King of the Jungle

My Dad, Fred Bentivegna, always enjoyed talking about Bushman, Lincoln Park Zoo's famous gorilla from the first half of the twentieth century. I know he liked him because he was a King of the Jungle, a serious bad ass not to be messed with. Whatever or whomever was the strongest and the smartest on earth was who my father aspired to be and used as mentors whether it was a Navy Seal or a mongoose outwitting a king cobra. He always thought "the best" could be proven with reason... and trumped color, sex, religion and politics. Perhaps this life code is why he was the most hated man on his highschool debate team because he could never be beat when it came to reason. People the world over sought his company exactly for his reasoning. He was so progressive and open in his thinking he thought the rest of the world would never catch up. He believed his life was a quest for knowledge, power and excellence. He especially loved the outcasts who turned out to be smarter than everyone else and he was drawn to them as well, like top notch code cracker Alan Turing. "You must respect and learn from those who are the greatest at what they do. They deserve to be worshipped." - Freddy the Beard, the man who I worship, the "Bushman" of the pool room and life XXOO

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