Monthly Archives: February 2016

Seven Monkeys that Should Have Won an Oscar

The Hollywood Wax Museum in Branson, Missouri grabs tourists' attention with a skyline and a giant King Kong gorilla on its roof!Celebrating Chinese New Year and the year of the Monkey, we’ve had monkeys on the brain here at Grosvenor. With the Oscars on the horizon, it got us thinking: why haven’t our clever primate brethren ever managed to bag themselves an Oscar?

Here are our nominations for this year’s awards!

Dodger, Monkey Trouble

MonkeyTroubleThis guy is just every bit as dodgy as his name suggests – particularly when it came to pinching things and other such tomfoolery. This sticky-fingered little chap was taught his mischievous ways by the good-for-nothing character of Harvey Keitel. Unfortunately, it’s Thora Birch who tends to get the blame!

Crystal, The Hangover Part 2

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Why Crystal doesn’t have an Oscar yet, we’ll never know. Her career spans as far back as George of the Jungle, but you might also recognise her from Night at the Museum, Animal Practice, and most recently, The Hangover Part 2. She even has her own agent – now that’s impressive.

Dunston – Dunston Checks In

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Dunston is one cheeky chimp with impeccable taste. When he checks into the five star Majestic Hotel with the evil jewel thief, “Lord” Rutledge, it seems like a life of crime is inevitable. Luckily, he meets Kyle, and the pair attempt to put things right – not without getting up to mischief in the meantime, mind!

Clyde, Every Which Way But Loose

DunstanIt’s not easy to look badass when you’re starring alongside Clint Eastwood, but Clyde certainly pulls it off. He loves his Oreos, car chases and flipping the bird. He certainly takes no prisoners and has a knockout punch, which becomes apparent on the command of ‘right turn Clyde’.

Jack, Pirates Of The Caribbean: The Curse Of The Black Pearl

jackA monkey playing a pirate and a zombie? Now surely that takes some serious acting work? Alas, still no Oscar for Jack following his Pirates of the Caribbean performance. His namesake, Mr Sparrow, was played by Jonny Depp, who seemed to rake in most of the attention. To add insult to injury, Johnny took home an Oscar for Best Actor in a Leading Role for his work on the film in 2003.

Suzanne, Jay & Silent Bob Strike Back

suzannThe lovable Suzanne really won our hearts in Jay & Silent Bob Strike Back, when the pair rescue her from a bleak future in a testing laboratory. Fact is, Suzanne was so good an actress that she even managed to pull off a role within a role, convincing Will Ferrell’s character that she was Jay and Silent Bob’s love child… No easy feat!

Spike, Ace Ventura

White faced Capuchin MonkeyThe capers of Ace Ventura wouldn’t be complete without his pint-size sidekick, Spike. Together, they make the perfect pairing (mainly due to being impish, mischief-makers)! Spike’s loyalty is questionable though – remember when he abandoned him in troubled waters?

Do you think these stars of the screen should be commended for their efforts at this year’s Oscars? Let us know!

 

 

Seven of the Most Amazing Monkey Facts

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We love celebrating Chinese New Year here at Grosvenor. The celebrations are vibrant and exciting, and the cultural significance of each year’s animal is fascinating. This year, it’s the Year of the Monkey – one of our favourite creatures!

In Chinese culture, monkeys symbolise cleverness, and are even associated with nobility. But it isn’t their intelligence that make monkeys such charming animals – here are seven amazing facts you might not know about them.

1. They have a festival dedicated to them

Monkeys are feeding themselves in the annual feast held for monkeys in Lopburi, Thailand. Fruits and vegetables are offered to monkeys during the annual festival to help promote tourism in the area.

Or should we say ‘feastival’? Phra Prang Sam Yot temple, in the Lopburi province of Thailand, plays host to the annual Monkey Buffet Festival. The festival sees more than 600 macaques gorge themselves on around 4,000 kilograms of fruit and other treats: a thank you for bringing thousands of tourists to Lopburi each year.

If you’re planning a visit, remember to keep a sharp eye on your belongings. The curious macaques aren’t averse to stealing whatever takes their fancy!

2. Some can damage your hearing

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Howler monkeys sound more like they’re celebrating the Year of the Dragon than the Year of the Monkey! Their eerie, 90 decibel roars can be heard up to three miles away, and are classed as being loud enough to damage your hearing. It’s all about territory, with males using these intimidating calls to warn off trespassing rivals.

3. Monkeys range dramatically in size

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Did you know that the smallest monkey on the planet weighs little more than 100 grams? The pygmy marmoset is truly tiny, and only grows to around six inches in length. The mandrill, on the other hand, is our largest monkey, weighing in at around 35 kilograms. They cut a hulking figure, but nothing compared to the great apes. A mature silverback gorilla can weigh between 60 and 80 kilograms, and stand around 5.5 feet tall.

4. Chimpanzees are practically family

Chimpanzee on a branch in a zoo.

These apes are our closest living relatives. In fact, we share around 99 per cent of their DNA. Just like us, they use tools to solve problems, are incredibly social and have hierarchical relationships. They can even be taught sign language.

In one study, a chimpanzee named Austin figured out that he could watch himself on a television monitor that was recording his actions. He opened his mouth to look at his teeth, but when he couldn’t see them properly, grabbed a torch and shone it into his mouth.

5. Gorillas can use sign language

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Another ape with an aptitude for sign language is the gorilla. One particularly famous gorilla, Koko, is by far the most talented. Learning sign language since she was a year old, by the age of 40 she could use around 1,000 different signs and understand 2,000 spoken words.

Koko’s understanding of language was made even clearer when she heard about the death of the actor, Robin Williams, who had spent time with her in 2001. She spent the day with her head lowered and her lip quivering.

6. They’re also very agile

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Imagine a gorilla climbing a tree and the image is likely to make you laugh. Surely these huge animals can’t traverse fragile branches? In fact, they can! Gorillas, including silverbacks, regularly climb trees to forage for fruit. Family groups in the Democratic Republic of Congo even sleep in the trees.

7. Orangutans’ arms out-measure humans

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Male orangutans can have arms spanning seven feet, from one fingertip to another. This is up to two feet longer than their standing height, which might sound awkward, but in fact, is a special adaptation. With arms this length, both male and female orangutans can spend their days swinging through the trees, where they gather fruit and build nests.

Chinese New Year is the perfect time to celebrate these amazing animals. Have you learnt something new about the wonderful world of monkeys?

 

Every Day’s a School Day

The GUKPT is entering its 10th year, and I’m proud to say I’ve signed another contract to represent Grosvenor Poker for not only another year, but this special year celebrating the UK’s biggest and best poker tour.

Winning one of the side events at the GUKPT Grand Final at the end of 2015 can’t have done me any harm when extending my deal was mooted, so as the 10th season got underway, I was determined to add to my collection of seven GUKPT winners’ trophies.

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