big enough to snack on alligators! yikes!
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July 10, 2016 at 10:24 am
Thanks for telling me. I’ll be sure to call you at 3am when I wake up screaming from my nightmare of being eaten by a python because the zipper on my alligator costume is broken so I can’t get out of it. (To be fair, though, a lot of my dreams already start out with me trapped in an alligator suit with a defective zipper.)
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July 10, 2016 at 6:50 am
Dear Themelesswriting. (I’m using the title of your blog because I don’t know your name.)
I am a snake. There are a few things you should know about us before you want to destroy us completely. I am writing here to try to rectify some of you misconstrued ideas.
First of all, not all of us are poisonous, and of those of us that are, many won’t actually kill you. The venom isn’t strong enough to kill a creature your size.
We destroy many of the vermin that pester you. I mean rats and mice. (yum) Did you know that a single rat could have as many as 1 million descendants in only 18 months without some form of predation. We can get into those little corners where your pest controllers can’t.
Rats and mice like the same things to eat as you, so they can devastate agriculture without some control. We can help greatly with that. So you won’t go hungry as long as we’re around.
We shed our skins, as you know, when they get a bit tight. These skins contain nutrients that are returned to the earth as they decay. As well as that, our shed skins help to protect other animals. the ground squirrel eats them, then licks its fur so it smells of rattlesnake. Predators then steer clear, thinking one of us is around. thus the little squirrel. whom I’m sure you like, lives a bit longer.
Birds too, sometimes hang the shed skins on their nests, thus keeping predators away, who think snakes are there. (not very bright, some of these predators.)
We are part of the ecology of the world. There are many food chains that get tangled into food webs. In those webs, we appear on different levels. Sometimes we are the ones who are eating others, but equally, we are often the eaten. (Not something I like to consider too much.) These food webs are what keeps life on this little planet of ours. Disrupt them at your peril. Oh, you’re doing that quite successfully already, I forgot.
So we’re food for many other things. Sometimes snakes will eat other snakes. (Horrid thought.) We’re also eaten by mongooses (nasty little beasts) birds of prey (there’s one actually called the snake eating eagle) all the different species of cat, coyotes, wild boar and even some frogs. Without us you might see a world without some of those creatures you actually like,
Finally, our venom. This is what frightens you, or at least most people. However, our venom is currently the subject of medical research. It has been used for lowering blood pressure, heart failure and could in the future be used to make a strong painkiller, and to help stroke victims as well as a possible cure for cancer. Do you want to forego these possibilites?
Your ‘final solution’ seems to me to be very nasty. I accept your fear of us. You aren’t alone, but before you put this into practice, remember all I’ve said, and also that there are many of us who are harmless.
Oh, and before I go, You are so much bigger than most of us, and more powerful, and so we will generally run away rather than confront you. Usually we only attack if we feel threatened.
Have a nice day.
July 10, 2016 at 10:47 am
Wow, that was very informative! I also never knew snakes could type and had such impeccable spelling. Unfortunately now I have to add to my list of snake-related fears that my job as blogger will someday be outsourced to snakes. 🙂
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July 27, 2016 at 1:36 pm
Very nice. I’ll have to share this with a Florida friend who shares your feelings about snakes.