Everything You Need to Know About Me You Can Learn From Monkeys

I was reading an article on ABC news regarding primate behavior that has some application to human relationships and celebrity status. While the amount of attention bestowed on celebrities might seem natural to us mere mortals, those in the spotlight often find it uncomfortable and regard it as undecidedly unnatural. Take this quote from the article:

Actress Angelina Jolie criticized the public’s fascination with the famous and influential on ABC News’ “Nightline” earlier this month. “Why is anybody giving any attention?” she said. “Because I made a film? Because I wore a dress to something? It’s silly, and it feels very shallow.”

Hey Angelina, you might want to just shut up while you’re ahead. What do you want people to judge you on? Your intellect?

That aside, the methodology of the study was described as such:

Platt conducted the experiment by offering thirsty monkeys a choice: their favorite drink, in this case Juicy Juice cherry juice, or the opportunity to look at computer images of the dominant, “celebrity” monkey of their pack.
Despite their thirst, they chose to look at the pictures.
“What is celebrity for a monkey but their status?” said Platt.
Monkeys with status have food, power and sexual magnetism — everything the others crave. The impulse to look at these “celebrity” monkeys was so strong, it superceded thirst.

I have observed this phenomenon at Leroys. Two chicks came in about a week ago and kind of hung out near the pool table. Nobody is paying them too much attention until one of them got up to sing. She took the mic and belted out a rendition of “If I Ain’t Got You” by Alicia Keys that had people going DAMN! I put my hands together (and I had hitherto clapped for no one yet that night) and the rest of the crowd gave her her props as well. You could see at that point she had attained status and was becoming the celebrity monkey. But we had seen nothing yet.

The other chick who had a pretty face but absolutely NO body started playing pool. At first it looked like she was getting some lucky shots and leaves but after a while it became apparent that this chick knew what she was doing. None of the regulars were playing but she took on and destroyed anyone who put their quarters up. She was making tough cuts shots, getting perfect cue control, and making her opponents pay for every mistake. More and more attention began to get drawn to the pool table, especially after she started taking motherfuckers’ money, until suddenly she had even more celebrity status than her friend who had knocked out the song.

No one even saw any other chicks in the house after that and one girl in particular let it show. This girl was sitting next to the two celebrity monkeys and she screwed up her face at every comment the other girls got and acted like an ass but to no avail. All attention was riveted on the singer and the pool player. In fact about four guys got the pool player’s phone number and the non-celebrity chick had to just sit there and take it. At that point every man in the house would have traded his juicy-juice to look at these girls.

More elucidation from the news story is as follows:

Interestingly, the “celebrity” monkeys, says Platt, were just as interested in their fellow celebrities.
“A male can be at the top of his game and suddenly plummet,” he said, sounding like he were describing any workplace situation. “Either if there’s a new guy in town who enters the group who’s high-ranking, or if his alliances fall apart, right?”

How often have we witnessed this in human relations at the bar or even on the blog? A new monkey shows up, the old monkeys attention is then disrupted from the previous routine until events play out to where the new status is solidified.

Office politics and bar hierarchy are simply the manifestation of monkey power. No matter how advanced we might think we are, deep down we’re still responding to monkey ethics. And if you don’t agree you can just swing on a vine. Eep eep!

9 Responses to “Everything You Need to Know About Me You Can Learn From Monkeys”

  1. guy in the UNLV Jacket says:

    preach on monkey man!!! Well you monkeys have fun I am going to Vegas in about 15 minutes. I might actually buy a UNLV jacket while I am there

  2. Mexigogue says:

    OOH RAH!!!!!

  3. Mexigogue says:

    Russ Martin, going over the terms of his new contract with his boss (and things that could get him terminated):

    Russ: Number 8, unethical business conduct. What is that?

    Gavin: I don’t know, what if you —

    Russ: We don’t like that one

    Gavin: Unethical business conduct?

    Russ: We don’t know what that is. That’s kind of broad.

    Gavin: I don’t know, if you became a pedophile or something like that. . . That’s unethical business conduct.

    Russ: What if I wore a tie?

  4. Phelps says:

    I think our course is clear — exterminate the monkeys and midgets.

    And can we get rid of all the Mexicans?

  5. Mexigogue says:

    No Mr. Garrison, we can’t get rid of all the Mexicans.

  6. rae says:

    Speaking of Celebrity Monkeys, they just interrupted my soap opera to tell me that the Pope has a high fever and was given a feeding tube. Come on already.

  7. Phelps says:

    News just went out that they are giving him Last Rites. When you think about it, if anyone should be able to say, “nah, I’ve been good, you can skip those” it ought to be him.

  8. R says:

    Fuck all you old fogey monkeys. I’m here to pit father against brother! Mother against daughter! Pet gerbil against the neighbor’s cat who always hangs around and manages to puke up dead lizard entrails on your porch!!!!!

    Oh, wait, that was Jesus.

    What was I talking about…?