Daredevil Raccoon, a Real Social Climber, Captivates a City
Internet denizens were also transfixed by #MPRaccoon as the critter scaled a 25-story skyscraper in St. Paul
A plucky little raccoon in Minnesota scurried up the side of the 25-story UBS building in downtown St. Paul — completely captivating the internet on Tuesday and well into Wednesday.
The hashtag #MPRaccoon is a reference to Minnesota Public Radio.
MPR’s building is about a block away, and the outlet was among the first to call attention to the creature’s seemingly desperate predicament.
Countless folks eagerly followed MPR news reporter Tim Nelson’s feed, where he live-tweeted crucial video and photos as #MPRaccoon’s fate unfolded.
And just when the world could use a bit of old-fashioned good news, #MPRaccoon delivered.
At about 2:30 a.m., the masked marsupial reached the roof.
Thousands — some quite sleepy — cheered at the happy news that #MPRaccoon had claimed the enticing prize of soft cat food that the city's Animal Control officials had proffered to lure him into a live trap.
When it comes to urban exploring, this was not #MPRaccoon's first rodeo.
The saga began when the animal was removed from the roof of a nearby office building, CNN reported.
There was even an offer of a reward from James Gunn, director of the "Guardians of the Galaxy" films. The social media universe was quick to note, of course, that the film series featured a beloved, equally plucky raccoon character called Rocket, portrayed by James Gunn's younger brother, Sean Gunn.
As it turned out, there was no need for elaborate, external rescue schemes, though many offered some ingenious ideas for accomplishing it. (And, as even the snooty New York Times deigned to report about the escapade, "Raccoons are skilled climbers with strong claws and will rapidly scurry up trees to escape danger. By rotating their hind feet, they can descend from trees headfirst, according to the book 'Adirondack Mammals.'")
#MPRaccoon eventually sorted it out on his own.
Personnel from Wildlife Management Services are now relocating #MPRaccoon to an undisclosed location, MPR's Tim Nelson reported, much to the collective relief of all who cheered for this unlikely little hero.
Michele Blood is a Flemington, New Jersey-based freelance writer and a regular contributor to LifeZette.