Everyone’s Got Something To Hide Except Me And My Monkey

Mark Twain once mused that Our Heavenly Father was so disappointed with the monkey that he invented man. 

This was way back in the late 19th Century. But if he were around now, I’d wager Mr Twain would have said God was so disappointed in one John Owen Casford that he invented the squirrel monkey. 

Perhaps we can make it clearer. It is generally accepted that the Good Lord did not make anything without a reason but mosquitoes, and the said John Casford come close. 

Said bloke tried to steal the monkey from a New Zealand zoo to “impress his girlfriend.” In mitigation, Mr Casford said he was as “high as a kite” although a well-known kite from said miscreant’s neighbourhood testified it had never been as high as a Boeing 747 before. This tallied with the drunk-as-a-skunk’s blood alcohol level  – “28,000 feet and climbing.”

The good people of New Zealand were shocked. They were generally not averse to a pint of the nourishing fluid but to try and steal a monkey was simply not on. OK, maybe a mug or three from the local pub or soap and towels from a hotel but this was a monkey, they muttered indignantly. 

Man has always thought monkeys can be trained to do almost anything. That’s why we hear the phrase “surely out of a million monkeys, at least one can write like Shakespeare. ”

When not in his cups, John Owen Casford was made of sterner stuff because he thought out of the box. That was why he put the old axiom about the Bard on its head.

“If we had a thousand Shakespeare’s, could one write like a monkey?” the wasted wastrel wanted to know. “That is the question.” 

It was the burning question he had uppermost in his mind when he broke into the Wellington Zoo in the dead of night and attempted to steal a monkey home to his girlfriend. Why the latter would have been impressed with such bounty was the burning question confronting the psychiatrists. 

He entered the zoo through an unsecured gate and broke through two padlocks to enter the animals’ enclosure. Suffice it to say the astonished apes weren’t pleased to see him. 

As they might say Down Under, anyone could immediately tell they weren’t prime mates. 

On the morning after the incident, zookeepers knew something was wrong when they found most monkeys injured or frightened and one, missing. She had apparently taken a generous bite out of the maudlin miscreant and was later found raucously singing a simian version of Tie Me Kangaroo Down Sport.

Meanwhile, the now-severely hungover Mr Casford was huddling with his lawyers. Asked why he felt compelled to drink that much alcohol he replied truthfully. “She is pretty sober,” he said, alluding to his girlfriend, “but she’s prettier, drunk.”

The plastered pisshead did not escape unscathed. He sustained multiple injuries, some self-inflicted and others presumably at the hands of at least one monkey with a fondness for horrendous Aussie songs grievously murdered long ago by Rolf Harris. 

Alas, poor Casford. His girlfriend booted him out and the judge booted him in. 

In jail that is. Four years of it. 

The Green, Green Grass Of Home

All over the world, smart business folk are creating start-ups and traditional businesses are being “disrupted.”

Taking a leaf out of Elon Mask – the enfant terrible of global disruption – the state assemblyman for Jeram, Selangor recently proposed what might be considered the “disruption” of Malaysia’s traditional agriculture.

The Honourable Member proposes replacing palm oil, rubber, or coconuts with a new crop.


It is an extraordinary idea and unheard of since the Cro-Magnon period whose inhabitants derived the idea from the inhabitants of an earlier period, the now-fabled Stoned Age. 

Hannah Yeoh winced and decided she was better off in the federal government than remaining the Speaker of the Selangor state assembly. As a woman, she’d heard all about the glass ceiling but this was the first she’d heard of one made of grass. It seemed that everything could be going to pot. 

The rocket scientist from Jeram wanted to return Malaysia to its halcyon days of being an Asian tiger economy. That admirable and lofty perch had been fuelled by a combination of foreign direct investment and exports, lots of it. So he had asked the state government to study the cultivation of cannabis for medical and export purposes that is to say for fun and profit.

Such a move by Selangor could potentially make it the world’s biggest producer of ganja and reap handsome profits said Mohd Shaid Rosli for that was the name of said RS.

The rocket scientist was learned because he ate a lot of fish which made him smart enough to know that it was possible for Selangor to undertake the venture, as the Dangerous Drugs Act 1952 stated explicitly that “any” government department was allowed to grow ‘ganja’ for medical use. 

The problem there, of course, was that the Act did not extend to private companies like IO-High and Slime Darby. 

The West had proved long ago that pot had medical benefits. The logic went something like this: Laughter was the best medicine. Pot made you laugh ergo pot was good, if not the best, medicine.  

Mr Shaid had come to the same conclusion although he cited better logic than the example above. 

He said a study on ‘ganja’ cultivation for medical and export purposes had been carried out by Universiti Sains Malaysia’s National Poison Centre director Prof Dr Mohamed Isa Abd Majid in cooperation with a local company, Keep on the Grass Sdn Bhd, with good results. 

