Archive for December 3rd, 2007

Monkey Fable


It’s the forties, approximately, and a movie is being filmed. They are on the set, the director, etc. They are trying to show the actor how to shoot. The actor is on the set with his gun. They have trained a monkey to aggravate the actor. This goes on and on. At a certain point the actor is supposed to shoot the monkey straight in the chest. This is method acting I guess. He’ll shoot for real out of anger and frustration, so that when he needs to act it out in the movie he will do it convincingly. Finally the time comes. He pulls out his gun and points it at the monkey’s chest, who is standing with his arms out (like presentation, or a hug) looking right at him annoyingly (as he is supposed to). The actor can’t do it. He kneels on the cement floor of the studio, bent over himself. He feels defeated. The monkey comes over and hugs him. The monkey is so grateful.

I hear, “Sometimes a sign of weakness can be the best thing.”


I wake thinking about the monkey. What a horrible position to be put it. Wanting to do right by your trainers–who are training you toward your own death, but wanting to protect your own life. Because of his faithfulness to his trainers the monkey is only saved by the actor’s failure. Thank goodness for his failure.

The whole thing is set up like a DVD extra from the filming of this old ’40’s b/w movie.


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