Wednesday, January 31, 2007

More on Gorilla Suits

National Gorilla Suit Day (see yesterday for information) passed in the northwest suburbs without incident. No one was spotted in our neighborhood today making the rounds in a gorilla suit, but then again even the daytime temps barely broke 20 degrees F., and it was fairly windy too. On the other hand, you'd think that a gorilla suit would be just the thing to keep you warm on a cold day.

Or maybe not. Sad to say, I have no experience wearing gorilla suits. (But it's not too late. Deep in middle age, some men acquire trophy wives or sports cars, if they can afford them, but those of us of more modest means have to settle for gorilla suits.)

I never even talked to the guy who wore a gorilla suit on the Adams Street bridge every day in the mornings when I used to work downtown. His job was to hand out fliers for some gym, and I guess the connection was, "Come to our gym, be an 800 pound gorilla," or something. Once, in mid-morning after the pedestrian rush was over, I saw him taking a break, sitting there with the gorilla mask off, smoking a cigarette. He looked pathetic indeed. Who dreams of growing up to be the Adams Street Gorilla?

I've heard, but never been able to confirm, that gorilla suits are popular in the neighborhood around the Belmont El station on the North Side. Years ago, when I went with friends for Sunday brunch to Ann Sather, the Swedish pancake house near that station, I thought I saw four or five gorilla-suit wearers wander by on the sidewalk outside. Anyway, I'm sure they take National Gorilla Suit Day a lot more seriously in that part of the city, with a parade and prizes for the best suits, than we philistines here in the suburbs.

I made everything up in that last paragraph. Still, I wonder what the collective for a group of gorilla-suited people would be. Band is the collective for actual gorillas, I've read.


At 3:08 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It was too long ago, apparently, and too minor an incident to show up on-line (I've looked), but I recall when I was in school in North Carolina, about 30 years ago, a man in Raleigh, I think, was arrested for wearing a gorilla suit on a public street. (He was advertising something, but I don't recall what.) He was charged with violating the North Carolina anti-mask statute - a law against wearing a mask in public adopted in the 20's or 30's to curtail the activities of the Ku Klux Klan. It was generally thought that his real offense was saying something offensive to a policeman, with the state's attorney thinking of the anti-mask statute after the fact to justify the arrest. There was enough public hilarity that the charges were dropped before very long, presumably to avoid more of the same. ANK


Post a Comment

<< Home