Job at the Zoo Story
A Favorite Story
In high school, I needed money. I was able to drive, had a girlfriend, and like to go out with my friends. My folks didn't have much money and I needed to pay my own way.
I had already done jobs working at restaurants and grocery stores and wanted to try something more interesting. While searching around, I stopped at the zoo.
As it turned out, the zoo director liked my style and said he had an interesting job that he felt I could handle. We walked through the back alleys and tunnels of the zoo that most people never see until we got to the gorilla cage. But, it was empty.
The director told me that their gorilla named Kong had caught a bug and was in quarantine for the next week. Kong was getting old and they were even now shopping around for a replacement since Kong just sits on a treebranch holding onto a rope all day. When the crowds started arriving on the weekend, they'd be disappointed to have no gorilla since everyone enjoys the gorilla exhibit, even a boring old gorilla.
The director said he had a gorilla suit I could wear if I would be interested in sitting on the branch for 4 hours at a time so the people would at least have something to look at. It sounded good to me, not the usual high school job, so I told him I would.
The next day I went to the zoo, put on the gorilla suit and climbed into the cage. I sat on the branch holding the rope and soon there was a crowd of children pressing their faces to the bars. It didn't take long for me to start getting bored, so I would scratch my armpits, thump my chest, and twirl the rope. About an hour passed and I began to really get into this gorilla stuff. I would grab the rope and swing across the cage. The kids thought it was great so I started swinging higher and higher.
In the next cage there was a lion and he was becoming irritated by my antics and began to pace his cage and roar. I kept swinging and started to swing to the lion's side of the cage and would use my feet to push off of his bars. I could really swing out far and he roared even louder. It was actually pretty fun and the kids were really enjoying the show.
All of a sudden I missed the bars, flew through, and dropped right into the lion's cage! I landed on my back and was stunned but immediately got up and ran to the front of the cage to the croud, screaming "Help me, help me, I'm not who you think I am!"
Just as I yelled, the lion jumped on my back and knocked me to the ground. His head was at my neck and I was sure I'd never make it to graduation. Then he whispered in my ear, "Shut up stupid, or you'll get us both fired".
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