Monday, October 22, 2007

A Rat with Good PR

No, this post will not deal with CEOs, or politicians. It's all about squirrels. Yep, those furry little animals (Sciurus carolinensis) that hop from tree to tree, collect nuts, and are considered "cute" just because it has a nice tail (i.e. good PR).

As someone who comes from a warm country, I was fascinated with squirrels ever since I first saw them roaming around my cousin's yard in Montreal. Industrious, smart, quick - and sporting a furry tail. Gray ones on the east coast, black ones on the west (called Douglas Squirrels, or Tamiasciurus douglasii), and scone-and-tea guzzling squirrels in the London parks :).

Yesterday, I went to pick up my mail. I'm standing there, rifling through the huge pile of spam (How come no one has invented a spam filter for a real mailbox yet?) when I hear a strange yowl. After a couple of more times, I looked up, and saw a squirrel trying to carry a pine cone twice its size up a branch. Every time it tugged and couldn't move it, it yowled again in frustration.

Some instinct told me to jump aside and indeed, just as I did, the squirrel threw that pine cone at me. Missed my head by an inch. This was only the second time in my life I've seen a squirrel attack a person (the first was in London. Word of advice: if you offer a squirrel a nut, don't pull your hand back. Once it has seen it - it's his).

There's no specific point I'm trying to make, just wanted to share this funny story.
But just to keep this post funny, have you ever heard of Squirrel Fishing?

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