"I don't like monkeys," Penn says. "OK," I say. We are in bed, and he has woken up sad from a dream in which he didn't get to stay very long at His Beloved Preschool. "They get angry," he concludes. "Come here, KooKuh. You want me to cuddle you?" There follows some fussiness about how exactly KooKuh would like to be cuddled. With my arm creating a rainbow above his body, apparently. Not super comfortable at 2:30 in the morning.
No monkeys for Penn. This came up a couple weeks back, and the breaking news immediately made the rounds on Facebook. "Tomorrow, when the sun comes up, I hope that there is a farm with no monkeys outside," quoth Penn, and suddenly my boss was inquiring after his mental health.
He is entitled to be wary of monkeys. We all have our faves and naves. I like lemurs, for example; not so much, chimps. I'm not exactly a fan of the zoo or the circus, as a general whole, but perhaps that is because I abhor clowns. I thought that was pretty much a universal truth, but not so. Witness this gift to Penn from a well-meaning admirer: