Victor is very lucky. He might disagree about that.

A lot of people sent me this clipping about an auction that was filled with 104 taxidermied animals, and I saw the bear photo and said, “THAT BEAR WANTS TO COME LIVE WITH US.”   Victor disagreed.


I assumed that he disagreed because of the gross, bloody trout and I explained that if Herbert was mine I would toss the fish and make it into a bear that could hug me.  And then whenever I was feeling down I could snuggle into the bear and he’d be like “There, there, little bunny.  You’re gonna be just fine.  Let me love you.”  Then Victor said we didn’t have any room for Herbert because he doesn’t understand that there’s always room for love.  But then I read a little further and decided that Victor was right because I really only collect taxidermied animals who died of natural causes or were older than me and Herbert didn’t qualify.  It was a sad morning.  But then Victor gave me a hug and said “There, there, little bunny.  You’re insane but I still love you.”  And that was almost as good as a Herbert hug.


PS.  I made an image to show Victor how Herbert would look without the fish because Victor has very little imagination when it comes to dead bears comforting you.  And I thought you might need it.  You’re welcome.

I made an image to show Victor how Herbert would look without the fish.  Victor has very little imagination when it comes to dead bears comforting you.

Herbert.  (If you pronounce his name with a French accent it sounds like “Hair-Bear”.)

141 replies. read them below or add one

  1. “And that was almost as good as a Herbert hug.”

    I was about to say “nothing is as good as a Herbert hug,” but then you said “almost” and I realized just how on the same page we were. I WANT ONE!

    Nic recently posted My Gym Playlist Indicates That I Might Be Into Hardcore, Kinky Sex (Which, Am I?).

  2. In offices and homes all over the world, there are people sitting in front of their screens mouthing “hair-bear” and giggling. Congratulations…you just made the world a better place! 🙂

    P.S. I don’t understand how Victor could not get why a Hair-bear hug would be awesome at any time. But particularly when you NEED one.

    TheFakeGourmet recently posted Cooking lesson #22: Don’t try to cook 3 new things at once. It may not end well..

  3. Now if there was a way to get him riding the Pegasus on wheels…that’d be something indeed.

    Jess @ NoPithyPhrase recently posted Dear Russia: Goats, Unicorns, Babies, Spam can all be found here..

  4. You’ve got a decent Herbert stand-in there. Well-done Victor, well-done.

    mousegoddess recently posted In Which Demons are Battled.

  5. Have Victor grow his nails out, then try the hug again.

  6. I am not sure about a Herbert Hug. He has Very Big Claws. (also, Victor rocks)

    margomusing recently posted Jennifer Saunders at the Bath Lit. Fest..

  7. Herbert reminds me of when my toddler is covered in questionable food substances and insists on snuggling me despite the fact that I’m wearing my dry clean only clothes. (Not that I actually dry clean them, I just wash them very carefully at home and hope they don’t ever get ketchup ground into them.)

  8. When the hugs run out my one year old nephew is super awesome at licking faces.
    Just let me know.

  9. I will love you with TEEFS!
    (That was in my Hair Bear voice. I’m not actually offering to bite you. That would be weird.)

    Are hair bears one of the cute knock off Care Bears from the 80s?

    April recently posted Planning a Wizard of Oz birthday party.

  10. Your own personal bear hug whenever you wanted? Absolutely you need to have him. Also, maybe you need to market that because I might totally buy taxidermied bears just to be able to hug them.

  11. I prefer my hugs from good looking live men, but I suppose it would do in a pinch.

    Jenny Williams recently posted Vi Hart: Geek Math Hero.

  12. Herbert doesn’t appear to be the snuggling type…
    Your husband sounds like mine. We are lucky to have found men who get our crazy thinking selves.

    susielindau recently posted Are You Ready “to” Spring?.

  13. You would make the most perfect red herring character in a horror movie. You know that, right?

    According2Robyn recently posted Tradition.

  14. and yet I feel a little sorry for the trout – maybe he needs a little love too? Hands up for who wants a hug from an eviscerated trout…anyone? anyone? Bueller…

    thetattootourist recently posted Getting Inked in Steel City – I Feel You, Pittsburgh.

