What do you get when you combine 26 stuffed chipmunks with the Michigan-Michigan State rivalry?
Well, besides, a bunch of puzzled looks, you get this odd creation:
Yes, what you're looking at here is a taxidermist tableau of the Wolverines-Spartans rivalry -- complete with 22 helmet-wearing chipmunks, two referee chipmunks and two chain-crew chipmunks. In case you're confused by the chipmunks' positioning, don't worry. There is a backstory, according to the Detroit Free Press. The game is tied, 27-27, with one second left and Chipmunk Cook is just about to throw the game-winning touchdown.
The taxidermist, Nick Saade, is no stranger to the game -- of football or taxidermy. His taxidermy shop is less than three miles from the Spartans' stadium in Lansing, Michigan, and he's been doing this for 18 years.
"Every once in a while we do something cute," Saade told the Freep's Judy Putnam.
Sadly, interested buyers, it turns out that you're already out of luck, too. The $1,500 piece of ... art ... has already been purchased by a 1965 Michigan grad and season ticket-holder.
The buyer, Roger Mayerson, told Putnam he simply knows what he likes.
"I think it's going to be quite a conversation piece," he said.
Don't think this was carelessly thrown together in one night, either. Saade carefully crafted this tableau, since one chipmunk takes as many as six hours to skin, stuff and sew. That makes for a total of 156 hours just on that part of the "artistry."
There's no word on what exactly Mayerson plans to do with the piece. But, if anyone misplaces the Paul Bunyan Trophy, it sure looks as if the rivalry could have an interesting backup plan ...