I feel pretty fortunate to live relatively close to my parents for the time being. After I turned 18 I pretty much left for 7 years straight except for the occasional holiday and I believe that took a toll on the family because I am the only one they had. I guess youthful indiscretion can be at times better worded as selfishness. But now that I am older I recognize the importance of spending family time even when this happens.
So I am at work, knee deep in superficial issues and figuring out other peoples dilemmas when I get a cellphone call from my Mom. I make a point to not answer personal calls at work but then she called again before the voice mail alert beeped. Maybe it is the fact that there are elderly people in my family and I am extremely paranoid over the well being of my parents, because I broke my cardinal rule and picked up.
“Bill, you need to come home right now”, Mom said in a shaky voice. My heart stopped.
I asked what happened as I frantically made my way to the elevator. There was a long pause and then she quickly said she would call me right back and hung up. As soon as I reached the bottom floor I made my way to the parking deck, my mind racing on every conceivable emergency. Did something happen to my Dad? Did my final Grandparent pass? Did one of my little cousins get ill? What could it be?
Now, I love my Mom but I know that she exaggerates the severity of issues. It’s not her fault, it was just how she was raised. We all have someone in the family that takes a situation and adds a touch of irrational thought and a pinch of panic. That’s her. So as I was driving out the garage I figured unless someone was dead I needed to subtract at least 20% from whatever I was about to be told. And then the phone rang.
I quickly demanded to know what was going on and then Mom said in a voice of pure excitement, “There’s a snake in the garage!”
Yep, there was a snake in the garage and I left every pending issue of corporate importance to drive 30 miles and due battle with a snake. I have to tell you that was a relief. I instructed her to call animal control and I would be there as soon as possible and not to shoo it out herself. If you think Mom would get excited to see a snake I couldn’t even comprehend the story if she was bit. Epic scale my friends.
So she informed me she already called 911. God I wish I could have heard that conversation. I imagine it would have gone like this:
911 Operator: 911, what is your emergency?
Mom: There is a huge snake in the garage!
911: Ma’am, can you describe what the snake looks like?
Mom: I don’t know, but it’s walking around on it’s hind legs! Come quick!
So I finally got there after I spent time on the phone consoling my very bothered Mom. I walked into the garage and saw no sign of a snake but I have seen Animal Planet. I know these thing coil in the furthest corners. So I peered over the first place that I would go if I were a snake and I found him. And it was exactly what I feared. A copperhead snake and it was poisonous. Fuck.
I have very bad luck when it comes to handling dangerous or any non-domesticated animals. I am always the one to walk away from a petting zoo with the handlers saying, “So sorry Billy, Danny the Deer has never ran down and bitten someone like that before.” So my chances of getting said snake from the opposite corner of the garage to it’s natural environment without getting bitten was not good. So I did what any guy in a suit with zero training would do. I took two golf irons and picked it up. (don’t do this)
Surprisingly, everything was going smooth. The snake wasn’t flipping out, I didn’t trip, Mom didn’t faint. Nope, 90% of the journey was smooth as silk. Right up to the point I gently put him/her down on the driveway. Then the little bugger did the unexpected.
Every nature show I have seen on TV paints the picture that snakes, when caught and then let go, take off into the wilderness because “it is more scared of you than you are of it”. Bullshit. That little bastard was on the ground for about ten seconds after I laid it down, sticking it’s tongue out with it’s head raised. Then right before I felt a sense of accomplishment it turned and made a beeline right for my leg. (shakes)
I don’t remember how I got to the end of the driveway. I think I miracled myself there. Regardless, that little bastard took approximately 30 dignity points away from me and fused my heart to the base of my throat. Jeff Corwin, suck it.
So we waited until animal control came and it took the guy about an hour to check the entire garage and came up empty. So now the next time I visit the folks I have to be worried about a very pissy foot long snake that wants to bite me. Winter can not come soon enough.
As for Mom, she may never use the garage again. I feel bad that I botched that up but she still made me a sandwich and lemonade. It’s funny that moms have a way of fixing issues through food.
Holy shit, Will! Just the story almost made me pee my pants… I can’t imagine actually handling that frigging thing!
Despite what happened, your mom HAS to see you as her hero. Yup, sandwich and lemonade… that’s hero treatment.
You think so? She always made me food after a defeat in sports or after a trip to the ER as if to say “it’s ok, eat”.
To be honest, it was about as long as my fore arm. Not so impressive. But he was quick.
