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Monday, August 1, 2011

Encyclopedia of Moi: K

Koko the gorilla:  Years ago I read the book “The Education of Koko” and it sat me on my heels.  Everything I thought I knew about the great apes evaporated.  If you’ve never heard of Koko, she is a lowlands gorilla who has been taught American Sign Language by researchers at the Gorilla Language Project.  They started working with her as a one year old and now almost 40 years later Koko has a working vocabulary of about 1000 words and understands over 2000 English words.  Because of her ability to communicate they have been able to test her intelligence… and she scores between 70 – 95 points.  100 points is considered “normal” for a human…  She can relate events that have happened, make requests, insult you and tell jokes.  And lest you think it was a fluke, the GLP raised a male gorilla with Koko.  Michael had a vocabulary of about 600 words and could relate the same as Koko.  

Kenya:  It has always been a place in my heart.  As a child, the wildlife fascinated me.  As I grew older, I became interested in the Maasai culture.  I have been to Kenya for a month touring the SW areas of the country.  I sponsor 2 Maasai children thru Compassion International ( ), 4 children who live in the slums of Nairobi thru ( ), and one not-so-little-anymore elephant thru ( ).   

Kiwi fruit:  These have been one of my favorite fruit for a long time.  How long?  I can remember when they used to sell at 10 for $1.00!  

Key Lime Pie:  Another fruit I enjoy, this time made into a pie!  I like the creamy style.  Mmmmmm!  Sis made a great one the other day for Mom’s birthday celebration.

Knives:  By now you know one of my pleasures in life is cooking.  And I enjoy using good quality tools when I do.  I have been replacing my old knife set with knives from the Culinary Institute of America.  So far I have an 8” chef’s knife, a 7” santoku knife, and a 6” boning knife.  They are fantastic!  I can hold a 3 inch thick chuck roast in the air and slice all the way thru it with my chef’s knife.  

Kittens:  I used to raise and show CFA Ocicats.  Got out of it for several reasons and am very happy with that decision.  However, there is one thing I miss.  The kittens.  From tiny little 2 day olds up to rambunctious 3 month olds (when most would head to their new homes), they were always so much fun.  Someday we will foster pregnant cats from the local no-kill shelter and keep them until their kits are ready to be placed.

Kudzu:  Yes, I well know that kudzu is “the vine that ate the South”… but did you know that its flowers smell like grape bubblegum and that it can be used to make a delicate jelly?  Goats like it too!  

Knit/Knitting:  I have a thing about yarn and anything made from it.  Especially knit sweaters, gloves and socks.  One of my “50 Before 50” projects is to learn to knit.  I’m working on it and can make a lovely chain…

Kimono:  I think kimonos incredibly beautiful and if I ever have the privilege to visit Japan, I plan on buying one to hang on the wall as an art object.  

Kites:  I used to have a stunt kite and had a blast with it!  One of these days I will get another as I now have a nearby place I can fly it.  I wouldn’t mind having a few other too like a fancy box kite, a long (at least 25’) dragon kite, and a phoenix kite.

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