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A selective sweep.
August 2, 2011 8:38 PM   Subscribe

Animals vis-à-vis windshield wipers: contra-, supra-* and despite.

The dog vs. windshield wipers trope is surprisingly populated. While birds tend to be more complacent about windshield wiper-bound tourism, snakes are plainly just along for the ride.
*not a happy ending, Not Safe For Herpephiles.
posted by Cold Lurkey (34 comments total) 7 users marked this as a favorite

 
If you look closely at the end, the child's window is open. That kind of nitwitery drives me crazy and is much more creepy than the snake.
posted by Oyéah at 8:47 PM on August 2, 2011


I can't even finish the first snake video; 10 seconds in and I realize I'm looking at exactly the sort of shit driver that makes getting around by highway miserable for everyone else.

The other videos reinforce my feeling that domesticated dogs are pretty much the best thing ever created by humans.
posted by Inspector.Gadget at 8:52 PM on August 2, 2011 [2 favorites]


The people in that first snake video are why I hate people.
posted by bonobothegreat at 9:04 PM on August 2, 2011 [2 favorites]


Probably Republicans.
posted by Flashman at 9:07 PM on August 2, 2011 [1 favorite]


The driver in the first snake video is a damn moron, PULL THE FUCK OVER and handle it without endangering the lives on everyone on the highway. However, the fact that dogs vs windshield wipers is A Thing on youtube totally made my night.
posted by MaryDellamorte at 9:12 PM on August 2, 2011


I study bug splatters on my windshield for science.
posted by twoleftfeet at 9:13 PM on August 2, 2011 [1 favorite]


I wish to complain about this parrot what I purchased not half an hour ago from this very boutique.
posted by Ahab at 9:13 PM on August 2, 2011 [2 favorites]


Windshield Vipers.

Also, aside from the not-careening-down-the-highway-like-a-bunch-of-addled-jackwagons aspect, it wouldn't have killed either set of drivers to pull off the road and let the snake(s) slither off to relative safety. I've done it with windshield hitchhikers from spiders to lizards and they invariably leap off before the car has even rolled to a complete stop.
posted by jamaro at 9:16 PM on August 2, 2011 [1 favorite]


Zat is no snake. Zat is a vindshield viper.
posted by twoleftfeet at 9:17 PM on August 2, 2011 [11 favorites]


Oh pooh. Beaten to it by one minute.
posted by twoleftfeet at 9:18 PM on August 2, 2011


If a link needs a disclaimer, perhaps that disclaimer should also go above the fold?
posted by zamboni at 9:20 PM on August 2, 2011


Vhy didn't I think of that for the post title!? Vhat a dull vitted idiot I am.
posted by Cold Lurkey at 9:21 PM on August 2, 2011


Oh pooh. Beaten to it by one minute.

Yeah but if that study you linked to is yours, you get the consolation prize of having the single most coolest job I've ever heard of.
posted by jamaro at 9:31 PM on August 2, 2011


If you look closely at the end, the child's window is open. That kind of nitwitery drives me crazy and is much more creepy than the snake.

It's not open, actually. You can see streaks on the glass. They still should've pulled the hell over and called animal control, though.
posted by katillathehun at 9:42 PM on August 2, 2011


They still should've pulled the hell over and called animal control, though.

Or just use a stick to lift it off the car. That doesn't look like a venomous snake (this guide is for Florida, but applies to most of the US): it has a long thin body and a thin head, and isn't a coral snake. If it also has round pupils and no rattle, it's almost certainly harmless.

It's a bit irritating when people freak out at snakes and kill them "just in case" it might be a SPITTING MAMBA, when (if you live in the US), there are probably only a couple of venomous species in your geographic region, and they're all either distinctive pit vipers or coral snakes.
posted by Pyry at 10:27 PM on August 2, 2011 [1 favorite]


It's a bit irritating when people freak out at snakes and kill them "just in case" it might be a SPITTING MAMBA, when (if you live in the US), there are probably only a couple of venomous species in your geographic region, and they're all either distinctive pit vipers or coral snakes.

I agree 100%. In that first snake video, the guy claims and with authority shouts that it's a big water moccasin even though it looked nothing like one.
posted by MaryDellamorte at 10:33 PM on August 2, 2011


Or just use a stick to lift it off the car. That doesn't look like a venomous snake (this guide is for Florida, but applies to most of the US): it has a long thin body and a thin head, and isn't a coral snake. If it also has round pupils and no rattle, it's almost certainly harmless.

Oh, I totally agree, but if they honestly thought it was a water moccasin, they should've called the right people to help them instead of potentially harming other drivers either with a flying snake or with their distracted driving and probably definitely harming the snake.

Sounds like the cameraman was prone to exaggeration, though. "We have A HUGE-ASS WATER MOCCASIN IN OUR CAR!" "No, honey, it's outside the car."
posted by katillathehun at 10:38 PM on August 2, 2011 [1 favorite]


Angry Hungry Birds.

(Yes, the idiot with the snake in that second video shits me, in a "let's endanger everyone around me 'cos I'm a fucking idiot" way. Put the camera down, pull over, and let the poor bloody snake slither off in peace…)
posted by Pinback at 10:38 PM on August 2, 2011


The reason the snake guy didn't pull over: He was thinking "This will be great for YouTube! Virals here I come!". And he was right.
posted by memebake at 1:11 AM on August 3, 2011


(Right as in virals, wrong as in should have pulled over)
posted by memebake at 1:12 AM on August 3, 2011


Oh God that snake video is shitty.

That looks to me like an Eastern corn snake. Totally and completely harmless, gorgeous creatures.

