Each week, the Roanoke Times accepts 16,000 digital photos emailed to them by local grandmothers and other folk, snapshots of squirrels and birds and anything furry and cute that will take up white space. But now the un-credited wildlife models want their privacy rights restored.
“I was naked as a jaybird,” said local blue jay, Harold Roberts of Riner. “And there was my bulging bug gut in the paper, without my permission, nor any royalties. It was embarrassing. All they [NRV Current] want is free content, critter porn!”
Bennie Goodview, a Blacksburg squirrel who raids birdfeeders for sunflower seeds on Harding Avenue, was livid at his picture in the Current. “The neighborhood kitchen dogs see that paper. They’ll know which feeders I’m raiding,” he complained. “My cover has been blown. And I was naked as a damn Harold Roberts!”
"Yeah!" added his equally miffed squirrel squeeze, Debbie. ( Last name withheld by request because although she really enjoys being chased around tree trunks by guys other than Bennie, she doesn't want a bunch of creepy old squirrels 'chattering' her up all day).
The Roanoke Times did not reply to our least reliable emails for a rebuttal to the critters' complaints, but did accept our 1,200 pictures of a naked chipmunk eating an acorn atop a woodpile.