"I once again completely underestimated my adversary."
May 19, 2021 11:52 AM   Subscribe

Mark Rober has made another backyard squirrel obstacle course for 2021. Previous obstacle course here. With new squirrel houses, Fort Knutz, walnuts, stuffed squirrels, and spy/heist movie inspiration!
posted by jenfullmoon (21 comments total) 23 users marked this as a favorite
If this is a personality quiz (this is a personality quiz, yes?), I got Marty the hacker, the nervy, slightly directionally challenged teammate. 💚
posted by spamandkimchi at 12:11 PM on May 19, 2021 [3 favorites]

I watched the first one when it came out, and now I'm hesitant. Before I watch the second one, is this one also laden with unexamined are-the-straights-ok gender baggage? about squirrels?
posted by tigrrrlily at 12:26 PM on May 19, 2021 [5 favorites]

He does identify one squirrel as previously preganant, and then continues to use male pronouns.
posted by buildmyworld at 12:38 PM on May 19, 2021 [2 favorites]

There is a joke featuring a poster of a squirrel in a bikini??

Are the straights okay?
posted by Mizu at 1:05 PM on May 19, 2021 [6 favorites]

It amazes me how quickly they figure it out and keep trying in the face of adversity. If I was one of those squirrels I would have given up and refused to contribute content right around the helicopter puzzle. I also appreciate his commitment to squirrel safety/wellness with the many exit options.

I hope this inspires people to take up engineering and try building weird stuff to baffle their local wildlife (safely)!
posted by fight or flight at 1:30 PM on May 19, 2021 [6 favorites]

The internet is friggin loving this video right now.

I learned a lot about how squirrels fall.
posted by iamkimiam at 2:17 PM on May 19, 2021 [2 favorites]

Yeah, at this point we know Phat Gus is a (very misnamed) girl, might as well go with it. Still my favorite though.

I want to reincarnate for the rest of my lifetimes as a squirrel, because being a squirrel looks AWESOME. All that flying, all that safe landing!

The guy is offering an engineering class online (mentioned at beginning/end of video). I sadly don't have the brains or the technology to do it, but was almost tempted.
posted by jenfullmoon at 2:38 PM on May 19, 2021

I’m mesmerized by their ability to navigate the “laser” room.
posted by double bubble at 2:44 PM on May 19, 2021 [6 favorites]

This is the most fun I've had all week. And y'know, squirrels are pretty smart critters as far as I can tell, and I reckon they had "fun" as well.
posted by turbid dahlia at 2:52 PM on May 19, 2021 [2 favorites]

My ex signed our son up for the course!! I think that I’m more excited than the boy child! I’m making a list of wildly fanciful inventions that I would like for him to bring into existence.
posted by pearlybob at 3:21 PM on May 19, 2021 [9 favorites]

Around here, the folks with bird feeders aren't concerned with squirrels right now, since the bears woke up hungry.
I think our bears could handle his course pretty quickly.
posted by MtDewd at 3:51 PM on May 19, 2021 [2 favorites]

That was brilliant - but I'm not sure I really like squirrels.
(Not that they would care - bastards).
posted by Jody Tresidder at 4:08 PM on May 19, 2021 [1 favorite]

Philosophers have long argued and made claims about what it is that actually separates humans from animals.

This. This is what separates humans from animals. The willingness to make a convoluted squirrel maze for Youtube clicks, and claim it's to keep squirrels away when actually they are obviously rooting for the squirrels the entire time. I'm sure we even have a gene for it. I've never heard of a chimp doing any of this.
posted by JHarris at 4:12 PM on May 19, 2021 [12 favorites]

Squirrels are nice 😌
posted by gucci mane at 4:13 PM on May 19, 2021 [4 favorites]

I grew up feeding back-yard squirrels out of hand while they sit on my leg and always having walnuts in my pocket. They're smart bushy-tailed rats. There's no way I could gender-pronoun-appropriate name any one of them. They're just names.

Why would you think this is worse than putting cat treats into a plaything that the cat has fun with to eventually get a treat. They're all grown ass adults and could totally be somewhere else doing some other thing than trying to get through the Ninja Warrior course.

Next video he should try to get them to come and eat out of his hand. It's not that hard to get a squirrel to bark at you to come out and give it a nut an it will happily climb up your leg and sit on your knee while you hand it walnuts. Everybody should have done this at some point. Leave the squirrels alone.
posted by zengargoyle at 5:24 PM on May 19, 2021 [2 favorites]

This makes my efforts to squirrel proof my bird feeder so laughable. I put the foil on the post, which works well for keeping them from accessing the feeder from underneath, but since there isn’t a space near my house that doesn’t have trees further than 10 feet apart they just launch from the trees to the top of the feeder, or land on top of the foil and hang out there while eating the bird seed. I put Vaseline all over the top of the foil and feeder and that worked well for a few hours but the squirrels prevailed and figured out how to stay put on the greasy surface. Then I realized how much fun it is to watch the squirrels jump on it, often fall and go back up again and chase each other around. There are four breeds with unique temperaments and abilities.

Anyway, this was so fun to watch!
posted by waving at 5:16 AM on May 20, 2021

This was awesome! I hadn't realized squirrels were so smart. The way they learnt from each other was fascinating.
posted by EllaEm at 7:09 AM on May 20, 2021 [1 favorite]

Zengargoyle and gucci mane are right, squirrels are nice! I spent the pandemic year befriending 3 young squirrels last year (Stripe, Alva and Bucky). Bucky had squirrel pups about 11 weeks ago, and within 10 days of showing up on my ledge, I'd taught pups Sam and Frodo to take walnuts, pecans and almonds from me directly.

Here's video from yesterday.

I usually don't feed them by hand but instead dump out dried corn, seeds and nut pieces on the picture-window's ledge next to my "home office."

Sometimes, I'm startled out of a writing reverie by insistent thumps on the window letting me know they're out of food...

As someone without pets, these little tree puppies have been a balm for my soul over the last 15 months.
posted by Unicorn on the cob at 9:00 AM on May 20, 2021 [10 favorites]

This makes my efforts to squirrel proof my bird feeder so laughable.

I own a copy of Outwitting Squirrels: 101 Cunning Stratagems to Reduce Dramatically the Egregious Misappropriation of Seed from Your Birdfeeder by Squirrels. I'm not saying he's not trying to come up with suggestions, mind you, but a lot of it ends up being pure comedy because YOU JUST CAN'T THWART SQUIRRELS.
posted by jenfullmoon at 2:27 PM on May 20, 2021 [4 favorites]

I have watched this twice and it's delightful
posted by 5_13_23_42_69_666 at 4:21 AM on May 21, 2021

My cat was enthralled by this video, so I found it hard to watch.
posted by cheshyre at 9:04 AM on May 22, 2021 [1 favorite]

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