The fish-loving, knowledgeable state assemblyman estimated that the planting,  processing and export of ganja could yield returns of about RM9 million for a one-acre piece of land through three harvests annually.

“This amount is higher than the returns on palm oil of only RM3,000 a year per acre. If Selangor gets to produce more than 100 acres, we will be the world’s biggest producer and we will get attractive returns,” said the savvy pescatarian. 

The canny Mr Shaid may have unearthed an idea whose time is fast approaching. Even strait-laced Singapore has indicated that its universities have begun researching the medical effects of grass although the city-state said it would confine its grass-laced research to its synthetic variety and not the natural variant.

Last year, US$81 billion worth of cannabis products were legally sold worldwide. And there are already a number of billion dollar companies exclusively dealing in the product.

The two biggest ones are Canada’s High & Dry and the US’ Weed Be Good Together. 

Did You Know There Are Awards That Recognise Stupidity?

No kidding. They’re called Darwin Awards in honour of Charles Darwin who contributed the theory of natural selection – survival of the fittest so to speak – towards the knowledge pool of humanity. 

But the awards are for people who get killed through their own stupidity. In the process, they do humanity a favour by removing themselves from the gene pool so to speak. 

Perhaps the Arizona woman who tried to pose for a selfie with a jaguar might qualify for a Darwinian honourable mention. 

What do you think happened?

Of course, the woman who stepped over a barrier to take a selfie at a zoo in Arizona in the United States was attacked by the jaguar.

That’s what happens when you fish in the sea of life without bait. Or try and run up a down escalator. 

When she crossed the barrier and approached the enclosure to photograph herself with the jaguar, it swiped out through the fencing, leaving deep gashes on her arms.

Wildlife World Zoo director Mickey Ollson said there was “no way to fix people crossing barriers”.

“They’re there for a good reason,” he said carefully avoiding the impulse to add: “Duh!”

Although the protagonist was a woman, 70 per cent of all Darwin winners are male and, again not surprisingly, most winners have come from the United States. Think Trump and no one should be surprised. 

Here’s another rocket scientist from Arizona again. According to police reports, a man accidentally shot his own, well, sausage while shopping in the meat aisle at Wal-Mart. 

Arizona law does not require a permit (nor a holster for that matter) to carry a firearm, so our hero felt free to carry his piece “commando-style” (unholstered) beneath his waistband. 

When the unholstered gun drifted down into his jeans, he reached in and accidentally pulled the trigger while repositioning his weapon. This loose cannon’s low hanging fruit didn’t have a chance. Neither did said loose cannon. 

Firearm supporters can add this event to the arsenal of ammunition against gun control. 

Not every winner is from the US, however. India has its fair share of people a few poppadoms short of a curry too.

Driving home from a wedding, Prabhu Bhatara idled the car on the roadside to relieve himself in the woods. From a squatting position he spied an injured bear— no less. And what does he do or think? 

The rocket scientist thinks selfie. 

Meanwhile, instead of intervening, the passengers in his car pulled out their mobiles and filmed the carnage.

As he neared the bear, the passengers advised him against his plan. Rocket scientist that he was however, the former wedding guest was determined to fulfil his full selfie potential. 

Once he was within reaching distance, the bear turned out to be not as injured as it seemed  – maybe it was just a bad hair day – and lunged forward, pinning Mr. Bhatara to the ground, “killing him on the spot,” according to Forest ranger Dhanurjaya Mohapatra.

Then, perhaps disgusted at this epic display of homo sapien apathy, a stray dog joined the fray in an attempt to save the man, and tried to fight off the bear! The bear, however, seemed to believe that the world had one too many selfie-seeking humans and finished off poor Mr. Bhatara.

According to media reports, once the body was retrieved, forest officials treated the bear for its injuries. The dog, although probably still disgusted, was unharmed.

Despair not my fellow Malaysians. Although we may appear to have an over-achiever’s share of rocket scientists, morons and dim-witted people, there is always one bright shining thought that we should keep in mind.

It could be far, far worse.

Surprise post!

To make up for our unfortunate technical difficulty from last week, we hope you enjoy this second post for this week!

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Leaving Seems To Be The Hardest Word

Old Crooks Never Die: They Just Steal Away 

Former Prime Minister Najib Razak is popularising the notion that it’s OK to be shameless even if you might be dreadfully guilty.

“Try me if you can” seems to be the former premier’s abiding credo and, to be sure, he has been dodging what could be a judicial bullet for ten months now.

So it appears that until he is finally brought to face the music, the 65-year-old former leader will continue to don black – parka, jeans and sneakers – and ride into the sunset because it wows youthful rebels without a cause into believing that shamelessness for fun and profit is not just fine but dandy and perfectly de rigour.

In such a universe, old axioms get tossed out the window. Perhaps even the one that says crime does not pay.  And you can seriously forget the one that says “the truth will set you free.”

