Nevada City, CA — Earlier this week the Gish Gallop announced that the first open carry permit for an accordion was issued to local bottle blonde attorney and accordionist Fran Cole. As then reported, one of the six stated conditions imposed by Chief Timothy A. Foley was that “Performer cannot carry instrument if accompanied by a monkey.” However, less than a week later, Ms. Cole is in hot water with Nevada City for violating the terms of her permit, and Chief Foley is not amused. According to Gish Gallop sources, Ms. Cole was performing on the Boardwalk last night with Bongo, her Capuchin monkey, and the monkey escaped. Bongo is still on the loose, despite frantic searches by Ms. Cole and local authorities.
Shrieking, “Chief Foley was right-I should have listened to him,” Ms. Cole was last seen running down Commercial Street Thursday night in brisk pursuit of a small monkey dressed in a red cap and military uniform, an outfit commonly worn by monkeys in organ grinder performances. In an interview with an out of breath Ms.Cole following the escape, she attempted to justify her actions.
Ms. Cole said that while she understood the public safety concerns repeatedly drilled into her by Chief Foley, statements by Nevada City Council member Duane Strawser, in which he indicated he would support a smallish monkey, emboldened her and caused her to throw caution to the wind.
Ms. Cole made the following statements in the official incident report:
Listen, this permit is the best opportunity I’ve ever had to advance my musical career. I just couldn’t let this moment slip away, as career breaks for accordion players are shockingly rare. Anyway, I was looking on eBay and just wanted to see if there were any monkeys available there, as it was looking good for me to be able to carry a monkey in Grass Valley. I didn’t have any original intent to defy Chief Foley. He’s done me a huge favor, and I’ve put him in such a bad spot now. We accordion players can be so impulsive, you know.
I really didn’t intend to purchase a live monkey. I honestly thought it was a stuffed one, and when I see a ‘Buy It Now’ eBay link, I just feel an irresistible impulse to click on it. When UPS delivered the wire cage and set it in front of my door, I was truly shocked. I really did try to send it back, but PayPal washed their hands of it and refused to help me get out of the deal. So, I decided to make the best of it. I figured the monkey would help me clear the Boardwalk for Chief Foley and convince him to get rid of the monkey ban. Boy, was I ever wrong!
Last night I rode my bicycle in my knee-length lederhosen and matching Bavarian shoes to the Boardwalk, carrying my accordion and Bongo in my backpack. With difficulty and after only a few bites to my arm, I got Bongo in his little red suit, I began to play one of my signature polka tunes, ‘The Chicken Dance,’ an animal tune that I was sure the monkey would take to.
All of a sudden, the monkey began shrieking and struggling to escape, scary, but a common reaction when I play. He then ripped off his cute little red cap and climbed to the roof of Cafe Mecca, where he jumped onto a string of Terrazzo lights and swung on them all the way down the street. There was no way we could catch him, as those darn Terrazzo lights made the perfect escape route. I was sobbing so hard I stained my knee-length lederhosen. The last time I saw Bongo he was pointing to my accordion, screaming deafening animal in distress sounds and making slashing gestures across his throat. On a positive note, I did clear the Boardwalk for Chief Foley, but I bet he’s still going to be mad at me.
At last report, Bongo was still on the loose in Nevada City. YubaNet has reported that the security guard at Bear Yuba Land Trust’s Woodpecker Preserve spotted Bongo there climbing a very tall monopine.
Chief Foley hopes that Bongo will return to the Boardwalk to be captured, and in a public safety announcement today on KNCO, he made a request that in the interim, all visitors to Nevada City make monkey calls as they walk down the streets, especially near the Boardwalk. Chief Foley would not comment on the possible revocation of Ms. Cole’s permit, stating that his first priority was Bongo’s safe return.