Monday, April 12, 2010


(Hey y'all. This little thing is called Memoir Monday, and I'd be thrilled if you gave it a shot. Just jot down a story about yourself, grab my code down there, and I'll link you up to be read by all my wonderful blog buddies. The only rule? It has to be true. I am personally doing what I can to help cure your case of the Mondays. Thanks for playing along!)

The year was a very long time ago, probably about 14 years ago. 

I was a young lad, still skinny and tall, and all full of adventure and shit. 

The setting was Camp Kiamichi, which is a Southern Baptist church camp set in the Kiamichi mountains of Oklahoma, where the normal summer temperature can range anywhere from 103 in the shade all the way to hot enough where pastors can say things like, "If you think it's hot HERE, how hot do you think Hell is?" 

So this is where a bunch of parents decide to dump their kids for the week, amongst the rock and mountains and various wildlife dangers. 

Well, one afternoon, my brother, my father and I were walking along a dusty trail on our way back to the cabin we were staying in. 

All of the sudden, Brad and I saw it. A lizard. 

There was a big thing that year about catching lizards. I guess it is something all young boys do, but for some reason, it was almost like a rite of passage. I mean, a girl would totally go steady with you if you could catch a lizard. Well, if you could catch a lizard AND you didn't have head lice, which is another story entirely. 

So here was this lizard, and much to my dad's amusement, Brad and I decide to catch it. So we start to corner it, and I'll be damned if it didn't run under a nearby rock, flip smooth over and play dead. 

Now I was used to seeing a lizard shed it's tail to evade capture, but I had never seen one play dead. This was before the Discovery channel, and it was before I knew that this particular lizard DOESN'T play dead. So I ambled up to catch the faking bastard, because you have to get up pretty early in the day to pull the wool over my eyes. 

My dad, being the level headed thinker he was, stopped me right before I put my hand under the rock. "Travis, hold on. I don't think lizards play dead. Hold on." So I held on. My dad got down on his hands and knees to peer under the rock, and I got down with him. That was when we saw this. 

For those of you who don't know, that is a Copperhead, and it is one of the few species of poisonous snakes we as Oklahomans have the privilege of sharing our state with. Turns out, our friend the lizard wasn't playing dead after all. He WAS dead. He had run under the wrong rock, which was a rock where I had nearly stuck my hand, and was about to be eaten by our good friend the Copperhead. 

However, my father decided he couldn't allow that snake to stick around a children's camp. I'd like to say he gently coaxed it into the open, then put it in a container and released it somewhere off the grounds. If you're a PETA supporter, then you can stop reading now. 

He poked at it with a stick until it came out from that rock, then he bashed its head in with another rock. Then  Brad and I took turns throwing rocks at it, then a few more kids took turns doing horrible things to it. From there we threw that sumbitch in the woods to be picked apart by birds and wild animals. 

And that is another way I almost died, and another reason why I'm still alive today because of my fathers wisdom. 

And his vicious snake beating skills. 

Other Non-Possum Playing Walks Down Memory Lane: (GO READ THEM!)


  1. Fucking hate snakes and if you are from PETA reading this, screw off. Snakes suck, just sayin.

    I have such a hard time writing about anything in my past. That being said I am going to try like hell to come up with something as I dig this meme. Will double dip next week if I can think up something in time and do this along with the MM.

  2. OMG!!! now i know what to do if ever faced with a cooperhead... *shiver*

    i'm playing again this week. i know i've been a slacker :(

  3. Pshaw....and you claim to have boy junk....

    Guys are such pansies about snakes. I don't see what the big deal is. Hubs freaks out about them too.

    I think they're cute.

  4. I am a vegetarian (for medical reasons) who does NOT support PETA, so we are good.

    As for the snake...I am so glad that your daddy killed that sucker. I hate snakes. Hate them. Don't care if they are poisonous or not, hate them all.

    In Missouri we have the cotton-mouth snake and my great-uncle saved my sister, brother and I from one.

    Snakes suck. I don't understand people who bring them into their homes and make them pets! Eeewwwwwww...