Heaven help us for we are losing it where values – or its lack – are concerned.  It appears that politics trumps everything including patently distasteful posturing.

And yet, the President of the Malaysian Chinese Association Wee Ka Siong recently suggested that his party might learn a thing or two from Najib’s motorcycle-riding antics “to stay relevant.”

Do you remember all those PM apologists who suggested at the time that it was always someone else’s fault – his wife, Fat Boy, etc? Now we know who’s calling the shots: BossKu (Our Boss) on a Moped.

At least some things have changed. Previously MO1 always denied that anything was wrong with 1Malaysia Development Fund. Now he concedes that there was, indeed, wrongdoing but it was a “systemic failure” and everybody should be blamed.

Harry S Truman, the 33rd President of the United States had a plaque on his desk that read “The Buck Stops Here,” meaning he was the one who took responsibility for everything that happened during his tenure.

Alas, the buck seems to have stopped at other destinations in this case. 

Low Teck Jho had never heard of Harry Truman but he’d heard of Harry Houdini and he had a healthy respect for the legendary magician who could escape from anything and who made things disappear into thin air.

Houdini may not have known that crime did not pay as well as politics. But far away across the oceans and safe from the madding crowd, the fraudulent fatso known as Jho Low knew it and mouthed a silent benediction to its sentiment as he uncorked yet another bottle of champagne to celebrate not having to ride mopeds in the humid heat of his homeland.

No, he much preferred comfort in well-cut suits. The corpulent conman believed in keeping his wits about him preferably in a land where Everybody Didn’t Know Your Name and where Interpol was both unseen and ignored.

You had to be smart but quiet. It was like underwear, the pudgy purloiner reasoned. It was important that you have it on but not important that you show it off.

The beefy brigand took pride in the fact that he was scrupulously fair. He did not, for example, want to stand trial in Malaysia because he thought he would not get a fair trial there.

But that was not to say that he might consent to being tried in the United States or Singapore where he was also wanted. That would be oh-so-unfair to his beloved Malaysia, his tanah tumpah darahku.

Fat Boy had principles and, by God, he was sticking to them. Who says there’s no honour among thieves? 

Leaving Seems To Be The Hardest Word

Michael Rotundo might have been a kid once but he appears to be hell-bent on remaining immature forever. 

Even after repeated notices and an offer of cash to move out of his parents’ home in Camillus, New York, the recalcitrant Rotundo pulled a real-life Failure to Launch and refused to budge. 

So, his parents did what every loving mother and father at the end of their respective tethers would do.

They took him to court.

Early last year, a New York judge ruled in favour of the parents, Christina and Mark Rotundo, and ordered the 30-year-old man to leave. However, he wasn’t going down without a fight. He claimed he’s owed a six-month notice, which would give him ample time to prepare for such “a big step”. 

Television footage showed the rebellious Rotundo to be bearded bespectacled and, true to his surname, beefy. He was also lazy and a cheapskate to boot: his parents testified that he’d never paid rent nor did household chores, all the while obdurately remaining at home where he wasn’t wanted in the first place.  

Was Michael always like that? 

It would seem so, certainly, his parents thought so. Michael, it appears, didn’t need anyone to make a fool out of him: he was more like a do-it-yourself type. At 18, neighbours recalled his mother getting furious with him for always kicking spilled ice cubes under the refrigerator. 

But for the future tyrannical tenant, it was simply water under the fridge. 

He was always a strange kid, his father recalled grimly. There were five in the family and Michael was convinced that one had to be Chinese because, statistically speaking, one out of every five people in the world is Chinese. 

He suspected that it might be his elder brother Colin or his father or his mother. Or it could be his younger brother Lee Ho Pang but he still suspected it was Colin. 

You might say he was strange. Incidentally, both Colin and Lee have since moved out of the family home and lead successful lives. 

Maybe it had much to do with his surname. Indeed, in his heart of hearts, the stubborn squatter acknowledged that he had always yearned for a good, stout, Anglo-Saxon name like Major.   

Now there was a name for you, thought the corpulent colonist admiringly. And you could be inventive with first names here. You could name your son Michael or Sergeant, or for the truly accomplished, B Flat Major. 

Alas, poor Michael. It had to be hard having a name like Rotundo and being neither slim nor svelte like his brothers Colin and Lee. It wasn’t that being fat ran in the family: it was simply the fact that he was the only one who didn’t run in the family. 

Worse, his nickname during his formative years was “Ample”: you might not leave home too if you’d been called Ample for most of your natural life.  

During his teenage period, the would-be recalcitrant refugee took refuge in Diet Cokes. It made him feel better about having two Big Macs and a strawberry sundae for lunch every day for most of his high school days. 

But you know what they say; hell hath no fury like an ousted obdurate. Michael’s planning his own revenge: he wants to choose his parents’ nursing home.