Wake up, get up, walk the dog. Back for breakfast. Read the paper. About at this time Terri says, "Hey, there's a scorpion." The dog had been interested in something wher a cabinet meets the floor, and that's what it was. I go get the Scorpion Jaws of Death, a handy plastic clamp I use to pick them up while maintaining a sting free distance - I've been stung once and it was surprising how much it hurt!) Drop into the garbarge disposal for a quick ride down the drain. Back to reading about Sarah Palin and Joe Biden. Terri goes by with a broom and steps outside to the pool and then she returns and says calmly, "Baby rattlesnake on the patio." I emote. Snakes scare me more than they should - ALL snakes, but I thought this territory by the pool, 6 feet off the ground, was safe, unless some fool snake would want to climb stairs, and 'they wouldn't do that...' went my now broken thought (although I do believe it must have come up the bushes which top out at pool level; another disturbing thought for all the times I've been innocently trimming shrubs.)
A neighbor has killed a BIG rattler, but not recently. Maybe 4 weeks ago that same neighbor killed a copperhead but his property includes a creekside. I tell myself that's why he had it.
So I insist I have to confront my fears and I gather the rake and shovel and move the flowerpot and sure enough - it sure does appear to be a baby rattler with triangular head, too young for rattles, though it looks like the stub has begun.
Tiny though it was, I read that the babies come with full venom, and Googling snake bites shows some evil necrosis. You don't want snake poison.
Time to be a lot more careful. Those little reptiles blend in REALLY well. And I know momma hatched more than one... and then... there's momma.