bear-blog

I wrote a story :3

The massive 800 pound bear stood there rearing back; its dark chocolate eyes staring upon Ursula questioning her presence in the forest he called home.  The girl warrior like in her stance, reached a hand out to the beautiful creature that stood before her. This was her dream, she had trekked through these woods day after day following the beast. The environment was treacherous, cold and unforgiving though she would not give up. She needed to prove he was not the beast everyone feared. He never noticed her until today, it was a lucky day for young Ursula.  She knew that he would not harm her, it was not his intent, and he would have already if that was his plan. This lumbering beast was not accustomed to humans and Ursula was no threat to the bear, though he began a low moan as a mild warning to the weird creature standing before him. Mok was not threatening Ursula too much, so she did not run she waited. She had been this patient she could wait longer. Ursula had chosen a name while following the bear, Mok, meaning spirit and soul. Ursula felt this name was perfect for the beautiful creature. Suddenly the bear plopped to ground, the trees rattling around from the impact. He began to lumber towards Ursula, she still was not frightened. She stood her ground hoping, praying that she could just run her hands through the thick, golden fur. She waited, Mok had his own terms, and this was his play-field, she needed his trust. Mok suddenly charged at her, Ursula tried to imitate the humming sounds cubs make to seem less threatening. The ground continued to shake and he ran towards her, and halted not two inches from her face. Mok huffed a few times blowing hot rancid breath in her face, she lowered the spear she held in her hand and wiped the saliva from her face. He sniffed around her long hair and Ursula did not dare move a muscle. The beast nudged at her body pushing her back into the snow bank behind her. He sniffed at her a few more times and decided she was no threat, and sat back on his haunches. Ursula slowly, almost barely moving let her hand settle upon the magnificent creature’s large nose. Her hand ran the length of his nose and Mok the grizzly, seemed to sigh with contentment. 

Am I too much bear?

Am I too much bear? Does my bearness have a maximum capacity that I sometimes overflow with fuzziness and sniffing dirt and eating acorns and rolling in grass (you know, bear things)? It is hard to say. I often feel that I am exactly the right amount of bear. While my weight seems to fluctuate according to sticks I like to step on, perhaps measurements of bearness cannot be collected in common physical data. Maybe bearness is something intangible. A feeling you can’t put your paw on.

I took to surveying some fellow forest dwellers to get their input on my bearness. The results were mixed, as one would expect.

Badger:

‘Q’

‘You are a bear…I suppose a bear of an acceptable size. Does that answer your question? No? Then I don’t know what to tell you. I’m going back to digging. Sorry I couldn’t help.’

Rob (the squirrel):

‘Q’

Rob (the squirrel) replied with that strange barking sounds squirrels make and scurrying up a tree. Then he threw an acorn at me, but I dodged it. This seemed to frustrate him so he ran away. I am still trying to interpret this answer.

Rabbit:

‘Q’

‘If I tell you, I will need a favor in return. You have to promise. I’ll give you all the info you want regarding your own bearness, but there is something you much help me with. Agreed? Good. Shake on it…’

Apparently my bearness was too much for the rabbit. He stopped talking (and moving) after our pawshake. I even waited for a long time for him to say or do anything again. Nothing. I suppose I bored him.

Another Rabbit:

‘Q’

‘I’d love to answer your existential question but I’m in quite some rush. A friend, and I use the term “friend” loosely, stole a rather impressive gathering of apples I had amassed in my burrow and hid them from me.’

‘Q’

‘Sure I can tell you what he looked like. He looked like me. Long ears, furry tail, etc. Seen him? No? Okay, well if you do, you come find me. Thanks.’

Opossum:

‘Q’

‘Hhhhhhhheeeeeeeeeccccccccccccccc  Hisssssssssssss Rrrrrrgrgrrgrgrgrg Heeeeeeeeececeecec.’

I probably should not have asked my question while the opossum was in a dumpster.

Raccoon:

‘Q’

‘Hhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhaaaaaaaaaaaarrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr’

I probably should not have asked my question while the raccoon was in a dumpster.

