My husband talks about his days as a long-haul truck driver and the pet squirrel who kept him company (and startled many a driver at truck stops). His stories remind me of the many squirrels I've encountered in movies, television, and the internet.
1. Sugar Bush Squirrel
Sugar Bush Squirrel lives with Ms. Kelly Foxton in Boca Raton, Florida. Foxton took Sugar Bush in as a baby and raised her in the lap of luxury. An extremely patient and easy-going squirrel, Sugar Bush dresses in costumes and poses in specially-built scenes for photographs. She has her own calendar and a line of notecards and greeting cards you can buy, as well as a plush likeness that also wears tiny costumes. Her gallery is updated often with scenes from the news, like the Sarah Palin impression shown here.
2, Twiggy the Waterskiing Squirrel
Twiggy was rescued after hurricane David in 1978 and raised by Chuck and Lou Ann Best of Deltona, Florida. Chuck taught Twiggy to water ski behind a remote control boat as a treat for his daughter. What began as a joke turned into a water show sensation. Twiggy's act has appeared in several movies and television shows. Although the original Twiggy has passed on, the act continues with subsequent squirrels trained by the Bests. See Twiggy ski in this video.
3. Tommy Tucker
Tommy Tucker was a tamed squirrel who posed for fashion photography in the 1940s. Photograph by Nina Leen/Time & Life Pictures.
4. & 5. Slappy and Skippy Squirrel
Slappy Squirrel and Skippy Squirrel were characters in the Steven Spielberg animated TV series Animaniacs, which aired from 1993 to 1998. Slappy was portrayed as an old woman and Skippy was her youthful and energetic nephew.
Rupert was the title character of the 1950 Jimmy Durante film The Great Rupert. Rupert didn't appear in many scenes and he didn't have any lines, but he was the hero of the story. The evil landlord hid his cash inside the wall, where Rupert found it and flung it downstairs to the poor tenant who was praying for money. This behavior continued every week until the house caught fire (which was also Rupert's doing). Still, there was a happy ending for all, including Rupert who became a circus star.
Scrat is a character in all three Ice Age movies. He is a "saber-tooth squirrel" who spends his time scrounging for food and pursuing the delicious but elusive acorn. Many people say Scrat is the only reason they sit through any of the films, so Scrat has also starred in several short films.
8. Secret Squirrel
Secret Squirrel and his sidekick Morocco Mole were Hanna-Barbera cartoons characters in the Atom Ant/Secret Squirrel Show, which aired from 1965 to 1968. During one season, Secret Squirrel had his own show. He was a spy code named Agent 000 who used amazing gadgets to battle evildoers, a la James Bond. Mel Blanc did the voice of Secret Squirrel.
9. Rocky the Flying Squirrel
Rocket J. Squirrel is better known as Rocky the Flying Squirrel, the smarter half of the Rocky and Bullwinkle Show. The cartoons were produced from 1959 to 1964, with June Foray as the voice of Rocky. Although he was miles above Bullwinkle the moose in intellect, most of their adventures were solved by odd coincidence or dumb luck. Rocky, unlike flying squirrels in nature, could propel himself to amazing heights.
See also: 10 Famous (or Notorious) Ducks