By Sharanya Gopinathan
Obviously I love all gorillas, but my favourite gorilla is Koko (sorry Harambe!).
Sorry if I’m a little late to the party, but for those of you who haven’t spent hours trawling the Internet for amazing animal videos, Koko is a fantastic gorilla who can understand over 2000 English words, and can speak 1000 words of a modified form of sign language, which her caregiver, Francine “Penny” Patterson, calls Gorilla Sign Language. Penny began working with Koko for her doctoral project in the 70s, and continues to work with her till today.
Koko became super famous in the 80s when she decided to adopt a kitten (her favourite animal). Because of her celebrity status, Koko now lives at an undisclosed location in California, although she did get visits from pals like Robin Williams, whom she loved so much that she insisted that he tickle her repeatedly, and then swiped his wallet from his pocket.
Koko is really, really smart. Not only does she know lots of words, she can also coin new ones when she doesn’t know the word for something, like when she decided that a brush was a hair-scratch-comb (fair enough).
Koko can get super emotional too. She has her own favourite books and movies (and even turns away during the sad parts!).
And just like everyone else, she can get frustrated if you don’t understand her.
Pluus, Koko’s on Tinder. Okay, that’s an exaggeration, but she has tried her own form of video dating.
She’s also an experienced art critic. Okay, that’s also an exaggeration, but she’s definitely an opinionated lady and can be a bit harsh on herself sometimes.
She once released a video saying that climate change is bad, and a bunch of know-it-alls felt the need to say that Koko doesn’t know what global warming. Yeah whatever go rain on someone else’s parade, Captain Obvious.