November 18, 2003

It's Wednesday all across this wonderful country of ours, and that can mean only one thing: it's time for another exciting edition of Nancy Goldstein's Monkeys, Donkeys, and Junkies: a regular foray into the latest news surrounding three of our favorite things!

It's always sad when a legend dies, and never more so as when that legend is a trained comic monkey. Let's head off to Japan for the first stop on our MD&J journey.
Jiro, the Comic Monkey, Dies.

Jiro, a trained monkey known for getting a laugh by posing in "remorseful reflection," died Saturday. He was 18 years old, which is equal to about 50 years in human years. The cause of his death is unknown.

Jiro, a Japanese macaque, was the second trained monkey to be called Jiro. He made his debut in June 1989 after the first Jiro died. He was famous for his unique pose of lowering his head when told to "think about what you've done" by his trainer, Taro Murasaki, 42. The popular comedy act "Taro & Jiro" often performed on television programs.

Murasaki received the prestigious Arts Festival Award from the Cultural Affairs Agency in 1991. In March 1998, Jiro "married" Kaname, a female monkey seven years younger than he was. Their wedding reception was one of the hottest topics of the year.
So very sad, indeed, and not just the part about the monkey wedding being a hot topic. Now let's head over to the good ol' UK for a whiff of media scandal featuring — no, not Prince Charles — but rather... DONKEYS!
PCC Investigates Star Donkey Story.

The Press Complaints Commission is investigating a front-page story in the Daily Star headlined "Asylum seekers eat our donkeys" following a complaint that it inaccurately claimed donkey meat is a delicacy in Somalia. The watchdog is acting after a Somalian complained the story, published on August 31, was nonsense because eating donkey meat is forbidden in Somalia under Islamic law.

The Star's headline was based on a comment about the investigation of the theft of nine donkeys from Greenwich royal park. The story said: "Asylum seekers have stolen nine donkeys and police believe they've killed and eaten them." A police insider is quoted as saying: "One of our main lines of inquiry is that they may have been taken by immigrants who like eating donkey meat as a delicacy."

The PCC said: "The commission considered that, in the context of the article as a whole, the allegation was clearly presented as comment from an attributed source and readers would not necessarily have been misled into thinking this was the only possible explanation of the matter."
Yick! I think we'll all be happier if we head on back home, or at least to LA, for the final stop of our tour...JUNKIES!
Jerry Lewis in Rehab for Steroid Use.

LOS ANGELES, Nov. 17 — Comedian Jerry Lewis has been hospitalized for several weeks as he weans himself from a steroid that was prescribed for a chronic lung ailment but led to his gaining 60 pounds, a spokeswoman said Monday.
Wow, check out that huge melonhead in the photo. Somewhere, Mike Wolf is laughing; and by somewhere, I mean Connecticut. Well, that's all for now! Be sure to check back soon for another globe-spanning edition of Nancy Goldstein's Monkeys, Donkeys, and Junkies!
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