Wednesday, September 1, 2010

If you play with fire (and/or anti-wildfire educational cartoon bears), you're bound to get burned.

Confession time:

I don't trust Smokey the Bear.

There. I said it.

I never have, and I'm not sure I ever will.

Now, maybe this has something to do with that I've lived my whole life in the Midwest. We don't really have forests, per se. We have forest preserves and, like, parks with bunches of trees and stuff, but mostly we just have farms and open fields with butterflies and kids flying kites.
What you see

So am I familiar with bears?

Only the ones in Chicago.

Except they play football. Next to a lake. And they're humans.

All I know about Smokey the Bear is that he likes pointing at me, sometimes while he's holding a shovel, and he doesn't wear a shirt.

Firstly, why are you pointing at me? I didn't do anything to you.

Secondly, a shovel? I sure hope it's not to bury some extra crispy forest friends.

And thirdly, no shirt? Look, if you're an anthropomorphic bear, I can't take you seriously unless you're either fully covered up or not covered up at all.

What I see
If you're buck-naked, you're just a bear keepin' it real doing mostly bear things, but you do human stuff too. You could probably still roar and crush my skull with your teeth if you wanted to. But you choose not to.

If you're fully-clothed, well then you're pretty much a human, except you have fur. I might be able to take you in a fight, but even if I lost, I wouldn't be inside your stomach being digested.

But if you're half-clothed? Well, then you haven't decided who you are. If you can't figure that out, why should I let you push a cause on me?

I'm all about letting the Berenstain Bears dispense some wisdom to me, or tagging along with Paddington Bear on a road trip, but the most I'm gonna do with Yogi Bear do is hit up a picnic and let him tell me some jokes. And don't get me wrong: I like Winnie the Pooh. He even says some pretty deep stuff, but I'm pretty sure it's because he's totally high. I mean, he's wearing a shirt but no pants. At least Smokey has that part the other way around.

Except I think he's high now, too. Remember Smokey's whole "Only YOU can prevent wildfires" spiel? Apparently now he's more into everyone getting their Smokey on.

I'm confused.

So, like, Smokey the Bear's a pothead now? This is a bear I'm supposed to trust for wildfire prevention tips and advice? Doesn't that make him more likely to start a wildfire? And doesn't that make him a total hypocrite with three claws pointing back at himself?

Okay, fine.

Let's just pretend Smokey's not on weed.

I still just have this gut feeling he's at least 70 percent likely to walk up to you and give you some sort of stern fire safety lecture before lighting your house on fire while laughing maniacally and yelling things like, "Not even YOU can prevent this wildfire!" or "You want to know why I'm doing this? BECAUSE I CAN!" and sticking around to tell the firemen you started your own house on fire for insurance purposes.

And then no one will believe you when you say Smokey burned it down, because he's Smokey the frickin' Bear! SMOKEY THE FRICKIN' BEAR!!!

Smokey the frickin' Bear.

1 comment:

  1. The reason he doesn't wear a shirt is because he's manly and rugged, plus it gets hot running around outdoors all day. Especially running around rescuing people from fires! As for the pants things - he's family friendly.

    I met Smokey one time. I found him very articulate and polite. And very knowledgeable.