The Day An Ape Made Me Proud To Be A Watson

from The No Niche

Is this what the greatest Watson of them all looks like? From: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:White-handed_Gibbon_Hylobates_lar_Black_1800px.jpg

My last name, Watson, is a pretty common name which boasts some well-known people. The Watson who puts the “Watson” in Sherlock Holmes’ most recognized quote, “It’s elementary, my dear Watson,” is probably the most famous of all the world’s Watsons, which is pretty bad ass, considering he’s fiction.

Thomas John Watson, Sr., former Chairman of International Business Machines (IBM), had the guts to once declare, “I think there is a world market for maybe five computers.” An enormous miscalculation, sure, but give the guy credit for, what I assume, was his great love for type writers, pen, paper and stone tablets. In a world where newspapers and magazines are dying off (and me with that pesky Communications, Journalism degree!), I almost admire this Watson’s ill-informed statement.

But no one has made me more proud of my last name than a mischievous ape called, you guessed it, Watson!

This particular 8-year-old ape was the catalysis for some major ruckus at Jungle Island last week. Here’s some details from an article:

Saturday’s series of events started around noon when the white-handed gibbon, a species of ape native to Southeast Asia, escaped from his pen. A team of four animal handlers attempted to wrangle the precocious primate, Chatfield said, but he soon made his way to the tall, fenced area enclosing the tigers.

Watson’s presence sparked the interest of Mahesh, who became ‘excited’ and chased Watson around as he made his way across the chain-link fence.

Though he didn’t have a full view of how the tiger made it so far up the fence, Chatfield said he likely lunged, gaining enough momentum to reach the top, where he eventually fell over it.

Investigation is still under way as to how exactly Watson had been able to escape, but one eye-witness in the article claimed that the employee, who was feeding the apes at the time, left the cage door open, and Watson walked through. The ape was later found and captured while he stood on top of a picnic table.

Watson not only successfully escaped his confinement, and four pursuing employees, but then preceded to jump into a habitat filled with a 500 pound TIGER. At eight years of age, I was afraid to walk past the lose tape of cassettes that littered the ground, because they look like long, giant worms. Even at 25, I’m still terrified of snakes, and can’t overcome my fears enough to learn how to swim. This Ape-Watson, though? He had the bananas to piss off a tiger, and then have a picnic!

So, move over John B. Watson, father of Behaviorism. A brave, white-handed gibbon just upstaged Watsons everywhere.

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