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Do you experience problems going out in public? Museums are fairly safe places as far as people approaching you, aren't they?

People don't mob me if I go to natural history museums. In fact, the only time anything has happened is when there have been large school field trips going on where you have about 200 screaming kids. Then someone might recognize me, and I'll sign some autographs.

Otherwise, people are there to see the exhibits as opposed to other things. They're there to see the woolly mammoths.

There's also a lot of nice private collections out there. I've found that I like to visit really nice private collections or behind-the-scenes collections at zoos more than public exhibits. I'm sure you probably know about nice collections in the private sector.

Oh, of course. You remember when I was telling you about the guy I knew in San Francisco who used to have lots of reptiles? He had the best private collection I've ever seen. He had some amazing stuff. I was telling you about his alligator snappers.

Yeah. Alligator snappers are awesome. There are efforts being made right now to provide more protection for them throughout their range.

That's probably good, all things considered.

In some areas, though, like New Orleans, there is still a lot of evidence in the marketplaces that people harvest them for food, shells and other body parts. People seem to eat snappers like chicken in Louisiana.

Yeah. I know this probably sounds sacrilegious, but I tried a little of it down there one time. It was on the menu, and I don't eat any fish.

We were on tour and traveling through rural Louisiana. Our bus driver was Cajun, and he took us to an awesome Cajun restaurant that was owned by some family back in the woods. So I ended up trying alligator, rattlesnake, turtle and, surprisingly for me, blackened catfish. I just tried little bites of each.

It's really a trip, because when you're in Louisiana-or Florida, for that matter-you're in the home states of so many of the reptiles that people keep as pets. There's an abundance of reptiles. It's amazing.

Having seen your collection, it seems that boas and pythons are your primary interest. Your rhino iguanas are very nice. Some rhinos are real aggressive, though, and you need to be careful around them. I know of a guy who lost a finger to all adult rhino iguana.

A whole finger! I can't afford to lose any fingers. If I couldn't play guitar anymore, I'd have to find something else to do that I really liked. Who knows, I could even end up working for REPTILES magazine (laughs).

You're right, though. Most of the snakes that we have are boids—boas and pythons. I'm not so much of a colubrid freak, although with Jim, that's his main interest. (Note: Jim Meyer is the name of the general caretaker for Slash's animals.) Jim's given me a few. I've got an albino kingsnake, and some other kingsnakes like pyro and greeri.

Have you ever owned a green iguana? They seem to be the most popular reptile pet.

I used to a long time ago. I was a kid, and I remember my dad got it for me. But that was ages ago.

When you do some rebuilding to fix the earthquake damage in this house, do you plan on changing any of the custom snake enclosures?

I’m going to keep this large upstairs python enclosure the way it is, but I know I want to redesign my carpet python cage. The rest of the reptiles will probably stay the way they are now, taking up the same rooms that they always have. I want to build one more built-in cage like the large python cage.

At this point, I'm so used to reptiles that their built-in cages are part of the house and the furniture.

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