David Hines (hradzka) wrote,
David Hines

Joe, the boxing chimp

The news that a cop shot an escaped chimpanzee struck a number of people as interesting. For my money, the most interesting part was that before the cop shot the chimp, he shouted multiple warnings, under the impression that the chimp understood what was about to happen. But some folks on my favored gun board expressed doubts that a chimpanzee could pose much of a risk to a grown man. This led one of the moderators, "1911Tuner," to chime in with a great story of days gone by:

An angry Chimp isn't a joke.

Several years ago, there was a guy who toured with small carnivals with a 90-pound male Chimp named "Joe."

He was a regular at the King fair in NC. King was my old hometown before moving here.

The rules were simple. If anyone could best Joe in a no-holds barred slugfest, there was a 200-dollar prize. It cost 5 bucks to try him on for size. He was equipped with boxing gloves for the safety of his opponents.

In the 20-odd years that Joe "performed" at the King fair...the guy never paid anyone the 200 clams. Ever. He even whipped a pair big football players from Wake Forest at the same time...given a special "Two-fer" by Joe's buddy and handler.

The only thing was that Joe hated the smell of alcohol on your breath, and it enraged him. If you entered the ring while drinking, you did so at your own risk. One of the young lions that night had been drinking. Joe broke both of his arms and one of his legs.

The Humane Society investigated once...watching from the crowd of spectators...fully expecting to get evidence of cruelty to animals that would let them take Joe. They left in shock...considered a Society to Prevent anyone from challenging Joe.

Joe was always a true sportsman. He always gave those whom he had beaten down a gentle hug as they were being led dazed out of the ring...if they were actually still able to walk.

Well...Except those who had been drinking. He sat in his corner and glared at the imbibers of John Barleycorn as they were carried out.

So...no. An aggressive, enraged Chimp is no laughing matter. They're faster than you can believe and they're stupid strong.
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