Skeptics say it is mostly a lot of monkey shines
Laura, the teacher, and her young pupil are romping playfully on the lawn in front of their classroom:
Pupil (rolling on ground): You tickle me.
Pupil (pointing to leg): Here.
Laura (after tickling him): Now you tickle me.
Pupil (tickling her): Me tickle Laura.
This dialogue between Laura and her charge might not seem unusual, except for one thing: the pupil was not a human child but a young chimpanzee named Nim. Like several others of his primate kin, Nim had been taught to communicate...