According to Holiday Insights:
Squirrel Appreciation Day is an opportunity to enjoy and appreciate your tree climbing, nut gathering neighborhood squirrels. It's held in mid-winter when food sources are scarce for squirrels and other wildlife.
It goes on to say:
Not everyone likes squirrels. While they are fun to watch skirting around the yard and trees, they are aggressive at bird feeders. Squirrels tip almost any bird feeder and spill the seeds in search of the particular seeds they want. In the fall, they attack pumpkins on front porches in search of the seeds inside. For gardeners they dig up and steal flower bulbs, and may eat some of the veggies in your garden. When you think about it, mid winter is the best time to appreciate squirrels. In the winter they provide a little entertainment. During other times of the year, you may look at them as a pest in the flower and vegetable gardens.
Doesn't sound all that appreciative.
According to Ms. Hargrove, "Celebration of the event itself is up to the individual or group -- anything from putting out extra food for the squirrels to to learning something new about the species."
So how do you learn more? Visit the National Wildlife Foundation website:
How can you celebrate National Squirrel Appreciation Day?If you have small children, play a game of squirrelly seek with them.
Share your squirrel sightings with NWF's Wildlife Watch.
Learn the facts about squirrels:
-- There are more than 300 species of squirrel.
-- Different types of squirrels range in size from five inches (the African pygmy squirrel) to three feet (Indian giant squirrel).
-- The word "squirrel" comes from the Greek word skiouros, which means shadow-tailed.
-- Squirrels have brought down the NASDAQ stock market twice, once in 1987 and once in 1994.
But why should you care???
Back in 1988, a few folks in a freshman dormitory dubbed G:TB founder Rob "Squirrel" based on his squirrel's nest of clutter. Unlike his tour of duty in ROTC or his Government major, the nickname stuck. Much to his chagrin. Throughout college, he tried to go by Rob, but he was Squirrel. He tried to change his nickname to "Meat," but no, he was Squirrel. More than a couple of his friends' parents know him only as Squirrel. More than once in my life, someone has been talking about our friend "Rob," and I responded, "Who?"
In recent years, he's distanced himself a bit from the moniker. He got jobs where they call him by his Christian name instead of his college name. He married a girl who refused -- and believe me, I insisted -- to call him Squirrel. And now he's an Internet phenom on the "Blogger" and the "Twitter" and such, where he's "rob." Only occasional nibbles about the Richmond Flying Squirrels give us cause to bring the old name up. For all intents and purposes, he's now just plain ol' Rob.
Somewhere deep down, though, he knows. He's still our Squirrel.
As a tribute to a once-great nickname, I commissioned a team of technical wizards to assemble an animated video that would appropriately honor both this holiday and our friend. Here's what they came up with. I think you will agree that it's a solemn, fitting tribute, and a parable for our blog . . . and our lives.
(Watch the entire clip, have sound on. It's safe for work and children.)