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The Siman Sleigh Ride
December 24, 2015 Rhesus Park will be sprinkling a little festive magic across the local community this Christmas with our simian charity sleigh.
Vagrants and vagabonds all over Shropshire will be temporarily lifted from the gloom when our sleigh crosses their path and one of our monkeys tosses down a stunning Christmas gift.
Santa and his three helpers – Maximus the marmoset, Gorky the gorilla and Beria the baboon – will set out from Rhesus Park at 11am on Christmas Day armed with the finest gifts money can buy from Aldi.
And they won’t return back home through the gates until every ill-starred person on the Shropshire streets is treated to a surprise that will warm their hearts on the coldest, loneliest night of the year.
Rhesus Park CEO David Alsatian said: “This is our way of giving something back to those less fortunate than us. The idea came to me when I was driving to work and Band Aid came on the radio for the 10th time that week. Instead of changing channel, as I usually do, I decided to really listen to the lyrics for the first time. And when Bono belted out: ‘Tonight thank God it’s them instead of you' I had a real lump in my throat. It was then I knew I had to stop being so selfish.
“I won’t be donning the Santa suit, though, as that’s going a bit too far. I will be Skyping a charming young lady from Greece on Christmas Day while making my way through a bottle of vintage Scots whisky.
“The honour of playing Santa will fall on one of the keepers. They’re planning a poker game on Christmas Eve and the first to drop out has to be Santa. I hope it’s not Clemente Kurva or the whole venture could turn sour.”
If you see our Simian Sleigh on Christmas Day please take a snap on your smartphone and send your pictures to firstname.lastname@example.org. If you are one of the homeless people to receive a gift, we operate a no-returns policy. Rhesus Park also refuses to take any responsibility for injury or harm our gifts may cause.
Small but perfectly formed
December 24, 2015 Rhesus Park has made the festive season even more magical by unveiling our stunning 19th century miniature winter wonderland.
Our lemur keeper Sal Pardesi has become something of an expert in model making, having been forced to spend all his free time indoors while living under the threat of a retaliatory bullet from the Cosa Nostra.
For the last three years he has been working on his festive masterpiece, a task made even more laborious by the shaky hands that plague almost everyone who decides to betray the Sicilian mafia.
Now he has proudly presented his utopian world after completing the final scene, pictured above, which shows a gang of fundamentalist Christians stoning three fallen woman to death in front of a townhouse that has just been exposed as a bordello.
Sal said: “I’m so glad I have survived long enough to complete this model village, a work that I can class as my proudest achievement.
“When I first came to England I feared I wouldn’t see another Christmas, never mind stay here long enough to make my own festive world. May God continue to look over me until I complete my next project, a miniature rendering of an ISIS training camp.”
In a homage to Rhesus Park, Sal has named the village saloon in our honour, adding a few drunken monkeys (pictured left) to complete what will surely be the most popular exhibit of this two-acre extravaganza.
He said: “The village is a reflection of myself so I had to make sure Rhesus Park was represented. I also wanted to portray my past so there is a scene where three goons extort protection money from the local shopkeeper with thumb screws and a cat o' nine tails
Sal’s Winter Wonderland will be open until February 24. Entry is £12 on top of your standard Rhesus Park ticket, although season-tickets get a 50p discount.
All I Want For Christmas Is..
December 23, 2015 It’s Christmas time again and Santa will soon be hurtling down your chimney to empty his sacks. Most of us will receive some worthless tat that will provide 10 minutes of entertainment before being cruelly tossed away like an ageing mistress.
But that can’t stop us from dreaming about the ideal gift before our hopes are dashed when we finally pull off that wrapping paper. Here’s what the Rhesus Park staff really want for Christmas…
Clemente Kurva: Diplomatic Immunity
The year has ended on a sour note, with Liberia joining the long list of countries trying to extradite me for alleged ‘war crimes’ in my part-time role as soldier of fortune. While I’m sure I won’t spend the rest of my life rotting in a Monrovian jail cell, I could do without yet another tiresome trip to The Hague. A more boring city you will struggle to find. Why can’t these trials be conducted in Amsterdam instead?
Clementine Rough: To have sex somewhere other than inside a truck
Since becoming a woman, my romantic dealings have been anything but romantic, with every man I meet online working as a long-distance lorry driver. Their idea of eroticism is smearing a molten Yorkie bar over my body then licking it off while Level 42’s greatest hits plays in the background. I’m not asking for much, I’d even settle for the cheapest room at a Premier Inn, with the added caveat that Lenny Henry watches us do it from the closet.