Dumpster:

‘Q’

Unfortunately, the dumpster did not have a verbal or physical response. It was actually a nice change of pace compared to the hissing.

The sky:

‘Q’

‘Am I too much bear bear ear r r r’

The sky, too, did not have an understandable response, but I did hear my echo in the vastness of its everything above. As my words bounced off the sky and spread as far my ears could hear, all throughout the forest, I realized that the degree of my bearness is actually irrelevant compared to just about everything else in the forest. This is why I received few revealing responses. Nobody is worried about me being a bear or how much of a bear I am. Only I am worried about such things. Only I care about my bearness. It is a little sad to realize how small I am even when compared to the daily thoughts and opinions of (physically much smaller) woodland creatures. I suppose my self-important questioning deserved the hisses it mostly received. I want my being a bear to mean something, to be important on some grand forest scale, but it just is not.

It is a relief, too, though. There is no huge role to fulfill or some grand journey to pursue. I am just a bear. There is not much more to the idea than that.

I am a bear.

If you would like to try being a bear, why not read some of the bear adventures available on this very site?

For any questions or comments directed at Bear, feel free to write to him using this email: justasinglebear@gmail.com

Birds as hats: a failed experiment.

I do not generally wear hats for one very important reason: I am a bear, and I do not know if bears are supposed to wear hats.

That does not mean I have never tried to wear a hat. I once found a very lovely hat in an abandoned tent. It was red and soft, but I did not know what to do with it at first. I ate it, which, as it turns out, is not what you are supposed to do with hats.

Rob (the squirrel) later explained to me that hats are what humans wear on their heads because they do not have enough fur to keep warm all of the time like most forest animals. He laughed at me for eating it and called me a fool.

It was not nice, but I appreciated the information. I vowed that if I ever found a hat again, I would try to wear on my head so I could have a human experience.

When I finally found a hat again, it was in a dumpster and it was plastic. I put the hat on my head, but it did little in keeping me warm or being comfortable or not making it hard to get air into my body. From then on, I merely assumed hats were not for bears. It made sense, after all, as I already had enough fur on my head to keep me warm.

After living and accepting my hatless existence for a very long time, I eventually began to wonder if maybe my hat experience was just a bad hat experience. Should I give hat wearing another try? Even if my head is already warm, would it not be nice for it to be even warmer? Maybe the plastic hat I found was not actually a hat and was more of a bag, actually, in retrospect, I am pretty sure that was the case?

I wanted a warm head like humans must get to experience on a daily basis (I imagine all humans wear hats all the time (why would you not want a warm head forever?)).

The chances of me finding another hat were slim, unfortunately. So I had to consider alternatives to hats.

I tried rocks, but they were far too hard and difficult to balance on my head. They also scratched my scalp a little too much.

The hat of leaves I made was nice, but it fell apart as soon as it rained, and it had far too many bugs in it for it to be comfortable while I was sleeping.

I tried accepting the cave above my head as a kind of hat, but since it did not actually touch my head, I had a hard time justifying that theory.

That is when I got an idea: why not put something I know is warm on my head? Most forest creatures are warm, so why not see if one could be my hat?

The idea was almost forgotten as soon as I remembered the time I let a opossum sleep on my head one cold, winter day. I woke up with very angry wounds near my eyes.

What kind of animal was warm enough to be a hat and docile enough to want to be a hat?

For some reason, my thoughts went straight to birds. Birds like to be perched in things, and why would you choose to perch in a tree when you could perch in warm bear fur?

I asked a bird who liked to make sounds outside of my cave every morning if it would be interested in nesting in my head fur, effectively becoming my hat. The bird agreed.

It was pleasant at first. The bird built a nest of sticks in my fur and made a cozy little home. It was sometimes difficult to keep on my head, but I managed to keep it secure while I walked around the forest.

The real problems began when the bird would fly away to do bird things, and I would end up just balancing some sticks on my head until the bird was back. And though it was nice when the eggs hatched, I knew this relationship could not last long.

I told the bird it could not longer be my hat. It was difficult to break the news to her, but she took it well and even let me keep the nest she had built (I did not actually want it, but I kept it to be nice).

