Here is the adventure Dad was talking about, Jesse. There’s a picture at the bottom, but I recommend reading about it first. 🙂

I was sitting in my room on Thursday night, when Dad came in and asked me if I thought I could identify a snake that Mom found under the kitchen sink in Grandpa’s apartment. She’d evidently been sitting in there when she heard a loud banging under the sink. It seemed too loud for a mouse, so she assumed it was a larger rodent of some kind and called Dad to see what it was.

I am terrible at identifying snakes, but I reluctantly agreed to come down and take a peek. By the time I got there, the snake was already making its way back through a hole in the wall cut out for the sink drain. I watched the long black tail disappear and I assumed it was a black rat snake, since I knew they were common and we’d found them in our house before. We were a little disappointed that it got away and were about to go back to work when Luke called from Grandpa’s bedroom, “Here it is! I found it! It’s behind the bed.”

Luke and I pulled the bed back from the closet door while someone ran to get a tank. We were hoping to catch it so that Mom’s biology students could see it the next day. As we closed in on the snake, we all began to hear a faint rattling sound every couple seconds. All of us assumed it was a chair, or some other piece of furniture close to the snake. All of sudden Luke, who was on his belly trying to keep the snake from retreating back into the wall, clearly saw it lift its tail up in the air and rattle it. He jumped up quickly and backed away. We still weren’t positive it was a rattle snake, but we decided we wouldn’t take any chances. We got our clubs. I coaxed it out of the closet and Dad promptly mashed it with his sturdy one-by-four.

All full of adrenalin, we laughed and went back to work while Mom went downstairs to find out what kind of snake it was. After reading a little on the internet, Mom went back into the room to see if she could identify the snake by its eyes. She noted, on first entering that the snake seemed quite lively for dead snake—quite, quite lively. It took her a moment to realize that she was staring at a second that had come out of the wall in our absence. A little surprised, she fetched Dad, who fetched me, who fetched Luke and the three of us went in with boards and killed the second snake–though we were pretty sure it was harmless.

We joked about them being Romeo and Juliet and about a third one coming as we went down to help mom figure out what they were. A little while later, Luke went in to peek at the bodies and noticed a third go slithering under Grandpa’s bed. Back we all went with our boards to kill the third one. We were just getting our snake-bashing down to an art when Mom discovered a website that said rat snakes rattle their tails as a defense against predators. It went on to note that this often results in their demise. x) We were glad, of course, that they weren’t rattle snakes but felt a little bad that we’d just slaughtered three innocent rat snakes probably tangled up in some kind of twisted love triangle. (Mom’s theory is that the racket she heard was the two males fighting over the female.) A fourth never came, and the next day we cleaned up all the blood and buried the evidence in the back yard.

Click here to see the carnage.

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