Two weeks ago I had the unfortunate idea to order 2 of the most recently written Berenstain Bear books from Merrick’s book order: “The Berenstain Bears’ Bedtime Battle”, and “The Berenstain Bears and the Trouble With Chores”.
For the record, I am a huge Berenstain Bear fan. I grew up on the Bear family, who lived in a treehouse down a sunny dirt road deep in Bear Country. Every life lesson I ever learned as a child was either brought on or driven home with these beloved fictional friends.
The Bedtime Battle is basically all about Brother and Sister acting like juvenille delinquents and getting away with it–staying up until all hours of the night while Mama and Papa, who have chased after them all day, picking up their toys and trying to get them to behave, exhaustedly fall fast asleep on the couch.
I’m sorry, but that’s lunacy. Mama and Papa should be ashamed of themselves.
The Trouble With Chores shows Mama Bear passive-aggressively manipulating her family into cleaning the house, and they only fall for it after about 6 months have gone by, and the Bear family is in danger of being separated by Child and Family Services, no doubt. Papa couldn’t give a rat’s ash about the unsanitary conditions of his family’s living quarters and Mama is too focused on her quilt club projects to really address the problem. Brother and Sister Bear have clearly not been spanked since 1986. And Honey Bear eats bugs.
It pains me to say this: Mama and Papa Bear have lost their touch. Their home is going to pot and they don’t even care. Honestly, what kind of world are we living in when Mama and Papa Bear are flushing 40 years of hardcore parenting down the toilet? Sure, they had another baby and adopted a dog–life is busy. We get it. I know modern society calls for sensitive guidance and direction when it comes to raising kids, but I miss the good ole days, when Papa Bear would come into the room and lay down the law. I want Mama Bear to whip her family into shape again. Instead, they’ve given up. Bear Country is going to hell in a handbasket.
And I don’t even see the point of even living anymore.
Okay, that’s extreme. But I don’t think we’re going to put these 2 new books on our regular bedtime reading rotation.