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Wild Monkeys Living with Adopted Raccoon Near Fort Lauderdale Airport

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A family of ververt monkeys that have roamed freely in Broward County since the 1950s has recently relocated to a patch of trees near the Fort Lauderdale/Hollywood International Airport, according to Local 10. Which is adorable and all, but, you guys, they also report that "a raccoon is treated like a long-lost family member." Which just reaches beyond adorable into some sort of sphere of cuteness which English does not have a proper word for.

Local 10, sadly, does not catch the monkeys interacting with the raccoon, and for all we know, their could have just been a nearby raccoon and the cameraman was like, "Hey, let's pretend it's part of the family to really drive this slow news day segment home."

But we want to believe. Local 10 reports on the possible origin of the monkeys ("One legend has it that a 1950s roadside attraction set a family of vervet monkeys free near Dania Beach.") What we really want to know is how the raccoon joined them.

We imagine it went something like this:

One day, with the sun shining and young Rocky believed his mamacoon was asleep he snuck out of the den, or whatever it is you call where raccoons live, to go somewhere he'd been sneaking of to a lot lately -- to hang out with other animals that made him feel alive like he never has before. Rocky was almost out of the den when he heard paw steps behind him.

"Where do you think you're going?" his mother yelled.

"Oh, just to go use the lil' raccoons room," replied Rocky.

"Don't give me that bullshit Rocky," she roared. "I ain't stupid. You're gonna hang out with those damned monkeys again aren't you? Oh, you think I didn't know. Everyone in the friggin' neighborhoods knows Rocky. I was digging through garbage outside the nail salon last week and everyone was talking about it. 'Oh, I heard your boy thinks he's a monkey trapped in a raccoon body. Someone must not've raised him right.'"

"Mama, it's not like that," he replied.

"It's sick Rocky, you're sick in the head! What's a matter, your own kind ain't good enough for ya? Those monkeys ain't from 'round here, Rocky. They're garbage, and not the good kind we just ate for dinner."

"But Mama, I can't help it. I just feel so right when I'm with the monkeys."

"Ain't no son of mine gonna pretend to be a Got Dang monkey. I tell you one thing. You walk out this den right now and you ain't never welcome back."

"Mama, I gotta go. It's the only way for me to be happy."

"Oh, you gonna leave me too, huh? Just like your daddy when he went away with that opossum he meet behind the strip club? Or your brother who got involved with the wrong crowd and caught the rabies? Or your sister who's down in Homestead living in a trailer park dumpster and won't even let me come visit the grandbabies? You're gonna kill me Rocky if you walk out this den. You gonna kill your mama."

"Mama, they didn't leave you," Rocky said, gathering up some courage. "They left because of you. You drive everyone away, and if you can't accept who I am, I'm gonna leave too. The Monkeys would never treat me like this."

"Why you gotta do this to me Rocky?"

"I'm not doing it to you Mama. I'm doing it for me, and I should've done it a long time ago."

And with that Rocky left to join the monkeys. He started living under his assumed primate name "Bananas Carpenter," and never felt as much love as he ever did there in the monkey village near the airport.

Sometimes Bananas still thinks of Mama. Wonders what happened to her. An old squirrel friend he ran into one day told him she took up with some old hecoon who's deaf in both ears and can't hear her bitching. He wonders if she's happy, but he knows some raccoons just ain't ever gonna let themselves be happy.

He feels bad for animals like that, because he let himself be happy, so happy, living amongst his new monkey friends.

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