Saturday, February 18, 2012

Hugs & Hisses, or "Hisses & Kisses" as Nikki Kept Calling It

For Valentine's Day, the Denver Museum of Nature & Science hosted "Hugs & Hisses," an event for adults after hours that showcased their new Lizards and Snakes exhibit. They were gonna serve booze and talk about SNAKE SEX and let grown-ups walk through the exhibit without a bunch of kids running around screaming and hogging all the best space to look at the reptiles. It sounded like a GREAT TIME, so OF COURSE Nikki wasn't originally going to bring me. ;p But she tweeted to the Museum and asked if I could go, since I'm "underage." After linking to this blog to clear up who I was, whoever tweets for the Museum said that I should totally go, so Nikki brought me along. And it's a good thing she did because....I GOT RECOGNIZED BY A BLOG READER!!! OMG, it was so exciting! We were hanging out towards the end of the event, and this guy came up to Nikki and me and said that he had discovered the blog through Nikki's friend Jared's blog A Bad Case of the Dates, and could he get a picture with me because "it's not everyday I meet a celebrity." [Note from Nikki: ABCOTD is a great blog, and a lot of fun to read, but long-term following WILL cause you to lose faith in humanity. Just a warning.]
My fan!! His name is Terrence, and he's absolutely awesome. :)

Now, y'all may remember that I'm a big fan of snakes, especially as I have two snake sisters and a snake brother living at home with me. So I was pretty excited to be able to go to see the exhibit, as best expressed in these pictures below:

And me with my "brother" Alejandro:
(Sorry it's blurry. Steve is TERRIBLE at taking pictures.)

I was heartbroken to discover that we couldn't take pictures inside the actual exhibit. There were SO MANY photo opportunities! Like the emerald tree monitor who was named "Nikki"! Or the GIANT anaconda! Or the tank full of geckos! But alas, no photos were allowed in the exhibit. So just take my word for it: you NEED to visit this exhibit. :) However, they have a photo booth where you can get your picture taken with Bo, the giant python. Nikki and I took TWO photos in the photo booth:

After strolling through the exhibit a few times and taking in all the lizards, snakes, and facts about reptiles, we watched a performance about all the different ways that reptiles show THA LAYDEEZ that they're ready for sexy times. The emcee asked the crowd, "Ok, I need two guys who want to impress the ladies," and Lisa called out, "Why can't *I* impress the ladies?!" Everyone laughed, and both volunteers turned out to be women: Lisa and another young lady. Their reptile foreplay action was FLEXING:

"Quick! Get a veterinarian! Those pythons are SICK!"

They then impressed the ladies by doing push-ups, which apparently, super-cute little lizards do. Lisa was in a skirt, so push-ups were a bit impractical. The other woman did the push-ups...then someone pointed out that her blouse was hanging a bit low and, ah...providing a very different kind of show for the audience.

Fun Science Fact: Reptiles do NOT have mammaries!

We ended the presentation with a conga line, presumably to demonstrate how snakes shake their rattles and get all twisty and dance-y to attract mates. Or just because making adults dance in a conga line after drinking booze is funny.

Casey and Nikki shake what the Good Lord gave 'em.


Us and the emcee, who was showing off his dewlap. Rowr!!

We also attended a lecture (a.k.a. "World's Largest PowerPoint") in the Imax theatre about reptile sex. 
The scientist leading the lecture was SO AWKWARD! You could tell he wasn't used to talking about this particular topic in front of so many people. We couldn't help but giggle. And when one of his slides was a close-up of a reptile's hemipenes (male genitalia), you better believe every "adult" in that place took a picture of it and posted it to their fave social networking site! (Including Nikki)

After the lecture, we bummed around for a while and met some of the animals that the Humane Society brought in.

Casey makes a friend!

Steve contemplates fostering a python. Because why not have even more snakes?!

I have NO IDEA why there was a stuffed capybara at the reptile event. It was on a table with a bunch of other dead, taxidermied rodents and bugs. Steve says that the display was of animals that snakes eat for food. I said, "Well then, what the hell is a capybara doing there?!" Steve pointed out that an anaconda could eat one, but they don't live in the same place. So...guess it's still a mystery.

All in all, it was a great night with awesome people, cool reptiles, and an EXTENSIVE cheese buffet!

Sunday, February 12, 2012


Now that we're done having our fabulous Snowventure in Evergreen, let me show you how fun it was so you can be TOTALLY jealous!!

Evergreen got about two feet of snow during the recent blizzard. Using Steve as a yardstick, you can see how much snow his aunt Pam and uncle Rob got on their porch!
Since it never really snowed that much in Maryland, Nikki and Steve don't own any cold weather gear. As such, Nikki had to borrow Uncle Rob's waterproof ski pants for our sledding adventure. Luckily, T-Rex and I were fine with just ear muffs and a scarf.
Aw man, T-Rex!! You're facing the wrong way! You'll go down the hill backwards if you're not careful!

Steve went down the sledding lane with a giant jump in it. Check out the look on his face!
The cold and wet aftermath of getting some sweet air.

