UNH squirrels remain campus stars despite Huffington Post snub
Published: Tuesday, October 8, 2013
Updated: Tuesday, October 8, 2013 02:10
The University of New Hampshire campus may be the home of the Wildcats, but it’s also the land of the squirrels. Wildcats love the campus squirrels, and they have been living symbiotically since 1893. Therefore, it may surprise students to learn that a recent Huffington Post article ranking the top 10 college campuses obsessed with their squirrels did not include UNH.
Although the @UNH_Squirrels Twitter account boasts 1,542 followers, the account’s last tweet was all the way back in May. The squirrels have been gathering nuts and scaling trees with their typical squirrely adorableness, so one must conclude that a slump in obsession is the students’ fault. Though, to the credit of some, the Twitter account is actively tweeted at with pictures of UNH’s curious cohorts poking around Holloway Commons, but the documenting stops there. To join the ranks of the top squirrel-lovers, UNH students need to step up their game.
Take the University of Chicago, for example. According to the Huffington Post, UC students created T-shirts around their squirrels that read “University of Chicago: Where the squirrels are cuter than the girls.”
“I find it strange that our squirrels have been elevated to celebrity status,” UNH student Quinn Hughes said.
But rock-star status squirrels are exactly what one would find at Oberlin College. Last May, the school ran a story in the Oberlin News-Tribune describing the cult of personality the pale rodents had garnered: “Stores around town are selling T-shirts, postcards and even plush versions of them [the albino squirrels]; they even have a drink named after them.”
Clearly, UNH is falling behind in the esoteric world of collegiate squirrel infatuation. UNH may not have fancy albino squirrels like Oberlin, or brooding and mysterious black squirrels like Princeton, but our squirrels have other things to offer and love.
“I don’t know what other schools’ squirrels are like,” junior Joseph Hamilton said, “but our squirrels are fearless.”
Indeed, the squirrels that frolic outside Thompson Hall are renowned for their brazen disregard for personal space. It is tacit Wildcat doctrine that values quality over quantity, and therefore what our squirrels lack in number and size, they compensate for through generous hearts and bushy tails.
“They always come right up next to me,” junior John Bull said of the squirrels’ fearlessness. “The students have a very personal relationship with the chubby squirrels. We feed our squirrels here, and they’re obese, but that’s why they like us.”
In the early days of October, the squirrels are no doubt getting ready for winter, which means added holiday weight. Students should get their iPhones ready for adorably plump squirrels soliciting outside dining halls; such pictures would make terrific fodder in the fight to regain squirrel-obsession supremacy.
The Huffington Post certainly made a mistake by neglecting to include the UNH squirrel admirers, but it’s impossible to deny rightful recognition where it is deserved. Such recognition was given to Vassar College in the Huffington Post article for the mythic status by which their squirrels are idolized: “There is a legend at Vassar,” read the article, “that the squirrels on campus are the ‘returned souls of English majors who couldn’t find jobs after graduation.’”
Putting aside competition and honing in on the heart of the issue, junior Nick Fuller summed up the debate and outrage with concise, poetic clarity: “Other schools can say whatever they want about their squirrels,” Fuller said, “but UNH squirrels are the nuttiest.”