Meerkat flees zoo! Next big Disney star?
I've got dibs on the book publishing rights to Hulu, the cute little meerkat who escaped from the Honolulu Zoo.
Hulu, if you're out there, don't sign any contracts. I'm your human. Let's do lunch. I've got fresh insects for you.
It's not often that a book writes itself, but this one's got all the surfing geckos and hang-gliding mongooses beat. Because it is generally acknowledged that meerkats are the most adorable, enchanting and delightful rodent-like creatures in the wild.
Meerkats are related to the mongoose except they don't slink around knocking over rubbish cans like mongooses. They stand on their hind legs in the most endearing way, their heads darting back and forth like they are watching a tennis match on the plains of the Serengeti.
I didn't even know we had meerkats in Hawaii. Most meerkats come from Africa but ours, curiously, came from Ohio. We had two, Hulu and Kapa, but Honolulu Zoo officials noticed the other day that Hulu was AWOL. And Kapa wasn't talking. Kapa's no rat. Literally.
They don't think Hulu was stolen because, as sweet as meerkats look, they're faster than speeding cheetahs and they bite, too. Zoo officials think Hulu just got out of his enclosure and went on an adventure. So do I. In fact, I'm banking on it.
"Hulu Goes Hawaiian!" The heart-warming tale of a mischievous meerkat, set down on a tropical island far from his wild, exotic homeland (Toledo), who decides to see Hawaii for himself. On his adventure, he meets his mongoose cousins, who teach him how to survive in this strange new island world (Mikey the Mongoose: "You push the rubbish cans over like this. French fries!")
"He briefly joins a bunch of bank-robbing geckos, but is kicked out of gang because he can't cling to ceilings by his toes. He falls in love with a show poodle named Fifi and they eat spaghetti together behind Roy's in Hawaii Kai, nibbling on the same noodle until their little foreheads bonk into each other. (Oooooooh!) But their inter-species love connection isn't to be. The evil Honolulu Zoo Escaped Animal Gestapo (sorry, but we need bad guys) hunt Hulu down and finally corner him at the Pali Lookout.
"Hulu hangs over the cliffs by his little paws, his head darting back and forth like he's watching a Serengeti tennis match, hoping for a miraculous rescue by his mongoose friends. Fifi watches the whole thing on TV, rubbing her tear-filled eyes with her little manicured paws."
I can't tell you the ending but it's heartwarming and inspiring in a future Broadway musical kind of way (Hey, 'Lion King' producer ... call me, babe!).
I've got big plans for this little critter: books, movies, TV series ... "Hulu's Hilo Hula Hukilau," "Maui Meerkat Manor," "MORE Maui Meerkat Manor," "Lilo & Stitch & Hulu's Hanalei Super Ferry Adventure" ... I tell you, they might have to take Walt Disney out of his cryonics chamber and defrost him for this project.
Buy Charles Memminger's hilarious new book, "Hey, Waiter, There's An Umbrella In My Drink!" at island book stores or online
at any book retailer. E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org