Hats are not for me. People hats. Bird hats. Plastic bag hats. I am not meant to wear hats. I have to accept the furriness and warmth of my head as it is and move on.

Thank you, though, bird.

I am a bear.

For any questions or comments directed at Bear, feel free to write to him using this email: justasinglebear@gmail.com

You can also now use Tumblr to address questions to Bear. Also, you can find bear photos and such on Bear’s Instagram, and don’t forget to “like” Bear on the book of faces.

hey robert you know what every damn time we play ring around the rosie you tell us about the bubonic plague and terrance and i are seriously going to kick you out of our family if you can’t get your head out of your ass for like 30 seconds we are children we do not give a single fuck about that shit

I wish bad things did not happen.

I had a collection of sticks.

It was a lovely collection. It contained sticks that were long, sticks that were short, sticks that were pointy, sticks that split off into some sort of double stick thing, sticks that had been broken into more sticks, and even a few items that were not sticks but I felt deserved to be in the collection (dirt, a plastic bottle I found, some acorns, etc.).

I kept the collection near my cave and added to it frequently. The collection was growing quite large, and I loved seeing it grow. I was very proud of my collection of sticks (and stick related items), and just knowing that it was there, ever being a lovely collection of sticks (and stick related items), was comforting to me.

Recently, however, it was damaged. I do not know by whom or why, but someone or something ravaged my collection of sticks (and stick related items). I approached my sacred pride early one morning to find it strewn throughout the forest, massive chunks of the once amazing assortment scattered and broken and lost and gone forever.

I was heartbroken.

Why would someone do this? What had the collection of sticks (and stick related items) done to anyone? I tried to follow the path of chaos that had been left by the destroyer, but it was fruitless. Even pursuing the idea did little to make me feel any better about having lost the sticks in the first place. I just wanted my sticks (and stick related items).

I growled for awhile. At nothing, really. I wanted to be angry at what happened, and I wanted that anger directed at someone I could blame. But the loud roars I produced also failed to make feel any better about my lost stick (and stick related items) collection.

I felt lost and helpless. I considered: Why have a stick (and stick related items) collection to begin with if someone or something can just completely destroy it on a whim and with reckless, hostile force? Why bother collecting anything that could be so quickly smothered out of existence without notice?

I sulked for awhile, sitting next to my fractured stick (and stick related items) collection.

Then I collected the sad remnants of my sticks. I picked up the ones I could find with gritted teeth.

I piled everything back the way I remembered it was, as best I could.

It was a slightly smaller collection of sticks (and stick related items) now, but it was still my collection of sticks (and stick related items).

I do not know why my collection of sticks (and stick related items) was attacked. I wish it had not been. I wish my collection had been allowed to just be a collection of sticks (and stick related items) forever, never losing sticks or getting tossed around or being destroyed.

I wish that had not happened, but it did. I still have my collection of sticks (and stick related items), though. And I will keep adding to it like I have been. Maybe, one day, it will be just like it was before.

I am a bear.

I got stuck in a hollow log for awhile.

It smelled good.

That was the original reason I had for poking my head into the hollow log I found in the forest, a little ways away from the river and across from the very interesting looking pile of rocks.

Moss?

Mold?

Some kind of mushroom?

A mouse carcass?

I had no idea what I was smelling, but I knew that it was a lovely smell that I wanted to investigate.

So I did.

When my snout scooted into the log, I felt the waft of the smell hit my face. It was delightful, so I continued to squeeze every part of me I could fit into the hollow log. It took quite some time to get inside, but after some honest labor, I got into the log.

I spent a long time sniffing the log. Enjoying the smells. Licking the old mold I was sitting in. It was a lovely time, but I knew I would eventually have to go.

So I tried to leave.

But I was unable to.

I struggled as I thrashed my limbs and wiggled my belly. I kept trying to slide my way through the hollow log, but I was stuck.

And then I got scared.

What if I got stuck here forever?

And then I took a nap.

I decided that being asleep would be easier than facing any difficult question that would only worry me more than solve the problem, so I napped. It was a nice nap, and I figured by the time I woke up, the log problem would have fixed itself.

I was wrong.

