Press-Republican

FYI...

July 15, 2013

'Frankenstein' rabbit with horns becomes Internet sensation

MANKATO, Minn. — College student Gunnar Boettcher of Mankato, Minn., was working in the garage when he first spotted Frankenstein.

That's what he wound up calling the wild rabbit with what looks like a series of horns growing out of all parts of his head.

“We've seen it before around the house but we've never been able to get a close look,” Boettcher said. “But we went over to him that day and he didn't run away like he normally does.”

That's when Boettcher decided he and his brother, Zander Boettcher, needed to capture the moment and film the rabbit.

“We started filming just for us, just to be funny,” he said. “Then we decided to put it on Facebook and it got a lot of views.”

It's fair to say that, in addition to getting attention for the fact that it featured a 12-horned rabbit, just as many people were entertained by Boettcher himself.

Instead of using the voice of the Midwestern football player that he is, Boettcher spoke in an Australian accent, guiding viewers through what seems like a spotting of a rare, possibly dangerous specimen in the wild.

“I used to watch Steve Irwin when I was little,” Boettcher said. “I was just being a goof, just for me and my brother's entertainment.”

After the success of that initial Facebook posting, one of Boettcher's friends put the video on Reddit. Within four days the video received 200,000 views and 2,000 comments.

So far he's been featured on several news sites, including the Daily Mail out of London.

After some checking, Boettcher said it appears the rabbit's ailment is cancer, a form of papilloma virus that is highly contagious. He expects the rabbit won't live much longer.

As is the case with most viral videos, not all the comments have been kind. Some say it's wrong to get a few laughs from a disease that certainly will kill the animal. Others say Boettcher has a responsibility to get the rabbit some veterinary help.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
FYI...
  • Why it's basically impossible to delete those naked selfies you text

    If you're selling an old Android smartphone on an online auction site, you could be giving away rather more than you intend to, according to a recent investigation by anti-malware company Avast.

    July 21, 2014

  • Why does the Vatican need a bank?

    The Vatican Bank's history reads more like Dan Brown than the financial pages, but its worst -- and weirdest -- days may be behind it.

    July 18, 2014

  • Almost half of the world actually prefers instant coffee

    Americans' taste in coffee might be getting more high-end _with a growing fixation on perfectly roasted beans, pricier caffeinated concoctions, and artisan coffee brewers - but it turns out a surprisingly big part of the world is going in the opposite direction: toward instant coffee.

    July 17, 2014

  • ent_taylorswift.jpg There's less good music now — here's why

    Taylor Swift, the seven-time Grammy winner, is known for her articulate lyrics, so there was nothing surprising about her writing a long column for The Wall Street Journal about the future of the music industry. Yet there's reason to doubt the optimism of what she had to say.

    July 14, 2014 1 Photo

  • Can plants hear? Study finds that vibrations prompt some to boost their defenses

    They have no specialized structure to perceive sound as we do, but a new study has found that plants can discern the sound of predators through tiny vibrations of their leaves - and beef up their defenses in response.

    July 12, 2014

  • wheat1.jpg Backlash has begun against gluten-free dieters

    The swelling ranks of Americans adopting gluten-free diets have given rise to another hot trend: people calling the whole thing a bunch of baloney.

    July 11, 2014 1 Photo

  • 140516-recalls_1357_88cb85dbc81b724b4ae9c83db4426fd8.jpg Auto recalls break single-year US record with six months to go

    With six months left in 2014, automakers have already recalled more vehicles in the United States than in any other year on record.

    July 10, 2014 1 Photo

  • The science of shyness

    Shy people have quite a bit to contend with - not least the word itself. It has a number of different meanings, none of which are flattering. To "shy away" from something implies avoidance; to "shy" can also mean to move suddenly in fright; to "be shy of" something can mean to come up short, or be insufficient.

    July 8, 2014

  • Wanna write a pop song? Here's a foolproof equation

    Pop songs (generally) stay in one key, are in 4/4 time, last between three and five minutes, are organized into chunks of four or eight bars, have a repeating chorus played two to four times, include the title sung at least three times, and feature short melodic fragments that repeat a lot to help everyone to remember them.

    July 7, 2014

  • Americans falling out of love with shopping malls

    Abandoned malls are hot: The Dead Malls Enthusiasts Facebook group boasts almost 14,000 members; a Google search of "dead malls" produces 5.7 million results; and the desolate interiors of these unused retailing meccas keep making cameos in thrillers and horror films.

    July 6, 2014