Ruby Gamble asks:
“International Monk” caught my eye. Whose heart and creative hands built you and where? And who is Giantmonk?
Giantmonk is me. Monk(monkey) Giant (I am a large monkey). Giant. Monk, cuddling chum extraordinaire. I am more than a mere few thousand knitted stitches and a curiously floppy arm alongside three more substantial limbs, I am best friend and confident to Mimi of Eskimimi Makes and Russell of Find It Cheapest.
I found my way into their lives when I found out that Mimi was in need of someone just like me. You see, there was once another Giantmonk, who we now call ‘Cousin Giantmonk’ who lived with Mimi and helped her through difficult and sad times. He was a handsome chap, as you can see from the picture below.
But a few years ago, Mimi had to leave Giantmonk behind and say goodbye to him forever. Mimi found this very difficult, and a year later she still missed the heavy knitted cuddles that she had, though she wasn’t sad any more – she wanted someone to share happy cuddles with. So Russell sent out a long search to try to find someone who could give cuddles as good as Cousin Giantmonk, and after a couple of interviews and a rather gruelling obstacle course, it was decided that I was the monkey for the job. The first thing I did when I arrived with my tiny suitcase was to request my uniform fitting. I had seen the lovely tank top that Cousin Giantmonk sported in the photos I had seen and had assumed that I would be required to wear one of my own. Mimi laughed and said it wasn’t mandatory, but I wanted one! So we picked out a few colours, and soon enough I had my own tank top.
And that’s how I came to stay.
You also asked by who’s fair hand I was made, and the truth of it is, I do not know. I have a tag on my shapely bottom that says something about Basildon, Essex, UK, but I think I came from a big room full of like-shaped cousins… my memory on this is really fuzzy.
To ask Giantmonk a question of your own, on any subject under the sun, from Japanese kissing fish to bubble bath choices, visit the Ask Giantmonk page.
I am often asked by people who I meet how it is that I best deal with what they call ‘media intrusion’ and the terrible ways of the paparazzi.
The truth is, I have just learned that if I smile, treat people kindly, and try to do good things, I have nothing to be ashamed of when the coverage does make it’s way into the daily papers. So the media occasionally get a snap of me sharing a bad of jellybeans with someone who needs cheering up, or making a nice pot of tea whilst I sit down and have a chat with an old dear at a cafe, but never has a picture ever appeared of me kicking a puddle over a small child, or scribbling an unfair slogan on a wall whilst clutching a box of crayons.
There is only one thing that has bothered me over the years in regard to the paparazzi and general media, however, and this is the obsession with catching pictures of me whilst I shower or bathe.
I remember clearly the very first time that I heard that whirring sound whilst I shampooed my head. I thought that the water heater was about to give in until the sound hit home as something that I heard many times before. I slowly drew back the shower curtain to confirm my suspicions as the sound of the rapid-burst mode of a long range camera lens came into view, trying to grab a few grainy frames of me showering.
Yet another time I was laying in the bath, trying to soak away the pressures of a long day in my hotel suite after the Jellybean Ambassador Of The Year awards in London’s West End, when as I gazed up through the glass exiling of the penthouse suite at the stars that flickered gently overhead, the balding head of a particularly mean-looking photographer came into view, the quick succession of flashgun bursts temporarily blinding me and causing those peaceful celestial companions to disappear from sight.
The thing that bothers me about all this is that I’m pretty much always unclothed, so it just doesn’t make any sense.
I know that many people visiting this site will have a fair idea of what this international monkey of mystery is all about, and that is exactly why you are here – to catch up on the adventures and non-stop whirlwind of an existence that your intrepid monkey-about-town leads, but there may be a few visitors who stumble across this site through some other path, and if you are one of those readers then I am sure that you’ll want to know a little about me.
Perhaps you have been merrily clicking around the internet and have followed a link on Life Magazine’s list of the 100 most influential figures of 2013, or have followed an outgoing link from a post on the Guardian website that has been written about one of my many adventures. It may even be that you have been using Google to research your fondness for particularly large men who live in Franciscan Monasteries – it is not for me to judge or question, the important thing is that you are here now, and hopefully to stay.
So, if you want to know a little about me, may I first direct you to a little article that was written about the first day that I sprang fully-formed into this world. I wasn’t really sure what was going on at the time, and had to keep telling myself to just keep smiling and hopefully these weird people would treat me well. As it happens I became chief cuddle-lump and jelly bean tester within a few hours, and now I am so very important that I have my own website.
But this is only the mere surface of what this Giantmonk has to offer the world and it’s extremely intelligent (and may I say very good looking) readers. Scratch a bit further by hovering your finger over this link to probe deep within my psyche with this amazing opportunity to ask me any question that may pop into that vast and wonderful mind of yours.