We’ve finally made it to Friday! Well, you finally made it to Friday… I was in no hurry to go back to work after having the last four nights off. That’s OK, because as always, the treat is for my faithful readers… and what better way to reward you all than to pull another hairbrained suggestion you sent in to my virtual mailbox for my Prompt the Squirrel series! I only have six bullets left in the chamber, but if you haven’t jumped in yet and want to ensure this game of WordPress roulette continues on for a while longer, please
shoot send me a prompt! I promise to go on about almost anything and everything…
There are two prompts patiently awaiting my insight dealing with subject matter I have absolutely no earthly notion about. I’m going to tackle the easier of the two this week, which was sent to me from Jenn at her Midlife Crisis in Sassy Green Boots blog. Here is what she sent to me:
What are your thoughts on the Scaredy Squirrel series? I like the books…and I’ve tolerated the animated series. Inquiring minds want to know….
Scaredy Squirrel got his start as the title character of a book written by Canadian author Melanie Watt in 2006. Six books in all have now been published in the series. He also was spun off into his own animated series a few years ago which supposedly is/was aired in the US on Cartoon Network. While I can’t say I haven’t come across the name of this character before, I’ve never seen either his books or his cartoon… but being the resourceful squirrel I am who is not scaredy of a little challenge, I’m just going to totally wing it and offer my take on what I can dig up on this questionably drawn critter from the internet!
Note: All italicized quotes that follow come from the Wiki page for Scaredy Squirrel….
The books often follow the same format: the titular protagonist Scaredy Squirrel identifies his fears, shows how he avoids them at all costs, and develops contingency plans, which usually involve an emergency kit and playing dead till the threat has passed. Scaredy is inevitably faced with the fears he tries so hard to avoid, eventually learning that it is not as bad as he initially imagined. However, he only slightly alters his strict daily routines after these experiences.
So Scaredy’s main fear is the fact that he might have to break one of his ridiculous OCD habits. There’ nothing wrong with always having an emergency kit in case somebody predicts the next Y2K or something, but the playing dead trick never works well for possums, who usually just get squished or eaten while they’re lying helpless.
The first book, “Scaredy Squirrel,” introduces the main character, a nervous squirrel, who is afraid of many things and keeps safe in his tree, following an intricate routine. One day he has an unexpected visitor, which he thinks is a “killer bee”. The terrified squirrel takes a leap into the unknown and discovers to his surprise that he is a flying squirrel.
There are a great many things we do not find out about ourselves until later on in life. I’m pretty sure the ability or non-ability to fly would be one of them. Where were Scaredy’s parents to pass along this bit of vital information to him? Were they maybe too scared to have “the talk” with him about flying? Was he unknowingly just a misfit of science? If someone is afraid killer bees are knocking at their front door, wouldn’t they probably also be too afraid to leap from tall distances before they found out they could fucking fly?
A sequel, “Scaredy Squirrel Makes a Friend,” was published in March 2007 by Kids Can Press. In it, Scaredy decides to leave his nut tree and find the perfect friend; he must be germ free, toothless and completely predictable. With meticulous planning and preparation Scaredy sets off with rubber gloves and air freshener in hand, but the friend he finds is not what he had in mind at all.
Oh gee, what a shock that our obsessive compulsive rodent is also a germophobe. I’ve been watching squirrels for years and have never seen one spray down an acorn they just dug out of a pile of doberman dung with Lysol before eating it. I can also assure you that the only toothless critters you are going to find out there probably have lots and lots of germs to thank for their gummy mouths.
Just what are some of the specific things that scare Scaredy shitless throughout the book series? Well, they include…
The Three Bears
OK, that took a while. Where was I? What was I talking about?
Aw, fuck it! I think I did a good enough job making another prompt look lame. Thanks Jenn for the chance to talk about a squirrel’s fears. Come back next Friday for the start of what looks like it’ll be the final month of your prompts… and they promise to only get sillier.