I am truly unwell.
A fire department in Arizona is warning the members of its community against using pool noodles after reports of finding snakes living in them — and this, my friends, is why we can never have nice things.
"POOL NOODLE ALERT!!!" reads the City of Buckeye Fire Department's Facebook post, which goes on to share a story relayed from a local about rattlesnakes found in their pool noodles. Casual. "If you come into contact with a rattlesnake, or any other type of snake, stay calm."
Oh, HELL, no. Easier said than done, firefighters; I'd be running from that situation faster than Usain Bolt.
"One of the worst things you can do when coming across a rattlesnake is to start panicking," the post continues. You know the fastest way to make a person start panicking immediately? By telling them not to panic.
After some research, the fire department also found reports of other types of snakes laying eggs inside the noodles, so they provided a few tips for if you come across a snake — particularly, a rattlesnake — in or around (or nowhere near) a pool noodle.
Snakes rely on vibrations in the ground to determine where you are. If you start moving fast and abruptly, you'll only scare the snake more. . . give it a lot of space. You can easily walk around it without frightening it. Just keep in mind that rattlesnakes can coil up and strike at great lengths, so give it as much space as possible.
If the first indication of a rattlesnake's presence is the sound of its rattle, you've already startled it. Instead of running, stay still. Chances are, the snake will stop rattling and slither off after it has calmed down. Humans are much bigger than snakes, so they don't see any benefit in biting if it doesn't need to protect itself. They'll more than likely slither away to safety on their own.
Although this warning hails from AZ, where snakes are much more commonplace, don't be fooled and sleep on this too quickly. A quick Google search of "Which states have snakes?" provided me with a top result of "VENOMOUS SNAKES FOUND IN EACH STATE," so we're all potentially doomed. Happy Summer, friends, and be careful out there.