Oh my God! I can NOT stop LAUGHING at this picture!!! Look at the look on her face! Ahahaha!!
[Nikki: I went FLYING down the damn hill but wasn't on the sled properly, so when I hit the jump, I flipped in the air. This is the exact moment I realized that I was going to die. And NO, there wasn't a video of it...thank God.]
Nikki faceplanted SPECTACULARLY. I mean, seriously, everyone went SILENT because we thought she had broken her neck and was dead. She just lost her glasses and hat and got covered in snow. THIS HAPPENED TWICE. The second time was just as funny as the first. After that run though, she decided just to stick to taking pictures. :p

Steve's aunt Pam spent all of her rides down the hill screaming bloody murder and laughing hysterically.
This is a hilarious video of me, T-Rex, and Nikki sledding down the mountain. Getting back up the hill was the hardest part...for Nikki. Neither T-Rex nor I have arms big enough to carry a snow tube back up a hill. ;p

After our trip down the hill, T-Rex and I spent the rest of the day chillin' at the top of the mountain. We saw what happened to Nikki, and even though we don't have any bones to break, he and I didn't want to risk it!

Nikki Post: Denver Botanic Gardens - Better Late Than Never?

I took these photos MONTHS ago, but because I didn't file them properly on my computer, I had completely forgotten they existed until recently. I was finally able to edit the photos today. Normally, I'd post them on my Facebook photography page, but you can see the pictures better (and larger) on Blogger. Please enjoy these pics from the Denver Botanic Gardens!

Monday, February 6, 2012

Reptile Show

On Saturday, Steve, Nikki, and I all went to the Rocky Mountain Reptile Expo north of Denver. Steve's new obsession is snakes, and since Nikki isn't scared of snakes (unlike fish), she's been pretty supportive of his new hobby.

Here are some pictures of me and some scaly creatures! If you suffer from ophidiophobia (fear of snakes), maybe this isn't the blog entry for you. ;p

The coolest snakes we saw were the pied pythons, which according to Steve, are a new craze in the snake breeding community. (I'm talking about the one in the container closest to me on the bottom row.) They're a mix of normal snakes and albino snakes, and we even saw one that only had color on its head; the rest of it was pure white! They're CRAZY expensive, and Nikki said they looked too weird, so Steve wasn't allowed to get one. (Also, he prefers boas, for reasons I'll get into later.)

I wonder if the "Least" snakes are cheaper! Hahaha!

This turtle spent a long time trying to climb out of his Tupperware prison. Poor little guy.

Eeeeeek!! It's a caiman! This crocodile cousin was only a little bigger than Nikki's hand. [Not that I held it. - Nikki] It kinda looks evil though. Why would you want to own an evil pet? Maybe he's just misunderstood...

According to Steve, this is "some sort of gecko." (I forgot to write down what kind exactly.) The guy who was selling this little guy told me that he gets people asking him ALL THE TIME if he sells any geckos that look like the Geico spokesreptile. "But real geckos don't walk on two legs or talk in Australian accents," he said. I REALLY hope there aren't humans out there expecting geckos to look like a computer-animated cartoon!

This is a baby Green Tree Python. Steve said that the snakes are born either yellow or red so they blend in with the undergrowth where they live. As they age and move into trees, they turn green to blend in with the leaves. (How cool!) Steve's a big fan of these snakes, but he can't get one because a) they're REALLY expensive (like, $300!!), and b) Nikki (irrationally) dislikes them because she gets this kind of snake confused with the kind that's in The Poisonwood Bible. [Jeez, spoiler alert much, Claire?! I had to edit this so it doesn't ruin the ending for anyone who hasn't read the book yet. By the way, this is one of my top five favorite books of all time. I TOTALLY recommend it! - Nikki]


This lady snake used to be someone's pet. The woman holding her told me that the snake ended up being abandoned by her owner in a nasty divorce battle and so was sent to the Rocky Mountain Reptile Rescue. Most of the pythons that end up here are former pets that just got too big for their homes. Steve signed up to be a foster parent for reptiles. If he brings home something this big, I'm pretty sure Tasha and I will riot!! Down with pets that could (and want to!) eat us!

I tried to get Nikki to buy me this BOSS tee-shirt, but she said that they didn't have any in my size. I told her that we could always shrink one! She still said no. :(

Steve DID make a purchase at the Expo: two Sinaloan Milk Snakes, which Nikki named Cristina and Alejandro (A.J. for short). The picture above is of Cristina, but A.J. looks just like her, so you're not missing out by not having a picture of each. Nikki SWEARS that Cristina's nose is a little pointier than A.J.'s, but I'm not buying it. A.J. is shyer though. They're both TINY, only about three or four months old. Unfortunately, King Snakes (like Lady Josephine) aren't friendly with other snakes, so the milk snakes will never be able to hang out with our original snake pet. But when they're older, I'm pretty sure Steve's going to try to get Cristina and Alejandro to breed (because he's a scientist like that), so it's not like they'll be lonely. ;)

Sunday, February 5, 2012


Trex and I are driving up to Evergreen, CO to visit Steve's aunt and uncle's house. (Well, Steve is driving. Trex's eyes are on the sides of his head, which makes him not very good at seeing in front of him, and I don't have my driver's license yet.) Colorado just got hit with a HUGE blizzard, which dumped over a foot of snow on us in Denver but TWO FEET in Evergreen. (In Black Hawk, which is an old casino town in the mountains, they got FOUR FEET of snow!!) Uncle Rob and Aunt Pam live on top of a hill that goes down to a wide open meadow, so they have, essentially, the PERFECT sledding hill! Nikki told me that when she was a kid, she and her family used to go to this park near their house that had a great, steep sledding hill. Only problem: it ended at the road that led you in and out of the park. So kids used to go FLYING down this hill, only to have to roll off their sleds at the bottom, or risk going under a truck! (Apparently, parents didn't care if their kids lived or died back when Nikki was a child. She says it was a simpler time.)

I'm updating this from Nikki's phone on our way up to the mountains. I'll be posting all the AWESOME pics and videos later.

 Here's us all dressed up for the cold!