Springtime is for Teddy Bears

15 Apr


The first time someone you “like” gets you a cute and cuddly stuffed animal, it’s almost indescribably sweet. It’s that moment every Hallmark card has promised you. It wipes out the embarrassment of walking around the school with a half-ton of metal in your mouth and fiddling with rubber bands looped around your molars. You forget that your best friend has a prettier nose or your one eyebrow is slightly crooked or your Nazi mother won’t let you wax your legs until you’re eighteen.

It’s even better if you have to hide the itty bitty teddy bear from the stern gaze of your moralistic and disapproving parents. After the boy has ritualistically and oh-so-romantically slipped it to you during recess or the mandatory after-school tuition class, you delightedly show it off to all your closest and bestest friends before stuffing it deep inside your schoolbag to take it home. Once there, you act as normal as possible, trying not to scurry with the sheer excitement of it all – there’s a cute boy out there who thinks you’re so special, he just handed you the universal declaration of love: a stuffed animal! How can a body bear it?!

It could be a teddy bear, a bunny rabbit or even Tweety – it’s not the species that’s important although a teddy bear, preferably pink or brown, is always the best option unless she has expressly stated her intense desire for a misshapen little yellow bird or something. And you never want to buy her a pig or a frog, etc. unless you know for dead certain that that’s what she’d like. Anyway, whatever it is, it has to be something that you can safely smuggle into the house without arousing suspicion. And when it is eventually discovered (#1 Law of the Universe: Thy Parents Shall Discover All Things You Most Wish They Wouldn’t, ‘Tis Only a Matter of Time), secreted away in the far corner of your closet or nonchalantly hidden in plain sight with the rest of your dumb stuffed toys, the useless ones that your parents bought for you because, I don’t know, they think you’re a child or something, you can always say:

“Oh, that old thing? Yeah, So-and-so gave it to me for, er, Friendship Day. Of course I gave her something too! I gave her… a hug? What? She liked it. She said so.”

And that’s when you know you’re all grown up. Lying to your parents because some guy you thought was cute for two minutes in high school gave you a squeezable dustcatcher? Proof positive that you’re a woman now!

The second time you get a stuffed animal, unless you’re an avid collector of the things, the pleasure has dimmed a bit but it’s still a warm glow around your heart. Aww, you think. How cute.

This glow begins to dim noticeably on each future occasion, however. Slowly, at some point in your very early twenties (possibly sooner if you’re quick to see these things) you begin to notice that your room is now so full of dearly beloved keepsakes and mementos, you’re slowly being squeezed out of it. Your bookshelf has few books, but is bursting at the seams with the little knickknacks, often completely bizarre and with no co-relation to your life at all, given to you by all your friends and romantic interests. The secret corner of your closet where you used to hide your love letters and Valentine’s Day cards is now so full to overflowing with the foot-tall cards orgasming with roses and flowery poetry, there’s nothing “secret” about it whatsoever. All you need to do is open the door and voila! There’re your innermost secrets visible to all.

And the stuffed toys! There are so many of them in such a variety of sizes, that you’ve begun to give them away to the neighborhood children. You start crashing birthday parties of perfectly annoying little brats so you can get rid of a few of the critters cluttering up your room. You get fat on birthday cake and mothers start asking you when you plan on starting a family of your own since you love the kiddies so much.

Then one day your mother asks you what you want to do with your old bedroom since you no longer live there and might perhaps want to update it a bit for your visits back home. You don’t know what she’s talking about until you walk in there and suddenly realize that you’ve given away all the stuffed animals that populated your teens and your room is now a blank slate waiting for you to decide what you want to do with it. It’s been a while since anybody got you a bear or a bunny or Tweety or Mickey or anything or anybody stuffed at all.

And that’s when you realize springtime is over.


Posted by on April 15, 2009 in Desipundit, Life, Personal


14 responses to “Springtime is for Teddy Bears

  1. pitu

    April 15, 2009 at 3:35 pm

    My jaw is open and I am drooling. You write so BLOODY WELL, Amrita!!! A plus and 2 gold stars 😉 I still have thr brown teddy bear Ajit gave me on our first day, there’s a photo of me, looking totally SMITTEN, just clutching the lil bear. I still have it. Of course, I also have a DRAWER full of old Valentine’s cards, letters and random gifts from exes or guys who had crushes on me 😀

  2. pitu

    April 15, 2009 at 3:36 pm

    first date*

  3. deej

    April 15, 2009 at 5:23 pm

    Damn, Ams, you got skills, dude!

