The Phoenix

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Even Chimps Can Get Black Lung

"Ai Ai," a 26 year old female chimpanzee at the Qinling Wild Animal Zoo in Xi'An, China, has finally quit smoking after 16 years!

So why does a chimp start smoking? Apparently even apes can get stressed out. Back in 1989, Ai Ai started smoking after her mate died. She was able to pick up the pieces of her life, but then her second mate died in 1997 and her smoking got even heavier...up to 8 cigarettes a day.

I wonder how her first two mates died...hmm...maybe they tried to nab one of her smokes?

So how does a chimp start smoking? It seems Ai Ai was able to pick up cigarette butts from tourists. Zoo officials have not disclosed whom has been supplying her with cigarattes daily. I've got a good idea: a very smart zookeeper. Chimps can peel flesh off a person like they're peeling a banana. Keep the lady chimp happy.

Exactly how did the zoo get her to quit? Easy - feed her face.

Along with the normal milk, bananas, and rice she got every day, they also gave her fried dumplings and other fried goodies. They also tried to keep her occupied with more frequent walks and entertainment. "I also put earphones on her so that she could enjoy some pop music from my walkman," one zookeeper said.

Way to go Ai Ai, which means "Love Love" in Mandarin, by the way. I'm sure she's going to lead a much healthier life. Until her next mate dies.

A chimp addicted to funny. It seems monkeys and apes have all kinds of vices and addictions. After some digging, here's what I found:

Tarrah Reed: This poor chimp can't stop drinking. Plus zookeepers say she's pretty "easy," if you know what I mean.

* * * *

K.C. and Joe-Joe: Blame it on the custodian here. He decided to show these two chimps the movie "The Blues Brothers." Now these two apes think they're Jake and Elwood...and that they're on a mission from God.

* * * *

Scareface: A chimp addicted to guns...not good. Here he is playing with his favorite, a Glock. "Say hello to my little friend!"

* * * *

Blogger: Yup, you guessed it. A chimp addicted to blogging. Somebody save him NOW!


Blogger Grafs said...

Your blog is always interesting. Would it be okay with you if I linked it?

10/04/2005 5:07 PM  
Blogger Andrew said...

Another fabulous post!

I wonder how the chimp got the cigarettes in the first place? And what kind of keeper allowed him to puff away all those years? And since they can smoke, shoot and blog (about all the essentials, I would think) will the chimps commence a class action against 'big tobacco'? I'll stay tuned.

10/04/2005 5:07 PM  
Blogger big left nostril said...

Those damn dirty apes!

10/04/2005 7:55 PM  
Blogger The Phoenix said...

Sure grafs, link away. I'll put a link over to you too.

Andrew, Chimps have right too. What would they do with all that settlement money? Probably buy more smokes, guns, and computers.

Turtle, Nice "Apes" reference there. One of my all time favorite lines.

10/05/2005 10:25 AM  
Blogger KC said...

I love monkey pictures! Each time we (The Magic Smoking Monkey Theatre) put on a play, our postcard mailer and posters always include a monkey as the central character. When we did Star Wars, Darth Vader was replaced with a monkey face; when we did Glen or Glenda, he/she was a Monkey; when we did It's a Wonderful Life, I think it was Zuzu who was a monkey. Etc. Who knows who will be the monkey when we do our Reefer Madness posters!

10/05/2005 10:33 AM  
Blogger The Phoenix said...

kim c,

Hey, nice Ophelia painting. She looks quite psycho in that one, as she's gathering flowers.

10/05/2005 11:27 AM  
Blogger Mae Midwest said...

We;re adopting from China and was told that EVERYONE smokes. You can't find non smoking seating anywhere in China. So it is no surprise that the zoo animals smoke as well!

10/05/2005 2:54 PM  
Anonymous Mark "The Marketing Professional" Brown said...

Hi Phoenix,

Thanks for your welcome to Missouri. I am just down the road from you at Ft. Leonard Wood.

I enjoyed your post about the chimps.

All the best,


10/05/2005 5:43 PM  
Blogger The Phoenix said...

mae midwest, When I was in college, all the Chinese students smoked a lot...zoo keepers susupect visitors and other zoo employees gave Ai Ai her smokes.

10/05/2005 9:33 PM  
Anonymous the weirdgirl said...

I heard about experiments giving cocaine to monkeys. Apparently they all got so addicted that they chose cocaine over food, water, even sex! (I not sure how they tested that one but they did.)

Poor strung-out monkeys.

10/05/2005 9:53 PM  
Blogger Pixie said...

LOL @ the blogger chimp...thats just what I must look like sometimes...only not as hairy of course !

10/05/2005 10:02 PM  
Blogger carrie said...

very interesting post

10/06/2005 10:45 AM  
Blogger big left nostril said...

Yeah, I'm all about chimpanzees. BTW, I had linked to your site from my blog as well -- thanks for the link from yours!

10/06/2005 2:55 PM  

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Welcome to the blog that aims to examine the lighter side of science. From the paranormal to wacky inventions, to strange mysteries and goofy experiments, I cover it all. Thanks for stoping by science is always stranger than fiction


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