I woke up to find that I was still very much stuck in the hollow log, and, though it still smelled lovely, the mixture of mold and moss and rain water was beginning to not feel great on my belly fur.

I thrashed some more, and I could not get out.

I was stuck, and no amount of napping was going to change that.

For awhile, I passed the time by staring at the inside of the log. It had some neat looking cracks and lines and little bugs crawling in and out, but I eventually got bored of that scene, so I stared at the ground for awhile. Again, neat looking in its texture and bugs and the water tasted fantastic, but I got bored.

I was alone with my thoughts. And those thoughts focused on the idea of me never getting out of that log. I considered the possibilities of this existence. I would have to live off of bugs and mold (which is okay), and I would never see so many important things ever again (dumpsters, light poles, other logs, etc.). Perhaps I would become known around the forest as the log-bear, the bear who never leaves his log because he cannot. It was an interesting idea, but, ultimately, it just made me sad.

When my thoughts wandered from the thought of never leaving the log (my likely future), I started to think about my past, particularly all of the mistakes that had led me to this fate. Why would I be so ready to wander into this log? Why would I succumb to the desire to find whatever was in the log? Did I deserve this?

Why was it too late to make any of this right?

I let out a small growl/howl sound. It was a sound of frustration and anger and regret. And then the log broke. It shattered into a million wooden shards.

I was free, and I should have taken that moment to be thankful for my lucky turn of events or to at least meditate on how I could have avoided this situation.

Instead, I ran.

I ran to my cave and napped again.

I am a bear.

If you would like to try being a bear, why not read some of the bear adventures available on another site?

For any questions or comments directed at Bear, feel free to write to him using this email: justasinglebear@gmail.com

You can also now use Tumblr to address questions to Bear.

Some things smell worse than other things (deer).

Smells are curious things. They fill the forest (and my nose) with either tantalizing or intriguing aromas for what often seems like unknown reasons. In some cases, smells have a very clear-cut origin. If the wind brings me a whiff of burnt meat, I know that humans are cooking some sort of tubular snack on one of those fire spewing tiny dumpsters at the nearby park (those dumpsters are terrifying, by the way).

If I am walking through the forest (presumably looking for berries/acorns/old dirt to eat) and a particularly stinging stench coils up in my nostrils, I know that a skunk (or skunks) have found my presence offensive and have taken it upon themselves to let me and every other forest creature in the immediate area aware of their unhappiness. It makes me wonder what smells I make when I am upset.

But other smells are far more mysterious. At times, smell behavior can be very disorienting and, dare I say it, sinister (and yes, I realize that the aforementioned skunk smell may be considered quite diabolical, but it isn’t; that is simply one forest creature doing what it can do to better its own unique characteristics…or something to that affect…what I am trying to convey is that skunks are nice and my nose forgives them).

At this point, it has been well-documented that my relationship with the deer across the river is a strenuous one, but do not use the following example with any sort of bias: the deer stinks.

It knows it. I know it. It knows that I know it. And it knows that it bothers me.

The smell that permeates from the deer across the river is almost indescribable, but I will do my best to properly illustrate its horror:

If you were to imagine the smell of old fish that had been washed up on dry land for several weeks and for some reason a hawk decided to pluck if from the shore and use it to brush his beak after eating a rodent carcass and then drop that fish/rodent carcass hybrid into the opening of a rotten log that would later be rolled back into the same body of water from where the fish came and that fish was then eaten by a turtle that would later try to cross the flat black rock nearby only to be tragically hit and killed by shiny beasts who live on the flat black rock and left to bake on the black rock for several days before being collected by a human in a jumpsuit and taken to a place where humans in jumpsuits collect dead animals for some strange reason and then tossed into a vat filled with other dead animals (and cheese and rotten potatoes for some other strange reason), the stench of that culminate would be vaguely in the realm of how the deer across the river smells.

And the deer loves that it smells this way. Anytime I drink from the river the deer is sure to let me get a whiff. It stands ever so that the wind picks up the odor and delivers it directly to my nose (as much as I love the omnipresent wind, I often wonder if it conspires against me from time to time, corroborating with nefarious smells or perhaps even the deer). I do not know why the deer smells this way. I understand skunks and grilled meat snacks, but I do not understand how the deer can stand to be so smelly.

