It probably had babies, too

Right now at this very moment, my dear, sweet mother is shaking in her shoes on her driveway. I just got off of the phone with her and for about 14 minutes, she made me laugh harder than I have laughed in quite some time. This is how it all went down just a few moments ago when she called me at work:

Moi: Hello?

Madre (with obvious panic in her voice): Angie? Caden…oh no…

I should pause here for just a second to let you know that with the level of panic I detected in her voice coupled with the fact she used Caden’s name right off the bat, my heart started thumping wildly. I was suddenly afraid she was calling to tell me he’d been hit by a car on his bike, broken a limb, cut his fingers off his right hand, smashed his head, was lost somewhere – you know, the typical mother worries that can pop in your head within a matter of milliseconds. Thankfully no, this was not the case.

Madre (in extreme distress): Caden…he just caught two snakes!!

Moi (obviously relieved Caden wasn’t maimed somewhere): What?? He caught TWO snakes? Where?

Madre (hysteria creeping throughout her tortured self): In the front yard! We were in the garden and two snakes came out and Caden was very brave and caught them! He’s holding one right now – eeek!!! (except read that more as a shriek of unholy nature – I think I almost went deaf at that point)

I have to say at this point I just started to laugh out loud. My mother is terrified – TERRIFIED – of creepy, crawling things. Namely snakes and spiders. She will jump a mile at the mere shadow of one of these creatures and here she was, watching her grandson hold one of these terrifying beings within his two tiny little hands. She was freaked.

Moi (starting to shake with uncontrollable laughter): Are you okay? What’s he going to do with the snake?

Madre (still shrieking and gasping from time to time): Ugh! Keep it away from me! Caden! Don’t drop it!

I hear in the background Caden talking to my mom and trying to reassure her, “Grandma, don’t worry, I’ve got it. I’ll protect you!” Then the voice of Ella, my little two year old niece, sweetly asking my mom, “Gamma, what’s wrong? What’s wrong? Let’s go see the snake!”

Madre (voice going in and out because she’s shaking so bad the phone isn’t staying next to her mouth): Ugh, Angie, it’s just so…eek! Look at it! It’s tongue! Eww, it’s tongue is flicking in and out! Ugh…that just bugs me! I’m trying not to scare my grandchildren but I’ll have you know that I am within a foot of that snake and – EEEEK!!!!

Chaos broke out over the phone. All I can hear is my mom shrieking, Ella laughing with glee, Caden repeating, “I got it! I got it!” My mom is making noises found in high octaves singers can only aspire to, panicking like nothing I’ve ever heard before, and here I was sitting at my desk at work, doubled over in laughter. I tell you, the tears were just starting to stream down my cheeks.

Moi (laughing, trying to compose myself): Mo-(laughter)…Mo-om! What happened? What’s going on?

Madre (in obvious distress and yet hysterically laughing herself): He DROPPED it! He dropped the snake!

Moi: Did he catch it again?

Madre (shaken and still trying to control herself): I bet we have a whole PIT of snakes under our driveway! Ugh!! Ohhhhh…you are soooo paying me for today, I think. (starts laughing again)

Meanwhile, my youngest sister Allison has just arrived home to this scene of chaos on the driveway – my mom frazzled with her phone up to her ear, Caden holding a snake and counting himself very brave, and Ella fascinated by the confusion and the snake and wanting to touch it (“Don’t touch it, Ella!!”).

Madre (half talking, half crying of sorts): Oh, oh, oh – Allison’s here, now. Allison! Look at Caden what found – and there’s another one in the garbage can trapped over there!! Ugh, ugh, ugh!!!

I can hear Allison’s laughter starting to peal through the phone as well and little does she know I am joining her and trying not to relish the fact that our mother has gone to pieces.

Madre (still so upset and her voice climbing higher and higher): It’s not funny! We have to get rid of it! Ewww! Ewww!!! Get it out of here!!

Moi (laughing so hard I can barely breathe at this point): Mom! Mom! Have Allison take a picture and send it to me!

I can picture the scene perfectly in my head but I would like it captured forever digitally. It would be such a nice cover for the family Christmas card this year. Don’t you agree, Mom? 🙂



  1. amanda · June 2, 2008

    CLASSIC! There are few things, I mean FEW things, I love more than watching my mom freak out over stuff that seems comical. Man, I almost wish I could’ve been there to see this! Snakes don’t bug me at all, but I get a small thrill out of watching people get hysterical. Then again, if this story centered around a huge spider or cricket, well…that’s just not funny at all.

  2. Katie Demcak · June 2, 2008

    Now I know why mom didn’t answer the phone earlier when I tried to call her! I can totally see her freaking out, I just wish I could have been there to see it! Ahhhh mother. Those are the things that I miss! Hope all is well with everything including selling the house!

  3. Mom · June 3, 2008

    I live to make your lives more enjoyable!!! Thank me that I’ve only transferred a few of my numerous phobias to you…certainly evidence of excellent parenting. My TERROR of snakes stems from a combination of the Garden of Eden story and the fact that my older brothers chased me with snakes…(see the obvious connection with the devil??? I condsider this an entirely appropriate response to evil. I know that you will be surprise to know that my friends and I had a pet snake named George. To be a member of our club you had to let George slither down your blouse. I want you to know that I was a member of the club in good standing…George unfortunately died (from being mauled to death) but we did have a funeral in true Thomasina (a movie that was popular then) fashion. I wrote a tribute to George and the services included a very sad procession, prayers for his salvation and plenty of tears….although I must admit I was not one of the criers. His little carcass can probably still be found resting peacefully in his satin lined shoebox in the field across from Grandpa’s house.

    Anyway, I’m thinking of revising my cardio fitness plan….Weed garden–see snake-heart rate excalates to the maximal cardiac output range and stays that way for 3 hours while I continue to sit at my desk doing paperwork. If I can only figure out how to mediate the chest pain, I think I’m really onto something.

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