A Calcutta policeman lost an ear during an encounter with a menacing monkey last week. Rathin Thakur noticed a number of monkeys on rooftops and trees while walking to work. Not having seen monkeys in his neighborhood before, Thakur gestured to the monkeys. One of them jumped down playfully, but then stole Thakur’s glasses. While trying to reclaim his glasses, the monkey jumped on to Thakur’s shoulder and became violent, biting off his left ear. Neighbors helped Thakur to the hospital where he underwent reconstructive surgery. Even though they ride around on unicycles and wear funny little hats, monkeys can be quite dangerous when agitated.
The marriage of German pop star Werner Boehm is in shambles after he moved a monkey into his home. The 10-year-old female baboon can reportedly play the piano and appeared in one of Boehm’s videos. His wife, Susanne, moved out after he allowed the monkey to share their bed. She made him choose between the monkey or her, and he chose the monkey. “It’s incredibly painful to know that some baboon is more important to him than I am,” she said. It’s all part of an important lesson — never underestimate a monkey.
Anthropologist Scott McGraw declared the red colobus monkey extinct in 2000, but new findings suggest otherwise. Reportedly last seen in 1978, evidence of the red colobus has turned up, including a photograph of a dead one, the tail of a red colobus, and the skin of one killed by a hunter. On hearing the news McGraw reportedly exclaimed, “Monkey outta nowhere!”
After mauling an infant to death and attacking several people, New Delhi residents captured one difficult monkey. The animal will be sent to the city’s Monkey Rescue Center which handles nuisance primates.
We’re all for monkey rehabilitation, but what about New Delhi residents who will shudder at the cry, “Monkey outta nowhere!”? Do killer monkeys really deserve a second chance?
Today is the first day of the Chinese New Year, and the Year of the Monkey, according to Chinese tradition. Predictions for the Year of the Monkey include “success even in impossible ventures,” “inventions and improvisations galore,” and even if we don’t try “we will be carried forward by the surging tide of the Monkey’s natural talent for learning and advancement.” Tradition also says the Monkey will “urge us to gamble, speculate and embark on risky but ingenious ventures.” It’s interesting to note that the American Revolution began in 1776, the year of the Fire Monkey.