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Geographica: Baboons!

By (March 5, 2013) No Comment

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A little (OK, a bit) frisson of horror at a picture in the latest National Geographic: the story is that gangs of baboons in the Cape Town area have grown progressively bolder and more organized at stealing stuff from humans – “Raiding baboons open doors, yank out windows, and remove roof tiles” says one researcher, and we’re told rangers are using paint-balls to keep the gangs in line.

It’s all there in the horrifying accompanying picture: the ape is nearly as tall as the woman, nearly as intelligent (and really, how much does intelligence signify anyway, in a parking lot tug-of-war?), and four times as strong.

It brought back a particularly bad batch of memories – when it comes to baboons, I could to thine ears unfold a tale would stand thy knotted locks each particular hair to stand on end, like quills upon the fretful porpentine. And even while I was looking at the picture and surreptitiously fingering my single biggest scar, I was paradoxically grateful to National Geopraphic just the same: it’s not every magazine that’s so consistently, unnervingly evocative. Creepy, but evocative.

baboon jpg