For some, Valentine’s Day and all that it entails for the weeks leading up to it, can be a time full of fancy meals, beautiful flowers, expensive gifts, and one-of-a-kind events. But for others, the holidays serves as a reminder of love lost, time wasted, and less than ideal experiences. If you’re in the latter group and have fallen victim to negative memories of past relationships you just can’t shake, the El Paso Zoo in Texas has something for you.
The zoo is currently running a promotion that allows anyone in the world to name a cockroach after an ex and then have it fed to a meerkat on Valentine’s Day. The event, called “Quit Bugging Me,” will be livestreamed so everyone can see the results. The names will be displayed near the meerkat exhibit starting on February 11. El Paso Zoo event coordinator Sarah Borrego told CBS News that they hope the community becomes more involved with the zoo through this unusual promotion.
“This is a fun way to get the community involved in our daily enrichment activities. The meerkats love to get cockroaches as a snack and what better way to celebrate Valentine’s Day than by feeding them a cockroach named after your ex!“
“All of us have exes and we are still not over it and it’s a great way to get the community in and also get out a little bit of the frustration,” she added.
On their Facebook page, El Paso Zoo posted:
“What’s the perfect Valentine’s Day gift? ❤️ Naming a cockroach after your ex, of course! Message us your ex’s name and we’ll name a cockroach after them! We’ll post names (First and last name initial!) starting February 11 here on Facebook! Watch on Facebook Live or on our website’s Meerkat webcam on Valentine’s Day at 2:15 pm to see them devour these little bugs!”
Oddly enough, El Paso isn’t the only Zoo who is trying to cash in on heartbreak for Valentines day. The Hemsley Conservation Center in Kent, England, will also name a cockroach after your ex for a small donation, but the roach will not be fed to a meerkat. Likewise, a similar promotion is running at the Bronx Zoo.
The El Paso Zoo’s campaign has beat expectations and, thanks to an overwhelming response, the following update was recently posted on their Facebook page:
“We’ve had a TREMENDOUS response to our Quit Bugging Me event! ❤️ So much that we have decided to spread the love to some of our other animals here at the zoo! We’ll keep you posted on feeding times next week!”