It's a surprisingly common thing among snake owners (who, in Australia at least, need a special license) - not getting your children eaten, necessarily, but getting blase about the animal and getting badly injured or killed as a result.
Just a few months ago there was a bloke over here who got royally sloshed and left his amethyst python
out of its tank. Seeing an apparently easy meal, it choked him to death and tried (unsuccessfully) to swallow him.
The consensus in Brisbane's reptile-phile community was that it was a good thing no-one suggested putting the snake down. After all, choking things and eating them was exactly
what it was supposed to be doing with its time.
As a post-script, just how much travelling have you done, Greg? Every time I read one of your anecdotes it comes from a new and exotic place!
This and further bad gaming ideas can be found in The Eclecticon