Erin Yingling 0

Shark Week? How about BEAR WEEK?

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7 August 2013 Discovery Channel To My Fellow Animaniacs, I am writing to you, deep in the thralls of Shark Week, a tradition revered by all and cherished each August, to discuss a new and deliciously thrilling possibility. In between each mortifyingly enchanting shark exhibit, I’m writing to broach (or breach…if you will) an exciting proposition for you. As you know, Shark week, like Christmas, comes but once a year…BUT….what if we could have a biannual celebration of terrifying predatory titillation!? What could be equally as scintillating as Sharks and the birth of Christ, you say? One word. BEARS. Now, I know what you’re thinking- “BEARS!? What a great idea! It’s so simple and obvious! Why didn’t I think of that!?”. It’s ok, you didn’t have time to think of that, you were too busy filming chompy ocean death and being scared out of your wetsuit to think about any other animals that are fun and terrifying. It’s ok, I’ve got your back, I’m here to do your thinking because there’s no way in hell I’m taking your place in that ocean filming. Ok, now that we’ve agreed that BEAR WEEK is a tremendous idea, let’s discuss all the grizzly details. I’m talking Polar Bears, Black Bears, Panda Bears, Grizzly Bears, PIZZLY Bears, Brown Bears and even those little Red Pandas, maybe for the morning time slots while people are brushing their teeth (we all know how great the Insanity workout it, now can we get onto some real, quality programming?). Still bearing with me? (See what I did there?). I’m thinking a mid winter (mid hibernation) special, to give us all something to watch as a family, while we’re digesting all our post holiday meal guilt and lounging around in sluggish wintry stupor, some on school break, some on holiday (for all your limey British fans across the pond, lucky ducks) and some on summer break (I see you, southern hemisphere), like January. But if we add Bear Week, won’t we have to add Dog Week and Chicken Week and Narwhal Week too? Short answer, No; Long Answer, No Sir. Because everyone can agree that the bear is the most regal and relevant of all the large, intimidating, and deliciously foreboding land animals. Everyone can relate! Even New Jersey has bears! (And I’m not talking about those hulking, roided, drunk Jersey boys, am I right?) And for something as special as a whole dedicated week by an esteemed nature education channel such as yourself, we can’t pick just any animal. It has to be great, it has to be mysterious, it has to be frightful. Yes, it has to be bears. As a Philomath and frequent mountain gypsy, I seek education about bears both for myself and all others who enjoy a brisk jaunt across mother nature’s heaping bosom. Too many people go into the woods with incomplete bear knowledge (bearledge? Igbearance? ) and resort to , often fruitless and agitating, gun use, improper contact prevention and behavior when in the company of a bear, and misinterpretations on bear behavior. Yes, everyone’s favorite childhood cuddle toy can kill you with one swipe of his giant, venerable paw, but rather than being cold blooded killers , you are likely ignorantly snuggling their cubs or resting your haunches on it’s hard fought kill (sorry elk, no elk week). The general public should know these things and both appreciate North America’s most formidable opponent (besides me if you eat my leftovers) and learn to coexist with more intelligence and respect for these commanding Ursine kings. This brings me to my final and most compelling argument for BEAR WEEK (you’re already warming up to the idea, I can see it in your eyes). Have you watched television lately? I mean actually surfed around and looked for something worthwhile and entertaining to watch that you can actually take something new and interesting away from. There is almost nothing of substance worth watching these days (except New Girl, tell me that show isn’t funny, I dare you, you can’t). ABC Family is a frothing whirlpool of regurgitated teen drama, MTV hasn’t had music videos for well over a decade, there is nine shows about picking through old stuff and selling it, and TBS might as well by TPS because it’s all Tyler Perry Shows, it’s a true wonderland of crap. We need something to bring our society back from the brink of intellectual despair more than once a year in full week, all predation all the time format. That’s where you come in. So this is my proposal, and I know there are many out there who will roar in agreement that this is the most capital idea we’ve had since the invent of Nutella. It’s going to be a veritable Brooks River Salmon run of positive rating points (….levels? checkmarks? High fives?...I don’t know how you measure ratings.) and I promise you wouldn’t regret it. So let me know what you think and when you’re ready to put your salmon where your snout is, I’ll be ready to be your Bear Week host, with plenty of interesting bear facts and a plentiful array of bear puns. (Contractual note: Package deal. Puns will happen.) Casey Anderson and Brutus can cohost, I’ll allow it. In closing, as President Theodore Roosevelt, famed wilderness spokesman and for whom the Teddy Bear was named, said, this is “why you should take charge and do mighty things!”. Bearing Warmth, Regards, and Salutations, Erin Yingling Sports Medicine by Day, Bear Spokeswoman by Night, Biophiliac by life

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