Why Won’t Zoos Let You Ride Animals Like In ‘Donkey Kong Country’?

November 12, 2019 by , featured in Video Games
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Here’s something I don’t understand: Why can’t I, as a tax-paying, God-fearing American citizen, go into a zoo and ride the animals like in Donkey Kong Country?

There’s No Reason

I’ve run the numbers, and there are no downsides to allowing me to do so. I know how to ride animals, having steered Rambi the Rhino, Expresso the Ostrich, and Enguarde the Swordfish through countless challenges. I also think the animals would like it. I mean, the animals are just there, not being ridden.

Why do we hate billionaires for stashing away millions of dollars that could be put to such great use but not zookeepers for not letting us ride the animals like in Donkey Kong Country? If I were allowed to ride the animals at the zoo, I would use them to break down walls into bonus areas and defeat larger enemies, including the manager from GameStop and my big, wily grandpa.

Believe Me, It’d Be Sweet

If you think I’m just setting myself up for disappointment, that riding the animals like in Donkey Kong Country wouldn’t live up to the fantasies, you’re wrong. One day, I disguised myself as the animal doctor and snuck into the zoo to see the rhino I had told them was sick. The fool zookeepers let me in, and I hopped on the back of that rhino like I was Diddy Kong. With earbuds in and playing “Mine Cart Carnage” from the original game’s soundtrack, I rode that noble beast around for 10, maybe 15 seconds. When he finally bucked me off and trampled me nearly to death, I had no thought running through my mind besides, “This was worth it.”

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Is that it? Are zoos worried I might get hurt riding their animals? If that is the case, I would prefer to not be mollycoddled in such ways. Yes, I could steer my charging rhino into an exploding tiki statue, let my ostrich fall off a tall cliff, or be eaten by a spider that shoots webs that are also platforms, but I’d rather die riding an animal like in Donkey Kong Country than live one more day under the thumb of my big, wily grandpa and without the refuge of my favorite GameStop. I think they banned me.

Images: Unsplash, Nintendo


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