Hips don’t lie: Fat squirrel stuck in manhole cover rescued; then eats more

December 8, 2016 • 3:15 pm

I’m going to shamelessly steal this entire story from the BBC site because it’s so damn funny. Click on the headline to go to it, but the entire text is below:


A red squirrel who got stuck halfway through a manhole cover thanks to his curvy hips is recovering after a lengthy rescue operation in Munich.

Initial attempts to free the animal by slathering him in olive oil failed, with his huge behind preventing him from squeezing his way out.

He was finally freed after animal rescue services lifted off the cover and eased his head through the hole.

Locals have nicknamed the squirrel “Olivio” after his oily encounter.

After the ordeal on Friday, an exhausted Olivio was wrapped in a warm towel and fed glucose, local media report.

Staff at a local animal shelter say Olivio is recovering well and has now moved on to a diet of Christmas nuts.

“He was almost dead,” Sabine Gallenberger from the Squirrel Protection Association told German media.

“Now he is eating a lot and sleeps all the time.”

The BBC was unable to verify the size of Olivio’s behind.


That last line is a classic.

Here’s the original headline from the German paper online, with the lovely German word for squirrel (click on screenshot to go to story auf Deutsch):


My translation:

Hips too wide

Squirrel stuck fast in manhole cover

Olivio can no longer free himself from the hole

h/t: Michael

30 thoughts on “Hips don’t lie: Fat squirrel stuck in manhole cover rescued; then eats more

  1. Anyone who laughs at this should be ashamed. This is unabashed, unvarnished, un-PC fatshaming, and of a poor, defenseless, big-butt animal, no less.

    1. While I do find this highly amusing (and good that they finally got the fat little critter unstuck),the BBC article links to this related content http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-37196629 — “Norway man rescued after climbing into public toilet,” replete with photo, which I hope is authentic. I find the antics of this member of the homo sapiens species truly ridiculously astounding, and I never fail to marvel at the idiotic situations we get ourselves into. I don’t care who thinks I shouldn’t laugh at this.

      1. That’s tragic. And ludicrous. But mostly funny. It is possible to laugh and sympathise at the same time.

        The poor guy was, in fact, being incredibly heroic trying to rescue his friend’s phone. Also stupid. But mostly heroic. I cannot imagine any circumstance (including someone pointing a gun at me) that would make me dive into a composting toilet.


        1. Yes, it is possible to laugh and sympathise at the same time. And he damned sure was trying to help his friend, albeit in a scatologically Quixotic endeavor. Now, that’s a friend. I think this is an excellent example of altruism, altruism run amok, or should it be “run a-muck”?

          1. ‘a-muck’

            Oh dear. What is there about this subject that inspires dreadful puns and, umm, toilet humour.



        2. When you said “heroic” I was expecting “the man’s kitten” or “the man’s baby.” No, I don’t particularly find it “heroic” that he went after his friend’s phone. It was a nice thing to try, for sure. He was being helpful and considerate, yes. But I think my standard for bona fide Hero is a bit higher than attempting to rescue someone else’s cell phone from the commode.

          1. So you would inextricably tie heroism to the worthiness of the cause?

            By your reasoning, nobody on the ‘wrong’ side in a war could possibly be heroic?

            How about the mediaeval knights* who went on quixotic quests for daft reasons** – were they by definition prohibited from being heroic?

            *not including the scum who were most of the Crusaders, of course

            **can’t think of any off-hand but old stories are full of ’em

            (My cynical definition of ‘heroic’ also includes sub-categories of ‘bloody stupid’ and ‘you wouldn’t want to be standing near this guy when he does his hero thing’)


      2. Devotees of Pynchon’s Gravity’s Rainbow will experience a little deja vu at this point

        Down the toilet, lookit me,
        What a silly thing ta do!
        Hope nobody takes a pee,
        Yippy dippy dippy doo…

        1. Backenhörnchen, according to Google translate, but if you ask it to translate it back into English, you get ‘baking squirrel’.

            1. If Wikipedia is to be believed, Eichhörnchen is etymologically grounded in the indoeuropean root “eig”, meaning to move around quickly or forcefully.

              In modern parlance, “Eich” would refer to oak and “Hörnchen” means little horn(s). But that seems to be retconned.

    1. Siegfried?

      Das ist kein Mann! –
      Brennender Zauber
      zückt mir ins Herz;
      feurige Angst
      fasst meine Augen:
      mir schwankt und schwindelt der Sinn!

        1. He is a strange boy, but remember he’d never seen a woman before, his best friend is a bear and he’s about to fall in love with his auntie . . .

  2. RIP John Glenn. A true American hero – at least to those growing up in the 1960s.

    If you have never read it, check out Tom Wolfe’s “The Right Stuff.” Putting aside his latest twaddle, there was a time when Wolfe could really write.

  3. Although I didn’t have to resort to olive oil, I was called upon last spring to rescue a pair of toads (Bufo bufo) that had got themselves into a somewhat similar predicament to this squirrel.

    Toads converge on ponds for mating in the spring time and once in the water the males grasp the larger females from behind in a process known as amplexus so they can release their sperm over the spawn as she lays it. Competition for females is intense and it is common to see numerous males all clasping onto the same female in one frenzied ball and so some males try to steal a march on the competition by grabbing onto a female before she even reaches the pond.

    This was the case with the pair I rescued which had got stuck trying to squeeze through the mesh of some wire chicken netting that had been nailed down over a board-walk. The female had pushed her head through the mesh but it is doubtful that she would have been able to squeeze through on her own and there was definitely no way she could get through with the male clinging to her back. He was not letting go however and as he grimly clung on she grimly continued in the hopeless effort of moving forwards through the netting. Trying to push her backwards was to no avail and in spite of my interventions she continued to try to press forwards whilst he refused to let go. I was only able to release her when I finally succeeded in pulling the netting away from the board walk and could then work the mesh back over her head.

    Having got the pair free I released them back onto the woodland floor and on they continued towards their intended nuptials as if nothing had happened.

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