Novel Completion Queries, Day Fifteen

Is the novel finished: PROBABLY NOT (I might have finished it on the plane, but that seems unlikely to me, and as I’m writing this ahead of time because I am likely still on the plane, I don’t know for sure)

Today’s question: Your favorite stuffed animal from your childhood (or heck, if it’s one from your adulthood, name it too, I don’t judge).

ppbMy answer: A pot belly bear (representative picture to the right), which was a faddishly popular stuffed animal in the late 70s and early 80s. Mine was named (because I was that kid) Lt. General Potter Patton Chocolate Chip Cookie. No, I don’t remember why. It just seemed to be the thing at the time. I got it in elementary school. I really liked that stuffed bear, enough so that when I went to boarding high school, I took it with me, which was not actually an advisible thing to do. I remember the poor being kidnapped a couple of times and at least once being threatened (jokingly, to be clear) with a swirly. When I left for college I gifted the bear to a girl friend of mine. I wonder if she still has it.

Your favorite?

86 thoughts on “Novel Completion Queries, Day Fifteen

  1. I had an identical pot-belly bear that my now-wife gave me as a gift in college. I named it Theotocopoulous (Theo for short). As a kid I had this very beat up Tiger with only one eye.

  2. I got a Bill the Cat stuffed animal my freshman year of college that I still have now 24 years later.

  3. I’ve had my teddy bear (not pot-bellied) since before I can remember. He’s lost an eye, much of his fur is gone, and some stuffing has managed to disappear. His snout is hard plastic and his ears are a bit ragged. I don’t think I took him off to college, but did collect him again after I finished up. Since then he’s mostly been stuck in a drawer, but my daughter did like to borrow him some nights when she had a hard time getting to sleep.

  4. A black stuffed bear. I called him Huckleberry Bear, because I confused Huckleberry Hound and Yogi Bear from cartoons at the time. He died on a playground slide age ~10. A friend and I were using him to slide on and he lost his stuffing… I was pretty much done with him by then.

  5. Several professional artists in my family, so unique family-made stuffed animals, and ceramic animals, many of the ceramic animals also operating as whistles. More fun was building forts out of couch pillows and the long struts used to keep my brother Andy from falling off the top deck of the bunk bed. In college I had a Nauga (from which Naugahide is skinned) which a girlfriend sliced open at the belly. Help stop eye-loss and stuffing-coming out of toys, click here. {toydoctors Without Borders}
    .
    Now the fun is in giving chewable squeaky toys to my dog, who bites them for the squeak, talks back to them, moves them around in the gardens, and sometimes performs a squeakectomy.

  6. Do hand puppets count? I had a hand puppet of a Panda when I was young. I called him “Polo”.

    (my brother’s squirrel was named “Tico”)

    I wore out poor Polo.

  7. I had a stuffed elephant. By the time I was four, it was so filthy my mother disposed of it down the apartment building’s incinerator chute. I can’t remember it’s name, but I’ve never quite forgiven my mother, עליה השלום, although that was 71 years ago.

  8. I had to wrack my brains to come up with the name here, but it was a doll of “Zippy the Chimp”. Specifically this one, with the rubber face, hands, and tennis shoes. Over the course of my toddler years, I lost the outfit, so I ended up with a naked chimp in a black “onesie” (he had no “fur” on his torso) in tennis shoes. That chimp was my constant companion, though I don’t know if I ever saw the real Zippy on TV.

  9. Oops, no image links without moderation while the boss is out of town. Shoulda thought of that.

    It was a doll of “Zippy the Chimp”. I had to wrack my brain to come up with the name. In fact, I only found it by Googling “chimpanzee doll from the ’70s”. I thought I might ask my dad, but I doubt he’d remember. My mom would have, but she’s been gone 13 years now. And now, between that and the doll I haven’t even seen in 25 years, I’m sad, and miss her. Funny the things that bring that all back. :(

  10. It was a bunny made from two pieces of fabric you could cut out and sandwich together. Like a template? Yeah. I found the thing at my parents’ house a few years ago, took out all the stuffing, washed it, re-sewed all the seams, and stuffed it again. Now my kid has it. <3

  11. I still have my old Pooh-bear and a rag doll with yellow yarn hair. Pooh only has one eye, and he’s more brown than yellow, and Raggedy Sal was subjected to a terrible hair cut way back when, but I love them still. I used to read to them. I suspect I was a rather lonely child.

