Pooh Bear, it’s widely known, is a bear of very little brain. What he lacks in cognition, however, he makes up for in appetite.
In the Hundred Acre Wood, Pooh’s appetite is legendary. Remember the time he went to Rabbit’s house and ate so much of Rabbit’s honey that he couldn’t fit out the door? Even that humiliation didn’t curb Pooh’s appetite. At a certain point, a strong appetite counts for you. Later on, it’s a point against.
Pooh Bear now lives in my daughter Iris’s bedroom. Pooh’s distended belly is useful at bedtime, which is storytime. Sure, it’s undignified to have your belly used as a pillow, but Pooh doesn’t hold a grudge. Probably all the stuffed animals come alive in the darkness, but only Pooh Bear goes out walking.
In the morning, Iris will find him frozen in the midst of some adventure. His head might be stuck in a kitchen cabinet, his paws still sticky with honey. One night he tumbled from her upstairs loft. Morning found Pooh lazily spinning on the slow blades of the ceiling fan.
“Pooh Bear! You come down from there!” Iris called. She admires an intelligent bear -- who doesn’t? -- but isn’t a bear with an appetite more fun?
When bedtime comes around, Iris tries to contain Pooh in her covers or in the bars of her headboard. She carefully checks his nose for wetness. An animal with a dry nose, everyone knows, is no bother at all.
But things change when darkness lulls humans to sleep and the appetites of animals quicken.
I’m Chris Fink, and that’s my perspective.