While Justin and Erica were here they were commenting on how motorcyclists will go in between lanes during traffic in order to pass cars, and how you never see that back home. The reason, they hypothesized, is that in Massachusetts it would be too dangerous, because there would be that one crazy guy who would deliberately sideswipe a motorcyclist or try to pin them against another car. Ah, all the people filled with Dunkin Donuts and rage on the Mass interstate. I miss New England so much. One guy even got shot with a crossbow out of road rage. Northern Californians are so boringly chill on the road, as they drink their status-symbol Starbucks instead of their reason-not-to-commit-suicide Dunkin Donuts coffee. This is perhaps bad if I'm getting nostalgic over road rage, misery, and the foodstuff used to bury it all.
So California said, "Hmm, that's too bad that Lindsay isn't enjoying our wonderful
Today I was poking around in the puckerbrush near a fishing hole, looking for places to do crosses. I emasculated one flower, and realized that a lot of the others near the trail wouldn't be practical because I would have to lean over a ton of poison oak. But I saw some more a little off the beaten path, with just enough room for a human in between the poison oak and the blackberry.
As I stepped in there, a steady rattle began and probably lasted a couple seconds. I backpedaled as fast as I could, wondering if moving slowly would have been a better idea, but deciding to continue following my instinct of getting away as fast as possible from the thing that could kill me. I got back out to the dirt parking lot, sat in an open space under a tree that definitely could not have any snakes hiding nearby, and made notes on my trip in my lab notebook. I decided that "Fuck" wouldn't be appropriate to put in there, so I wrote "F__k."
I only have two sites with this species. This one is apparently rattlesnake habitat, and the other one is gangbanger habitat. Well, so much for that cross. I have cuttings in the greenhouse, so maybe I can do it next year if I admit that I'm on the 6-year-plan and not the 5-year-plan. I guess given how much field work I've done, I was bound to find a rattlesnake sometime. I hope that I'm not also due for a mountain lion.
New England! The most dangerous animals in my home area are ticks that carry Lyme disease! We don't have to deal with foxtail grasses (the seeds are heavily barbed so that they will only move one way through clothing/flesh). The worst possible natural disaster is easily survivable with enough firewood and canned food. California is either going to fall into the ocean, or its agriculture is going to be destroyed by global warming.
On the bright side, I do think that it is very nice that rattlesnakes rattle before they strike.