Photo 1 - At prayer
Photo 2 - Ophidia appears
New Cults in the Americas
Dateline: January 2006       (Click on a photo for a larger image)

It has taken me more than 7 months to gather enough courage to expose what I believe is a serious problem in the herpetocultural community. Even though this may seem incredulous to many please read this with an open and inquiring mind.
Back in May of last year (2005) there were several posts on by Mr. BH, Mr. BM and Mr. DT titled
• Today in the Sierras and
• Rubber Boas and Zonatas
Please bear with me as I feel I must set straight the misleading accounts posted by these gentlemen.
Supposedly, these posts were about a day field herping, Sunday May 15, 2005, in the Sierra Nevada Mountains of Central California. However, I must expose the alarming behavior of these cultists. A better title for these posts should be
Sunday Services and Sacrifices in the Sierra
In the picture at right (Photo 1 - At Prayer), led by the Bishop Of the Basin (BOB) wearing a black backpack, supplicants belonging to the growing cult ROMK (Religion of Mountain Kings) pray for guidance from their great god Ophidia.
Since I was a non-believer I did not see their god Ophidia with my own eyes (see Photo 1 - At Prayer.) However, when I was reviewing the pictures at my cultbusting lair with my trusty Macintosh and my demon-exposing software (Photoshop, Graphic Converter, Canvas and assorted spectral-enhancing filters.) I noticed what my state-of-the-art Digital Camera had really recorded on it's CCD sensor in Photo 2 - Ophidia appears.
Note that Ophidia is eyeing the supplicants (sizing them up for a meal?) Also note BOB's near perfect prayer form (a 9.9 out of a possible 10?) and his mysterious black bag. What lies within that bag? Some speculation:

• His cheat sheet - An Illustrated Children's Guide to the Snakes.
• 10 copies of the ROMK Bible - Mountain Kings. Probably as premiums for the acolyte's correct and generous tithe to Ophidia and ROMK that BOB collects as Bishop.
• Extra zs for salting the rocks and impressing the acolytes.
• A secret alien-produced GZPS. (Global Zonata Postioning System that BOB was given when he visited Roswell, New Mexico.)
• An inflatable ROMK High Priestess to be used in special May Day and twice- yearly equinox ceremonies.
• A primer on entering the Celestial Kingdom using New Age mysticism and Alien Abduction techniques.
• Or just sacramental lunch.
The prayers and offerings must have pleased this so-called great god as the weather was warm and miniature godlike artifacts were found. The young acolyte at the far right in both Photo 1 and Photo 2 disappeared shortly after the picture was taken - probably because of his incredibly terrible prayer form (a 0.5 out of 10?) Although I now believe that BOB, using his Staff of Ophidia - in right foreground of the pictures, may have violently reduced the acolyte's chances for survival in order to better please his god.
I was able to get a better picture of BOB's Staff of Ophidia (see Photo 3 - Staff of Ophidia) and was greatly surprised to see one of the methods he uses to recruit new cultists. The others did not see this but I was amazed to see what happened to BOB's priestly staff when he reverently threw it on the ground while muttering vile incantations
The mantras and prayers offered up by BOB and other supplicants use words like Crack, Rock and Slab a lot and I was astounded to see that when I examined other pictures closely I found an astonishing sight in Photo 4 - Zonata in crack. It isn't a very good picture and I had to digitally zoom in on BOB's backside so please forgive any pixilation or misfocus.)
I am not now a believer in a deity (although myself, BOB and Mr. DT all believed in the same god at various times) but, after witnessing the miracles that BOB could conjure up, this ROMK cult has become dangerously seductive to me.
Seeing is believing?
Anonymous (To protect my family from ROMK and BOB)

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Photo 3 - The Staff of Ophidia
Photo 4 - Zonata in crack