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Trustworthy Snakes...

By Ed Williams

Here's a true story for y"all to think about...

Several years ago, down in South America, two women went out late one night to do a little fishing. They put their small canoe into a tiny tributary of the mighty Amazon River and began slowly floating along. The roles the two women were to play in their quest for fish were simple - one held a flashlight, and the other held a stick with a spike on the end of it that would be used to gig the fish. They floated out into the water, the light from their flashlight scanning the murky liquid in a search for some much needed food.

The women slowly made their way along and managed to gig several fish, a couple of them really nice ones. They had just finished gigging another, when the lady handling the flashlight shone it out over the water ahead of them and saw what appeared to be a large tree stump. When the stump suddenly moved, both women were startled and quickly realized that what they had observed was not a tree stump but an anaconda, one of the largest snakes in the world.

The lady holding the flashlight figured the snake was an omen and mentioned to her friend that they should call it an evening. Her friend, to her surprise, scoffed at her request and said that if the big snake approached their boat that she intended to drive the stick she was holding right down its throat. Upon hearing that, the lady holding the light became convinced that it was time to call it an evening. She informed her friend that she was leaving, handed her the flashlight, and then stepped over the side of the boat and out into the water. The water was very shallow, only about two-and-one-half to three feet deep, and the woman quickly walked out and made her way on up onto the riverbank. During the few moments that it took her to do that, the large anaconda swam up underneath the small canoe, moved on up into it, wrapped two coils around the woman who remained, and then pulled her back into the river. Her friend on the bank turned around just in time to see her vanish underneath the surface. Needless to say, after she comprehended what had just occurred she ran back to her village and told everyone about what had just happened.

Search parties were formed to search for the large snake, and after about three weeks of looking they were finally successful. The huge anaconda was found underneath a large tree, and there was no doubt that this was the right one due to the fact that it had an extremely large lump showing in its middle, a human being sized lump. The snake was quickly killed, cut open, and the woman's body was recovered. The tribal elders of the village buried her the next day, and the skin of the snake ended up in the Maritime Museum in Key West, Florida, which is where Will and I saw it a few years ago - the museum's curator told us the story behind it after he saw us both staring at it.

The morals of this story are:

1. Fishing for food in a body of water inhabited by super large snakes who are also quite hungry is probably not the smartest thing in the world to do.

2. If you find you are compelled to do this anyway, take one of the following people along with you to help you: a New Jersey tax collector, Matthew Lesko, or Carrot Top.

3. At least a real snake doesn't hide what it wants, and proceeds to ruthlessly go after it. "Human snakes almost always hide what they want, but they are just as ruthless as their reptilian counterparts, if not more so. Their "bite can hurt a lot more, if you think about it.

4. Remember to live each day to its fullest, because truly anything can happen. Truly anything.......

About The Author
Ed's latest book, "Rough As A Cob, can be ordered by calling River City Publishing toll-free at: 877-408-7078. He's also a popular after dinner speaker, and his column runs in a number of Southeastern publications. You can contact him via email at:, or through his web site address at:


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