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Seriously: A letter from your neighborhood bear

Collegian | Trin Bonner

Editor’s Note: This is a satire piece from The Collegian’s opinion section. Real names and the events surrounding them may be used in fictitious/semi-fictitious ways. Those who do not read the editor’s notes are subject to being offended.

Dear humans,


I’d like to start this off by noting that we’ve always had a decent relationship. You’ve left us to do what we do; we leave you to do the same. If either party encroaches on that line, justified consequences naturally ensue. However, the past few decades haven’t been great, and I’m the only one brave enough to call you guys out. I’m going against the grain here; I’m somewhat of a revolutionary and the only bear around here with the balls to say what I’m about to say: We are starving, and it’s all your fault. 

I’m generous enough to offer some solutions to this predicament — no thanks to any of you. Below are some helpful tips and potential solutions to fixing this little issue you’ve created.

Firstly, please leave your trash out when you’re camping. Right by your tent is ideal: We can smell it, mosey on over and get a quick lunch. Fast food, if you will. If that’s not an option, just keep it near your campsite — even if there’s one of those fancy trash cans you can’t even open, which is very inconsiderate (I’m looking at you, National Park Service). Just try to keep trash as close to you as possible and low to the ground. 

Bonus points for feeding us because it makes us more comfortable around people, which is great. Once we realize you’re not that scary, we’re back in control.”

Next, anything with a strong scent should be on you at all times. We need our homing beacons, so hold onto things like gum and toothpaste that smell like mint chocolate chip ice cream. Having those on you or in your tent is perfect for us to come find you. Even if we’re disappointed at the lack of ice cream, humans taste so much better.

Thirdly, leave the damn bear spray at home. It’s ridiculous how many times I’ve been sprayed directly in the eyes because I was hungry. Do you realize how bad that can Pavlov a bear? Every time my stomach grumbles, my eyes get all teary, and it’s hard to breathe. Only cowards bring bear spray. Don’t be a coward. It’s embarrassing. 

Another great way to get attacked is to surprise us. Here’s the thing: I’m not a jumpy bear. I like to think I’m pretty aware of my surroundings. However, there are some times when some sneaky little hiker has their noise-canceling headphones on and scares the bearjesus out of me.

Or when they try to get a picture of me from way too close. I’m a total Monet, to quote the cinematic masterpiece “Clueless.” The closer you get, the worse I look.

And it’s so frustrating knowing there are horrendous pictures of me out there. I can’t be the one ruining the brand for bears. It’s embarrassing, and no one wants to sit next to me on my lunch break, and it sucks. Therefore, I lash out. Is it my best quality? No. Do I do it anyway and enjoy it? Absolutely. I will defend my public presence until my last breath. Plus, it’s kind of fun. So get as close as possible and surprise us, please. It’s great entertainment and really brightens up a slow day.

The final, most important part of interacting with us bears is to feed us. We can typically get our own food. Have you ever seen National Geographic? Yeah, we don’t need your help.


However, a hearty lunch of Doritos, grapes and a Lunchable is a nice break from the stuff our instincts tell us to eat. If it’s unnaturally orange, that’s usually a good indicator that it directly violates whatever Mother Nature intended, and it’s also tasty as hell. Bonus points for feeding us because it makes us more comfortable around people, which is great. Once we realize you’re not that scary, we’re back in control.

Thank you for reading this far, truly. For a bear with a blog, I don’t usually get a lot of traffic on my page. I also have damn good advice, and it’s a crying shame I don’t get recognized for it.

But I digress. The next time you want to venture into the woods, go camping or move to Colorado — looking at you, Texas and California — take a gander at this list to prepare yourself for dealing with bears. We appreciate it.

I guess this is all for now. I’ll see you the next time you leave your trash out. 

Signing off, 

Beary Keoghan

Reach Addy Dollaghan at or on Twitter @ADollaghan

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About the Contributor
Trin Bonner
Trin Bonner, Illustration Director
Trin Bonner is the illustration director for The Collegian newspaper. This will be her third year in this position, and she loves being a part of the creative and amazing design team at The Collegian. As the illustration director, Bonner provides creative insight and ideas that bring the newspaper the best graphics and illustrations possible. She loves working with artists to develop fun and unique illustrations every week for the readers. Bonner is a fourth-year at Colorado State University studying electronic arts. She loves illustrating and comic making and has recently found enjoyment in experimental video, pottery and graphic design. Outside of illustration and electronic art, Bonner spends her free time crocheting and bead making. She is usually working on a blanket or making jewelry when she is not drawing, illustrating or brainstorming.

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