It makes me wonder if I also emit an offensive odor. If the deer has somehow gotten used to its own disgusting smell, perhaps I have gotten use to whatever smell I am putting out in the world.

If that were the case, however, someone would have told me by now. I have never been told I smell bad (the skunks would definitely tell me if they thought I was offensive to their what must be their delicate noses).

But the deer doesn’t seem to have any friends to tell him he smells.

There is a good reason for this. Perhaps he smells so horrendous because he has no friends. Or vice versa.

I am not going to tell him. He knows why. One day he will atone for the things he has done. And I will accept his strange smelling atonement. But until that day, the deer across the river will be alone in his smell.

I am a bear.

If you would like to try being a bear, why not read some of the bear adventures available on this very site?

For any questions or comments directed at Bear, feel free to write to him using this email: justasinglebear@gmail.com

You can also now use Tumblr to address questions to Bear

Do trees care about me?

I cannot tell whether or not trees care about me.

I have known about trees practically all of my life, and for as long as I have been aware of them, I have assumed they have had as much care and interest in me as I have had in them. That is why I tell trees my every woe and discontent. That is why I spend so much time staring at trees and waiting for them to speak back. That is why I have been so patient with trees even when they do things like almost fall on me or not support my weight on their limbs or provide shade for hostile creatures like the deer across the river.

I have given trees a lot of my time and energy, and I have always assumed that such time and energy were reciprocated. However, a recent event has made me question the trees’ dedication to me.

I was sitting under a tree, gathering shade and enjoying the scratchiness of its bark, when I noticed something interesting about the tree: it was a home. The tree had a large number of tiny ants climbing in and out of its base through small holes and between scales of bark. It was a fascinating sight, and I spent quite some time just staring at it.

Right in the middle of taking in the majesty of these ants, a limb from the tree fell onto my head.

That is okay. That has happened before. It will happen again. It did, though, make me think: why do the ants get to live here? Ants live in this tree and the tree is perfectly fine with it. Do I get to live in this tree? No. In fact, this tree attacks me when I use it for shade. And every time I have slept in the branches of it, I have fallen out of the tree, finding myself slamming into the forest floor, far below the tree.

During this thought, I considered the ants. Despite being able to live here, I am sure there are some things about this tree the ants do not get to enjoy. What if a limb falls on them? A limb that would leave a bump on my head would completely destroy them.

I do not think that tree (or any tree) hates me or the ants. I think trees might just be indifferent. They provide wonderful shade and lovely homes for some creatures, but they can also crush us and throw us from their tops, and they seem to do this indiscriminately.

I thought trees were there for me. For the ants. For the creatures of the forest. I do not think they are there for themselves, but they are definitely not here for any of us. Maybe trees just are. Trees are just here to be trees, whether that helps or hurts us is more up to us than it is to any tree.

I am a bear.

If you would like to try being a bear, why not read some of the bear adventures available on another site?

For any questions or comments directed at Bear, feel free to write to him using this email: justasinglebear@gmail.com

Here is a list of things to figure out at night.

A list of things to figure out at night:

  • Stars
  • Buzzing sounds
  • Dumpster mysteries
  • Opossum activities
  • Darkness of cave
  • Skinny trees emitting light
  • What crickets are up to
  • Why this skinny tree has some black lines coming from it
  • Maybe climb the skinny tree
  • Why there are so many metal splinters in this skinny tree
  • Where the moon goes
  • Where the sun goes
  • Keep climbing the skinny tree
  • Why nobody really fishes at night
  • Oh, it is hard to see the fish
  • You figured out the last one
  • That was a nice revelation
  • Get to the top of the skinny tree emitting light that has lots of tiny metal splinters on it
  • Why the night air smells better than the day air
  • Why it is not night all the time
  • Why it is not day all the time
  • Can you bite the black lines
  • Are they tree branches
  • Why is the grass wet in the morning
  • Why are you not covered in water in the morning
  • Raccoon activities
  • What tastes best at night
  • Not this black skinny tree limb that you are afraid to bite
  • But then again how would you know
  • Bite it maybe
  • It looks scary
  • Maybe do not bite it
  • Do not bite the skinny black limb of the skinny tree that emits light and has many metal splinters on it
  • Is this where the buzzing sounds are coming from
  • Why it is so easy to lose your balance at night
  • And fall
  • Out
  • of
  • the
  • skinny
  • tree
  • that
  • emits
  • light
  • and
  • has
  • many
  • tiny
  • sharp
  • metal
  • splinters
  • ow
  • Do not try to figure things out at night
  • Just sleep
  • It is not worth the risk

