Dear Incredibly Handsome Mr. Knowitall,

I’m thinking of getting a pet snake. Do you have any advice?

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Snakes are rare, and intriguing creatures. Found only on one continent, they are prized for their fine pelts, and winning personalities. There are three basic kinds of snakes that the beginning snake collector should consider. Try to think about which kind fits your lifestyle and needs the best. First, there are the pathetic, lame, wimpy ones. These are the kind that no one really wants. They don’t have poison, and can hardly kill anything. The only type of people who would want this kind of a snake would be infants, and possibly really old people. I’m not certain of this; I’ve never talked to any really old people so I can’t be sure.

The second kind are the really cool ones you see in movies such as King Kong, and… Well, that’s the only one I can think of right now. These are like having your own personal monster. They can crush pretty much anything; even cars and most types of buses. And they have enough poison to kill eleven strong men. (And about 13 women.) (And maybe 40 small dogs.) (And if my math is correct: 9,347 sparrows)

The third kind are Basilisks. I don’t recommend these, as one glance from them turns you to stone.

So now that you’ve decided which kind you want, (The cool poisonous viper) you will need to know how to handle them. There are 3 things you need to know about the personality of venomous snakes:

  1. They are smarter than we give them credit for. About as smart as High School graduate who was home-schooled in a log cabin in Alaska.
  2. They love getting their faces rubbed. It soothes them.
  3. They are always less afraid of you than you are of them.

Understanding the inner workings of your snake is the key to training, and enjoying your pet. Also: to become the Reigning World Champion Snake Charmer. The first thing you need to do is to show them the respect they deserve. This is the only way you can build the necessary trusting relationship. Snakes need to feel loved and needed. They need to feel like they are the only thing you think about night and day. Learn their ‘Love Language’. For some snakes it is touch. Just a simple caress or poke in the eye when you get home from work will make them feel special and loved. Others want you to clean the house for them. They might think that you don’t care about the relationship unless you are on your knees scrubbing the toilets incessantly. Some just need serious talk time. They want to hear all about your day, who said what, and what you are thinking about. And they HATE it when you say, “Nothing.”. They know you were thinking something!

Building this ‘Trust Bond’ takes time. It varies based on the family of snake. The deadly cobra takes about a year, the venomous rattle-snake requires two years, and the perilous sea snake can take up to five years. (Because the water-to-air density discrepancy mitigates Trust like you wouldn’t believe!)

Once you have achieved the Trust Bond you will be well on your way to victory in the World Champion Snake Charmer competition which is held every 13 years on a skull-shaped, volcanic island just north of Fiji.

With the following knowledge, you can train your snake to do things you may not have ever imagined in your wildest dreams. (You know, the one where you are piloting some kind of giant, inflatable emu through a canyon full of cheese spaceships that keep shooting at your emu, and you have to peck them away before it pops, but your brother just shows up out of nowhere and keeps hitting you with an electrified shovel, and you’re like, “Stop it! I have to keep the cheese away!”, then it turns out it’s not even your brother, but some kind of robot powered by psychic energy?) Well, here are some of the things that you can train your snake to do that are sure to impress the judges at the World Champion Snake Charmer competition:

  1. Teach it to bite its tail and go rigid, then hula-hoop with it.
  2. Unscrew a hard-to-reach lightbulb with its jaw.
  3. Snakes can sing if they are inspired.
  4. They can jump through flaming hoops. But that is so overdone. Train your snake to jump through a time portal.
  5. Teach it to drive a car. Of course not a stick shift!
  6. Since snakes are cold-blooded, you can freeze them and throw them like spears.
  7. Get your snake to wrap around a skull, like through the eye sockets and stuff. That looks RAD!
  8. If your snake is an electric eel, teach it to zap the other snakes during the race.
  9. Coil it up in a spring and slink it down stairs.
  10. With enough practice, your snake can breathe fire and shoot lasers out of its eyes. A diet of jalapeños will give it fire breath. And of course, Velveeta or American cheese will produce laser beam eyes.

Believe it or not, some people don’t care about being the World Champion Snake Charmer. Even if you are one of these losers, and don’t compete, you can still have a successful and rewarding relationship with your snake. Personally, I find you below contempt, and not even worthy of my time. It’s because of people like you that famine and suffering exist in this world. You are the cogs in the machinery of human degradation and abasement. You are the muse of all things base and vulgar. You are the reason that J.F.K. was assassinated.

So while it is true that you are a waste of skin, I guess I’ll still leave you with these valuable ‘general care’ tips for pet snakes:

  1. Always grab your venomous snake by the tip of its tail.
  2. Poisonous snakes love surprises. Try to startle it as often as possible.
  3. If you have enough faith, you can get bitten an infinite amount of times by your deadly snake. But if you are an unbeliever, try to limit it to a couple times a day.
  4. Like fish and sexy female assassins, snakes absorb oxygen through their scales. So don’t keep them in their knitted sweaters for more than a few hours a day.
  5. When walking your snake, keep an eye out for eagles. They are the sworn enemy of snakes and will attack without provocation. Always bring Eagle Spray with you.
  6. There is something very important that you should never do with your snake, but I can’t remember it. Drat!

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