The video: Drug-runners in Baranquilla, Colombia, trained a green parrot named Lorenzo to squawk "Run, run, or the cat will get you" if the authorities ever stumbled upon their "weed and weapons stash." But when police breached the hideout, they seized the otherwise law-abiding Lorenzo (along with $165,000 worth of cocaine and more than 200 weapons). Since being incarcerated, say reports, Lorenzo's signature phrase has been on his "lips/beak nigh-on constantly."
The reaction: Get your "life behind bars" and "jail-bird" jokes ready," says Alastair Plumb at Asylum. The incident is odd enough, but "but what makes this story even stranger is than Lorenzo isn't the only parrot to be used this way" — reportedly, 1,700 other parrots have been employed as lookouts, many in the same region. Gus Garcia-Roberts at The Miami New-Times wonders why parrots can't avoid "running with the wrong crowd...first there was their storied relationship with blood-thirsty pirates," and now this. Watch Lorenzo squawk his fruitless warning:
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- Why you should stop believing in evolution
- 4 things NASA can teach you about a good night's sleep
- 7 of the scariest spiders in existence
- The secret to handling pressure like astronauts, Navy SEALs, and samurai
- Why isn't 'Arkansas' pronounced like 'Kansas'?
- It's time for the police to rethink 'shoot-to-kill'
- This 1,600-year-old Viking war game is still awesome
- Internet piracy isn't killing Hollywood
- How Israel's hawks intimidated and silenced the last remnants of the anti-war left
- Welcome to the age of ambivalent feminism
Subscribe to the Week