  12. I still have my very first stuffed animal: an elephant named…El. Which is, I’m pretty sure, short for Elephant. Creativity comes well after one names their first stuffed toy but at least his name isn’t ‘Pinky’ since I think he used to be pink. At least some of the stitching is still pink so I’m guessing all of him used to be pink (and he’s very comfortable being a boy elephant who is pink, thankyouverymuch).

  13. I had a dog named Dog. I still have Dog, actually, s/he lives on my bookshelf now (most of my stuffed animals were gender-less).

    I also had a stuffed elephant named Cafeteria. Because Cafeteria a fantastic name for an elephant. And because it was the longest, most complicated word I knew at the time.

  14. My favourite stuffed animal was (is) a lion that I got as present when I was three years old. His name is Leoncio (from “leon”, “lion” on Spanish), and he used to have a fabulous mane and some extra hair in the tip of his tail. The story of how Leoncio lost his hair is epic (meaning that I get reminded of it every now and then), and I have my mom to blame, even if she denies culpability. When I was four, she brought me to the hairdresser, and she insisted that my hair was to be cut very short (she, being a practical woman with two younger children, considered that spending ten minutes every morning brushing my hair was a luxury she could not afford). Of course, I wasn’t okay with the situation: I wanted to preserve my pigtails! So, she had to tell me, while I was crying out of despair all our way back on the street with my pigtails reduced to a boys’ hairstyle, that hair always grows back, and I would have my pigtails back soon and even better: my new hair would be stronger and nicer! She managed to convince me that her way of doing things was the best in time to prepare dinner. What happened next was that she left me alone in my room, with Leoncio. She didn’t notice me escaping to the living room, fetching my toy scissors, and getting back into seclusion. I remember very vividly giving Leoncio the Talk About How Cutting Hair Makes It Grow Stronger, and carefully cutting his mane and tail very short. My mom got a fit when she found me, my action completed. But she couldn’t punish me because my argument was HER argument, after all.

  15. Whoa, I had one of those. The koala, and it was my favorite — the one I slept with every single night, probably right up until junior high. My brother had the raccoon and it was *his* favorite.

  16. I had two.

    The first was a stuffed brown bear (aptly named Brown Bear) the size of a small child. My dad bought it for me when I was born, from the hospital gift shop. My mom brought me the nose recently, as I apparently removed it early on.

    The second was a stuffed Curious George. I used to spin him vertically, holding on to his arms, necessitating multiple shoulder surgeries and stuffing transplants. That poor monkey heard a lot of stuff over the years.

    Now my daughter has both, and like me has a real attachment to everyone’s favourite monkey. I occasionally get something in my eyes when she hugs George tight.

  17. As a kid, I had a bed full of stuffed animals and no real favorites. As an adult, I have a stuffed Stitch (from Lilo and Stitch) that my now-husband bought me on our third or fourth date and I actually do sleep with it – it helps me sleep on my side without hurting my shoulder, so win-win.

    I have a smaller stuffed Stitch that Ferrett Steinmetz brought me back from Hawaii, but that one is just on display, I don’t sleep with it.

  18. I had an 8″ dinosaur that got a lot of love and abuse through sixth grade or so. He was relegated to the back of the closet for a few years more, before he was trashed.

  19. We’re about the same age, Scalzi, so you may remember, when we were growing up, that there was a whole Snoopy merchandising campaign going on at the time. I was born with medical issues, and spent much of my childhood in and out of the hospital. When I went in for one prolonged stay (around age 7 or so), my maternal grandmother bought me a roughly 10″ Snoopy doll. Every day I spent in the hospital, I opened one package which contained an outfit for Snoopy (storebought, not handmade). By the time I left the hospital, he had a full wardrobe. I’m 43 now, and I think I still have Snoopy and most of his clothes around here somewhere.