Jesus Garcia Iturrapse: For someone to buy my sitcom pilot
It’s exactly 30 years since I penned my first sitcom and it still hurts me deeply that nobody has shown the slightest bit of interest in it. At the time I was convinced that I was on to a winner and nothing has changed my view. Called Faiths of My Father, it’s about half-brothers teaming up on a road trip across America in a bid to find their estranged dad, a philandering priest. One of the brothers is a fundamentalist Muslim while the other is an orthodox Jew. As you can imagine, much hilarity ensues.
Salvatore Knuckles Pardesi: For the pain of my brother’s death to disappear
While I was lucky enough to escape Sardinia with my life after ratting out the Cosa Nostra, my poor brother Demetrio was not so fortunate. Had I known Demetrio would refuse to leave the motherland, there’s no way I would have turned rat. The cops thought they had found the perfect safe house for him in Genoa but there’s no escape from the Cosa Nostra in Italy. Poor Demetrio was lying dead with a bullet in his head within two days of my arrival in Shrewsbury. They also let several rabid rats eat his rotting corpse..
Hertz van Rentaal: For Britain’s Got Talent to finally recognise my genius
For the last four years I have been trying to make my big breakthrough at auditions for Britain’s Got Talent and every time I have been treated with no respect. I have performed spell-binding close-up magic and pioneering psychological tricks but I’ve been continually overlooked for social misfits who sing piss-poor karaoke or performing animals. It leaves me with just one conclusion, this is a deeply racist country which can’t cope with people from other nations being more talented than them.
Elena Cartwright: An Uzi 9mm
The world is becoming a scary place and a girl like me needs a bit of protection. It’s bad enough having to deal with the perverts who are drawn to my beauty like moths to a flame but now I’ve got to factor in international terrorism as well. After what happened in Paris, it seems like they are targeting people who like to go out and have a good time so I need to start packing some heat. I’ve already spoken to Uncle Clemente about this and I’m sure he’ll be able to get his hands on an Uzi in time for Christmas. Hopefully he will lob in a few grenades too..
Cowardly Peake bottles it
December 17, 2015 Rhesus Park has expressed “the utmost disappointment” in astronaut Tim Peake after he welched on a promise to unleash one of our baboons at the International Space Station.
Peake, who worked as Rhesus Park’s night watchman during his training in a bid to adapt to the loneliness of space, hatched a plan to take our malevolent baboon Frank with him on the historic journey into the great beyond.
Egged on by head keeper Clemente Kurva, the duo spent months painstakingly preparing what Clemente claims would have been “the greatest practical joke in history”.
And there was electricity in the air when Peake collected Frank at Rhesus Park last week before heading off to Kazakhstan for the launch.
But Frank’s hopes of joining famous 1960s simian forefathers such as Ham (pictured below right) in experiencing the wonders of space travel were cruelly dashed when Peake’s bottle spectacularly crashed on launch day.
Doubts began to plague the 43-year-old when cosmonaut Yuri Malenchenko reacted violently to Peake’s son Oliver placing a whoopee cushion on his seat, leaving the four-year-old with severe concussion.
And when Malenchenko insisted the next person to try “any f****** monkey business” would be “pummelled into an early grave”, Peake abandoned the plan to stuff Frank inside his titanium suitcase.
Rhesus Park learned of Peake’s cowardice when Clemente Kurva spotted Frank terrorising a reporter from BBC Breakfast live on air once the astronaut had abandoned him inside the media room.
A tearful Frank then watched on in solitude (pictured above) as treacherous Peake and his two colleagues blasted off into space without him.
Our head keeper now plans to have “stern” words with so-called hero Peake when he returns from his six-month stint of performing standard grade chemistry experiments on the space station.
Kurva said: “It really stuck in my craw when I heard people bang on about Peake’s bravery on the telly when the reality is he’s a coward. I can’t believe he let himself be cowed by a Russian whose bark is worse than his bite.
“If he thinks Malenchenko is a scary prospect then just wait until he shows his face around here again. I’ll show him the true meaning of terror.
“It would have been brilliant if Frank had become the first simian on the International Space Station. We might even have seen some inter-species breeding as I have never seen a more highly sexed animal. He would have had the female astronauts on the run.
“The live feed from the station would have become the most popular TV programme in the world. Who wouldn’t want to watch a baboon terrifying a bunch of nerds inside a confined space?
“But we’ll never know just how entertaining that would be and it’s all down to one man. Peake’s a total bottle-merchant. I hope he does a George Clooney up there.”
Salman starts the Xmas Rush
December 10, 2015 Rhesus Park started the countdown to the festive season in style last night when reclusive novelist Salman Rushdie switched on our Christmas lights to thrill a crowd of thousands.
Having pipped John Leslie and Abu Hamza in our Twitter poll after all three celebrities had expressed an interest in flicking the switch, Rushdie took extra delight in lighting up Rhesus Park with our stunning Rhesus Ark centrepiece (pictured right).
