Kids often make friends with inanimate objects: plushy stuffed animals, dolls, wooden replicas. However, when the parents of 1-and-a-half-year-old Sylvie received a gift from a friend to put on their boat, they had no idea that this practical item would become the object of their daughter’s affection: a severe-looking plastic owl, meant to function as a scarecrow. You’ve probably seen similar owl statues before, perched on roofs to scare away birds, or presiding over gardens to terrify squirrels and rabbits that might want to steal produce.
So why would a toddler fall in love with such an object? Well, to start with, she’s really into owls. “We have a bedtime book about owls that she loves, and we read it every night. We also have a lullaby video of an owl singing ‘Twinkle Twinkle Little Star’ that she loves and pretty much watches every night. So I think she associated this owl with those owls,” Sylvie’s mother, Rebecca, told Buzzfeed.
Sylvie brings the owl statue, named Whootie, everywhere, and her adoration is apparent. She even falls asleep next to Whootie’s, um, adoring gaze. “She doesn’t seem freaked out by it at all, even though it’s clearly kind of terrifying,” said Rebecca. Hey, the heart wants what it wants.