A Seattle-based squirrel has developed a taste for cheesy snacks, a story that opens up a very particular mélange of awww-meets-gross that reaches new heights when you get to the bit where a kid picks the squirrel up and the squirrel is totally cool with that whole situation.
Seattle’s KUOW reports on Kevin the female squirrel (it is unclear how the squirrel’s gender was determined), a resident of Discovery Park who also goes by Geoffrey or Sammy or Skittles, depending on which kid is around. Kevin has a notched ear, but is notable for also being a wily little fucker who will jump into moving strollers, tear into backpacks, and climb up a person’s leg in search of snacks (and cheesy ones in particular). One three-year-old actually picked Kevin up with her bare hands, and when she put her back down, the squirrel just stood there, totally unbothered, probably waiting for someone to fork over the foods.
The NPR affiliate found loads of gems in a neighborhood parent group on Facebook, including a member of the group who, despite having moved to California, regales new neighbors with tales of the crazy, snack-crazed squirrel: “I talk about this squirrel even though I’ve moved!... I go, ‘Back home there’s this squirrel…’”
Parents in the group note that the Kevin (per KUOW) will chase people for food, unseal sandwich bags, open Tupperware containers, tear holes in backpacks, and as mentioned above, scale human legs like climbing walls in order to beg for popcorn. (The hell? How is anyone cool with that?) Her treats of choice are, apparently, Cheez-Its and Goldfish crackers. One member of the group, Sara Pokas, noted that the squirrel sometimes eats right out of the hands of visitors to the park: “Maybe we shouldn’t do that, but look at Kevin. How can we resist?”
KUOW also quotes Pokas as saying that Kevin doesn’t get down with fruits and veggies: “Kevin threw an apple slice once and waited for Goldfish.”
The network’s reporters went to the park to try to spot the infamous Kevin, planning to tempt him with barbecue chips, but failed to spot him. A local mom informed the team that another parent had recently chased him away. She didn’t seem particularly sorry about it, either:
“Steel [her 4-year-old] had a bad dream in his bed because of this very squirrel,” she said.
Steel looked solemn. “I don’t like squirrels,” he said.
“It’s a little annoying for parents,” Wright said. “My son is apprehensive about coming to the park – ‘Mom, I don’t want to see the squirrel. We shouldn’t bring snacks to the park.’”
KUOW does not share Steel’s views on that hot-button issue. And though reporters failed to share the barbecue chips with Kevin, Kevin may have snubbed them anyway, since they are not cheesy. KUOW ends this delightful story, which you should totally read, with one of the all-time great kickers:
“A crow nicknamed Leonard ate the BBQ chips.”