He said: “I haven’t seen a glow like that since a bunch of Iranians burned a papier-mache effigy of myself on top of a flaming pile of my novels.
“It meant a lot when Rhesus Park asked me to turn on the lights as public invites have understandably been thin on the ground in recent years.
“Hopefully this can help me get back in the public eye a bit. Maybe I’ll get invited on Loose Women and that could lead to my ultimate dream, eating a kangaroo’s balls on I’m A Celebrity.”
Given the recent outbreak of terrorist atrocities in Europe, Rushdie was a controversial choice as this year’s ceremonial switcher but in the spirit of democracy, Rhesus Park CEO David Alsatian felt he had to abide by the results of the Twitter poll (pictured below)..
He said: “Of course there were security concerns but we received assurances by ISIS that the fatwa against Rushdie would be temporarily suspended while he was at Rhesus Park.
“Our head keeper Clemente Kurva has contacts with the Mujahideen after fighting as a mercenary during the war with the Soviets back in the 1980s.
“Some of them play on-line games of Mario Kart with senior figures in ISIS and after losing a race one of the ISIS commanders agreed to waive the right to attack Rhesus Park as a forfeit.
“Even without those assurances we would still have been keen for Salman to switch on the lights as we always try to give our Twitter followers what they desire. One we start letting terrorists mess with on-line polls, the whole democratic system starts falling apart.”
Radical cleric Abu Hamza, our gallant runner-up, was furious when he learned the identity of the man who had pipped him to the honour of switching on our lights.
However, we managed to appease him by securing the prized role of Captain Hook in this year’s Shrewsbury Pantomime.
Rhesus Park CEO David Alsatian said: “I met plenty of luvvies during my days with Sue Lawley and a couple of them owed me a big favour after I managed to put out a few fires when cops started sniffing around after Operation Yewtree began.”
Shamed television presenter Leslie (pictured below) was far easier to appease, settling for an all-expenses-paid lunchtime trip to our local lap-dancing club, Legs Eleven.
Clemente Kurva, who accompanied the Scot during his visit to Shrewsbury, said: "What a laugh we had. It was an expensive couple of hours but well worth it. John told me a couple of cracking X-rated stories about Lorraine Kelly and also passed on Abi Titmuss' telephone phone number.
"When I'm next Edinburgh, John has promised to give me a guided tour of the hairy triangle before taking me down to Easter Road for a Hibs game.
"He has a lot of critics but I found him tremendous company. Let's hope he wins next year's poll and gets to turn on the lights. He deserves it."
Liberia target Clemente
December 9, 2015 Liberia have become the latest country to open extradition proceedings against Rhesus Park head keeper for alleged atrocities he committed as a mercenary in their civil war.
Clemente joined forces with rebel group Liberians United for Reconciliation and Democracy (LURD) during the siege of Monrovia back in 2003 and later switched sides to fight for the Armed Forces of Liberia when they agreed to double his pay packet.
Despite interim president Gyude Bryant hailing Clemente for his role in restoring order in the country later that year, he is now being pursued by the new regime led by Ellen Johnson Sirleaf for "crimes against the Liberian people and humanity in general".
Known as the “white shaved devil” in Liberia during the conflict for his distinctive bald pate, Clemente has come back into the public sphere as a result of a new book about the conflict by respected American journalist Chuck Howitzer, who became a noted anti-war campaigner after severving in Vietnam (pictured right).
This 1000-page epic features several terrifying testimonies about the “shaved white devil”, with many Liberians viewing Clemente as a demon from the “deepest recesses of Hades”.
Howitzer even claims locals have made voodoo dolls of their tormentor (pictured below) in a bid to heap pain back on the man who "epitomised the barbarity of such a senseless conflict.
Public pressure forced Sirleaf’s government to take action against Clemente and Liberia have now joined Tajikstan, Burundi, Yemen, Guinea Bassau, Chad and Mali in opening criminal proceedings against our head keeper.
Despite this latest threat to his liberty, Clemente remains relaxed about Liberia’s bid for extradition, shrugging it off as an “occupational hazard” for a part-time soldier of fortune.
He said: “I was paid to do a job and I delivered. This is armed conflict, not a school coffee morning. You need to break a few heads to make an omelette of peace.
“Why do the Liberians think they can succeed where so many other countries have thus far failed? All this talk of a ‘shaved white devil’ is nonsense. They used that term for all us mercenaries. I wasn’t the only one.”
Rhesus Park CEO David Alsatian added: “We always back our staff to the hilt until their guilt is proven in a court of law. Clemente remains a valued employee and we will do everything in our power to ensure that he is able to continue in his duties here.”