Sunday, January 01, 2017

The philanthropic snake

Both my former housemate Julia and husband Rick have asked me at different times why I had put a book in the freezer.

It was simple. There was a snake in the story, snakes give me nightmares and so I wouldn't have nightmares, I froze it.

People know I don't like snakes.

My grandmother was terrified of them. One could hear her discovery of one several houses down the street.

My fear is not like that. When I was student teaching I turned around and was looking at the flickering tongue of a snake, held by one of my students. I took it from him, asked questions about it and told him to put it away.



Desire not to be subject to future attacks by creepy crawlies.

The boy was tottering between a D- and F. I gave him the F. Without the snake, it would have been a D- more of a gift really than he deserved.

When I was little at bath time my mother and I would do double stories, each one of us taking part. Neither of us knew where it would lead. Sometimes the characters were original. Both my mother and I ended up as writers and we had vivid imaginations.

One of the recurring characters was Mrs. Snake who was me. I was a philanthropist snake. My mother's role was to find people or animals that would be helped with my money. At five and six I wasn't sure where money came from and why a snake should have any didn't matter.

Because my mother would offer other alternatives for stories, I suspect she wasn't crazy about Mrs. Snake, but she always gave in after I rejected one or two ideas.

You will notice that there are no photos of snakes in this blog. If I put them on, I would have to put my laptop in the freezer so I won't have nightmares tonight.

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