Home > Fiction, Uncategorized > July 18, 1992

July 18, 1992

            So today is the Bear’s birthday. Suddenly, he’s 19—oh, my God! Old, old, old. I’m so old. Le sigh!

            But for those who don’t know, this is how the Bear came to live with us:

            On this exact day 19 years ago, I demanded turkey of my parents. Unfortunately, they don’t really stock turkeys at Safeway in July, since it’s more of a winter food, so we were kind of SOL.

            It wasn’t long before Sven joined me in my cacophony of whining, and, seriously, two whining, farting, crying kids screaming for turkey is enough to drive anyone to extremes. Trust me, I work across from the Disney Store. I know about this shit.

          So my dad grabbed his shotgun, my mom pulled on her fowl killing smock, and the two set off for the woods.  Naturally, they got lost and ended up in Canada, or something like that.

          Dehydrated and despairing, my dad sat down on a log and said, “Laura, did you pack the compass?”

          “No, Wade,” she said. “I forgot it while I was pulling on my fowl killing smock. But, wait! Look at the way the moss is growing on the trees!”

          An old oak tree grew at the edge of the clearing where they sat, and the two got up to examine the generally moss-less tree, each circling the tree in opposite directions. So focused on examining the moss (or lack thereof) were they, that when they reached the opposite side of the tree, they crashed into each other and went rolling down a hill.

          Parents. Sigh!

          Fortunately, being that they’d already raised two hoodlums, they knew the concept of “tuck and roll,” so they weren’t terribly hurt by their tumble.

          “Wade,” my mom groaned.

          “Gah! Yes?”

          “I broke my everything!”

          “No, you broke my everything! And we’ve probably scared off all the turkeys. Way to go. Now what are we going to feed our terrible children?” he asked as he brushed bramble from his coat and trousers.

          My dad continued to grumble incoherently when suddenly my mom screamed, “Wade! It’s a bear!”

          Across the clearing, the Bear came bumbling along, humming to himself. He had a bee hive in one paw, and the other was buried up to his elbow inside it.

          “Dum, de, dum, dum, dah, dum, dum,” he sang. “I have some honey for my tum!”

          My parents froze in place. Surely this bear cub had a mother somewhere about, which meant terrible trouble for the two of them. Not only would they NOT catch a turkey, they’d also probably get mauled by an angry she-bear!

          “Shit!” my dad swore.

          “Hell’s bells!” my mother added.

          “Take that, you silly bees! All your honey is for me, me, meeeeee!” sang the Bear cheerfully. He sat down in the grass and began to carefully tear the hive open, swatting at any remaining bees as they escaped.

          “Laura, he talks,” my dad gasped.

          “Are you thinking what I’m thinking?”

          “That we should start a circus with him as the main attraction?”

          My mother scowled at my father. “No! Good heavens, Wade!”

          “Well, what then?”

          “He’s clearly no ordinary bear! Let’s talk to him.”

          So the two parentals cautiously approached the baby bear, who, at this point, had his entire head in the bee hive.

          “Excuse me, Bear,” my mother tentatively said.

          The baby bear abruptly stopped slurping up the honey and gazed at the two of them over the rim of the hive. “Yes?” he asked.

          “I, um….” My dad trailed off.

          “Want some honey? I gots lots and lots!” He grinned as he spoke.

          Fact: grinning bears look an awful lot like angry bears. I suppose Bear would have looked terrifying had he not been so adorable and generally covered in honey. Further fact: Bear doesn’t like sticky things. He was actually quoted as once shrieking, “Why would anyone want to be that sticky?!”

          I’m still not entirely sure how it got settled—one of the mysteries of life that goes along with being a six year old, I guess—but they ended up bringing Bear back to the house that evening. I gotta say, it was pretty lucky that my parents found Bear when they did. He’s basically been the light in our lives ever since.

          And as for Sven’s and my insatiable hunger for turkey? We learned to love wild honey instead.

Categories: Fiction, Uncategorized
  1. July 18, 2011 at 11:06 pm

    This is the most brilliant, entirely true post I’ve ever read. Every word is accurate and exactly as it happened.

  2. Sarah
    July 19, 2011 at 9:20 am

    Brilliant story, Kari! Love the photo!

    Hugs and kisses from The Dekkers

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