July 22, 2012 12:41 PM   Subscribe

Curious Kazakh Gopher at a Spaceport. (SLYT with explanatory NPR blog post)

I love the whole look of the scene, especially the part with the rocket in the background. For some reason it makes me think of playing "No One Lives Forever II".
posted by Eekacat (23 comments total) 12 users marked this as a favorite
Dude, no need to editorialize in the FPP.

Seriously, that was fantastic- the Hitchcock music made it really work. I'm curious about animal videos like these: what do you think the animal is thinking about the camera, and what is it about the camera that piques its curiosity?
posted by hincandenza at 12:50 PM on July 22, 2012

Hey, in 1974 that Gopher was named to the Order of Lenin for his contributions to the soviet space program. He's retired now, but still wanted to live near his beloved rockets. He's wondering why there are so many cameras in front of his dacha.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 12:51 PM on July 22, 2012 [5 favorites]

what is it about the camera that piques its curiosity?

It's not organic, it's not moving, it wasn't there yesterday, and it possibly reflects the animal's image, something that nothing else in its environment probably does.
posted by dobbs at 12:56 PM on July 22, 2012 [1 favorite]

Also, potentially gnaw-worthy.
posted by zippy at 1:11 PM on July 22, 2012

Gnawing is kind of a rodent's job description. I let my guinea pigs run around my bedroom and now I have to get my laptop's power cord replaced!
posted by dunkadunc at 1:14 PM on July 22, 2012

Heard they nicknamed him "FOOF." Isn't that adorable?
posted by hal9k at 1:27 PM on July 22, 2012 [1 favorite]

It's all fun and games until the rocket transport train tracks start getting under-mined...
posted by anthill at 1:41 PM on July 22, 2012

That rocket totally photo-bombed the gopher's video.
posted by bicyclefish at 1:45 PM on July 22, 2012 [1 favorite]

I'm alright, nobody worry 'bout me
posted by fuse theorem at 1:46 PM on July 22, 2012

Hah. I like how the last one was so quick to emerge and have a look around after the gigantic multi-hundred-ton launching platform rolls over its home. He's like... "Welp. I guess that's there now."
posted by Drexen at 1:49 PM on July 22, 2012

Adorable to the max, but now I have to find that music. Is it really something from a Hitchcock movie, or just Hitchcockesque? It's not the theme to the tv show (Funeral March of the Marionette), I know that.
posted by maudlin at 1:53 PM on July 22, 2012

Day 37 - The humans continue to suspect nothing. The rodential body of the host organism seems to inspire an optimal mix of affection and complacence, aided by continual execution of the behavioral subroutines "scamper", "sniff", and "gnaw" in the presence of their visual recording device. Preparations for the invasion are in their final stages; soon I will have crippled their primary means of space transport. In five days, the operation shall begin.


posted by dephlogisticated at 2:08 PM on July 22, 2012 [7 favorites]

If you say in the first chapter that there is a rifle hanging on the wall rocket on the launch platform, in the second or third chapter it absolutely must go off.
posted by benito.strauss at 2:36 PM on July 22, 2012 [2 favorites]

I think he'll be okay when the rocket launches. If there's sidewalks and rail tracks then that area is probably not washed by exhaust during takeoffs. And he's underground, which is always a plus when there's strange, loud noises and explosions.

A bigger question is how he can possibly get enough to eat. It doesn't look like there's a single blade of grass in that spot.
posted by Kevin Street at 2:52 PM on July 22, 2012

What they don't realize is the gophers have gnawed themselves out a traveling compartment in the Soyuz navigational computer. Gophers on the ISS!
posted by Salvor Hardin at 3:02 PM on July 22, 2012

Maybe he someday hopes to hitch a ride, like spacebat.
posted by BrashTech at 3:42 PM on July 22, 2012

posted by scruss at 4:57 PM on July 22, 2012 [1 favorite]

You can see the little thrusters in his brain firing, trying to figure out what this shiny new object is and, more importantly, can he eat it?
posted by maryr at 5:39 PM on July 22, 2012

So that's who's been stealing our cucumbers.
posted by seanmpuckett at 6:13 PM on July 22, 2012 [1 favorite]

Very nice; I like.
posted by Apocryphon at 7:47 PM on July 22, 2012

Camera! Om nom nom nom.
posted by arcticseal at 7:49 PM on July 22, 2012

Does it have a name? If not, I suggest Lamarr II.
posted by homunculus at 11:53 PM on July 22, 2012

In post-Soviet Kazakhstan, gopher watches YOU and your space program
posted by Happy Dave at 4:35 AM on July 23, 2012

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