Why would anyone play with snakes?
“Momma look what I brought you.”
My son James was so eager to show me what he considered “my prize” this weekend. Drinking a soft drink in my recliner, I leaned over to look inside the cup he held between his dirty little hands.
A small snake began to slither his way up inside the cup toward my face.
I immediately hurled my ice cubes into the air and ejected myself like a fighter pilot out of my chair.
“What...it’s a snake,” I yelled, unsure of what to do next. “Get it outside. Hurry.”
Shoving poor James outside on the front porch, I noticed the sneaky little man was snickering the whole time.
When I ripped the front door open, his daddy was on the front porch steps.
My husband Jason was about as red as a tomato from laughing so hard.
James even grabbed the tiny snake and began to jingle it like Christmas bells while Jason gave him a high five.
“What is wrong with ya’ll,” I asked, wiping my forehead. “What possessed you to send him in the house with a snake? Are you out of your mind?”
Jason grabbed the snake from James and began to play with it in between his fingers.
“It’s just a little grass snake,” he said. “They can’t hurt you. You think I would let him pick up one that would have hurt him?”
My eyes began to squint together, and I felt my Irish temper fuel up.
“I never know what you’re liable to let anybody do,” I said, slamming the door.
Heading back to the living room, I noticed an ice cube hit the television set. My soft drink was now on the floor.
Wiping up the sticky mess, I continued to grumble.
“Bringing a snake inside the house,” I mumbled. “What is wrong with them.”
I immediately began to call my girlfriends to vent about what just happened.
He did what?
I would have killed Jason.
What do you mean, a snake?
I heard everything you can imagine from them. And leave it to my Momma to bring the harshest comment of all. She is a nurse, and for some reason everything leads to death.
“He doesn’t need to give snakes to James,” Momma said. “He is going to pick up a mean one next and get attacked. I have seen kids come in with snake bites, and they lose their whole arm.”
That was just the cherry on top for me that day.
Throughout the day, I looked outside the window to check on the boys as they continued their yard duties. Even without trying to worry about scaring me, those two continued to play with snakes they uncovered in the flower bed.
Jason would throw the small snakes on the ground, and James would dance around them. He would pick them up and show them to Jason, who would do the same thing.
“Playing with snakes,” I said to myself. “Who does that?”
Apparently, most boys do play with the small grass snakes because I began to hear other stories of all the “prizes” little boys bring to their Mommas. Jason’s mother said she often came home to a bowl of worms in the refrigerator that her boys thought she would want to see.
I guess I just better get my nerves ready.
But if I find a bowl of worms in my fridge, Jason might have to be put in time out.