  20. I have a stuffed dog named Princess. It was the name of the toy company wot made her, and as the 80s used to have a thing for telling you the name of your toy via a little tag on its butt, I thought that was her name. Princess is still with me, ancient, decrepit, falling apart. I took her to a Teddy Bear Clinic, a health awareness event put on by a local hospital, where some pleasant douchebag told me that she was going to die soon. I admit that in humans, a hole in the neck generally means a lowered life expectancy, but feel that when telling kids about their stuffed animals, you can exercise a modicum of deceit. In any case, I am still carting Princess around.

    My husband has a stuffed dog named Max who looks nearly identical to Princess, but has innards stuffed with old gym socks. Max has different colours but is in most respects, the same shape as Princess, so they might have been made by the same company. When I saw Max, I was charmed that my husband’s stuffed animal was so close to mine.

  21. A very old stuffed dog, circa 1953, stuffed with excelsior (the thin wood shavings you used to find for packing material before peanuts and bubble wrap). I named him “Bang”, he had button eyes, and a short tail, so he was probably a wire-haired fox terrier. Now, his insides are still pretty much there, he has a wire frame skeleton, and there are holes in the legs where you can see the stuffing. I’ve managed to save him from packers who wanted to throw him away as junk, from a messy divorce, and he’s been halfway around the world and back with me. He “resides” in my bedroom closet now, on a shelf that’s unreachable to the cats. I’ve been laughed at for having it, for keeping it, and for defending myself for even having it, but you know, I don’t give a damn. It was a happier time for me than other parts of my life, so those people who laugh just never had a happy childhood, I guess.

  22. My first response to this question was, “I’m too grown-up and serious to have a stuffed animal!” However, one look to my right reminded me that that is not entirely true. My mother used to collect Beanie Babies (her room is a shrine to them – don’t ask). When I was going through school, she bought me four different ones: each is an owl wearing a cap with a graduation year on it. If you include my high school diploma, I have one owl for each of my degrees (if you don’t, I have one for each of my degrees and one for good luck).

  23. My grandpa bought me a teddy bear when he found out my parents were expecting me (before I was born!) I still have him today, 39 years later. Named him Baby because I was young and that is what fell from my mouth! He accompanied me on multiple hospital visits (they even gave him his own wrist band) and I could not fall asleep without him.
    He now sits on a cupboard in my room. But when I am really sad, he has been known to still find his way into my arms.

  24. Big Bear. He is a sort of blondish teddy bear fully two and a half feet tall and I’ve had him since before I can remember.

  25. Bo Bear, who was a teddy bear wearing a NY Yankees shirt that I won in a claw game at a friend’s birthday party back in elementary school. I think I named him that because I knew next to nothing about sports, except that Bo Jackson was a sports guy, so it seemed an appropriate name. I have a lot of stuffed animals that I love, so it’s hard to pick a favorite, but Bo Bear has the best origin story.

  26. There are so many… my wife and I collect teddies, favoring the Chosun big-footed bears of about 10-15 years back. Take them to concerts, art fairs, movies. Needed a whole bag of them last weekend when I did my final radio show after 25 years.

    If I had to choose a favorite, it’d probably be Umberto (named because he has “bear toes”).

  27. If I had a stuffed animal as a child, I don’t remember it. But as an adult? I bought a stuffed StayPuft Marshmellow Man® for my wife (then girlfriend) in college. I’d made us Ghostbusters costumes for a Halloween party. Mr. Staypuft is still hale and hearty (though less than pristinely white), some 30 years later. I did do some minor repairs on him a couple of times. We also have several Opus the Penguins, in various costumes.

    My daughter has a tremendous stuffed animal collection. We thin the herd periodically, but my rule is, if it got named, it stays. She can decide about them when she leaves home. I’ve found SpaceBags to be an excellent way to store them. Suck all that air out, and they almost disappear.

  28. As an adult, current favorites are:
    1) the Tickle Me Cookie Monster that says “ha ha ha ha! Boy oh boy!” when squeezed – this used to live on my desk and when a particularly stupid task or email came along, he expressed my opinion: and
    2) the collection of thrift shop and seasonal clearance finds that I use to teach triage and mass casualty incidents. The MCI stuffies have been given injuries like decapitation, amputation, disembowelment…and it keeps student attention much better than a powerpoint does.