  15. 15
    Jonathan H.
    The Hair Bear Bunch

  16. Now I just want a bear hug!

    angie@LoveTheRunning recently posted Mental Illness Awareness and Suicide Prevention.

  17. How could you buy a house without room for a potential Herbert? You should have an entire extra room for weird things you might come across.

  18. Unless Victor can give you a bear hug (see what I did there?!) it is not the same.

    The Dose of Reality recently posted Hello Idina Menzel Or Should We Say Adele Dazeem.

  19. I’ll bet that with the right 3-D printer, you can make your own Herbert.

  20. Appearing in tonight’s nightmares……

  21. 21
    Chantal Bon

    I’m confused as to how you think he didn’t die of natural causes….he clearly starved to death, because look at those motor skills. The way he’s holding that fish is like trying to eat soup with a knife.

  22. Victor is awesome!!

  23. Appearing in tonight’s nightmares

  24. I do need a hug from Herbert the bear. That would make my day better.

  25. You’re right. I did need that. Thanks.

  26. Kinda looks like it would be a hug with a butt-grab, though.

  27. Sounds like you are lucky to have Victor too!

  28. Sorry about the double comment. I’m heavily medicated.

  29. You’re right. I did need that. Thank you.

  30. I would hug the SHIT out of that bear.

    Katy Bug recently posted Four in February 2014: FAIL.

  31. I want a dead bear hug now. And I suppose that it would probably be a good think to only have stuffed dead bears if your house is prepared to receive one.

  32. 32

    I could use a Herbert hug!!!! Quick you need to patent that. The hug would help me celebrate the small win I have had today for not crying from frustration. Had enough strength to say my piece and make it very clear I have had enough and that I can think of nothing that will fix it but I am gonna change it and they won’t like the outcome. (thanks to the extra meds….. but who is counting, right???) cause it is still a win and the more I build on that win the better things will get….. soon!

    HUGS TO EVERYONE!!!!!! Depression Lies!!!!!

  33. At least Herbert comes with fair warning (note:claws) that hugging MAY lead to mauling. Granted, if you are not hugging bears, the mauling potentially happens to your heart (ahhh, heartbreak) when the hugging ceases.

    Also, I am not sure what it says about me that “There, there, little bunny. You’re insane but I still love you” is possibly one of the very most romantic phrases I’ve ever come across.

    Adminderella recently posted Social Media Choices Can Be Overwhelming.

  34. Victor is definitely lucky. 😀

    Brooke recently posted Do You Know My Name?.

  35. I would have nightmares for weeks if this were in my house! I remember my grandmother had the head of the deer above her fireplace when I was a kid, and I never liked sitting in the living room after dark alone. It takes great courage to share a house with dead animals!

    racheltoalson recently posted Dear society: Boys can cry, too..

  36. Also, yes..Victor is very lucky. My husband is lucky. All husbands are lucky. Except my first husband. His second wife was horrible. We should feed her to the bear.

  37. Before I got to you naming him Herbert, I decided his name is Herman. See if Victor will let you have HERMAN.

    Kitten Thunder's Girl recently posted A Life Less Miserable.

  38. Herbet is terrifying! Fish or no! Maybe I just like tiny cute adorable little animals–not ones taller than I with claws the size of my arms!

    I’m going with Victor on this one!

    Brittany Boyce recently posted Dr. Who?.

  39. 39
    Al Berzins

    Has Herbie still got his Crown Jewels etc. ’cause THAT would be Interesting

  40. 40

    Those nails would cut you, as I’m assuming I would want drunken bear hugs/use the bear as my gaming chair and pretend he was helping me defeat the Dark Side. I would have to sit on another chair to make this work, so really he’s just the chair arms/back but for that smiling face? Totally worth it. Plus, when we did NASCAR races, it would be like he’s guiding the Wii steering wheel when we turn sharp corners. Pure awesome.

  41. I wish I had an old bear friend that would die of natural causes and then I would stuff it and send it to you for your birthday. Complete with huggy arms.

  42. 42
    Ashlie Johnston

    I ♥ Herbert…he could totally be Beyonce’s new BFF!

  43. That fish definitely does not belong there…

    Poor bear. Now I’m thinking of how he must have died.


    Jane @ The Blue Morpho recently posted Dear Universe, I Have an Announcement.

