With the exception of turtles/tortoises, I absolutely do NOT like reptiles or amphibians (though it occurs to me right now that Warren would be a great name for a gecko – less of a cliche than Gordon, and even more appropriate). For years I was terrified of going down into my parents’ basement because I’d encountered toads too many times (which always resulted in me shrieking and running back upstairs). But the worst for me are snakes and anything snake-like – worms, eels, basilisks, etc. Ever since I had a nightmare as a child of getting bit by a rattlesnake. If it doesn’t have legs, I want nothing to do with it.

(For the record, I don’t like anything tentacled, either – definitely not a H.P. Lovecraft fan. The only squid I want to see are on the menu at an Italian restaurant.)

Over the past few years, I thought that maybe I had gotten somewhat better about it. I survived (though certainly not without protest) Younger Brother’s reptile obsession when he was in high school – he had Lucy (ball python), Piper (Amazon tree boa), and Orange Drink (sidewinder; don’t ask about the name). I wasn’t freaking out (as much) when I encountered worms on the sidewalk after the rain.

And then while riding the T this morning, I read this article in the Metro: Cambridge woman wakes up to snake.

A Cambridge woman woke up to a 4-foot snake on Sunday after leaving her window open overnight.

Animal control removed the Colombian Red Tail Boa from the Sherman Street home and took it to the MSPCA-Boston Animal Care and Adoption Center.

“They were able to use a little maneuvering and a pillowcase to capture the snake,” Brian Adams of MSPCA said. “They knew one of our staff members provides foster care for reptiles. They knew the snake would be in good hands here.

Anyone who knows the snake’s owner should call (617) 522-5055.

It’s unclear how the snake got into the woman’s apartment.

I don’t know exactly where on Sherman St., but basically, this was only a few blocks from my apartment.

I AM NEVER OPENING MY WINDOWS AGAIN.

(For good measure, I’m also staying away from the basement)

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