I'm Feeling Monkey

Google monkey. That's the term they're using for the lackey intern who has to use the search engine to find whatever the boss wants. Every newsroom and research shop has one.

I wanted to share with all of you something that this Google monkey found: there's pretty much zero literature available on the internet that looks reality square in the face and fucking says it: That "we are monkeys."

Hundreds of thousands of pages get into things that indicate that we are what we are; stuff about our feces, life spans, wombs, saliva, genetics, etc. But just about nothing on the connection between those things and our existence.

This matters because it's pretty solid proof that we're in virgin territory with this monkey stuff. Consider how many Reagan biographies there are. I've heard there's as many as 246 published books and I know there are thousands and thousands of private LiveJournal.com Reagan altars. If the public wants to understand Reagan, there's plenty in the offing from a variety of lovers and haters alike.

But what about the monkeys? Slim pickings. Yet the available material is a testament to how indispensable music & songs, philosophy & poetry are for coming to terms with the greatest truth on earth.

First, oddly enough, a song by the oh-so-90s British band Travis, aptly titled: "We Are Monkeys."

"...Many think they're brainy but they haven't a clue
And I think I'm clever cos I'm singing this to you
We are wrong, we are wrong
We are all so, so wrong
We are monkeys
We are false, we're untrue
We should be in the zoo with our uncles
And if you don't believe
Go and climb up a tree and you'll love it
You're a fool to believe anymore
So believe you're a monkey
All the clever monkeys telling us what to do
Telling us to stay in line and join the monkey queue
Thinking that they're special cos they went to private zoo
One day soon they're gonna end up in a monkey stew"

Pretty good showing from one of the most insipid and uninsightful bands of the past 20 years. My only quibble is that after rigorous testing from my own personal experience, the "clever monkeys" are totally unaware of the fact that they are "telling us what to do." Exactly as unaware as the monkeys who carry out their orders -- I don't separate the clever and the servile monkeys anymore; they're in the same stew.

Why Travis released the song on a b-side, burying it in their second pressing of their 1999 single, "Turn," I think I have some ideas: They were sort of afraid of saying it out loud -- they aren't social revolutionaries; they're fucking Travis. Or maybe only the songwriter got it, and wanted the rest of band to play it as a kind of learning aid, but then clammed up after they rehearsed it 50 times and no one quite caught on. Or it was just a piece of totally unconscious songwriting.

Next in the Google results, bow down to Andre Padilla's (age 10 of Seattle s Rainier View Elementary SCORES program) poetic contribution to the tiny English monkey opus:

"We are monkeys
Yes we are, we think
Trees are playgrounds.
We climb forever and
Ever, we are climbing
To the top. I wonder
If we can walk up.
Anyway, higher and
Higher we go come on
This time we will not
take a break. If we make
it to the top, it will
be night."

Here's what I pulled from Padilla's cryptic, brilliant verse: We are monkeys. If we keep going in the direction we're going, and stop taking lunch breaks and weekends off, we'll come to a point where we can't go any further. And then It gets a little blurry here this final place will be a pleasant twilight where we can be as unconscious as any other bunch of monkeys out there and take naps, or we're all gonna die. I'm not sure. But it looks like Padilla isn't either, and the final flick of his pen is a fine act of artistry for a 10-year-old boy.

The next quote is from a blog entry by MaxFaust: on a BDSM blog forum site: "I think we are monkeys that became insane." Max goes into it a little, but not as well as Callum Keynes of the "Chimpage" site. Here's a bit from Case Study #3: Circuses in Callum's seminal paper, "Why Humans Are Insane Monkeys":

"The thought of monkeys performing in front of hundreds of other monkeys is a disturbing thought as it is. However, what if a single monkey wearing a top hat and holding a chair is stood in the centre of the ring, surrounded by angry lions? The audience of monkeys are having a whale of a time. Meanwhile, a small car drives into the ring and explodes. Four monkeys wearing makeup, wigs and large pants fall out of it, and begin throwing custard pies at each other. A monkey rides past on an elephant. Finally, at the climax of the show a monkey is fired from a cannon. Is this sane? No, it's not actually and is quite mad. Although this sounds far-fetched, humans actually do this professionally. Why? No one knows. Absolutely Insane!"

Yep. But that's what's going on. Callum is ahead of his time. And thanks to him in part, I've accepted that we're not just monkeys; we're also somewhat mad forced to become crazy soon after we are born, mostly by our mothers.

There's only a few things left from my search results, including a rather pedantic dispute between two Marxists about monkeys, but you peel that banana in your own time. I don't do Marx.

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Last Issue: #92

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