  29. I had an identical bear — Clarence, as I recall — although my two favorites were a hippo, named “Hippity Bippity” and a lion named “Richard Henry Leo” because I was born in 1970 and I got him in 1976, and my Dad listened to a lot of showtunes, especially “1776”

  30. My favorite was a plush Cecil the Seasick Sea Serpent. When you pulled the string he would say 11 different phrases. I carried him everywhere. He’s probably still around here somewhere.

  31. I think my favorites when I was little were an unmatched set of Raggedys–a red(yarn)headed Ann and Andy in what I think is the traditional navy blue and red outfits, and a blonde(yarn)-haired Ann in pink, all made by my maternal grandmother and now living in storage with much of the rest of my life. But my favorites now are my stuffed Opuses (Opi? Opii?)–standard version, holding a red heart, wearing reindeer antlers bearing a couple of red and green ornaments, and one wearing a straw hat and grass skirt that one of my friends gave me before my one and only trip to Hawaii. Also in storage, dammit. ***tragic sigh***

  32. All of my stuffed animals are named after scientists I admire. I have Carl, a husky, named after Carl Sagan; Marvin, a penguin with a “M” emblazoned on his chest, named after Marvin Minsky; and Dennis, a cardinal, named after Dennis Ritchie.

  33. My first bear, which I got on my first Christmas. He’s lost a lot of fur, but after 65 years you can still turn the key on his back and the music box inside still works!

  34. A stuffed duckling that my grandmother got me when I was a baby. When I was old enough to name it, I named it Chickie. I did not know that it was a duck. It didn’t register as a duck until I was a teenager and an ex-boyfriend pointed it out to me. I still have Chickie, and I still get annoyed whenever anyone calls Chickie a duck.

    I also have Babo, one of the Uglydolls, that a different ex-boyfriend (still friends with this one) got me. He is part of my life. I made him a superhero costume. He is in my avatar, with a cup of tea.

  35. My favorite stuffy is Jackson, a brown bear that is about 3 feet talk, sitting on the top of my bookshelf. he’s named after Jackson Hole WY where I bought him near 2 decades ago. He managed to snag his own airline seat when he wouldn’t fit into the overhead. Funny aside, that’s the trip that our luggage made it home before we did.

    However, I still have my mum’s stuffed puppy from the ’40’s that’s in a sealed container to keep her safe.

  36. I still have (and have only recently stopped sleeping with) the stuffed cow (Moo) I got as a birthday present in 6th grade. She’s pretty big with actual joints at the shoulders and hips so she’s pose-able, and except for the head she’s filled with beans, so she retains heat well. She went with me to college where no one mocked me for having her.

    Sometimes my mom would have a conversation with her (doing both voices) while I did my homework. We might be a bit odd.

  37. I still have an Opus around the closet, slightly grubby; Opus seems to be the stuffed penguin of choice here. I used to have a plush squeaky pig who rode on the dashboard of my car, named Wilbur the WarPig. Sadly, when my car was totaled, Wilbur went with it :(

  38. Cookie monster! still got him but he’s in humidity controlled storage now, being slightly older than sesame street has the advantages of getting the first releases of toys..

  39. My favorite is no longer with us. He was a panda whom I loved to death. I named him Scarecrow after my favorite character in the Wizard of Oz. I, of course, was Dorothy in my games. My sister gave me a panda some years ago, who is Scarecrow II.

  40. Mine was Pup, a red and white stuffed dog. Sadly, he died in our house fire when I was 6, but he’s always in my heart.

  41. I also had a pink elephant that my mother threw out when I was 5 or 6 & it got grubby & smelly. The first time I rescued it from the trash; second time she must’ve waited until after Ieft for school on trash day. Right now I have a stuffed chenille fish on my bed, given to me about 10 years ago by a childhood friend. I’m inclined to say that I’m not very attached to it, but then I can never seem to chuck it either so I guess I am. I’ve never named any of my stuffed animals

  42. I have a four feet tall teddy bear my daughter gave to me that I named Hecubus (Can you guess where I got the name?)

  43. I have absolutely no memory of owning a stuffed creature of any kind. That doesn’t necessarily mean I didn’t own one, just that it was not a significant enough event to have been written to my longterm memory banks.

  44. Mama Bear, who looks exactly like the photo, given to me on my first birthday. Also Ugly Moose, a stuffed moose I got when we visited Yellowstone when I was about 2. While I have no memories of the trip itself, I was told how I called all the moose “ugly moose”, hence the name. Both still live in my spare room, along with some other meaningful stuffed animals acquired along the way.

