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BeeHive  >  Press Articles  >  The Bee Side - Squirrels setting a good example

The Bee Side - Squirrels setting a good example

I have just been reading about a guy called David Bowler, who had trouble starting his car recently, even though he keeps it in his garage.

His wife Jill had evidently noticed the difficulty in the car picking up speed, so David took it to the local garage.

The after-sales manager at the garage, Richard Lawson, was reportedly ‘astounded’ by what his mechanics found to be the problem. One and a half kilograms of peanuts had been stashed away in the car’s air filter assembly and that reduced the overall performance of the vehicle. Mr Lawson’s best guess was that a squirrel had been going up the car’s air intake pipe and storing its winter food in the filter at the top of it.

Mr Bowler regarded this as ‘a bit of a mystery’ because he had no idea how a squirrel could have got into his garage in the first place, let alone into the car’s air filter system.

The squirrel, which was not named in the press report, must have had a bit of a shock, too, the next time it went to the garage to check on its winter food supply. But that was not reported. The trouble with this kind of press article is that it tends to focus on the human side of a problem but, as in this case, the squirrel’s plight tends to be completely ignored.

Squirrels are famous for thinking ahead and foregoing current consumption in favour of putting aside something for the future.

I couldn’t help thinking that, had the creature been born a human being, it would have been the sort who would save up for a pension. Giving up consumption now for an income in the future is what pensions are all about.

Mind you, with such bad luck, I suppose the pension scheme he stashed his money in probably wouldn’t have been there when he needed it.

Steve Bee

First published in Pensions Management, April 2005