Pintada means painted. The Pintada Kid tells me that he was given his name by the "original" Pintada Kid. Our P.K. was born near Pintada, NM, located in Guadalupe County. It was given that name for either the petroglyphs or the colored mesas in the area.
The Pintada Kid has a great deal of knowledge about the natural world. He learned from the old people he grew up with and through his own observations and experience. Here is what he has to say about rattlesnakes.
"When you kill a Rattlesnake remember to Cut off the Head and bury it. A Rattlesnake can still Strike Hours after its dead so dont leave the Head on. Also if you bury the head you wont step on it or have an animal or bird pick it up and drop it somewhere else. When it rains the Rattlers on the Rattlesnake get wet and dont rattle so watch out when you go for a walk in the rain. Just because its winter and theres snow on the Ground does not mean all snakes are hibernating. I know places in the center of N.M....when i was out there around March there was snow on the Ground but around the Cliffs it was very warm and i almost stepped on an over 5 foot rattlesnake which i killed with my Ski Pole Walking Stick."
"I spend lots of time out in the Backroads in the center of New Mexico and have been doing this for over 40 years. 30 years ago or more i use to head out to the mountains and kill maybe 2 or 3 good size Rattlersnakes in a Day just on the Road. Today it can take me all Summer to Kill that Many and even then i might not kill 3 some Summers. TIP if you kill a Rattlesnake use a Long handled Shovel Preferably."
"TIP if your worried about snakes and you will probably never get Bit if you Never walk close to bushes or shady spots in the summer without being extra Careful were talking about out in the Country anywhere in N.M. Dont walk close to mounds or holes in the Ground and nests of sticks and if you smell and awful smell like a Dead animal try to get away from that area. Remember any snake can give you an infection if it bites you."
"Ive Killed Big Rattlers all my life or ever since i can Remember. My biggest was over 6 foot long and i was inside my Pickup when i shot it. On My Knees behind the Steering Wheel and the Window half way rolled up the Fricking Rattlesnake was half way up my door i put 4 shots from my Pistol into its head before it dropped. My Suggestion to anyone who is afraid of Snakes is to see them at a Snake Roundup or even eat the Meat its good for High Blood Pressure and save that 400 or more Bucks you would pay a Therapist plus you could eat a Rattlsnake Burger and feel BETTER. I know about being afraid of Snakes especially when your out on a Cliff or Hiking and they Rattle Off and you have no idea where the noise is coming from or what direction you are going to be hit. The Big Rattlesnakes can Drown out a Loud Car Stereo and it seems like theres a Dozen Rattling at once. To Me the Sound of the Rattlesnake is the Most Chilling Sound in the WORLD."
Next: Pintada Kid, Part 3--Some folk remedies