So. There’s a planet. And a bunch of apes on it. And they try to save the other apes. The best they can think of is to build a large concrete and glass cage, with concrete trees, and then charge other apes to have a look.
It would, one thinks, inspire an ape to look deep into time and find out how animal it is, or how human the other apes are. This is the Chester Zoo, which has successfully bred apes, lions, rhino, and more, all nearly extinct on earth because the most numerous great apes build concrete junk like the stuff above for themselves, too, and junk like that takes a lot of room.
But apes are not rhinos. They need a little fun. For human apes, that means with each other.
Give them scaffolding, and they call it art, the crazies.
They really like this stuff.
And presto, they build artificial scaffolding worlds.
And live in them.
But they are not orang-utans. Give them a scaffolding world, and make it cozy for human apes, so they’ll bring their kids to see the Earth, or a scaffolding version of it, and they’ll come…
… to see a depressed orang-utan crumpled up at the bottom of his concrete tree.
Who on earth thinks of this stuff? So maybe the kids will be alright?
Maybe they’ll learn to be concrete orang-utans?
But what can they learn from Dad?
Depression? I don’t think we should fool ourselves. Here’s the outdoor pen again.
And here’s a young orang-utan coming to some clear decisions.
Picking the lock, for instance.
Or trying to, to our collective shame: partly the shame of mistreating our brothers and sisters like this, but also the shame of treating ourselves like this.
The environment is the message.