  44. And it’s in my hometown! I wish I still lived there.

  45. Herbert looks like he wants to hug you WITH HIS MOUTH.

  46. Seriously. I can’t stop looking at the claws. I’d be a scared bunny.

  47. I work for a company that does large scale digital printing. I can make you a realistic looking life sized stand-up cut-out of a bear that you can keep in the shower of your guest bathroom as a nice surprise for overnight visitors. It won’t be cuddly, but it also won’t have been alive at any point. (FYI, we can make life-sized cutout’s of almost anything — including Victor). Think about it.

    (We need to talk. For real. ~ Jenny)

  48. I wrote a book that’s coming out in October that has demons and basically goes against religion, because I’m a rebel like that, but Herbert made me think of one of the demons that gets the drop on our hero. It’s called an ursa demon and I totally made it up. They’re like skinned bears and it literally bear hugs the hero in the book before he stabs it in the mouth with a bowie knife and ultinately destroys it with holy water (wow, this book sounds horrible if you’re not actually reading it…). If Herbert was bald, he’d be the perfect ursa demon.

    I could totes use a bear hug today. 🙁

  49. Ha ha! Can’t believe Victor didn’t go for it 😀

    Rhonda recently posted Poor Little Rich Girl.

  50. I luv u and your posts & ,your book. You Made my insanity ok and all the crazy notes I leave for my husband , acceptable behavior. You r my hero.

  51. 51
    detta penna

    Maybe Herbert could close his mouth and look a bit more nuzzly than bitey.

  52. Hi dang it I forgot to attach my link. Anyways luv all if it.

    Laurie Free recently posted The Non Profit Biz.

  53. I was with you until the modified photo. That’s kind of scary, but still awesome.

    Isn’t the French version of Herbert “Hubert”? I kind of like that better, because it sounds like “who-bear” I feel like that could lead to some fun who’s-on-first-esque conversations.

    You should definitely continue to search for a Who-Bear who meets your taxidermy standards. You could write it off as material for the next book. Or the Polish one? The one with the bear on the cover? You can retroactively write stuff off, right? Or charge that publishing company? Because you clearly need a bear now.

  54. maybe Herbert could close his mouth and look a bit more nuzzly and a bit less bitey.

  55. Herbert looks a lot less scary without the bloody trout. Who WOULDN’T want to hug him?

  56. Pure awesomeness! I took taxidermy high school. I was a weird kid…

  57. Everyone needs hugs. Even dead bears holding fishies.

  58. You could totally rig up Herbert mechanically to give squeezie hugs. Oooh. And then you could attach a coin box and pimp him out for bear hugs at a quarter a pop! Ooooh!! And then? Then, you could write about his adventures in bear prostitution and write off the whole thing on your taxes!!!!

    You are so welcome Victor. ; 0)

    kidlitskorner recently posted Happy Day o' Love.

  59. On a separate note – that’s a darned good job of photo editing! Yes I can see where the fish was, but if I hadn’t seen the original I would not have thought it anything except mottled fur.
    Kudos to you!

  60. uh, don’t bears eat bunnies? you might want to stick with victor hugs.

  61. If he were a lion or tiger, I’d buy him. I’ve always wanted a huge, cuddly pussy that wouldn’t try to kill me.

    lisarpetty recently posted Paging Dr. Doogie!.

  62. Herbert would make an awesome backscratcher

  63. Wouldn’t it be more like “air-bay” in French?

  64. I think I love Victor. He so gets it…and you. Not too many of those around….guys who get it and maintain a semblance of humor. It’s a dying art…and a dying breed.

    The Wifely Person recently posted Vladimir the Great and Other Delusions of Grandeur.

  65. Jenny, your blogs always make me laugh and feel better. I love that you are just as weird as me! (No insult intended) I hope you have a wonderful day. 🙂

  66. LOL Herbert has so many uses! Love giver. Coat hanger. Back scratcher. Door guard. Foot warmer. Nose picker. Hat holder. In-law deterrent.

  67. What perfect timing. I have been needing a hug today.

  68. Why does Victor insist on crushing our dreams? Also? My maiden name is Hebert, and is pronounced A-Bear.. so, you know, hugging me would be just as good. Probably. Just think about it.

    Rachael recently posted B.I.T.C.H. It's Real..

