Friday, February 18, 2005

Things I Almost Did But Didn't Quite Do...

Inspired by Deana's blog of 50 things she never has done and by Chad's blog of 25 things he has done, I am listing 10 things that I almost did but didn't quite do:

1. I almost didn't have Deana as a daughter. My wife's second pregnancy failed so we tried again. Out popped Deana...

2. I almost went swimming in one of the bottomless lakes outside of Roswell, New Mexico. I chickened out.

3. I almost made a career out of public accounting. I earned an accounting degree at Abilene Christian College. Two years after graduation I decided I did not like accounting.

4. I almost crashed while landing a Cessna 172 aircraft at the Abilene Municipal Airport. Wind shear nearly pushed my plane to the ground prior to reaching the runway.

5. I almost experienced being bitten by a water moccasin snake.

6. I almost experienced being bitten by a sidewinder rattlesnake.

7. I almost experienced being bitten by a copperhead snake.

8. I almost drowned in the Y.M.C.A swimming pool in Beaumont, Texas.

9. I almost spent the night in jail in Beaumont, Texas.

10. I almost thought of 10 things that I almost did but didn't quite do. Nine are all that I could strum up.

Monday, February 07, 2005

Hoop Snakes

Recently a columnist wrote in the Houston Chronicle about Hoop Snakes. The Hoop Snake is a rare breed or at least seldom seen. The snake clamps onto its own tail with its mouth. Then it balances vertically and moves about by rolling like a wagon wheel or a tire.
I noted this article because I saw a Hoop Snake just last week. I was watching from a rear window of my home. The birds were flocking in our back yard to peck birdseed I had just scattered.
Out of the corner of my eye I glimpsed an unfamiliar motion. I looked and thought I saw a hula hoop rolling over the fence. My first thought was that a kid had lost the hoop in the high winds.
But when I looked more closely, I saw that it was not a hula hoop. The hoop would roll then stop, roll then stop. I realized that the hoop was a living creature. It had a mind of its own. Then I saw the eyes. Snake eyes as it were. There was a mouth. And there was the tail in the mouth. I thought to myself, "That is a snake with its tail in its mouth and it is rolling upright on the ground."
I ran to get my camera. Then slowly I eased out through the back door. Fortunately the snake was still there. I stepped closer and raised the camera. Just as I was about to snap the shutter, someone tapped me on the shoulder. I looked around and there to my surprise was Bigfoot. Bigfoot said he needed a match because he wanted to go camping. I was in such shock that I gave Bigfoot a match without saying a word.
Then I turned back around to get a picture of the Hoop Snake. But the snake was gone. He must have rolled over the fence into the neighbor's yard. The thought struck me, "Drat it. But at least I can take a picture of Bigfoot." I wheeled around to photograph Bigfoot. He was gone.
So, because of Bigfoot, I missed getting a photo of the Hoop Snake. And because of the Hoop Snake, I missed getting a picture of Bigfoot.
You know, it's unbelievable that these two rare creatures showed up in my back yard on the same day.

My interest in Hoop Snakes has been heightened. If you have ever sighted a Hoop Snake please write up your story in a reply to this blog.

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