  45. I got an all plushie, no hard nose or eyes, bear for my 7th birthday. His name is Cuddles. He still hangs around my bed and sees occational use as the perfect sized small pillow 30 years later. He is also for sure male. Almost all my stuffed animals were, even though I’m female.

  46. I had a yellowy-brown teddy bear I called Tessa Bear, who stayed with me until I first moved to Canbrrra. She was a very well-loved bear, loved to the point of thread-bareness, and her nose had fallen off, plus the foam stuffing was perished when I finally left her behind. These days, I still have a bear (Bear Bear) which lives on my bed – a white one I picked up on a discount from a supermarket “collect the stamps” promotion (you were given a stamp every time you spent about $5 at a particular chain of supermarkets, and once you’d spent about $100 you were able to redeem the sheet of stamps and get a bear for something like about $15 or $20… previous such promotions had involved cookware, and dinner sets).

    I also have something of a stuffed menagerie, most of whom are stowed away in a tub in my room at present. The three which aren’t stowed away are Bear Bear; Zack (husky puppy) who spends time on my bed; and Cthulhu, who sits on the bed-head and acts as a sort of dream-catcher (don’t knock it, it works!). When I finally get around to finishing the cull and re-sort of my library, and start putting things up on shelves, I’ll pull out Ook (the orang-utan) to sit on top of the shelves as the librarian.

  47. I had an identical bear named Big Bear, a gift from before I was born. My second favorite was an Amy from the Hollie Hobby collection. They’re both on a bookshelf at my house today.

  48. This is a tough one for me, so many choices. I guess it would either be my mauve and pink, with tuft of yellow hair, octopus (Octavia) or my two foot tall brown T-rex (Fluffy).

    For my more recent acquisitions, I am quite fond of my herd of Cthulhus.(14)

  49. Alas we could not have stuffed animals in our house because my sister was allergic to them (strange eh?). I did however have a blanky that I called my “yum yum.” It had nylon around the edges that I would scratch while I sucked my thumb. Where I have stopped sucking my thumb over 55 years ago, I do still scratch the nylon on blankets.

  50. I had a lot of stuffed animals, but there are two that really meant a lot to me. The first I got from the Santa at my dad’s job. I was very small, perhaps three or four, and Santa handed out generic gifts to all the kids. It was a blue cow that I named “Moo Moo” (Not a lot of imagination, I know, but what else is a small kid going to call a cow?). Moo Moo was pretty much loved to death, and I think the last of him was nibbled on by mice in the attic while I was away at college.

    Another favorite was a stuffed lion. For those from the Chicago area, you may remember the Harris Bank lion mascot called Hubert from the 1970s. I wanted one very badly, so my parents opened an account at the Harris Bank to get me the lion for Christmas. He had a pince nez, but my sister stepped on it and broke it. Other than that, Hubert is still around and keeps my cats from scratching the woodwork in one of the bedrooms.

  51. I had a Pound Puppy, the little grey one with a red collar. He perished in a Christmas Eve house fire when I was eight. I clearly remember being pretty traumatized by the loss at the time, but now I can’t even remember what i named it, so I guess time heels all stuffed animal wounds. Of course three years later the real live pet dog that had been there since I was born died, which was much worse grief, and that still makes me sad. After the pound puppy I never got attached to stuffed animals any more. Since my dog died, I’ve had dogs (we even had another dog at the time who lived another four years) and cats, including my cat and my wife’s dog (now our cat and dog), and I love them all, but I don’t think I’ll ever be as close to another pet as I was to me first dog.

    #FirstWorldProblems

  52. I had a gigantic polar bear. Well, gigantic from a toddler’s perspective. I’m pretty sure someone gave it to me when I was born. My parents have photos of baby me asleep in it’s lap. I had that bear for years. Quite possibly the best toy ever.

  53. Teddy White. He was a teddy bear. He was white. My sisters had Teddy Blue and Teddy Pink, respectively. We were quite a literal family. Teddy is threadbare and beige, these days, but he’s still atop my wardrobe.

