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From Stupid Blog to World Sensation: Ascension of the Squirrel Whisperer

Our generation has witnessed the electric surge of numerous Internet sensations. We have left our computers in the hands of our “friend” to simply grab a drink or pop into the loo only to find on our return that that jabroni has changed our homepage to (DISCLAIMER: if you haven’t seen this yet, don’t. Or do, but don’t blame me).

We have eagerly clicked on Youtube videos promising the “CRAZIEST SHIT YOU’VE EVER SEEN!” only to find out that we are actually going to watch three minutes of Rick Astley gracelessly convulsing in his trench coat and black turtleneck/full-on denim outfits.

And we can’t go anywhere without being subjected to Psy’s “Gangnam Style” and that provocative horse dance (please watch through this entire video).

Ardently waiting for the next viral hit, Penn State has been blessed as the home of a mini-web phenomenon of its own: The Squirrel Whisperer.

There probably isn’t one person on our campus who hasn’t heard of Mary Krupa and Sneezy the Penn State Squirrel. I have been fortunate enough to witness Krupa dish out tasty snacks to her squirrel pals on several occasions. And seriously, LITTLE HATS. I don’t think there is anything that gets me more torqued than little clothes. THEY’RE SO TINY.

Since the article was written just over a month ago, Krupa’s Facebook page for Sneezy has gone from a handful of likes to 4,890 and climbing. A quick glance through the page shows that it is not just Onward State readers that have fallen into the cult of squirrel benevloence, but fans worldwide. So how did the Squirrel Whisperer go from a post on a stupid blog to international sensation? Let’s take a look:


It was on this day that “Meet Penn State’s Squirrel Whisperer” was published, thus beginning the movement. 


Hours later, the story was picked up by tech champion Mashable, naturally questioning whether our campus had been overrun by hat-wearing squirrels. 


In little time (but slightly behind as per usual), Yahoo News snagged Mashable’s story. 


As much as I am sure it pained Penn State to conduct a story based on an Onward State article, Krupa sat down with two members of Penn State Network’s “After Hours” to “talk all things squirrelly.”


Now, I am not exactly sure whether Yahoo or Mashable is responsible, but the Squirrel Whisperer jumped across the Pacific, and found itself featured on the Taiwanese site ETtoday (I like to think the Google translation of this page is spot on). 


A few days later, Krupa’s tale was published in the Taiwanese newspaper Merit-Timesearning a front-page spot on the print.


After nearly a month of silence, the post reemerged on the mega-liberal, viral-detection site Buzzfeed. 


While it is alarming that it took this long for Buzzfeed to recognize the greatness of this story, it most certainly led to the most significant recommendation yet: Pee-wee Herman. While he chose to cite some dumb website called Neatorama, everyone’s favorite public masturbator (sorry, Jason Russell) knows a good thing when he sees it, and we all must obey.


A day later, Tosh.0’s blog raved about squirrels and hats in that typical, condescending, asshole Tosh fashion.

And here we are. It is also important to note two local shoutouts:

1. Bell’s Greek Pizza for inviting Sneezy to stop by the restaurant to chow down on their “extra bread,” which they usually surrender to the “local birds.”

2. Centre County DA Stacy Parks Miller for highly recommending Sneezy’s page to all of her followers. You’re OK in my books, Stacy.

Where will the Squirrel Whisperer make berth next? I don’t know, but we will be watching. Go with Christ, brah.

About the Author

Ryan Kristobak

Hailing from Lebanon, PA, I am a senior majoring in print journalism. Things I enjoy include lovesacs, denim, mullets, Fight Milk, Jonny Moseley, and "hang in there" kitten posters. Things that bother me include "fun" sized candy bars (not fun), fish, shoobies, wet door knobs, baby leashes, and Jake Lloyd.


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