Girl looks for cell signal, steps on rattlesnake nest

In a rural area outside San Diego, a teenage girl is snakebit just because she wanted to text her boyfriend and call her mom. Life can be cruel.

Chris Matyszczyk
2 min read
Be careful. They're out there. ABC News Screenshot by Chris Matyszczyk/CNET

Sometimes, the little bars on your cell phone just aren't there.

It could be because you're somewhere remote and it doesn't pay for phone companies to put a tower there. It could be because you're somewhere remote and the locals believe a cell tower would blight their aesthetic pleasures.

Or you could be in the middle of San Francisco and have AT&T.

My guess is 16-year-old Vera Oliphant was probably in category one when she reportedly wandered around, trying to find a cell signal. She wanted to call her mom and text her boyfriend. No one should be denied lover-texting capabilities.

Sadly, her desperate wandering caused her to disturb some rattlesnakes -- one adult and five cute little kiddies.

They weren't pleased with the intrusion and, as Reuters reports, this led to 6 bites and 4 days in intensive care at Sharp Grossmont Hospital.

"My vision started to go right away. First it looked like the snakes blended into the leaves and then I started seeing black spots around the edges and I started blacking out," Oliphant told Reuters.

You might imagine that she was trekking with her uncle in some remote desert region or some strange part of Argentina, where cell signal might be difficult to find.

But, no. This was Jamul, just outside San Diego.

"The pain -- on a scale of 1 to 10 -- was like a 45," she told ABC News.

Oliphant is still using a walker to get around, but the 24 vials of anti-venom saved her to text once again.

With cell phones, it has been constantly proven that walking and talking or texting is even more difficult than walking and talking to a camera.

There was the woman who fell in the mall fountain while texting. Then there was the celebrated case of the texting woman who fell into Lake Michigan.

The most recent was the woman who was texting and attempting to discard a cigarette butt in Alaska and fell off a cliff.

Texting is a vital part of human existence. But so is human existence.

Perhaps the best suggestion one can give when texting is this: stand still.