Damn (beautiful) Bear

He’s a teenager, my 13-year-old granddaughter texted. She recently attended an online camp about forest animals, so I defer to her expertise.

He’s a jerk, I texted back.

No, he didn’t eat the Tinman. That’s just the fancy top of one of my bird feeders. Shout out to friend Rick for asking.

And that jerk didn’t budge when I yelled at him to move on. He just looked at me the same way my kids did when they were teenagers: Whatever, lady, and he lowered his head to lick up the remains of what he didn’t eat last night after he partially tore apart three of my bird feeders.

I consulted the game commission’s website and it said to not to put veggies or fruit in a compost pile when bears show up in your yard. I started a compost pile earlier this year, but like all kids, this bear – this teenage bear – prefers sweet seeds and hummingbird water over the carrots lying on top of the compost.  

Frickin’ frackin’ Damn Bear! I swore under my breath as I cleaned up his mess.

I can’t feed birds for a while, not until Damn Bear forgets my backyard is a Perkins. Last night, the cardinals, who, if they truly embody the souls of departed loved ones, looked at me like, WTF, Lynn? I replied, Hey, Dad and all you other people – Grandma and Uncle David and whoever – it’s not like you’ll drink coffee or eat cookies if I put them out like you did in your previous life! Go find bugs!

I woke up this morning to a text from a neighbor: Hey, just a heads up. We saw a bear behind your house when we left our house 20 minutes ago.

Damn Bear.

I got up and looked out the back window.

I recently filled a storage bin with hulled sunflower seeds. It’s like caviar to birds and, apparently, bears.

It rained last night, so this is full of water.

Damn Bear.

It’s like he scored a keg. “Party!” I imagine he called out to his forest friends as he dragged the fifty-pound container off our porch and into the yard. I watched as the birds swarmed in and the feral cats circled, and I thought about the kids I hung out with at parties on remote dirt roads when I was a teenager. Yeah, they were good times. I have to give Damn Bear a bye on that one.

But he needs a name. Calling him Damn Bear and Jerk doesn’t seem right. After all, he’s just being a bear. Other than “Yogi” (although I’m sure Damn Bear would love a pic-a-nic basket), do you have any suggestions?

In the meantime, I hope Damn Bear wanders off into the forest and lives his best life, independent of bird feeders and plastic bins filled with expensive hulled sunflower seeds. Mostly, though, as beautiful and “natural” my granddaughter reminds me he is, I hope he doesn’t return next spring. Stay off my lawn, Damn Bear!

2 thoughts on “Damn (beautiful) Bear

  1. I vote for the name of the character on that old TV show where this young man drove a motorcycle, wore a leather jacket, and seemed to ignore what anyone thought except for Mrs. C (Cunningham). For the life of me, I can’t remember his name. Joanie was the daughter and Richie was the son. I hope you’re old enough to remember the show.

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