Don’t Know Their Own Monkey-Business

, , , , , | Learning | June 15, 2018

(I teach seventh- and eighth-grade science. Our local zoo is reopening the exhibit that houses monkeys, apes, and other similar animals. There is a special open house for teachers. Immediately after school, I pick up my three-year-old at daycare and head off to the zoo. We enter the exhibit and come to the spider monkeys. My son asks what they are. Before I can answer, [Teacher #1] says:)

Teacher #1: “Those are spider monkeys, honey.”

(She and [Teacher #2] seem to be pacing us. At the next exhibit:)

Teacher #2: “Look, honey, those are mandrills, like in The Lion King.”

(At the next window:)

Teacher #1: “Those are orangutans. They look like orange men.”

(We get to the next window. The animals inside are clearly eager to see people and hang from the glass in front of my son.)

Teacher #2: “Look, honey, see the monkey?”

(My son has decided he’s had enough of these women.)

Son: “No. That’s not a monkey. That’s a lemur. He’s a ring-tail lemur. That one is a ruffed lemur.”

Teacher #1: “No, that’s a monkey. Let’s see if I can find out what kind it is.”

Me: “It’s a lemur, not a monkey. He’s right.”

Teacher #2: “Oh, this sign says they are not monkeys. They are lemurs.”

Teacher #1: “He needs to learn not to correct teachers.”

Me: “Teachers need to learn to not tell kids wrong information.”

(They were very offended as they stormed off.)

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, , , , | Right | May 31, 2018

(I’m doing some Master’s research at a zoo. To collect data, I have to watch some Indian Rhinos from the visitor observation deck. I do this every day for about two weeks, so I overhear a lot of the stuff guests are saying. It amazes me how so many of them don’t know what I consider to be basic facts, and how many of them don’t read the information readily available at the exhibit. At this time, the zoo has a special dinosaur exhibit going on with animatronic dinosaurs, which may be the reasoning behind this exchange I overhear:)

Mother: *to her young child* “Look at the rhinos, sweetie! They look cool, don’t they?Like they’re wearing armour!”

Young Child: “Rhinos are so cool!”

Mother: “You know, they look like that because rhinos descended from dinosaurs! They’re basically living dinosaurs!”

(The child looks confused, but doesn’t dispute it. I do a huge facepalm. Not long after, the rhino we are observing fully submerges himself in his artificial pool, with only his nose above the water to breath. This makes his horn readily visible. Another family walks up.)

Dad: “Look, kids, a hippo!”

Kid: “Dad, it’s a rhino; look at its horn!”

Dad: “Rhinos don’t go in water, honey; it’s a hippo.”

(Cue another facepalm.)

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The New Jurassic Park Is Now In Indianapolis

, , , , | Right | April 30, 2018

(I work in a zoo. We offer free dolphin show tickets for the guests, and many times we run out. On this day, a customer comes up to my ticket booth.)

Guest: “Are there any more dolphin show tickets left?”

Me: “Unfortunately, no.”

Guest: “Oh, that’s okay. What about the raptor show?”

Me: “Um, I don’t think we have those shows anymore.”

(Considering raptors have been extinct for quite some time…)

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The Lizard Part Of Her Brain Is Active

, , , , , , | Working | March 8, 2018

I am a maintenance electrician at a zoo. I’m working in the reptile house installing a new outlet in a tight space between two cages. One of the keepers comes in and squeezes past me, so now there are two of us in this little space. Right as I bend over to pick something up, she starts singing, “We just need to check out your butt; gonna look at your butt.”

Now, I’ve worked with this keeper before, and this is totally out of character for her. I stand up and turn around. She’s singing to the lizard she is doing an examination on.

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A Touch Too Much

, , , , | Friendly | March 2, 2018

(My sister has three children under five and is pregnant with her fourth. She is at a zoo, with her three-year-old and one-year-old in a double stroller, and her five-year-old walking along with her. She turns and bends down to talk with her five-year-old about one of the animals, and hears this behind her.)

Three-Year-Old: “Her name is [One-Year-Old]. Mommy doesn’t let people we don’t know touch her. No touching her.”

(My sister turns around to see an old lady trying to get her one-year-old child out of the stroller. She starts getting up, but as she’s pregnant, so it takes a bit.)

Sister: “I’m sorry, but I’d really rather you leave her in the stroller.”

Woman: “Did you hear what your son said to me? It’s so disrespectful.”

Sister: “I heard him very respectfully stand up for his sister who can’t talk for herself, and follow the rules I’ve given him.”

(The woman now notices that she’s pregnant, and runs over and begins rubbing her pregnant belly.)

Woman: “Oh, and you have another little one! I just love pregnant women. They just glow.”

Sister: “I can see the pattern here, because you don’t have permission to touch me, either.”

Woman: “Oh, you’re a mother. You can’t mind people touching you! I’m sure they’re—” *gesturing to the children* “—climbing all over you constantly.”

Sister: “But they’re my children. You’re not my child.”

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