On Tuesday night a woman was removed from a flight for attempting to bring on board her “emotional support squirrel.” We, the staff at South Florida Clothiers South Florida Friday Fun Fact, knew where this occurred before we even looked… in Florida. Sure enough on closer examination, it happened at Orlando International Airport. The reason we knew: because Florida is ground zero for squirrel-centric bedlam.
Photo Credit: Auto Evolution
Take a 2012 Clay County incident where a man was pulled over for DUI after swerving and hitting other cars. He did what anyone would do in that situation and blamed it on the squirrel wrapped up in his shirt. It didn’t work though, as evidenced by the police report stating the officer “had the defendant secure the squirrel and then exit the vehicle.”
Ok, so maybe the squirrel was not at fault for that particular instance, but there have been plenty of cases in Florida of squirrels on the wrong side of the law: As in June of this year where a squirrel was videotaped stealing a bag of Peanut M&Ms from a Disney Store in the Magic Kingdom (it’s unclear if the squirrel snuck into the park or was an annual passholder). In Martin County, a family reported on a crazed squirrel they named “Munchy” who returned night after night to dine on their SUV, eventually chewing a 4” square chunk out of the body. For two days in a row on the campus of the University of South Florida in 2014, a squirrel, or more likely 2 squirrels working in velociraptor-style tandem, knocked out the power to the school library… during finals!
Photo Credit: NORA ZIEGLER
Of course, Florida squirrels are not all bad eggs. Twiggy, the water skiing squirrel, promoted water safety at the Orlando Boat show for the past 10 years before retiring this summer (Cover Photo Credit [sans Stone Crab]: Orlando Sentinel).
And still active in the workforce is Sugar Bush, a squirrel who resides in Boca Raton. Sugar Bush’s owners hire her out as a squirrel model, and apparently own over 4,000 squirrel wigs and outfits in order for Sugar Bush to ply her trade.
Photo Credit: Kelly Foxton
And, not to be outdone by a lesser species, a 53 year-old man, who tried multiple times to blow up the IRS building in Miami, identified himself as “Squirrel” when finally caught by the FBI.
So, exercise caution with our squirrels out there Florida, or just follow the advice a Central Florida man posted on a sign in a local park where the squirrels had gotten a little too aggressive: “Aviod [sic] Contact with Squirrels.”