I am a bear.

If you would like to try being a bear, why not read some of the bear adventures available on this very site?

For any questions or comments directed at Bear, feel free to write to him using this email: justasinglebear@gmail.com

Also, why not go see/listen to a song created by Emeric Viani inspired by the things Bear says/thinks:

The potentially wonderful but possibly nonexistent river bear.

The river I go to in the forest is a great mystery. I know a few things about it. It provides delicious water for me to drink. It has lovely, shiny pebbles at the bed of it. The river also delivers fish for me to stare at or eat or consider the lives of. I can swim in the river. I can sit in the river. I stare at what I presume is my face in the river. The deer rests by it, too, which I am not fond of, but I understand why he chooses to do so (beyond to taunt me).

I know these things about the river.

What I do not know, however, is where it comes from or where it ends up. It seems to move forever in both directions, so in the past, I have been far too intimidated to explore the river. Where would I start? Toward where the water goes or toward where it comes from? Do I want to know how it begins or how it ends? Should I just float in it and see where it takes me? Should I trek to the side of it, against where the water flows?

There were too many things to consider, so I never bothered to actually create a plan for exploration until very recently. When I did finally decide to explore, I was set on finding out where the river begins. I made this decision based off a theory I had developed involving a river bear at the mouth of the river. What if there is a bear at the end of the river from whom all the glorious water seeped? Imagine it. A massive bear with its mouth wide open, pouring rushing water to provide for the numerous creatures of the forest who depended on it.

My theory was based completely off a dream I had after taking a nap in a dumpster where I ate three wet pizza boxes, but I felt absolutely compelled to explore it and find out if it could be true. Even if it was not, just knowing what was at the beginning of the river would be satisfying enough to validate the trip.

So I started.

At first, I swam in the river, toward the flowing water. It was difficult but very fun. I also got a lot of water in my mouth and ears and eyes. That was less fun.

The journey continued on land. I stepped out of the river and walked beside the stream of water instead.

It was… boring.

It was very boring.

Before long, the sun had left and the moon had come and I was sleepy.

So I napped.

When I woke up, I was in the river (I am not sure how this happened), and I had floated all the way back to where I had started. I was startled to find the deer across the river staring at me, surely thinking of ways to end my life. I made a growl of discontent and got out of the river. Then, I went home.

In my cave, I napped again. I was hoping to dream about the river bear again, but I did not. Instead, I dreamed about floating down the river forever, enjoying the peace and soothing sounds of the water as I accepted not knowing anything about everything. Also, I am pretty sure the deer was the one who pushed me into the river while I was napping (I have no proof, but I feel this is accurate).

I woke up and ate some moss in my cave.

It was nice, and though I wish I could have met the river bear or at least found out if it existed, I was okay with where I ended up.

I am a bear.

If you would like to try being a bear, why not read some of the bear adventures available on this very site?

For any questions or comments directed at Bear, feel free to write to him using this email: justasinglebear@gmail.com

Sometimes I wonder what is inside of me.

I can hear a lot of commotion in me. Things moving and beating and pumping. I do not know what any of it is or why it is there. I assume it is important, but I have no concrete way of knowing. I remember thinking about these things aloud in front of Rob (the squirrel) one day. I mentioned how I had no idea why my body made so much noise, and I said that I wanted to know what all of it was for. He told me that his body did the same, and that all living bodies do the same. Then he related a grotesque story to me about a time he slept next to an old, tired raccoon one winter night because it was warm. It was not warm the next day, and all the sounds and movement associated with being alive had ceased to be in the raccoon.