  4. deej

    April 15, 2009 at 5:25 pm

    A bloke gave me a whatzisface – a wee koala (he was studying in Oz then). Even before the “awww” factor wore off, I learnt the nazis at home had recycled it by gifting it to some annoying brat for its budday. Their reasoning? I was bleddy 20 and shld have grown out of the teddy / koala bear mush zone. phtooey.

  5. M

    April 15, 2009 at 5:51 pm


    when is your book out now?


  6. sachita

    April 15, 2009 at 11:36 pm

    Did the crazy woman from chicago who swam towards the polar bears inspire this post?:)

    Mine (not gifted by any boyfriend) is still preserved by parents. they think its a substitute for me( i swear i didnt knew i was so easily replaceable for my parents).

  7. Kokonad

    April 15, 2009 at 11:59 pm

    So girls DO like it when a guy coyly hands them a soft toy and runs away (way back when everyone is in 5th grade)! 😀 I knew it!
    Thank you Amrita, this information does open up a window here. Time to search some people I used to know, on Facebook!
    Now that I have that part figured out, I have always wondered why is it that girls pretend that something horrible has happened when a guy coyly hands them a soft toy (way back when everyone is in 5th grade).
    Oh wait. May be it’s me the guy. 😦

  8. Amey

    April 16, 2009 at 8:40 am

    I second Kokonad. Also, does that mean that now we are all grown up (and all), I don’t need to buy soft toys?

  9. DewdropDream

    April 16, 2009 at 10:24 am

    Did I hear ‘book’?! DETAILS!!!!

    And yes, that is so well written I have half a mind to direct smug young upstarts doing creative writing to you and tell them to fall at your feet.

    Soft toys… I’m not exactly hung up on them but I have an alarming number of them for someone who feels that way. My mum’s stowed my bachpan waale in the garage 😦

    @Amey: There is no such thing as a man not buying soft-toys ever. You just need to know WHEN to buy them 😀

  10. Gradwolf

    April 16, 2009 at 11:03 am

    So who did you give the last stuffed toy to, Amrita? :p

  11. maxdavinci

    April 16, 2009 at 11:22 am

    in the immortal words of alaf raja

    ‘jawani char din ki chandni hain mazze le lo, badi chanchal hain badi chulbuli hain mazze le lo’

    couldn’t find the youtube vid, but then you get the drift!

  12. Amrita

    April 16, 2009 at 2:36 pm

    Pitu – aww, thankoo! 🙂 I’m still looking for the guy whose teddies I’d like to keep. Sigh. Still have the cards and stuff though. And I have a feeling my mom’s read each and every one!

    DG – lolz! Well at least the hubby must be happy.

    M & 3D – thanks 🙂 I’ll post the teaser chapters in a couple of weeks.

    Sachita – ha, almost! and awwww @ your parents. That’s so sweet. My mother the packrat will save anything and everything that belongs to me but she will NOT save the cuddly toys. She thinks they’re a health hazard or something!

    Koke, Amey – so you want free ka tip? 😛 Unless you’re hitting on 16 year olds, the teddy bear is nice but you don’t want to keep giving her the things in different sizes and shapes. Back it up with something nice, like flowers (the ones she likes, not just the usual red rose thing) and little bits of jewelry or chocolate or something. For a first gift though, a small stuffed animal is mega cute. Unless she hates them in which case, avoid. Sigh. Women are so complicated, yaar!

    Aditya – wow, you know I cant even remember. I think I’ve only ever given those to little kids. I’ve always been in the habit of gifting other stuff, like books or clothes or perfume or jewelry, etc. I’m a very nawabi kind of person 😀

    Max – do you mean Altaf Raja? HAHAHAHHA! First Pitu, then you. The things you guys remind me of!

  13. NM

    April 17, 2009 at 8:24 am

    That’s great Amrita! So what was the gift that you guy to your Boy/Man crush eh ? 😛 Why is it that we men have to give,give and err..give…
    Not that we would mind some stuffed stuff.
    Teddy bear of course.

    • Amrita

      April 17, 2009 at 3:10 pm

      Hey NM, thanks! I don’t think I’ve ever given a crush anything 😛 Boyfriends are another matter, of course. I think went to the point of buying a card once for a boy I really liked but never gave it to him. And I got over it real soon too, so no loss!

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