Meet the Chimps

Once a year, several of the regular poker crowd at Prentice Hall would rent a house at Cape Cod for a week of drinking, card playing, and general debauchery. It was known affectionately as “Immaturity Week.” Oh, and there were no women allowed.

So one year, I get a phone call on a Friday at lunchtime from my friend Joe. “You need to come on up here,” he says.

Now it’s a six hour drive or so, and I’m married and in the middle of working, and this was out of the blue.

So, after checking with Mary, my response is: “How do I get there?”

I finished up my workday, grabbed something quick for dinner, packed, and hit the road. I arrived at the cabin at the stroke of midnight, and of course found the beer already flowing and the poker was already playing.

We had a fun time that week, hanging out and doing all sorts of stuff. In fact, Paul would comment that we’d completely devolved from humans into chimps. And our humor and behavior was quite chimp-like.

At one point, after my requisite imitation of the Monty Python character Mr Creosote got better than usual laughs, we halted our game at 3am to run to an all-night video store to rent The Meaning Of Life, so we could fast forward to that one scene. We had a great laugh, then hopped back in the car and returned it.

It’s what chimps do.

Another funny moment came at the end of the week, when the owner of the cabin dropped by to say hi (and, I supposed, make sure the chimps weren’t decorating the wall with thrown poop.) We chatted a bit, and then he mentioned how he stopped burning Duraflame logs in the fireplace because they had too much creosote. Several of us had to turn away to keep from laughing in his face.

I do believe that was the final Immaturity Week, because some of the wives/girlfriends had finally started questioning why they were excluded. Some of the chimps rented the place for a second week and invited the wives/girlfriends, and Maturity Week was launched without me.

It’s been years since Cape Cod, and since I’ve seen any of the poker guys. But the Chimp in me still lives on.

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