What are you most afraid of?
Most of us are afraid of something, even if that fear may be a little difficult to explain or outside the norm. Some people are afraid of butterflies. Or birds. Or cotton balls. I personally get skeeved out by having flour on my hands. Our personalities are shaped by all kinds of things — the things we enjoy, the things we can't stand, and the memories we form starting from a young age.
Actor Vincent D'Onofrio recently shared a fascinating glimpse into his childhood via a now-viral Twitter thread — specifically, his experiences at a facility in Florida that let people come inside and feed monkeys. While that may sound fun and even educational when you first hear it, D'Onofrio's story reveals that it was anything but (at least for him). The trauma he experienced at the Monkey Jungle in Miami obviously stayed with him for a long time. While we sympathize with his experiences, we also can't help but be entertained by his brilliant storytelling.
It all started in Florida...
1) Just for a laugh; Let me just say something about monkeys and their ability to scare the SH*T out of me. There u… https://t.co/HeyS7fvJ4q— Vincent D'Onofrio (@Vincent D'Onofrio)1552158407.0
Apparently, D'Onofrio found himself there quite often as a child.
2) It was not a fun place however i was taken their many times. Held hostage by whoever of the other children wante… https://t.co/kh68YxElXm— Vincent D'Onofrio (@Vincent D'Onofrio)1552158407.0
D'Onofrio considered the petting zoo to be more of a torture chamber.
3) A place that I thought of as a horrible place, a torture chamber of sorts. It was not the torturing of the monke… https://t.co/N09OikcTwc— Vincent D'Onofrio (@Vincent D'Onofrio)1552158407.0
There was a lot of monkey poo.
4) But it was severe torture for me. The amounts of monkey poo everywhere was unbearable. We walked through the poo… https://t.co/mQohTSCrij— Vincent D'Onofrio (@Vincent D'Onofrio)1552158407.0
Suffice it to say, D'Onofrio was not a fan.
5) At times it squirted down upon the visitors. Some people laughed and others cried. All I thought was "what kind… https://t.co/aFAlO7uUrk— Vincent D'Onofrio (@Vincent D'Onofrio)1552158407.0
You didn't even really get to feed the monkeys.
6) You never really fed them you just let them grab food from you. Rip it from your hands or body. Steal food from… https://t.co/boChtUc0vV— Vincent D'Onofrio (@Vincent D'Onofrio)1552158484.0
D'Onofrio was clearly not a fan.
7) I will never forget all the different sizes of them swinging in trees. Hiding in the trees. Sticking their faces… https://t.co/TIIoX0T9Ox— Vincent D'Onofrio (@Vincent D'Onofrio)1552158485.0
People would even eat lunch at the facility.
8) The group I was with would want to eat lunch there. "Here?" I would say to myself. "Here?" I would say. Amongst… https://t.co/GMiFdX7PSq— Vincent D'Onofrio (@Vincent D'Onofrio)1552158485.0
I love his description of the monkey faces:
9) All the monkey faces staring and screaming at us. Faces that lthat resembled something between Teddy Rosevelt an… https://t.co/3idmbakmXV— Vincent D'Onofrio (@Vincent D'Onofrio)1552158485.0
And then D'Onofrio talks about the screams.
10) You would of had to hold me down and force food or drink into me if you wanted me to eat in that disgusting hor… https://t.co/wiwO0E83gD— Vincent D'Onofrio (@Vincent D'Onofrio)1552158485.0
In fact, it was anything but.
11) I was to measure screams and the meaning of those screams from now on by the high bar those monkeys set in that… https://t.co/qNJHw8gYuq— Vincent D'Onofrio (@Vincent D'Onofrio)1552158485.0
The screams were constant.
12) As I was being walked out of the establishment I remember all of them screamed constantly non stop.I remember l… https://t.co/3kjugIGb7X— Vincent D'Onofrio (@Vincent D'Onofrio)1552158485.0
Apparently, it's the screams that really stuck with D'Onofrio.
13) everywhere and these screams, these screams from high pitched to guttural loud rolling howls. Feeling this gutt… https://t.co/o1Zlb9wg5I— Vincent D'Onofrio (@Vincent D'Onofrio)1552158485.0
But the harrowing experience wasn't limited to D'Onofrio's childhood years.
14) the unbelievable relief I felt from finally being out of that god forsaken monkey place.I remember it like it w… https://t.co/67qXKvzG44— Vincent D'Onofrio (@Vincent D'Onofrio)1552158486.0
It was early morning.
