Next time you're at a Bucs game, stroll by the pirate ship and say hello to Rankin, the parrot guy. For the past five years, he has manned the remote controls for "TD,'' the robotic parrot that helps root the NFL team on to victory. Rankin, 48, a comedian and actor who lives in Seminole, is appearing in Eight O'Clock Theatre's production of DeathTrap and has a regular gig at the Clearwater Marine Aquarium working the microphone during the dolphin shows.
What's on your nightstand?
I've got two: Cesar Millan's Cesar's Way. He's the dog whisperer. He's the real deal.
What, you've got dogs?
Small, medium and large. I've got an Australian cattle dog; a Basenji, which has the benefit of being the "no barking'' dog, but she also runs like a ballistic missile; and my newest, a 4-pound teacup Yorkshire terrier named Giada. But all Cesar's tips work, honest to God.
And your second book?
The Best Book of Useless Information Ever: A Few Thousand Other Things You Probably Don't Need to Know (But Might as Well Find Out) by Noel Botham. All the stuff is just classic.
Did you know a turtle's backbone is connected to its shell?
I don't know if everyone would call that useless.
Right, because if you see a turtle walking down the street, and he tells you his back itches, you'd know where to scratch the itch for him.
Piper Castillo, Times staff writer