Snakes in a Bag on a Plane

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The top of the year is always a treasure-trove of “best-of” lists for the news cycle. The one I’m sure you all have been waiting for is finally here! I mean, this is the first I’ve heard about it, and I couldn’t be more excited! The Transportation Security Administration (TSA, or those nice folks who probably helped end the most recent government shutdown) has released its annual list of wacky things people tried to get through airport security. They created a Top Ten Strangest Confiscated Items of 2018 list. (Doesn’t really roll off the tongue, does it?)

Most of the items are some form of weaponry. There’s an Freddy-Krueger-style glove, hand grenades with little painted tuxedos on them (no, I’m not kidding), and even a knife hidden in a baby carrier. There’s also a bag of snakes and–


Yes, that’s right. Someone actually tried to sneak a snake, in a bag, onto a plane.

For those of you who don’t know me, I am terrified of snakes. I can handle spiders, bats, or even bugs. Do NOT surprise me with a snake. Unless you want me to scream and cry. I’m an animal lover, and I’d never purposefully harm any animal, including snakes, but I have my limits! I feel like Samuel L. Jackson would understand.

Back to the snake seized by the TSA. I actually feel sorry for the little thing. The owner stuffed the ball python into a bag and tried to hide it in a computer hard drive. That is no way for anyone to travel. Maybe for annoying, noisy, human passengers, but not a snake.

What exactly was the owner thinking? Was he/she going to be gone on a very long trip? Snakes don’t need to be fed that often. Did he/she not consider what might happen to the poor animal when the plane hit its cruising altitude? A quick Google search tells me that while it’s possible to fly with a snake, most airlines don’t allow it and those that do have specific requirements. Was it an emotional support animal? If so, how much support was it going to be able to offer, packed away like a sardine?

I also realize that some of you feel cheated because I originally said “snakeS on a plane”, plural, not singular. Yeah, several of the news headlines I saw about this did the same thing to me. The story is still just as confusing, but not nearly as dramatic. But maybe I can make it more exciting…


Okay, so I have no proof that the snake was or was not pregnant, and ball pythons apparently lay eggs, but forget science! What if this snake gave birth ON THE PLANE? I can picture the pandemonium! This completely irrational fear I have is completely rational. Alright, I’ll be more realistic…she could lay her eggs and they’d secretly hatch later, when I happen to be on the flight! *horror-movie-style scream*

Of course, I’m kidding. But in all seriousness, the snake only made it to spot number seven on the TSA list – how was it not number one? The strange packing method alone should have qualified it for the top spot! Not to mention, IT’S A SNAKE.

If you want to see the full list for yourself, you can check it out here. Otherwise, let’s hope that 2019 doesn’t bring us more scaly stowaways.

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