  54. My teddy bear from when I was a little kid. He’s about 18 inches long and is your basic brown bear. He used to have a music box, but that wore out eons ago. I still have him.

  55. I never had one. My younger brother did…but by the time I was four, I was head over heels in love with my ZX81 (it had the booster pack!) and playing…and writing… v simple games.
    My brother still has his stuffed teddy bear (a dog named Boot…who got booted (punt-kicked) around a lot), to the best of my knowledge…but my ZX81 is long gone…

  56. Hi John,

    I’m gonna cheat. I just viewed your photos from Mammoth Cave. I visited the park, but was traveling and didn’t take the time to go underground into the cave. I read a book some years ago about a group of cavers who were exploring into the depths of a cave near Mammoth, and because a dam was being repaired, they were able to go deeper into their cave, and came up into Mammoth Cave.

    Where they were promptly arrested for being in parts of the cave that “tourists” weren’t allowed into. After lots of explanation and demonstration, they showed that their method of getting into verbotten areas of Mammoth Cave wasn’t illegal.

    More interesting, since you’re interested in caves… back a few years, fall of 2012 I believe, we signed up with Archaelogical Institute of America for a tour of the ancient caves with paintings in Spain and France. Not easy, nor cheap, but worth every bit of sweat and lucre.

    The art work is past imagination. In some caves the guide can move her lamp, and the animal moves to look at you. 30,000 years old, and scary good. You get to visit serious archaeological digs, with any luck meet famous researchers, we met the guy who discovered Lucy… who hugged our tour guide, Paul Bahn… who speaks French and Spanish like a native. Amazing, worth it, see the past of our species.

    http://www.archaeological.org/sites/default/files/aia-tourschedule1q_2015_web.pdf

    This links to the 2015 tours, the Lascaux caves etc is in September.

    Best of luck in Australia,
    JR in W Va.

  57. I had a 1980 olympics Misha bear. I still have it. It is worn quite a bit after 35 years, but it is mine.

  58. Almost certainly my stuffed pink elephant (eventually named Susan after going through a few other names), about 41 or 42 years old, rather worn and understuffed, and the only one that got brought over from England to the US.

  59. I had a smallish stuffed white dog with black spots. I still have it stored away, though the stuffing long ago fell out – while I was still a kid – and now it looks more like a dog-skin rug than a stuffed animal. I don’t remember his name, but it might’ve been something original like “Dog.”

  60. I have a gizmo and a bear my husband brought back from Korea around 85 or so, they went every where with me for years. My favorite is however the fleece baby that is the same size as my son when he was born, especially now that he just outgrew me at 15.

  61. I have had a stuffed rabbit called Bunny since I was a few months old, in 1958, and still have him (though with new body and new trousers in his life, so is he still the same broom?). I did lose him once in a department store on Hamra street (in Beirut) when I was about three but we realised quickly and retrieved him. I did not take him to boarding school. But I have never been keen on eating rabbit out of loyalty, though I don’t absolutely refuse.

    In adulthood he and my brother’s animal, a penguin called Erp, went missing for about ten years, and I imagined the young daughter of a cleaner must have taken a liking to them, or something. We didn’t accuse anyone of anything, and just as well as they were found in a suitcase under a bed in 2004, stuck there since my parents moved house in 1994.

    As kids we had had a whole menagerie… Big Elephant, Trampy (another elephant), Simba (a lion) and a bunch of others whose names I forget, much like Rabbit’s friends and relations in Winnie-the-Pooh. But we left them behind when we left Beirut in 1970.

    As well as the rabbit, I had a Linus-in-Peanuts-style blanket and used to suck my thumb. But I stopped that by about eight.

  62. I had a bear, called Big Bear; stuffed animals were difficult to get in Britain in the 1940s. And I had a dog, originally my father’s, called Small Dog.

    Not the most original names, and they are now fairly scruffy (Small Dog must be well past his century) but they still seem happy together. I wish I could tell them how happy they’ve made me.

    Will

  63. I have a firefox. And because I am Bad At Names he is called “firefox” (I have a whole zoo, they are all named similarly unimaginatively). Firefoxes (more properly Red Pandas) are cute and fuzzy and hideously endangered. I’ve met several in zoos, but have yet to travel to Nepal to actually see any in the wild.

