Did I ever mention how much I hate snakes? How I have an Indiana Jones-like fear and loathing for them? This morning, my son Lucas and I were out in Starhill fishing in the pond with my dad and some friends. At mid-morning, I walked away from the pier and up towards the camp, and came upon a large canebreak rattler, slithering across the porch, looking for food.

One of the men fishing ran to his truck to get his pistol. We had a small drama, involving much rattling, and ending with the rattlesnake’s body being separated from its head (see above; the execution had just taken place, hence the snake’s reflexes still keeping his rattles erect). Sucker had 10 rattlers, and a button. I had just a couple of minutes earlier been walking right where I found him. It’s unnerving to think about what might have happened had one of the little boys fishing with us stumbled upon him instead of me.

That’s the only thing I hate about living in south Louisiana: the big snakes.