New Yorkers never go to the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade (at least not more than once – and even then, only if they have VIP access). My own tradition on the anniversary of the kickoff of a genocidal land grab against Native Americans is to sleep
off a hangover late, sip some breakfast wine coffee and listen with half-interest to the parade on TV whilst screwing around on my laptop in my pajamas. Once in a while I’ll glance up when something of interest drops from the mouths of the chucklefuck hosts. “Patti LaBelle,” for instance. Or “SpongeBob.” And anything, really, that just seems too hilarious or bizarre to miss. (<-While I was typing that sentence, I glanced up to see – I shit you not – some d00d in a cowboy hat crooning a country song from atop an enormous bucket of KFC fried chicken. WTF?)
But what really got my attention this morning was one word.
[CONTENT NOTE: disgusting images of baby squirrels, descriptions of wildly inappropriate human-squirrel interactions.]
Twenty years working wildlife rehab, and Kevin Barton has seen it all. Or he thought he had. At least until Hurricane Irma tore through Florida this week. It wasn’t the variety of species that grabbed his attention. It was the volume. Of utterly common critters, like bunnies and squirrels. Mainly squirrels.
By midweek, the Wildlife Rescue and Rehabilitation Center of Venice had accepted 140 baby squirrels, from week-old hairless “pinkies” to unweaned juveniles.
ONE HUNDRED AND FORTY FUCKING SQUIRRELS. Yes, what people rebuilding their lives from Irma’s devastation in Florida really need right now… more squirrels.
[CONTENT NOTE: vicious squirrel violence.]
This is no way to start my morning. In a terrifying echo of July’s assaults in Brooklyn, residents of New Orleans are suffering unprovoked attacks by the enemy rodent menace:
NEW ORLEANS – In the Lake Vista neighborhood of New Orleans, neighbors live along lush, tree-lined lanes in harmony with nature.
But, this week nature attacked.
Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis is warning about hostile and possibly disease-ridden squirrels.
“Recently, there have been reports of aggressive squirrels around the IUPUI campus,” IUPUI wrote in a Campus Life blog post July 25. “Squirrels may look cute, and they are fun to watch scampering about, but they should not be treated as pets.”
Good luck with that message, IUPUI. I’ve been desperately imploring my own mother for ten years to stop feeding the disgusting monsters, but she will. not. quit. (Then again, I’ve also been telling her I’m a fucking adult for at least twice that long, and she doesn’t accept that either. So.)
Squirrels are known to carry diseases, including rabies, salmonella and even plague, the university said. IUPUI advised students and workers to stop feeding the furry menaces.
The 7-year old victim of multiple bite wounds from an unprovoked squirrel attack on Wednesday in Brooklyn has spoken to ABC-7 New York about her horrifying ordeal. Readers may recall from my post yesterday that she is being subjected to a course of rabies treatment as a precaution, and was seriously traumatized by the relentless assault. “She is not OK,” her father Andres said. “Every night, she’s crying and scared. ‘Please papi, help me, the squirrel is coming, a big one.'”
Now, adorable little Maria Guerrero and her father have added more disturbing details to the terrifying tale:
[CONTENT NOTE: graphic image of squirrel bite injuries]
And here I was thinking I could enjoy a lazy, relaxing Sunday morning but nooooooo. As soon as I fired up my laptop this was the first thing I saw in my feed:
At least five people were attacked by an “unusually aggressive” squirrel in Prospect Park, and the Health Department is urging anyone who’s recently been bitten to seek medical attention for potential rabies exposure.
[CONTENT NOTE: graphic image of child’s arm showing injuries after a squirrel attack.]
I read with alarm a terrifying story out of Jacksonville, Florida:
Young boy among 3 attacked by squirrels at Jacksonville park
Several people including a child are recovering after they were attacked by a squirrel at a park in Jacksonville.
South Berwick, Maine is a typical small New England town (pop. 7,220) just a stone’s throw from the New Hampshire border. At 97.5% white and solidly middle class, it sounds unexceptionally boring. In fact, the only thing that ever happens in South Berwick is a yearly “strawberry festival” held on its elementary school grounds. Highlights apparently include “shops, food, games and rides for children and trolley rides.”
Since virtually everyone else in the world completely ignores this dreadfully boring town, the squirrels have taken notice—and taken up residence. Indeed, South Berwick seems to be the ideal location for the enemy rodents to perfect their latest stealth technology: winter camouflage.