This week I’ve been thinking about bears. I think about bears a lot, honestly. They’ve been popping up in my life and in my work more and more often lately.
It generally goes like this: I’m writing and thinking about something totally un-bear related when a symbolic bear will waltz into my periphery dripping in serendipity, then tuck itself snugly into my work.
I love it.
So, let’s wade into the stream, catch a salmon or two, and take a bite out of The Bear Edition.
The Bear Necessities
Is it weird to admit that I’m a huge fan of the National Park Service? Yes, the actual parks, but more importantly, the social media accounts. If you’re not following the NPS, do yourself a favor and follow them ASAP. They’re HILARIOUS.
I wrote a play last year inspired almost entirely by this Instagram post. It lists a bunch of ways to handle seeing a bear (and to avoid being eaten by one) and the list was so thorough and so funny to me that 24 hours later, my comedy, THERE WILL BE BEARS, was created:
THERE WILL BE BEARS is a fun, ten minute comedy about bears, relationships, and a surreal bear expert on YouTube named, Ranger Phil — and there’s a FREE virtual performance of it (as well as one of my poems) this weekend. Check out The Fragmented Festival this Saturday, July 31st at 7 pm EST / 6 pm CST on YouTube. Click the image below for the direct link!
So, if you want to see some fantastic theater by a group of talented playwrights and performers AND get to see my face while I read one of my poems — well, this is the only place you can do both of those things for free* this weekend.
*This makes it sound like there are paid options to see my face which there aren’t… unless… I could always… no, never mind.
Grin and Bear It
I adore Amy Poehler as much as I adore bears and this article about her life and her philosophies is a great read.
This quote is also the perfect segue for me to post another hilarious bear-themed piece from the National Park Service. This image is framed in my office — I’m a little bit obsessed.
Bear With Me
I’m going to add two wholesome bear-themed things before ending with a completely inappropriate bear tweet. Ready?
I love the Muppets. This is Bears AND Muppets. I catch myself humming this a lot which seems like a hip, cool thing to do, right?
No surprise here, I’m sure, but I’m also a big fan of Smokey Bear. FYI, I’m one of the few people who gets annoyed by references to Smokey THE Bear. He’s just first name: Smokey, Last name: Bear. NO THE.
That’s it for this edition! Here’s the inappropriate tweet I promised you:
It’s funny, but don’t do it because bears are cool and according to the NPS, they might actually eat you. Also, COME SEE MY PLAY.
Until next time,
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Love this. I'll send you this week's edition of Spark with my own personal bear story. Humiliating? yes. Funny? My mother thought so. I'll share it with you when it goes out on Saturday. Thanks for this great find (discovered you today on the Shout-Out thread).
Wildfires in California have driven bears into residential areas. They tend to enjoy pools, as evidenced by recent videos of bear families swimming and hanging out on the deck. I always think of Robert McClosky's classic Blueberries for Sal, but there are some great bears in fiction. Patrick O'Brian has a towering British officer escape occupied Spain by wearing a bearskin in his brilliant Post Captian, and I have seen them in Russian stories as well. Faulkner too. Bears are way cool.