  69. Can you see my email address? My email at work is and our phone number here is 412-788-0640.

  70. Victor is kind of perfect at times, isn’t he? ^^

  71. That was absolutely brill! You and Victor seem to take part in some pretty bizarre conversations…that are really pretty awesome. Thanks for the laugh. Now, I too, am on the look out for a huggable bear (:

    A Thousand Moments More recently posted One For The Train.

  72. 72
    Tracey Lee

    I love you. You are the weirdest of all of my friends and that makes you extra awesome. That is all. Carry on. <3

  73. Victor hugs are almost as good as taxidermied bear hugs?? That’s high praise indeed!

  74. Oh, hug me, Herbert (French way), ooh, la la!

    Kathleen recently posted Agustín Wednesday.

  75. Herbert could also serve as a very effective burglar alarm. If I was sneaking in your house, that would make me run in the other direction. It would be fun to hide that just off your front porch too. You wouldn’t need a doorbell. You would know someone was coming to the door by the screams.

    You might have to hug everyone that comes to your door after that scare though. Is Victor prepared for that?

    Laurie recently posted And This is What Texting with Mom Looks Like.

  76. Imagine how classy Hair-bear would look with a French manicure. That might win Victor over.

    jaclynschoknecht recently posted Seven Kids to Watch Out For When Throwing a Birthday Party.

  77. I’m with thetattooartist; the fish needs some love, too. Maybe the trout could be cleaned up (who wants to go through their stuffed afterlife looking like a horror movie victim?) and someone could hinge and motorize the tail so he could swim in a dentist’s tank and scare the crap out of people.

  78. 78

    Mary Beth must have the best job EVER!!! I want a huge print of the bear. If I had the real bear I’d just want to paint the nails EVERY SINGLE DAY! I have stupid fingernails but those are like dream painting nails!!!

  79. 79

    An illustration in our upcoming game is wildly apropos.
    (only have the draft pencil sketch by illustrator Noah Patrick Pfarr, his color version not ready yet. Next time, coordinate the timing of your bear hug posts, Jen! Sheesh!)

    (That little girl is so me. ~ Jenny)

  80. My brother has a standing bear. I must say, his is much better looking. That one is awful. Good job on the photoshop (except for the fish tail) He looks better without it.

  81. I’d hug that bear. I’d hug that bear every damn day.

    Emelie recently posted My Morning Routine is Starting to Get a Little Weird..

  82. 82

    I need Herbert merchandise for a friend who is deathly afraid of bears. I really think a Herbert mug would help her get past that. Or scream. I’m sort of cool with either one.

  83. Unfortunately, I have to agree w/ Victor on nixing the bear. See, the way his arms are, every time you hugged him, he’d be grabbing your butt (which is Victor’s job, and he probably doesn’t want to have that part of his job given to a dead bear).

  84. I don’t whether I should pity, Victor… or envy him.
    Let’s go with envy, shall we?

    The Hook recently posted You know things are quiet in the hotel biz when….

  85. I love the name, Herbert. I can totally picture him living in France wearing a jaunty beret. My son has a bear from his childhood named Albert (if you pretend your French, like I do in my head, it’s Al-Bear). I think Herbert and Albert would be good friends. It’s in a box upstairs. I think you should get Herbert so we can test this theory.

  86. “Hair-bear” looks like he could hold a trombone with no difficulties.

  87. It’s settled then. Victor needs a bear suit.

    Psychobabble recently posted Reminders.

  88. I read every single one of the replies and can’t help feel that all 87 of you are missing the point here. Yes, hair-bear is fetching, but Dungarees Guy in the Background! I need to know his story. Expose? (I don’t know how to make a Frenchie letter thingy, so I’m not asking you to expose yourself to him, or him to us. That’s just a rude request. I’m wanting an ex-po-say on his whole deal.)

  89. That actually sounds super comforting. Like those hugging machines they make for autistic children. I want one of those. But this is better because it is also warm and furry and not just cuddling up to plywood.

    ideationms recently posted Hot Air Ballooning.

  90. THAT is from my hometown newspaper, and the gentleman who had this bear is almost certainly someone my aunt knew (he lived in Dexter City, which is totally NOT a city but is a very tiny town of a few flung out houses, an ice cream stand, and a porn store). I’m not sure if I should be proud or mortified right now, not even gonna lie.