  5. WOW glad your daddy stopped you before you stuck your hand in there. Want to keep copperheads away from your house.. put cucumbe skins all under your house and around it. IF you are somewhere and smell cucumbers real strong there is a copperhead nearby.. just some FYI for future reference..

  6. I <3 your dad's snake skills!

    [Downunder with 8 of the world's most venemous snakes.. and lets' not even talk about the killer wombats!]

  7. I remember how exciting it was to see my dad kill snakes with a garden hoe! Now those were good times!

    I've been pretty lax in my blogging lately. I'm in this week, though.

  8. I HATE SNAKES...thank god I grew up in Indiana and we didn't have any "dangerous" snakes.

    Your story reminded me of a snake story of my I stole your idea.

    Check it out

  9. I grew up in NW Ohio farm country and there were snakes, but mostly the harmless ones. They didn't particularly bother me, but my dad and brother were scared of them.

    One time my brother was out jogging and came across a hognose snake in his path. Hognoses are harmless, but their defense is to rise up and flatten out their necks like cobras do.

    My brother, however, did not know this. So as he approached the hognose and it rose up, he jumped as high as he could over it and proceeded to set a new personal record for that particular run.

    I believe there was also a rather conspicuous trail left behind, as well.

  10. Snakes suck! That's all I have to say about that.

  11. Snakes shakes... killer kangeroos here. Especially when they hit the bumper.

  12. Oh, and for a bit of variety and no pets:

  13. Summer camp and snakes go together like peanut butter and jelly. Love it. I've got great memories of those. Good ol' Dad, eh? Glad there are no copperheads here.


  14. In my growing up days I've killed enough copperheads, cotton mouths, timber and diamond back rattlers and moccasins to give PITA people a conniption fit. Don't care. The fuckers are dead, dead, squashed.

  15. A#1) Bashing a snakes head in with a rock is good. Decapitating it with a shovel is even better. Especially when it turns out that the snake was a Garter snake and couldn't hurt you if it wanted to.

    B#2) I am a member of PETA


    And yes, that includes rattlesnake in addition to squirrel, buffalo, ostrich, impala, crocodile, and zebra.

    Ya bitches, I said Zebra.

  16. My husband would have shat himself, run off screaming and left the kiddies to save themselves.

  17. Oklahoma has mountains? I picture it as this flat area with lots of tornadoes. My excuse is that I never studied US geography in school.

    As kids in the mountains of NJ (yes, NJ has mountains, too) we used to play all the time in this rocky area that was between our yard and our neighbor's yard. Then some guy was there one day digging up rocks to get at some buried cable and found a whole nest of baby copperheads. After that our Moms decided that we should play in a different part of the yard.

  18. Great story. Never stick your hands down unknown holes.

    Love the blog.

  19. Vicious snake beating skills are essential.

    I'm playing even though it's not Monday anymore where I am. Work really cuts into my blogging time. Stupid job.

  20. I'm so very glad you survived those mother fucking snakes... so that you could write this blog post and host this carnival that i love so much but can't bring myself to participate i because i just don't write much on sunday night.. my goal is to change that soon...

  21. We have our fair share of the dangerous version in Texas. Shovels are a great decapitation tool.

  22. The last time I saw a Copperhead was when I spray-tanned my penis.

  23. We have copperheads here, and rattlers, but mostly just harmless snakes. My dad had balls like that too though. He'd catch a little garden snake and the damn things would bite his hand and he'd just let 'em hang on there, sometimes they were big enough that blood would be running down his hands. Yep. He either had ten ton balls or no brain.

  24. Wow - good thing daddy was along to save your ass! That show really knew what it was talking about, "Father Knows Best." And all this time I thought is was misogynistic. (Look it up. It means "hates women", or "prejudice against women".)

  25. I'm still shivering... I absolutely HATE snakes! You can thank my younger days in Oklahoma for that. I also don't swim in water where I can't see my feet because of all the creepy crawlies and nasty fishies in the lakes there. I get so freaked out and think that everything that slides past my legs is a snake.


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