Man, this is going to be me in 20 years…calling Max so he can kill the spider in the bath tub or whatnot. I hope he is as good a son as you.
I think I’d pay to see you, in a suit no less, running(screaming?) from a snake.
Not to say that I wouldn’t do the same.
Snakes can be sneaky. A few years back I had a 6 foot long Boa. We were letting her roam around my place when she got into the couch. It took 9 hours to get her out! Imagine 6 feet of muscle wrapped around the frame of a couch…it was not an easy task. However, I wouldn’t be glad to see an unknown snake in my garage.
As for mom’s…they’ll always call us for the smallest of things. My mother will call me before making certain decisions just to get my take. I wish I appreciated her awesomeness more when I was younger. 🙂
first a spider and now a snake. you better watch out for bats in the near future!
And here I thought that this was going to be another story about your keys. Or, in the snake case, a belt.
But damn…hero indeed. I have a corn snake myself, non-poisonous, but Idon’t want it to get out of his cage…
Snakes, along with spiders, bees, and any other wild animal that has the potential to bite if they are aggravated scare the CRAP out of me!! I think I would try to shoo it away wtih a broom, like a janitor broom. One time about 4-5 years ago now I worked at a cemetary for about 10 months and my main job was mowing. We mowed on a ride on mower and it was actually quite an easy job, the mowing part anyway. The mowing I looked forward to. Anyway we saw bull snakes here and there they lived in the shade so we weren’t too afraid of them.
One time I saw one in grass and it scared the crap outta me and I thought ah ha and turned the blades on (I was driving on the road with the blades off my best friend was across the cemetery I was driving the mower over to talk to him) and ran the fucker over!! I didn’t see him and then I went back and saw his tail so I think he went to his home and bled to death. People might feel sorry for the snake and I don’t do stuff like that that often but you know I thought it was cool at the time.
Nice new Icon buddy!
I kept feeling something crawling around me while I read….growing up by a river gave me a fear of snakes up close.
And you’re doing that thing you do again. You know, writing so much I feel like crap for not doing better with my own stuff. Gah. How do you find the time?…..
“I think I miracled myself there.”
Abso-fucking-lutely. You are clearly a superhero and your next mission is to save the world.
Personally, I think it’s a better super power than falling off of a building and surviving.
Save the Billy, Save the world.
Wow, what is it with snakes lately? I posted a picture a couple of weeks ago of the snake I found in my neighborhood, but mine wasn’t of the poison variety. That didn’t stop a lady from killing it with a shovel (which greatly traumatized me). Tuchi (that’s what imp had named his picture) didn’t go without a fight either. RIP Tuchi. I’m not into poisonous snakes though.
“Pinch of panic”– loved it!
Your a braver man than I am! I’d have left the little bugger in the corner and staid in the house till animal control arrived! I gotta agree with Josh though, I’d have paid to see you running and screaming down the drive way too!
“I miracled myself there” is the best line ever. Have to remember to use this someday. I can’t believe you actually picked it up. I’m not afraid of snakes but I don’t know how to tell them apart so unless someone says it’s a garden snake I’m not touching it. Very heroic!!
Oh I’m sure the snake has made itself at home in your mom’s flower bed and is just hanging out until you show up again, ready to pump you full of poison. I hate to be the one to bring this up… but did anyone find a stray egg laying around???
Give yourself a break. I would’ve screamed so loudly every dog on the planet would now be deaf. There’s no way in hell I’d attempt to remove it with a blow torch, let alone some golf clubs. My mom’s arms aren’t broken — she can deal with it. While Animal Control most likely wanted to kick your ass, to your mom you were THE man.
P.S. Jeff Corwin is crazy.
I got to sit here safely and read this, but you even gave ME the shakes when you described those scary moments right after the release….you really mustn’t scare me like that…(and i’m a little extra freaked-out ’cause snakes were always the leading actors in my childhood nightmares)
So yeah…ummm…glad you didn’t get poisoned 🙂
Oh maaan, that reminded me of the time I had to try and murderlize a Rattler cause it was laying on the only path out of the office.
Needless to say, I missed…
We think he’s gone, but we still spaz when the bushes outside the office make noise.
Geez, that is scary. Your poor mom.
I was searching ways of how to get rid snake in the garage and I saw your story. I was thinking the same way, checking where that creature is at and use probably a stick and bag to catch him. (I changed my mind) I do not even know what kind of snake is in there. But I am very excited to know what is in there!
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