    Shayla recently posted Apparently makeup can help you feel better.

  91. Victor sometimes says things to you that my husband has said (or might say) to me! Also, BOOM! Herbert is my new desktop background! May his hugs inspire me to work on my term paper.

  92. I had an uncle we called Hair Bear. He was hairier than your Herbert, though.

  93. “You’re insane but I still love you” – that man is a keeper! I’m not sure if Herbert would be as tolerant of your unique thought process. I’ve heard that bears can be kind of grumpy 😉

    Kat recently posted Wordless Wednesday.

  94. I constantly want to send you pictures of taxidermy-ed animals but my kids go, “You don’t really know that person, she’ll think you’re a weirdo,” but then again, what if I find something truly epic and you miss it?!

  95. Well, I LOVE ‘hair-bair’. I think the name alone is worth a change in the rules. But if he didn’t die of natural causes… oh dear.

    There, there, little bunny…

    stef recently posted No, You CAN'T Share My Swim Lane--More Awkward Encounters.

  96. I love the expression on his face! The same face every single Oprah audience member had when she would give away her favorite things.

  97. A wise woman once said, “A hug is like a strangle you haven’t finished yet.”

    Hubert looks like a hugger who can finish what he starts.

  98. If you pronounced Herbert with a German accent, would he be Herr Bear?

    He is handsome!

  99. Oh, small world!!! That auction happened in my home town and my father purchased the groundhog for me for my birthday. I pre-approved the purchase of the angry dead fox with deader squirrel, the bat, badger and skunk, but W. Charles Marmota works. You can meet him here:

    He’s a handsome fellow.

    kstewand4cats recently posted 21 Pounds.

  100. 101
    h. miller

    Also? That bear woild make a great back scratcher!

  101. “When I was a kid my favorite relative was Uncle Caveman. After school we’d all go play in his cave, and every once in a while he would eat one of us. It wasn’t until later that I found out that Uncle Caveman was a bear.” – Jack Handey

    Victor needs to understand that you need Huggy Herbert Bear in remembrance of Uncle Caveman.

  102. OMG I want one! That. Is. AWESOME!

  103. Imagine the fun you could have at Halloween!!!

    mmaxwellbey recently posted the coin.

  104. Ah. I loved that Victor filled in for Herbert…how sweet!!

  105. Victor disagreed? (Since when has that ever stopped you?) Jenny, gotta say, that’s a little scary to hear. You must not have wanted huggy bear 100 percent or that sweet thing would be in your kitchen playing card games with Hailey now and drinking honey milkshakes. Kind of diappointed in you. Your friend, Laurie F. recently posted Cranky Is As Cranky Does…I’m HUNGRY.

  106. How much for the taxidermied man on cellphone in the background? Asking for a friend.

  107. If the bear was posable I’d buy the rocking chair behind him and sit Herbert in it. Then put the entire ensemble in your guest room.

    Sandy the Fearless Scribe recently posted What's in my purse: The boring edition.

  108. I was having the worst morning… and then there was ‘le herbert’ (whose name will ALWAYS be said in a French accent) ready to give me a comforting, dead, bear hug.

    Katy recently posted Two Practical Aprons and One 'Racy' One.

  109. I think Victor will be very grateful that I only became aware of this auction after it had taken place as who could resist number 4 ‘magpie on a football field’ or perhaps number 6 ‘pair of pheasants fighting’ and for pure rarity there is number 35 ‘albino ferret’ sigh

  110. I think the claws would be an issue. Sad that he didn’t die of natural causes. 🙁

  111. Oh my God I needed that! Thank you, again!

  112. 113

    I think that Victor’s reserve of “Appreciating Awesome” might be all used up on Hailey and you.

  113. Unless that image is copyrighted, I expect to see this on a t-shirt soon.

    Actually, I expect it regardless of copyright.

  114. OMG, that bear is spectacular. I think I want him, only TX is far too far a trip to justify to my husband as a bear-finding mission. We have a bear-themed room, that wasn’t a bear-themed room, until the day we went to a furniture consignment shop to find a “square, wooden table for less than $50” – this is the reasonable conversation Husband and I had before we left the house – and I instead decided that I had to have the $250 bear table that was sitting, unloved, on their display floor. Yes, a whole table of bear. His name is Seamus and I love him, even if he is only ceramic. Maybe someday we will love him enough that he can become a real bear, like Pinocchio. And on account of Seamus, we now have a bear-themed room. It complements the artwork that our previous owners left behind in the barn, including a painting of a Satanic, androgynous cowbull. I love that, too.

