Snake Snatching

In my family’s franchise of businesses – the Potomac Bead Company jewelry craft stores – theft is a common problem. You can easily imagine how simple it is in such large stores to drop small objects into a purse or pocket. Extensive efforts with cameras and employee vigilance are a constant reality … especially keeping an eye on products made of silver.

We hate it, but in a small way we are able to understand that there is value in these objects.

But stealing a snake?? Snake-snatching? Reptile-robbing?

First of all, the very concept of a snake store is bizarre for my way of thinking. What kind of business plan would an entrepreneur in reptiles take to the bank for a business loan? I’d simply like to read the portion about the target customer base!

It is just so sweet and cute - makes you want to go right out and buy one for $500!

Well, at a Sacramento business called Serpentarium, a thief brazenly broke the lock on a cage and stole a baby ball python. This particular snake was the off-spring of two pythons with different coloration patterns, and only about 25% of the snake babies born from such a union are known as “Bumblebee Ball Pythons.” This loveable little cuddly ball of joy was selling for $475!

Clearly my son Nathan had the wrong vision for his business empire! He should have gone into snakes instead of beads.

There is so much about this world that I do not understand.

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Snake Loving “Friends”

So… these are the kinds of friends I have! One of them – whose initials are Tim Thorpe – posts the following picture on Facebook and says, “This makes me think of my friend Randy.”

Random Snake in South Florida

Then, my other friend – whose initials are Russ Ellis – comments that, “It looks just like the one I saw going down Dam 4 Road!”

OK, so, I know there ain’t no snake like this around Downsville. But, the caption on the picture said it was in Florida … the place I was going the very day I saw the picture!  The place I am as you are likely reading this – if you see it the day I post it.

So, Tim and Russ … watch your step. I always laugh last!

Smokey Snake

“Only you can prevent snake escape,” could be the public service announcement by a cute talking snake in Florida named “Smokey.” (Oh, hold it, there is no way to make a snake look cute!). The 5-foot long boa constrictor escaped from his aquarium and was found in the garden next door.

The even worse part about people owning pet snakes is not simply the troubling nature of the fact that they see this creature as a pet, but that they themselves are … well … how to say this gently … ah … not likely to be people who scored 800 per section on the SAT.

Snake escape stories abound daily on the internet, and the clueless owner always has some version of “I just don’t know how Foofie got out of his container.”  Ah, maybe they shouldn’t be in a container?

To quote the news story, “I just want to take him home,’” <the owner> said, still a little choked up at the thought of losing Smokey.

(I’m not making this up …) She said she was just glad to be able to bring the pet snake home, where she also has three Chihuahuas — Dynamite, Peanut Butter and Lucy. It seems to me that better names for those dogs would be Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner! Isn’t this a little bit like keeping a pet lion in a homemade cage in your sheep pen?

I’ll never understand the “pet snake” oxymoron.

Snakes for Christmas

A regular feature of my old blog was the inclusion of snake stories. There seem to be no shortages in the world of news accounts of snakes being in the most unlikely and distasteful of places.

I am surely not alone in my aversion to these most dreadful of creatures. I’ll use a separate posting at another time to explain my problem with snakes, but suffice it to simply state here two indisputable truths about slithering serpents – one logical and one theological:

Logical – there is nothing positive about a snake. Don’t tell me there are good snakes! Every last one of them will bite you given the opportunity.

Theological – oh, who could it be that chose a snake to incarnate?… Oh, hmmm, who could it be? Could it be….. SATAN?!?!?

I never understood why getting a lump of coal in one’s stocking was such a bad thing at Christmas … especially now that I heat with a coal stove. No, coal is good! If you really want to zap your kid at Christmas, put a snake in his stocking! Even Jesus thought that this would be THE mega-zappo! “Which of you, if your son asks for bread, will give him a stone. Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake?” (Matthew 7:9-10). There you have it; case closed!

OK, so here’s the Christmas snake story – A family in North Carolina set up their freshly cut tree in the house, and even decorated it … but then noticed one of the colorful sort of candy cane ornaments was moving! Ugh! I always thought artificial trees were a bit wimpy… but now, I see that they are a sign of wisdom and prudence and safety!