Oct 16, 2007


It’s getting cooler outside and that persuades me to read. So I have a couple I am working on and the book I find I'm reading very slowly so I may relish every word is

Winkie “...begins with the capture and wounding by a SWAT team of the eponymous, sentient teddy bear in a backwoods cabin; the team thinks it has captured a mad bomber. In jail, Winkie, who no one denies is a teddy bear, must contend with cruel jailers; his stuttering, court-appointed lawyer named Unwin; the 9,678 counts of everything from treason to witchcraft he's charged with; and the intersection of his life with that of the previous possessor of the cabin, an old humanities professor whose bombs never worked. While marking time, Winkie contemplates his past: his ownership by the Chase family, his loneliness when on a shelf, his magical awakening to life one morning—marked by a bowel movement so lovingly described that it recalls Bloom's in Ulysses. The sections devoted to Winkie's trial is a minor masterpiece of ridiculousness, in which the prosecution's move to end the trial after it has presented its side sounds uncomfortably close to what we read in the newspapers…”

I find this book excruciatingly tragic and lovely. Please, understand that I was a child who named every stuffed animal in my room and made sure each one was kept comfortable and well hugged for the good of the very universe. And as an adult I secretly think that if a sock gets lost in the laundry the unmatched sock is actually sad about the loss of its mate. I know this is borderline OCD or something, but here’s the thing… there are whole religions based on the idea that everything in the world has a soul, so it’s not that weird right? Don’t answer that.

So anyway, today Ella and I went with friends to the Build a Bear Workshop at the mall where Ella and the Bear Lady lovingly placed a tiny electronic “beating heart” inside her bear and filled her with wads of fluffy soft stuffing while making a promise to keep “Brookklyn the Wonder Bear" safe and give her lots of hugs. The fluffy haired grandma that worked at build a bear was so excellent at her story weaving both Ella and I were buying it hook line and sinker (Yes, I can hardly wait for Christmas!) Wide eyed and believing Ella placed her wish for ice cream inside Brookklyn’s back and sealed it up with a quick kiss and more sparkles of belief shining through her eyes. When the Bear Lady looked at me from the corner of her eyes and I nodded, she told Ella she was sure her wish would come true right after dinner, I got choked up. I wondered if she would hug Brookklyn enough. I wondered how long Ella would believe her easy wishes for ice cream would always come true. I wondered if Brooklyn would remember the day she was born like Winkie does.

I want to give the book to the Bear Lady after I finish with it. What would she make of a random mom walking in and handing her a book about a teddy bear arrested for terrorist activity? Would she read it? Would it taint her love for her job? Would she relish it and know she will cry at the end like I know I will? Would my bear “Yogi” recognize me if I found him?

1 comment:

Jo said...

Of course Yogi will remember you. You never forget the people who loved you.