  64. I had a stuffed tiger, with a zippered pouch to put stuff in. His name was Stripey. He eventually wore out and fell apart, as do we all.

  65. does patchwork quilt count? the one I use is as old as I (+/- a few weeks) and got even a factory maintenance (i.e. mum :)) in January (the first one in 35 years – high quality ftw!)

  66. A stuffed dog I named Bruno. I’ve had him as long as I can remember, and I slept with him until I moved into the dorms in my junior year, which is a little bit embarrassing. I still have him, and always will. He is #2 on my resuce from a fire list, topped only by my pets.

  67. I had a posse of stuffed animal friends. Like a gang. They were violent and rude, and frequently drank. The leader of the gang was Leonard the Lion. He had pierced ears (as did most of my animals with ears). He fought with Gigi the ragdoll a LOT. The drunkenness stemmed mostly from the frog (now renamed Bella by my 3 yr old who watches Magic School Bus) — but Froggy was just Froggy back then — and he got ripping drunk on fly based beer on St. Patrick’s Day. Could be that he was angry at being mis-identified with gender and is much happier now that she’s Bella.

    My father was the architect of much of this passion play, but definitely contributed and encouraged this world-building. It was his methodology of getting me engaged and interested during the wake up for school routine. Now that I have a small person to herd, I really respect his tactics.

  68. My wife and I have approximately 20 stuffed animals around the house, and naming a favorite would cause a riot. I bought her the first, a bear, because she had never had a teddy bear as a child, and the others just accreted over time. They argue a lot but they love each other.

  69. I have a stuffed donkey called Pinocchio. My dad brought him back from a business trip, I must have been five or so, so he is about 38. Well loved, I still have him. And he is NEVER to be called Eeyore. No. You will die. He still comes and cuddles with me if I am sad.

  70. I had a cat that was crying, plastic tears down the little sad plastic face. The body was stuffed. When we were shopping in Sears (a very long time ago) I saw the cat and I cried as we were leaving the store. My father asked why I was crying and I told him the kitty wanted to go home with me. It did. If I could ever find another one today, I would buy it. Poor kitty.

  71. I think I grew up in an era before the term ‘nurture’ came into vogue. My blanket was taken away from me for reasons I can’t recall now at a very early age. In fact, I can’t even remember having a little ‘blankie.’ Yeah, I know, poor me. So, it goes without saying I didn’t have stuffed animals back then either. At present, there is a little stuffed teddy bear my son gave me many years ago. I put the mealtime toy on a triceratops ceramic that my son made.

  72. That would be the light pink with yellow pads/ears teddy bear that my aunt gave me when I was born. I still have him, though he’s grey now and his features are drawn with felt-tip since they fell off long ago. His full name is Theodore Edward Bear, because my brother and I thought he needed to be Teddy Teddy Bear.

    Am also very fond of one of my buffaloes (don’t tell the others), one of my Highland cows (ditto), my cartoony bighorn sheep, and the small Pooh Bear my husband bought when we were first dating. And my collection of Giant Microbes.

    Athenrein: I go to cons with Sailor Babo! He has a 4th Doctor scarf.

  73. I had hundreds of stuffed animals (possibly closer to 50). I earned a Girl Scout badge in collecting with my stuffed animals. (I remember I had to visit a toy museum and give a report on it.) They all had names, and file cards with dates of acquisition and such.
    Oddly enough, I don’t recall any particular favorite.

  74. I had a Santa made from cutting out two pieces of cloth with the design on it and stuffing it (like S. J. Pajonas’s bunny above). I slept with it until high school, and the fabric wore almost totally away and the stuffing clumped badly. In my senior year my mother bought a new, slightly larger design. She gave it to me with one side not sewn yet, so I could watch her insert the original Santa and know that he really was in there, before she finished it up. I cried.

    Santa now lives in my son’s room, along with my Chewbacca (carried to the theater to see the first run of Empire Strikes Back).

  75. I gawped at the photo of the bear, as hir cousin Bobbi Bear is sitting on top of the dresser in my bedroom. My grandmother sent her to me during my first year at uni, when I was desperately homesick and wanted to get on the next plane back. She’s been joined by the Husband’s Curious George and the Paddington Bear I bought at a kiosk near Paddington Station 13 years ago.

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