Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Rumble in the Jungle

He has a bit more hair than I normally go for, and he’s shorter than I am, but gosh, I’m in love. He’s about 30 years old, has his own pad, and a job that keeps him in cushy quarters. It’s this job that has made me fall in love with him. Rather, his reaction to his job.
Like so many people, he has no upward mobility. He sees the same walls day in, day out, with no hope of a promotion. But who can quit in an economy like this? Especially when it keeps him fed, housed and otherwise out of the jungle.
Literally.
Santino, a 30 year old male chimp from the Furuvik Zoo in Northern Stockholm has staged an IRA type rebellion. Every night, he gathers stones from the moat surrounding his island, breaks up lumps of concrete, and creates piles of projectiles. Then, when visitors start shuffling through with their obnoxious kids and their chimp-sounds and their wrappers and bottles and staring eyes, he hurls stones at them. Apparently, he’s a pretty decent shot, although I haven’t heard of an MLB contract yet.
I like the planning. I like the use of available materials. I like the huevos on the ole boy. And I especially appreciate the feelings behind the attacks. I, too, sometimes feel like hurling stones at my co-workers. I, too, have wanted to smack people who invade my space, speak disrespectfully, and leave their trash all over my habitat. And, vaguely, I understand the trapped feeling. No matter how many climbing ropes the keepers provide, Santino can go nowhere.
There’s another animal I fell in love with this week. A kangaroo, wild, broke into an Australian home and started jumping on the bed. Don’t know if the outback wasn’t good enough, or if it was an adolescent kangaroo and so beds just seem made for jumping. Anyway, gave the couple, who were in the bed at the time, quite a fright. That’ll teach them to sleep in just their undies.