ORANG IS THE NEW LACK

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Sometimes I think that we humans (homo sapiens sapiens) are not a distinct genus in the family homimidae, but that we are each of the extant others in turn throughout our individuals lives. As adolescents we act like chimps and bonobos: Peer pressure big time, solving everything with fights and hook ups. We then go through a gorilla stage: This is our middle ages where we live in hierarchical troops with silver-haired bosses and there is still some fighting and hook ups but generally we are begrudging resigned to our fates by this stage of our lives. And finally we go orang-utan: We live alone, we only get along where food is plentiful (all-you-can-eat buffets) and we howl at no one in particular (Fox News, mostly, not me, though) just to let the world know we still exist.

So our hero, at this “person of the forest” stage of his life, feels he’s at odds with human industries he shares a home range with. He stays close to his nest, but travels as necessary to find food and keep comfortable. He is solitary, now, but true to the above thesis, as a youth he hooked up with peers for sex and companionship and in midlife fought for and lost a career and wives. He doesn’t do any of that any more as it’s more trouble than it’s worth for both him and the others. But on rare occasions when he thinks he see one of his kind through the branches, he waves, smiles even, but he never gets a reply. Must have been mistaken, he muses, perhaps he should have called first.

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