Photo courtesy of the author Dan Musgrave ( e s s a y ) I started at the ape house during my first semester of academic probation. e Th director never asked to see my résumé, and I suspected they let me in simply because I volunteered to do anything, even clean toilets, to be around apes. As it was, I gave them the Saturdays of my junior year, and they gave me a respite from the constant anxiety of life at the highly ranked liberal arts college I attended. In the beginning, the youngest bonobos, four under age ten, welcomed me. Three of the adults were skeptical but at least took note of my existence. The fourth adult, the matriarch, regarded me like a person would a piece of fur- niture. It was okay that I existed, but I shouldn’t get in the way, and if I became useful, that would be a surprise. She was cool and, I thought, conniving. It wasn’t that I didn’t trust her; it was just that at first she was outside my ability S u M M e r 2 0 1 6 / T H e M I S S O
The Missouri Review – University of Missouri
Published: Jul 7, 2016
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