Book #5 – The Bears’ Vacation

Adapted and excerpted from Stan and Jan Berenstain’s Down a Sunny Dirt Road: an Autobiography, published by Random House in 2002.

There were occasions when we stood on principle and resisted Ted Geisel (Dr. Seuss).  Consider the case of the length of Papa Bear’s finger-nails and toe-nails for example:  “Papa’s finger- and toe-nails are too damn long!” pronounced Ted in the course of going through The Bears’ Vacation.  “They make my teeth hurt!”

It was bad news when Ted’s teeth hurt.  But artistic integrity required us to take a stand.  We backed our stand with a letter from a boy who held a contrary opinion.  “I really like your books,” said the letter.  “My favorite character is Papa Bear.  His fingernails and toenails are awesome!”

Ted backed off.  Kid’s opinions had a certain standing with him.

The Bears Vacation was published by Random House in 1968.

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