I am thinking of starting a Teddy Bear farm. Why you may ask? Because Teddy Bears are PETA friendly.
Last Christmas I was standing in line with my little girl Claire. The two women in front of us evidently were acquaintances and were catching up after not seeing each other for a long time. I was not trying to eavesdrop but it was difficult not to catch the conversation since they were speaking loud enough to insure everyone on that floor would know how well off each of them had become, with their rich husbands, 2.6 children, and suitcases full of expendable income.
At one point one of them turns to the other and says, “Is that coat real fox?” The other responded “No it is not real fox it is real raccoon.” She said it in such a way as to imply that raccoon was way more cool that fox, though I got the idea she was trying to relay that her coat was real genetically pure raccoon and not Chinese raccoon dog which had been in the news a lot lately.
The first lady says, “Oh, it looks like real fox.” The other lady responded again matter of factly, “No its not, it is real raccoon.”
My daughter was looking up at them watching the exchange. I am not sure what she was getting out of the conversation but with one hand holding onto her own brown furry coat she tugged now on the real raccoon coat trying to get the ladies attention. They both looked down at her and she put both hands on her coat and announced very proudly, “My coat is made from real Teddy Bears.”
Everyone within 20 feet of us was either laughing uncontrollably or giggling to themselves with the exception of the two ladies who were stunned as if Oscar de la Renta himself had just told them “Their clothes were so last year.” My daughter was beaming, taking in the attention that had just been cast upon her and I was again wondering why I do not walk around with a camera pointed at her at all times.
The ladies were now recovering from the shock and trying to find a way to not look completely out of touch with humanity. I spoke to them reassuringly, “And it is one hundred percent PETA approved.” I think at this point if they would have just laughed and said “How cute” they could have played it off with relatively little collateral damage, but they decided to pretend they were not amused. Which had the result of everyone standing around uncomfortably for the next 5 minutes while they finished with their purchase in silence and moved on. Claire and I continued to comment on the Teddy Bear coat industry.
“The Teddy Bears are only raised on free range farms under the most humane conditions.”
“What do Teddy Bears wear when they take their fur off to make coats daddy?”
“Why they give them wool sweaters, of course.”
It occurs to me there is probably an entire marketing plan set around making coats out of real Teddy Bears. Sure there is the Teddy Bear lobby that will continually complain about the poor living conditions of the Teddy Bears but I am pretty sure with regular visits from PETA and the Humane Society we can assure the public the Teddy Bears live long happy lives.