@mdhughes “[W]hile I studied … with the intensity of a snake-handler reading his Bible”: I honestly can't tell whether that means you studied them really intensely, or mostly ignored them. Because why would a snake-handler read the <cite>Bible</cite>?
Oh, wait, is that those Christians who handle snakes and believe their god will protect them? In that case it makes perfect sense. Ignore all of the above. I think I was thinking of snake charmers.