15) Something I will never https://t.co/GIQf54Aoxc was very early morning and the sun was just settling onto the da… https://t.co/EKPefoaMxi— Vincent D'Onofrio (@Vincent D'Onofrio)1552158486.0
He realized that he needed to stop at an ATM.
16) I was out of cash so I asked him to wait a few as I proceeded to the ATM machine which was in the street. Only… https://t.co/quIwjgXwk2— Vincent D'Onofrio (@Vincent D'Onofrio)1552158486.0
Suddenly, he felt a tug on his belt.
17) As I received my cash from the machines slot. I felt a tug on my belt from behind. A uninvited tug on my body.… https://t.co/qvdu3NtFvT— Vincent D'Onofrio (@Vincent D'Onofrio)1552158486.0
18) And as I turned I see a two foot monkey with that face. The face of Mo from the three stooges sliding with a sc… https://t.co/wH7q5aNnkp— Vincent D'Onofrio (@Vincent D'Onofrio)1552158486.0
D'Onofrio was instantly transported back to his childhood experiences at the Monkey Jungle.
19) sticking its stomach out at me and screaming with its mouth wide open. This scream and the horrid event as a wh… https://t.co/ruJnCmX2z9— Vincent D'Onofrio (@Vincent D'Onofrio)1552158486.0
D'Onofrio was (obviously) pretty shaken by the experience.
20) with the driver laughing at what had just happened and most likely the look on my face and the loss of color in… https://t.co/SieqmxLT5T— Vincent D'Onofrio (@Vincent D'Onofrio)1552158486.0
Even being safely in the car did nothing to allay D'Onofrio's monkey fears.
21) one block, two blocks and three behind us now I could still here this monkey. Screaming and the vision of monke… https://t.co/Yzoo9uDjoV— Vincent D'Onofrio (@Vincent D'Onofrio)1552158487.0
And that's the story of why Vincent D'Onofrio is really, really afraid of monkeys.
22) Every once and a while I tell this story when the subject of monkeys come up. And i always start the story with… https://t.co/7wQC0CSMpJ— Vincent D'Onofrio (@Vincent D'Onofrio)1552158487.0
D'Onofrio's Twitter thread quickly went viral. People soon began sharing their own experiences with monkeys.
@vincentdonofrio As a twentysomething I lived briefly in Gibraltar while working on a boat there and quickly found… https://t.co/NZcyPM8vJd— Brooke Binkowski (@Brooke Binkowski)1552200260.0
She had big plans of feeding them...
@vincentdonofrio Instead, I hiked up there with a bag and these evil little bastards surrounded me, one leapt at my… https://t.co/ur59tWuWAT— Brooke Binkowski (@Brooke Binkowski)1552200450.0
Apparently, she was not alone in her endeavor to befriend the apes.
@vincentdonofrio every year some idiot tourist does exactly what I did and gets bitten, so I kind of lucked out the… https://t.co/OsVMpnn3lv— Brooke Binkowski (@Brooke Binkowski)1552200529.0
Other Floridians also commented on D'Onofrio's thread sharing their own experiences of the Monkey Jungle.
@vincentdonofrio Monkey Jungle in South Miami Dade county. It was a horrible place! School field trips were a night… https://t.co/aeBrJ4MT5z— Lisa Rozwenc-cohen (@Lisa Rozwenc-cohen)1552173806.0
As it turns out, D'Onofrio is not the only person to have been traumatized by Monkey Jungle.This story is actually even more horrifying that D'Onofrio's ATM experience. I applaud this person for not holding a grudge against the monkey that grabbed them.
Apparently, there was also a Parrot Jungle nearby.
@vincentdonofrio also the "Parrot Jungle" in Miami where they'd take a pic of you with a parrot on each shoulder. O… https://t.co/NvNDjrPj6K— Michael Roston (@Michael Roston)1552176767.0
If you take nothing else from this story, I hope you at least now have a deeper fear of monkeys.
@vincentdonofrio I had a friend who had a bald spot from a monkey in a Manhattan pet store in the 70s that decided… https://t.co/rJHc1BCImU— cassie j. sneider (@cassie j. sneider)1552189171.0
Above all, you can at least enjoy the hilarious thread.
@vincentdonofrio I have never laughed as hard on this website as I just did reading this thread. Tears running down… https://t.co/iQr59Wp3U5— David Ervin (@David Ervin)1552241867.0