Remember back in July when I announced my poll results to you, my bright-eyed, blog-hungry friends? Have you noticed that I still haven’t explained my love for monkeys?

My gut reaction when the question first appeared was simple — monkeys are FUN! There’s nothing to explain, for heaven’s sake. Everyone loves monkeys, don’t they? Monkeys are carefree! Monkeys are cute! Monkeys throw poo!

Wellll….OK…. I really am a grownup who realizes monkeys don’t necessarily have it that great. I mean, they live in pretty complex, hierarchical social groups which one minute can be loving and nurturing and the next minute can seem senselessly cruel. And some of them live in cages. But that stuff is true of life for ALL of us, isn’t it? So let’s just push the negative stuff aside for a minute, and take a look at the really cool things we — or at least I — imagine about monkeys’ lives. Hang onto your bananas and coconuts! I think I’ll make a list.

23 reasons why I love monkeys

1. They have sweet little hairy human-child faces that make me want to mother them.
2. They scream at the top of their lungs whenever they feel like it.
3. When one monkey screams at the top of his lungs, it excites his friend-monkeys, who join in with unadulterated, euphoric abandon.
4. I just have to smile — even if it’s only a little — when I look at a monkey. I’ll bet you do, too.
5. Say the word ‘monkey’ three times REALLY fast. Now, that gave you a chuckle, did it not? I’ll be willing to bet that, at the very least, it amused someone nearby.
6. They pick bugs out of each other’s fur.
7. They are curious and learn very quickly.
8. They really seem to love a good practical joke.
9. They don’t have to be at work every day at the crack of 8:30.
10. They have no concept of ‘politically correct.’
11. They swing carefree in tall treetops, unafraid.
12. Some monkeys may live in cages, but I’ll bet they don’t live in metaphorical cages.
13. They make friends with animals outside their own species.
14. A monkey’s friends are his friends for life.
15. It’s perfectly acceptable for monkeys to be naked at all times.
16. They have no mortgages or other bill-paying obligations.
17. They don’t belong to any homeowner’s organizations, and — even if they did — they wouldn’t give a rat’s ass whether their neighbors thought their shutters need to be painted.
18. Monkeys scratch whatever itches, no matter who’s around.
19. They have impressively strong tails.
20. They’re fuzzy!
21. Sometimes they have affectionate group grooming sessions which last for hours.
22. They throw poo at things which displease them.
23. When I was in grade school, I was a giggling, gleeful witness as a baby monkey crawled to the top of Johnny Carson’s head and — you guessed it — went wee-wee. I still laugh when I remember the look on his face.

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