TNB Night Owl: Trash Panda Does St. Paul

A scruffy raccoon (no, not Rocket Raccoon from Guardians of the Galaxy) captured the heart and soul of Twitter today, as it alternately climbed, napped, and groomed its way up the side of the USB building in Saint Paul Minnesota. At one point, a live feed was provided to monitor the coon’s progress. As of the time of this Night Owl publication, the saga that gripped Saint Paul is yet unresolved. Night has fallen and the world will sleep uneasily with the fate of #mprraccoon unknown until morning.

The critter had, at last report, climbed its way up to the 23rd floor over the course of the day – literally scaling the side of the building in between naps. Firefighters have placed a live trap baited with cat food on the roof, trying to lure the creature to safety. Officials, for some inexplicable reason, appear reluctant to endanger the city’s First Responders by having them repel down the side of the building and attempt to sweet talk a wild, beloved though it may be, animal into their arms to be whisked to safety. Indeed, the dozens of other suggestions on how to rescue the trash panda have also come to naught – the windows on the building do not open and any attempt to rescue the animal would, experts say, lead to injury or death. (No one wants the story to end like the raccoon story in Toronto a couple years ago. If you are unfamiliar with it, it could be worthy of a Night Owl of its own, but you can read up on it here.)

As night deepens, the citizens of Saint Paul, and indeed  the world, are going to have to hope that “Spidercoon”, as some have dubbed him, can figure out how to make it safely to the roof where the city will then attempt to relocate him.

Although the Washington Post published an article about the stranded coon today, for our purposes at The News Blender, this is a story best told via Tweets, written by the people who are invested in this story in ways journalists could never be.

#mprraccoon: The Story in Tweets

The Saint Paul Mayor weighed in this evening, to offer assurance that officials are working the problem and to give the city a plug.

As twilight approached, the raccoon remained perched on a ledge.

Spidercoon has united the people of Saint Paul as they join together in cheering on a climb that, for many, has taken on an almost symbolic image of a larger struggle to survive. Or of PokemonGo.

From earlier today, a close up video of #mprraccoon…

It is clear, from these pictures, exactly why #mprraccoon has captured the hearts of the world.

A city waits with baited breath…

Twitter offered “helpful” suggestions on how to save the brave raccoon.

#mprraccoon helped people refine their priorities on a day when their attention might have been elsewhere otherwise.

Its news people. Vital news.

Perhaps #mprraccoon is not 9-11, the Apollo 13 mission, or even, as one tweet suggested, this generation’s Baby Jessica but watching him is stressful, nonetheless.

Of course, Twitter can turn anything into politics these days…

The memes, oh, the memes…


To close with a serious note on a less-than-serious story, it is moments like these that have a way of uniting people around hope for a creature that has come somehow to represent the struggle we all face. When people care about a life, even a raccoon, that is not a bad thing.

The News Blender offers its best wishes to the trash panda who, hopefully, is safely sleeping on a window ledge in Saint Paul tonight. (TNB is aware that raccoons are nocturnal but, shhhh… we won’t tell Twitter as it would be too distressing.)

Sleep well, Spidercoon and find your way to safety.



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About Beth 2668 Articles
*Principle above party * Politically Homeless * Ex GOP * Tribalism is stupid* NeverTrump ≠ Pro Hillary. Anti-GOP ≠ Pro Dem. Disagreeing with you ≠ Liberal. Counter Social: @NoMorePlatosCave

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