I asked Rob (the squirrel) why he had slept next to a raccoon in the first place. Was it justbecause of its warmth? His response was tossing an acorn at my nose and running.

His strange (but admittedly interesting) story did give me some insight as to why all this noise is inside me and all living things, evidently. Being alive meant noise. Having noise and motion and grumbles and tumbles inside of you meant you were alive.

But what is in there? I know whatever it is, it moves, but what is it? I have thought about this question for quite some time, and I have a few (completely unverified) theories.

One idea I have had is that everything in me (and presumably you as well) is just another smaller version of me. Perhaps there is a tiny me inside of me trying to understand what all the noise outside of me is. Maybe it too has the idea that the outside of itself is a bigger version of itself trying to figure out what is inside of itself. I like to think that there might even be a whole forest in there, something huge for the inside me to explore and understand. I hope there are not as many squirrels in there, however. The idea of a population of tiny squirrels inside of me scares me, though it would explain any time my body is ill in any way.

I have also considered the idea of there being a tiny sun in me. I like the sun, and it seems like an important part of the sky. It also keeps me warm, which is nice. Whatever is inside me seems to help keep me warm as well, and I believe it is safe to assume that all the bits and pieces inside of me are vital to making me me. Consider a tiny sun inside of your body, glowing and keeping everything warm. Does it go away at night like the sun out here does? Does a moon replace it, providing the smallest amount of light and warmth while I sleep? Perhaps the same inexplicable aspects of the sun that keep everything warm happen inside of me, all the time.

Of course, none of these ideas really hold up when I consider what little of the inside of me I have actually seen. Recently, I climbed a tree and misjudged a branch that I wanted to rest on. It snapped and I fell. It hurt, but I was fine except for a gash above my paw where I had landed on a very sharp rock. Red water flowed out of it. There was no tiny me or tiny sun gloriously oozing from my wound. It was just liquid, and it hurt.

I licked the opening above my paw, saddened by evidence contrary to everything I hoped about the inside of me. There might still be a sun inside of me. I still do not know for sure, but I do know it is nice to consider it.

I am a bear.

If you would like to try being a bear, why not read some of the bear adventures available on this very site?

For any questions or comments directed at Bear, feel free to write to him using this email: justasinglebear@gmail.com

I found a chair.

The forest is cluttered with a variety of wonderful objects that are not native to the forest. Some of them are completely harmless (donuts, tents, wind). Some of them seem to serve no purpose to the forest (tires, chairs, strange birds). And some are downright bad for the forest’s overall well being (the deer across the river). Throughout my travels of the forest, I have found a great number of these curious artifacts. I almost always stop to inspect them. Sniff them. Lick them. Stare at them. However, no matter how I approach these objects, nearly all of my interactions with them have one thing in common: I usually accidentally break them.

I never mean to end the life of the strange objects I find in the forest, but I almost always do. Take, for example, a lovely plastic chair I recently stumbled upon. It was a beautiful red color, some of it fading into a more orange hue from exposure to the sun. It had to have been in the forest for quite some time, so I felt beckoned to examine it beyond a simple glance from afar.

I approached the chair.

It was still, so I was assured that any further poking around would not be met with some kind of violent reaction from the chair.

I sniffed it.

It smelled like dirt. It also smelled a little bit like insects (not any specific kind that I could detect).

I licked it.

Dirt. Again. Also insects. Again. I think I could taste the sun on it, too, but then again, I am not entirely certain what the sun actually tastes like (though I have my theories).

The chair was withstanding nearly every part of my normal investigation pattern: approach, sniff, lick. I only had one step left: sit. I frequently find myself trying to sit on new things I find in my ever vigilant search for the most comfortable things in the forest. Was this chair going to be comfortable? At the time, I had no idea, but I had to know.

So I sat on the chair.

It was nice for a moment. A brief moment. Then the tiny legs of the chair snapped and I found myself hurtling toward the ground. It was not a long trip from the top of the chair to the ground, but it was long enough to frighten me and send me running off into the forest. At the time, I did not know that this action was me actually killing the chair by accident. I had to run away just in case this was the chair’s way of trying to kill me on purpose.