    I’m recovering from the flu and am maybe a little loopy and spending too much time writing comments online. Forgive the ramble.

  115. That is awesome. Now I want a hug from Herbert.

  116. Sooo..what does your daughter think of all the very still, oddly dressed critters in the house?

  117. you make a really excellent point…..always room for love, which clearly that bear is offering a lot of. And as a bonus… fish!

    kellml289 recently posted My Interpretation of the Oscars (roughly to completely inaccurate).

  118. I want that photo as a motivational poster at work. There’s many a day that I need a Herbert hug to get through the insanity

    skullwoman recently posted Commute Music of the Week 3/7/2014-Macy Gray “I Try”.

  119. Herbeart. #fixeditforyou

  120. My husband would probably let me get Herbert, but he’d probably want to get a bear on his own. We have two fish and formerly had a goose that he had taxied. The goose scared his niece because he had it hanging in the guest bedroom and placed so that it looked like it was swooping down on you while you slept. He has since given that to an old man and now we just have two fish in our Hall of Fish. They don’t hug us though. 🙁

    AmberLynn Pappas recently posted Prepped.

  121. Is it wrong that I’m absurdly proud that this auction is happening in my home town?

  122. Aw big bear. Every little thing gonna be alright. I sorry they stole your fish. X Chicken

  123. Please tell me you know about Walter Potter.

  124. We need you to have this bear in your life.

  125. My boyfriend squashed my dream of an espresso cart on the streets of indonesia with my little espresso monkey and side kick, Sumatra, in much the same way. Bastards.

    Stacey recently posted I'm Posting! Huzzah!.

  126. I kind of want one that sings like that bass fish.

  127. I love this! You NEED it.

    The Munter recently posted Boo Fucking Who, Little johnny didn’t get a ribbon.

  128. 129
    Steve the Fan

    In my mind, Herbert looks as though he’s confused because he was in the middle of a saxophone solo, when someone swooped in and swapped his sax for a trout. Yeah, my ind is a weird place.

  129. Haha I love this blog, if you love this blog you will love mine too

  130. You and Victor are one of the best couples in the world, ever.

  131. The guy on the phone in the background is totally calling the cops to report the crazy lady staring at a taxidermied bear while muttering something about “hair” and “bears” and Photoshopping fish. You’ll notice that he has his hand over the mouthpiece because crazy people are notoriously good at reading lips, particularly the words, “send the men in white coats.”

    And as a side note, my husband’s name is Herbert and our French relatives cannot pronounce it AT ALL. They finally went with “Pherb” prounounced “Fairrrrrrb” with that guttural, phlegmy French R that makes everyone within earshot want to clear their throats after they say it. Just sayin’.

    Sandy recently posted True Mom Confessions.

  132. whoever this cassie person is commenting i really need her as my publicist. also maybe my c.p.a.
    and my tax attorney. i’m probably gonna need one of those.

  133. His razor-sharp, two-inch long claws scream “I will peel the muscle from your bones!” But his eyes are so kind.

    Marianne recently posted Lazy.

  134. Victor how could you deny Jenny some real “care-bear” love? I suggest you all rethink the possibilities that such a unique critter like Herbert could provide! These hugs are unconditional people!!!

  135. Victor is very lucky indeed. Who is the man behind Hairbear and who is he talking to?? Wait, why can’t you have Hairbear again? He didn’t die of natural causes did he…

  136. I love bear hugs!

    Punky Coletta recently posted How do you feel about perfect attendance awards?.

  137. I think there’s an antique store in my town that shared your love for taxidermied animals. They have a bear outside their shop, under the awning, that they dress up for the seasons and holidays. Right now, it’s wearing a red curly wig, green jacket, and green skirt to match, like an Irish Hermione Granger.

    You could have done that with Herbie. Totally.

  138. Should I wait till that dude gets off the phone to take the picture?

  139. its very unique site. thank you very much.

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