Southern Thing Column

Forecasters warn of iguanas falling from the sky and Syfy movies are coming to life

If you missed last week’s column on It’s a Southern Thing (, you can read it by clicking here. Below are the first paragraphs.

We all know Florida is the Australia of the continental U.S. – there will be something waiting to eat you whenever you go outside. Giant insects, killer snakes, 9-foot alligators. (That’s why it’s so strange to me that so many people with walkers live there; it’s got to be tough to run from a ’gator with those things).

Any-hoo, even Australia doesn’t have Florida’s latest threat – live iguanas falling from the sky. (I’m guessing. I’ve never actually been.)

This week, with temperatures dipping to unusual extremes for the Sunshine State, forecasters are warning of iguanas passing out from the cold and falling from their perches in trees. Falling from above, y’all. You may be thinking, “That’s bad but at least no one will get hurt.” Bless your little hearts. This isn’t some cute little garden lizard falling from your dogwood tree. These things can grow to 5 feet long and weigh 20 pounds. If one hits you, it would be like a bag of kitty litter falling on your head (it’s a legitimate point of reference in my house).

In Florida, iguanas are considered an invasive species, which means they are everywhere.  The National Weather Service in Miami tweeted that when the temps get into the 30s or 40s, iguanas bodies slow to the point where they faint, kinda like Scarlett O’Hara when she’s kissed by Rhett Butler, only the iguanas don’t make out first. (Again, I’m guessing.)

And how do we know how iguanas react to passing out? Do they slide delicately onto a velvet sofa, hand to forehead? Or do they get airsick and vomit? Do they lose control of their (whisper) bodily functions? In other words, it might be more like a 1-year-old baby falling on your head and no one can prepare for something like that … not even Aussies. To read the full column on, click here. And you should. It’s pretty funny.

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