I hid behind a tree for awhile.

When I felt like it was safe to come out, I did. The chair was still broken. Its sad cracked legs were shattered. Pieces of them were scattered around the forest floor. I felt guilty.

I put the broken chair through the same process of investigation as I had the whole chair (approach, sniff, lick, sit). This was to ensure that the chair did not change its mind about not being violently reactive to something after becoming a broken chair.

It did not break again when I sat on it the second time, but it was clear that I had left a significant amount of damage from my investigation.

I like finding new things in the forest. I like investigating those new things, too, but I wish I knew a more effective, less damaging manner of doing so. I am sorry, chair that I broke. Also, I am sorry, everything else I have sat on by accident or on purpose. That includes you, the opossum who was nesting in my moss collection. It was an accident, opossum. I promise.

I just want to know more about where I live, and I hope I can learn how to do so in ways that do not leave chairs and opossums upset and/or crushed.

I am a bear.

If you would like to try being a bear, why not read some of the bear adventures available on this very site?

I saw two mice fighting today.

I did not know what to do. The two mice were hurling tiny, rage-filled fists at one another, tearing fur from skin, and biting. Their tiny shrieks of pain and anger echoed through the forest. I tried to make a fearsome growl at them to curb the violence, but it did not work. They kept going and going.

I watched.

Upset.

And helpless.

Finally, they stopped. I did not intervene here, either. I wanted each mouse to go its separate way, and I figured any intervention from me would be largely met with more violence in one way or another.

I could not tell if the mice were reconciling or just taking a break. The tension was agonizing.

And then a bird flew down and clenched its powerful talons around one of the mice. The two flew away. The remaining mouse then picked up a small kernel of corn and ran away.

All of that over a kernel of corn?

The violence. The shrieking. The terror.

Over some corn.

I had several questions:

Why not share the corn, mice?

Was losing one of you worth one tiny bit of corn?

Where did you even find corn in the forest?

Why fight so hard for something that is so insignificant?

I walked back to my cave with all of these thoughts swirling in my head. At first, I was quick to cast judgment upon both mice. After all, it was their violent tendencies that got one of them eaten by a bird. Why did they not put more consideration and care into that situation? Surely, two mice would be better at finding more corn than one, right? Is a fellow mouse not worth at least one kernel of corn?

I stuck to this line of thinking for awhile until I considered what I would do in that situation. What if another bear and I had stumbled upon the same rabbit skeleton? Would we share? Would we fight over it? Would we cooperate to find more? I like to believe I would be willing to help a fellow bear, but then again, I have never had to actually do any of this.

I have never had to compete with a bear. I rarely ever even see other bears, let alone violently fight with them over resources.

I have not been tested.

So why was I so quick to dismiss the struggle of the mice? I do not know how frequently mice have to fight one another for corn, but I do know that it has to be considerably more often than I have had to fight anyone for anything.

And mice have more to fight than just other mice, as I saw from the nightmarish claws of the bird who ate one of them. Nothing in the sky has ever tried to pick me up and eat me. I am fairly certain that there is nothing big enough to do something like that to me.

It is difficult to see the forest from eyes that are not bear eyes. I wish I could do so more easily. I wish it were easier to simply know the struggles of other creatures. I would like to know how the opossum I accidentally sat on the other day felt about that incident, though the high pitched shrieks were easy to interpret. I would like to know how others are impacted by my being a bear on a day-day-day basis. I would like to know the dangers wild rabbits face as they hop through logs and burrows. I would like know what fish feel. Even the ones I eat. Especially the ones I eat.

I cannot know these things, however. I am just the bear I am. I will try to understand these things and not be so critical of them from now on. I will also try to understand that being a bear might be easier than being a mouse who needs corn. Being a bear might even be easier than being an almost anything else so far as I have seen.

And I will try to find out where I can find corn in the forest. I would like some corn.

I am a bear.

To read more thoughts from this particular bear, interact with the blue or grey parts of this sentence.Also, be on the look out for a new bear adventure.