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Berkeley Breathed, Creator of ‘Bloom County’ Comic, Almost Stepped on a Rattlesnake

Pulitzer Prize-winning cartoonist Berkeley Breathed had a close and personal encounter with a creature that would blow any attentive person out of its skin.

Luckily for Breathed, the creator of the “Bloom County” comic, the 65-year-old wasn’t paying attention and just stepping on a western diamondback rattlesnake. Breathed on Tuesday posted a 10 second video clip on Facebook of him leaving his house and walking next to the snake that slithered inches from his left foot.

“After my wife showed me this morning clip from our doorbell camera yesterday, I decided to give up the hedonistic and luxurious life of a cartoonist, to dedicate my life to the Baby Jesus, to help place unruly orphans and become a cloistered nun somewhere not anywhere near Western Diamondback Rattlesnakes,” the social media post wrote.

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“Bloom County,” the newspaper clip, which originally appeared from December 8, 1980 to August 6, 1989, offered a satirical look at pop culture and politics and won Breathed the Pulitzer for editorial cartooning in 1987. The strip relaunched in 2015.

The Opus penguin, one of the main characters of “Bloom County”, now has his own Sunday comic.

Breathed graduated from the University of Texas in 1979, where he worked for The Daily Texan and wrote his first comic strip, “The Academia Waltz”. He also worked as a freelance cartoonist for the Austin American Statesman until he was fired.

Breathed is also at the center of a big story about someone who released over 300 baby alligators into Lake Austin and/or Lake Travis in 1979, according to the statesman. The game warden reportedly fined Breathed for possessing two alligators, which were found in an aquarium in his dorm.

As for Breathed’s plans after the snake scare: “Tomorrow I might change my mind, but that’s the plan for now. I hope, Bloomers, your weekend was as happy as mine.

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