The Story Behind Those Fake Squirrel Ads You've Seen on the CTA

Courtesy of Ben Larrison

"Fact: Statistically speaking, at least one 'person' on this train is actually 7 squirrels wearing a human suit. Don't be a victim." That's just one of the "Squirrel Truths" a Chicago man is sharing in a recent ad campaign on CTA trains.

Ben Larrison, who raised funds for the campaign on Kickstarter, told Thrillist the point of the ads is to "hopefully make people laugh or smile for a minute in their day in a place like on the train where you’re not always there at the most pleasant of times," he said. "It's to get comedy out into the world where you might not expect to see it and reclaim a little bit of marketing space from the world that we’re constantly surrounded by."

The campaign includes four different "Squirrel Truths" posted in 90 spots across CTA Red Line trains and will appear for at least another few weeks as part of the one-month advertising deal with the CTA. In addition to the squirrel ads, Larrison also included two different ads appearing to be commissioned by a man hoping to win over an ex-girfriend, Vanessa, he said.

Some Chicago commuters have gone on Twitter and Instagram to post sightings of the ads and share the hilarious "truth" about squirrels:

Squirrels are such bastards #squirreltruth

A photo posted by @anichms on

Tony Merevick is Cities News Editor at Thrillist and, as a former Chicagoan, welcomes anything that might make the Red Line a little better. Follow him on Twitter @tonymerevick.