I like to think that I am a friend to all animals, however; the truth is, I have a distrust of both the bear and monkey.
I often think about the initial choices we make regarding our trusts and fears.
I'm talking childhood zen here, the sort of thing that just shouts to your fresh brain that red is candy and sweet potatoes are to be avoided. You make deeper choices as well, like are you a dog or cat person or both, or is your father the sort who would have killed and eaten you if times had been hard. (Bears do this) You are also taking sexual notice at this time. That makes sense as you are the recent product of a sexual union. I grew up in a woman house and the visions of soft curves and pretty feet were early additions to the slide show behind my eyes. I had animal exposure too. Carted to the National Zoo strapped into my stroller like a jet pilot, I was wheeled to within yards of the actual "Smokey The Bear." This was supposed to be a lark but, in fact, it was the product of a horrible domestic misunderstanding. A local TV show for children, which centered around life in the forest, featured a man who played a guitar and sang a song about Smokey the fire prevention bear and how he came to get that job. I loved the guitar but, as I lived in the city, did not really relate to the story,. In fact smokey was represented as a stern creature who wore a drill instructor's hat and admonished in a rumbling robotic voice that "Only YOU can prevent Forest fires" and I just could not figure why it had to be ME since I had other plans for my life. My keepers, on the other hand, insisted that I loved the bear and that's why I was freezing in a stroller watching a scarred bruin watch me. I was wheeled to other sites as well, but to me, the most intimidating was a trip through the monkey house.
Now I knew a bit about Chimps because there were two of them on the television. There was J. Fred Muggs and there was Zippy the chimp. Both of these animals wore clothes. Zippy did tricks and Muggs just sat around and sometimes he smoked a cigar. Chimps like to smoke. I instinctively disliked those monkeys. Sort of like the sweet potato knowledge, or maybe because Zippy The Chimp Dolls of all sizes were in distribution and lay in doctors waiting rooms and on preschool toy shelves. These were horrific in that, while they seemed furry brown and cuddly, they had naked ears and hard rubber faces which totally robbed them of any chance of love. It would be of great interest to analyze a person who actually did become emotionally attached to a zippy doll just to see what sort of person he or she had turned out. Regardless of my predispositions toward chimps, one look at the naked apes in their pseudo environment of sex and violence was enough for the boy and has remained constant into manhood.
I'm here on this monkey business due to the recent story of the face eating Chimp up in New York. Pretty gross indeed, yet because I know my enemy, I can tell you that this sort of destructive attack is not uncommon. In fact, in the last year I read of a couple who had a long standing relationship with a chimpanzee and during a visit to the animal, who was now living in an open environment with other chimps, another chimpanzee attacked the man and ripped his testicles off as well as causing other significant trauma. These villains who go about on "all fours" literally have legs for arms and can tear someone to pieces. I remember a story by the famous Animal expert Frank Buck, who described being temporally blinded by the venom of a spitting cobra. In order to save his eyesight he had to call for help, yet the only telephone was in an office located across the room and to get there, buck had to pass the cages of several chimps. In chilling detail the author described having to crawl in a prone position keeping as close to the floor as possible while the chimps, sensing his injury madly reached for him, there fingers nearly brushing his clothes. Buck escaped, but he made it plain beyond doubt that the terrible chimps would have murdered him in an instant, even though he had treated them with great care and kindness. Chimps. Somewhere down the dusty hall of horrors where the light of my adulthood seldom shines, there is the memory of some long lost kine scope showing Zippy dressed in a doctor's get up, complete with one of those reflectors on his head. In the "gag" he is supposed to be an escaped chimp who has put on the get up. You know how it goes. Patient sees the doctor, the doc says "I'll send in the specialist" Zippy shows up, patient freaks, doctor returns, patient says specialist is a monkey-hilarity ensues. Well OK, but in real life, I think that's pretty screwy and if my doctor ever says, "Ill be right back" I make sure I've got my pants on and I'm ready to bolt. No doubt, chimps are blessed with super speed as are bears. I don't know what the human to chimp + bear ratio is, but I fear it is too high. On an evolutionary scale, I'm supposed to be above a monkey, yet the only product of my superiority that is evident is my ability to get my hands on an Army .45. Well and good, but I'll wager a chimp can shoot a gun too. My advice on that is to do like I do when traveling in chimp territory. I carry a life-like replica of a pistol which I can recognize due to the fact that the tip of the barrel is colored a bright red. If I am challenged by an armed Chimpanzee and can't get the drop on the bastard, I simply pull a bit of the old monkey see-monkey do and placing the "toy" gun in my mouth pretend to pull the trigger. Fair fight? Hell no! Like I said,I get along with animals just fine, but when it comes to ball ripping face eating Chimpanzees, well the tables closed and all bets are off.
The next subject in this series will be, Bears, an abomination before Almighty God!