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Posted by gomezvi on November 17, 2002 at 21:52:42:
So I'm laying awake last night, unable to fall asleep, flipping channels. Nothing much on TV at 1 a.m....then I see this dude who's kinda like the "Crocodile Hunter" meets Steven Segal. Basically a bad (as in awful) combination of herper who thinks he's too hip to be bit by snakes. He makes sure he mentions his
'extensive' martial arts training and walking through the desert with his shirt flapped open. I didn't catch the name of the program, but this man was out to find the most venomous snakes in Africa and rate them according to his own scale, giving them a numeric value for speed of snake, venom, and speed of strike.
What REALLY struck me as being narcissistic about this guy was that he was intentionally provoking these venomous snakes, and using a camera with a macro lense (meaning he had to get VERY close to the snake to get the shot) for dramatic extreme close-ups of these animals.
The very first snake on his show is this small looking side-winding adder (hope I got the name right) that he's provoking, going on about his martial arts skills, and thinking he's too fast for the poor snake. I was all ready to turn off the T.V. in disgust when BAM! it happens. HE GOT BIT!
I start laughing my head off, thinking 'this is getting good!', but it's nothing major and he quickly goes back to his stuff. (NUTS!) Next in line is a cobra who pretends to be dead, then spits venom in his glasses, and tries to strike him to no avail. He's going on and on about the venom all over his glasses, face, and camera...I'm sure I've seen the best of the show already and I'm quickly losing interest.
On to the next snake, a large, something-nose cobra (sorry, I'm not a snake person!), very impressive in size and his attitude. And there's the S. Segal wanna-be, ruining the shots of the cobra with his commentary. He's right in the middle of making a condescending remark "...this cobra is so slow, that if I was a mongoose, he'd be..." and BAM!!!!! He's bit on the finger. All pretense leaves the show and there's real fear in this man's face as he administers first aid and suctions the wound, and gets carted off to the hospital for anti-venom. While he's there, he's making comments to the camera to the effect of 'that's it, no more...I'm getting too old for this...'. His bravado facade comes down and he's showing an unguarded moment. I'm genuinely starting to like the guy.
The last snake he showed before I finally turned the off T.V. was a beautiful female Gaboon Viper. I noticed his approach was much more humble after the cobra incident. He was not provoking the Gaboon Viper, and he was actually gentle with it. He did mention several times the excruciating pain that a Gaboon Viper bite makes as it destroy muscle and nerve tissue.
I don't revel in the pain of others. But I also feel that if you're gonna play Russian Roulette, you'll eventually get the chamber with the bullet in it. I am sorry that the guy got bit, but he pretty much had it coming! But in the end, he did learn a little humility and the show was much better for it.