Primatologists at the University of Minnesota achieved a milestone this week by teaching sign language to a rare albino mountain gorilla named Brock — and you won’t believe the first thing it said!
The gorilla had previously been non-communicative and prone to violent outbursts, leading many prominent experts in simian-human communication to believe the animal was incapable of self-expression.
For years the whims and motivations of the beast were explained by its handler, Paul Heyman, who expressed notions that most researchers assumed Brock was incapable of processing.
But over seven years of daily interactions with the animal — during which 32 researchers were hospitalized after being thrown, or “suplexed,” around its enclosure — a breakthrough was finally made.
Last week, using American Sign Language, the animal finally expressed itself, revealing a far more sophisticated intellect than anyone had previously assumed.
It said: “Life’s but a walking shadow, a poor player, that struts and frets his hour upon the stage, and then is heard no more; it is a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.”
After a thoughtful pause, the animal then added: “Bitch.”