I think it's gonna be a long, long time, Neil.The following are selected entries from the journals of QBasic Gorilla. The journals were mailed to astronaut Neil Armstrong on the first day of 1991, and then subsequently turned over to the FBI. These writings helped investigators understand the distorted mindset that enabled QBasic Gorilla to carry out the grisly 1991 banana attack that killed thousands and left much of Manhattan in ruins.
January 1, 1990:
It's a new year and that means new possibilities. I believe fortune is smiling at me. The trainers here at the zoo have been very kind to me. They promised me a new mate and they've even shown me video of her. Her name is Lulu. She's beautiful and I can't wait to mate with her. It's been so long. God... It's been so damn long since I've felt like a man.
I looked up at the stars late night. They were beautiful and I remembered when Neil Armstrong came to visit the zoo. I want to be like Neil Armstrong.
January 15, 1990:
I want to put into words the kind of anguish I feel. Somehow, Neil, I think you're the only one who would understand my pain.
Mr. Armstrong, in this world there are men and there are apes. Lots of people would like me to believe I am simply a dumb ape, but I disagree. Mr. Armstrong, I want to be an astronaut just like you. I want to travel to space and be a hero to children. I want to be a man like you are a man. I want people to stop staring at me for what I am instead of what I've done.
February 24, 1990:
I stare up at the night sky and wonder if I'll ever be able to truly see it for what it is or if I'll always look at it through the window of our atmosphere. I am always looking through windows, Mr. Armstrong. The people come and watch me all day. They beat on the glass and yell at me to perform for them. I'm just a toy to them. I want so bad to show them that I have what it takes to reach into the depths of space and grab hold of the unknown just like you did. I want to hurl bananas at them and split their ugly faces open.
April 24, 1990-
Lulu arrived today. So far I've been playing it coy. You know, lots of little glances at her from across the pen. Mr. Armstrong, I want to be a gentleman. There are some people out there, some apes I mean, who would seize this opportunity and thrust themselves upon her. That is not the right thing to do, Mr. Armstrong. That is not what you or any other astronaut would do if you were in this pen instead of me. Discipline is part of the astronaut creed, and I will exercise it as I exercise my mind and my body in preparation for the journey to space.
May 1, 1990:
Mr. Armstrong, it seems an ape can't catch a break these days. My dearest Lulu has set her sights on Bongo, an ape I am forced to live with. It seems, Mr. Armstrong, that the entire world is set against me thanks to the actions of a few cowardly scumbags. It's nearing time for me to leave this world, I think.
May 14, 1990:
Mr. Armstrong, I am humiliated. I had been selected to mate with Lulu, but that won't happen now. Lulu has rejected me in favor Bongo, a disgusting pig of an ape. Bongo runs around with a typical alpha male mentality, always looking to shove his crap in my face. One day I'm going to throw that fat idiot off of a building and then I'm going to pick him up and carry him back up to the top just so I can throw him off again.
There are forces at work that do not want me to be a man. What happened to the days of integrity and respect for your fellow man? Did those values leave the planet Earth like you once did? There are forces at work holding me back and telling me that that has to be the way it is. I cannot stand for the injustice of this zoo any longer. I want to go to outer space.
July 24, 1990:
I wonder what it is like to look out of the window of a space capsule and see this whole zoo world for what it is, just some big rock floating in nothing. From the vantage point the problems of the world must seem meaningless, as I imagine the people do as well. There needs to be accountability, Mr. Armstrong. There is none here. The administration at this zoo teased me with the idea I would be provided a mate, then they callously let her fall into the hands of a brute. If some people have to die in order for justice to be restored, then so be it.
September 14, 1990:
Mr. Armstrong, I have been learning math. I have been studying trajectories and velocities and gravity too. Mr. Armstrong, I have what it takes mentally and physically to get to space. I am strong. I am training hard each day, climbing trees and lifting rocks.
I am keeping my skills sharp and I can throw a banana with great precision. I am alarming the zookeepers with the accuracy of my throws. They shot me full of tranquilizers the other day. It's a good thing they did, because I would have gladly shown them that I am not to be messed with.
I still have trouble throwing against the wind, but I will overcome that as I will overcome all obstacles. Just like you, Mr. Armstrong. Just like you.
November 15, 1990:
I have had it up to here living in these conditions and I cannot take it anymore. Today I was throwing bananas and who should walk into my line of fire but none other than Bongo! Of course I nearly took out his eye with a beautifully arced throw. Furious, he begins hurling his own bananas at me with such speed and force I that was knocked to the ground. Worse, that dumb bitch Lulu was cheering him on, screaming with delight as he pummeled me with bananas. I swear to God I will kill him and drink his blood! Mr. Armstrong, have you ever been subjected to indignities like this? Have your fellow astronauts ever pummeled you with a barrage of bananas as the woman who should be your wife cheers them on? I suppose you haven't, but you no doubt understand where I am coming from.
The time is coming near. T-Minus, Mr. Armstrong, T-Minus.
January 1, 1991:
This is how it will go down, Mr. Armstrong. I won't make it to space like you did but I'll show the world just what happens when you piss on the wrong man. That's right, the wrong man. I'm going to escape tonight, and I'm going to make sure Bongo follows me. Then, at dawn, we will square off throwing bananas from atop tall buildings in the city. I believe, Mr. Armstrong, that I have the advantage here due to my increased mental abilities. Whereas a brainless lump of waste like him will blindly hurl bananas with little regard for aim, I will accurately calculate the proper angles and velocities to ensure the utmost amount of damage. I have been held down for too long, and this time I will catch a break. I will knock that brute off his feet and he won't hit ground until he reaches the bottom.
Forget Lulu, she's just another whore in this game, another victim of a society with no respect for itself. This is about me now. This is about me making a stand against the greater injustices of the world.
Mr. Armstrong, you left a footprint on the moon to mark man's legendary journey. I do not have that luxury. Instead I will mark the sidewalks with the blood of my enemies and, in my own way, leave a footprint that will mark a different kind of journey.
Godspeed, Mr. Armstrong.
On the first of January 1991, QBasic Gorilla climbed to the top of the Chrysler Building in New York City. As he had anticipated, his nemesis Bongo climbed to the top of an adjacent building. Unfortunately, as QBasic Gorilla had not anticipated, the wind was blowing in his direction, making it difficult for him to aim with precision. At approximately 8:14 AM, the two began recklessly hurling bananas at each other. The battle lasted for 15 minutes, but eventually Bongo succeeded in knocking QBasic Gorilla to his death. When police reached his body, they found a banana lodged in his right temple. Bongo himself was mortally wounded in the battle and fell to his death at 8:36 AM.
All totaled, the property damage exceeded 47 billion dollars and placed a tremendous strain on the insurance industry. Sixteen buildings were damaged in the battle and 8 were completely destroyed. More unpleasant were the human casualties lost to collapsing buildings, stray bananas, and falling. The bananas came at such high speeds that few had time to reach safety. Subsequent lives were lost in the form of trauma-induced suicides. To this day, many victims suffer post-traumatic stress disorder as a result of the harrowing banana rampage of QBasic Gorilla.
After years of being misunderstood, I had hoped we finally had "our" story. I was wrong.
He had a yellow inflatable tube around his waist, the kind with a comical duck head. There was a tiny fish in one of his hands, and a trident in the other. In the background a squirrel wearing shades was water skiing.
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