Last night, unable to contain its excitement over its human minions’ upcoming football game, the Seattle Seahawks’ actual hawk mascot decided to fly through Lumen Field and anoint the head of one lucky fan by grabbing onto his skull with its sharp bird talons.
Footage of this auspicious gift shows Taima, the bird in question, descending through the crowd to the soft nesting material of a guy’s head, grappling onto the back of his neck before scrabbling for purchase all over his unprotected dome. “Ah! We’ve got a runaway,” a commentator says, chuckling as we watch the man’s face contort in primal fear. “Get that guy season tickets!” he adds as the footage continues to show the man somehow managing to accept his potential bird-driven demise in slow motion. As a fun bit of trivia that helps contextualize what this fan experienced, Taima’s wingspan is roughly 4.5 feet.
USA Today writes that Taima The Hawk was doing his usual routine of flying around the stadium before the beginning of the game when he decided to break from tradition, ignore his handler, and visit with the people who give him a job in the first place.
Despite the good omens provided by Taima’s noggin-clawing act, the Seahawks did not capitalize on the fear their mascot’s presence might’ve instilled in their opponents’ hearts and lost 26-17 to the Los Angeles Rams—a team that probably could’ve done even better if they brought a live ram to the game and had it run around headbutting members of the audience.
We’d love to say the potential injuries that Taima might have caused can be avoided entirely by replacing actual animals with human mascots in costumes, but, well ....
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