The Youtube comments remind me of when people would bring me hognosed snakes that they killed all to Hell because they thought they were cobras.
posted by louche mustachio at 5:01 AM on August 3, 2011


Sorry, the snake in the second video is a corn snake. The first one is a pine snake.
posted by louche mustachio at 5:06 AM on August 3, 2011


That looks to me like an Eastern corn snake. Totally and completely harmless, gorgeous creatures.

I was thinking gray rat snake, but there is a lot of overlap between all the rat snake species due to inbreeding; definitely totally harmless (make excellent pets, in fact) an important ecologically for rodent control (and rodent-borne diseases have killed more people than snakes ever will).
posted by TedW at 5:18 AM on August 3, 2011


Last evening I was driving through a swampy area in the dark and heard an object impact the windshield loudly. Something was stuck in the wiper. Turning the wipers on didn't help and it was too dark to see what it was.

This morning I didn't think about this until I began my drive to work. I then realized that (a) it was a large dragonfly, (b) it was badly, graphically mutilated, and (c) it was still alive.

I watched in horror as Zombie Dragonfly squirmed and waved its limbs at every stop light.

A co-worker removed it for me and reported that it was still crawling about hours later.

I am glad none of these videos were anything like that.

Although the snake people did behave like idiots.
posted by kinnakeet at 5:31 AM on August 3, 2011


You'll all be happy to know that after reading this thread a small spider was crawling around on the keyboard tray of my desk, and the collective disdain for snake people guilted me into coaxing him onto index cards and releasing him outside instead of squashing him immediately.
posted by codacorolla at 6:39 AM on August 3, 2011 [2 favorites]


Best part of the Angus-on-the-windshield video is the last thing the guy says:
"In prep for the motorbike."
posted by Mister Moofoo at 7:05 AM on August 3, 2011 [1 favorite]


You'll all be happy to know that after reading this thread a small spider was crawling around on the keyboard tray of my desk, and the collective disdain for snake people guilted me into coaxing him onto index cards and releasing him outside instead of squashing him immediately.

And then he was promptly eaten by a green snake.
posted by TedW at 7:30 AM on August 3, 2011


Better than me eating him, I guess.

I mean, what?
posted by codacorolla at 7:39 AM on August 3, 2011


I'd also like to vote for a public shaming of the snake video people. Cripes, so many things wrong with that video.
posted by Salvor Hardin at 7:49 AM on August 3, 2011


I haven't had a snake in my windshield (...yet), but my car is a total frog magnet, you guys. Especially during the rainy season, I'm always having to shoo them off my windshield, but usually they resist my shooing and retreat into the hood instead of off it, and then a few months later I'm removing a dessicated little frog corpse. Lizards too. And spiders.

I LOVE FLORIDA!
posted by Gator at 7:51 AM on August 3, 2011


I don't understand the youtube commenters saying "pulling over would be dangerous!" or "all snakes are poisonous because I am afraid of snakes!" or weirdest of all the ones who keep pointing out "but they had an infant in the car!", as if that had anything to do with anything.

Then again I guess I could just generally truncate that to "I don't understand the youtube commenters" full stop.
posted by ook at 8:04 AM on August 3, 2011


Hmm. I never would have guessed that vis-à-vis is related to "do-se-do" (as in square dancing).
posted by shponglespore at 8:07 AM on August 3, 2011


I was definitely chanting "Wreck, wreck, wreck" in my head while watching the snake video. Fuckers.
posted by troublewithwolves at 8:41 AM on August 3, 2011


Oh my god! It's the perfect opportunity for me to share my paired Windshield Mouse anecdotes. Note: there is a quiz at the end.

Background

I live in The Woods™ and when you live in The Woods™ and don't have a garage, mice tend to colonize your car. It happens to everyone out here at some point.

The mice will typically find shelter in your engine bay, which is warm and dry and safe from predators. But when you start driving, sometimes they panic and try to flee. One escape route from your engine bay is the air vents beneath your windshield wipers.

I have experienced Windshield Mice several times. They climb out onto your windshield and scamper back and forth. This can be somewhat alarming the first few times it happens. After that, it's just infuriating. If you pull over, the mouse will inevitably duck back into the engine bay and hide.

Windshield Mouse Anecdote #1

Once I was stopped at a traffic light on Highway 20. I was in the middle lane, with a turn lane to my right, the wide shoulder of the road, and then a drainage ditch.

A mouse clambered out onto my windshield. It scampered out to the far end of my right-hand windshield wiper. Without thinking about it, I flicked the windshield wiper controls.

To my astonishment, the mouse flew up into the air, arced over the turn lane, past the road's shoulder, and flew into the drainage ditch. It was like the most perfect pinball flipper timing event of all time.

I wonder if the car behind me noticed this happen.

Windshield Mouse Anecdote #2

I'm driving at a crawl down 1st street in La Conner, trying to get to the post office. It is the height of tourist season. The sidewalk is thick with pedestrians.

A mouse scampers out onto my windshield. It runs onto the windshield wiper. I freeze, paralyzed with indecision. I look to my right, calculating the mouse's potential flight path, and see that it will drop from the sky right into a clutch of little old ladies admiring the window display in front of the teddy bear store.

A split second. The mouse dashes back into my engine bay. I am spared having to make the decision.

I still wonder, if it happened again, would I do it? Would I launch a mouse into a crowd of elderly tourists? Knowing that the shock of aerial mouse assault could potentially trigger a fatal heart attack?

I wish I was a good enough person to say "No," but let's be honest.

Would you?
posted by ErikaB at 10:46 AM on August 3, 2011 [3 favorites]


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