By Charles Matthias

I wrote this back in 1998 in a fit of silliness.

Somebody must have had some marijuana at the party last night, because the memories that David had of it were simply too bizarre to be real. He had been escorted home by hallucinations even. As the last strands of sleep and the world of dreams faded away, he could still barely remember the faces. Had somebody come to the party dressed as Winnie the Pooh? Or was that Smokey the Bear?

Regardless what fantastic things he had witnessed the previous night, it was now well into the afternoon, and despite his hangover, he needed to get up. David struggled past the covers, throwing off blanket after blanket. The only thing he had on was a pair of bright yellow shorts. Where did he get those things? Oh yes, somebody passed them out at the party last night. It was all so much a blur!

Scrambling into the bathroom, trying to wipe the sleep from his bleary eyes, he resolved to wake himself up and to break the worst oft he hangover. A nice cold shower would be more than sufficient to clear his foggy mind. David felt so dead, he didn't even bother to take the shorts off.

When the water struck his skin, it felt electrifying, and his eyes snapped open. He cried out att he shock of the icy blast, and fumbled at the draw curtain, trying to stay on his feet. He was only going to remain in the shower for a few moments, that would be all that it took to get him up, but something odd caught his attention.

David decided that whatever had been smoked at the party last night was not completely out of his system. For on his skin were strnads of white hairs. There seemed to be a lot of them in fact. And they were all over the place! The more he watched, the more grew from his flesh. What was worse, his nails began to darken and thicken untilt hey looked more like claws. Yet the most pronounced feature of his delusion was that his belly began to swell to four, no five times its previous size. Perhaps further, he couldn't tell. Yet the yellow shorts did not break, but seemed to grow along with him.

Once the changing stopped, David setpped out of the shower, and peered at his mirror. Staring back at him was the face of a polar bear. He blinkd, and it blinked; he opened his mouth, and the great muzzle before him opened wide. It was quite unbelievable. What a most realisitic halluciantion! He'd never experienced anything like this before.

Suddenly, there was a knocking at his door. He turned to answer it, but realized that he couldn't do so like this - not as a bear. You aren't a bear silly, it's just the drugs making you look like that, he reminded himself.

So he lumbered over towards the door, he found his waist bobing up and down quite a bit as he walked. He must still be human after all, bear's can't walk on two legs. He found peering out the peephole to be rather difficult, because apparently he felt like his muzzle was there! Everytime he leaned forward, he would bump his "nose" on the door frame. Whatever that guy was smoking, he wanted some of it for himself next time!

Finally, he peered out from the side of his head, and saw something shocking. Standing out there was two other bears in yellow shorts! And then his fogged mind managed to recall them. They were the two guys who'd dressed up as bears at the party last night. They'd been the ones who'd given him the yellow shorts as well.

And for some strange reason, he felt comp[elled to let them in. Opening wide his door, the two other bears, one a grizzly, the other a polar bear like himself, stepped into his apartment. They both carreid briefcases in one paw, and seemed rather official in bearing.

"David Adams?" the grizzly asked.


"I see you have just recently sampled our product," the polar bear added, pointing at the floor with one claw. David looked down and noticed that he had forgot to dry himself off. His fur was totally soaked and clinging to his massive form. The floor was wet all over.

"Who are you guys?"

"I'm Banjo, and this is my associate Matt," The grizzly replied. "We are the charter members of WUN."

"One what?"

"No, WUN. W. U. N. World Ursinization Now," Matt explained calmly, setting his briefcase down on the coffee table next to a stack of beer cans. Calmly, he lifted out a pamphlet and handed it to David, who took it in his own paw. "We are committed to turning every human into a morphic bear, such as ourselves and now you. Membership is free for all morphic bears. The benefits are quite extensive."

"Benefits?" This was way too bizarre. He must have passed out at the party and still be dreaming. Yet this seemed so real His nose still hurt from bumping it into the doro so many times.

"Well there are different levels of membership, and each level provides more benefits, but also requires certain repsonsibilities from the members." Banjo pulled out another brochure and pointed to each plan with a claw as he spoke.

"For example, you could get the basic Care bear package. That includes free transport to a wilderness clime that would best suit you. We'd have to take your yellow shorts back of course, and remove your ability to speak for a few years, but its all for a good cause.

"Or you could go to the other end of the specrtum and try the Mary Kay Bear pacakge. Under this plan we provide you with aplace to live, food to eat, and all the yellow shorts you will ever need. However, to maintain these benefits you need to be willing to convince others to join WUN."

"But don't they need to be bears?" David couldn't believe he was saying this. What a wild dream!

"Of course. But if you give them a pair of these yellow shorts then the problem will be taken care of. They are activated when they come in contact with water. The temperature of the water determines what sort of bear they become. You took a cold shower, so you became a polar bear. It varies," Matt explained, handing him another pair of the yellow shorts from his briefcase.

Banjo then pulled out a clipboard with a form on it. "You don't have to decide right away, but we do need your signature at the bottom of this form."

"What for?"

"Legal purposes." Matt and Banjo gave each other a quick look, and then the grizzly continued. "Basically it says that you agree the transformation was voluntarily and not under any form of duress."

"Oh." David tookt he pen in his claws, and did his best to sign. What would normally have been his name however came out as a bunch of scribbles.

"Don't worry, you'll get used to it in a few days," Matt assured him, patting him on the shoulder.

"So, would you like to join WUN now, or would you like to think about it? You are under no obligations of course." Banjo held out the form for him, almost like a car salesman might. He probably couldn't fit into a car being as big as he was now! David wondered what his friends might think if he told them about his dream.

However, he always liked the idea of free food, so, chuckling to himself he rumbled, "I'll take the Mary Kay Bear plan." How he wished somebody would offer him something like that when he was awake!

Both Matt and Banjo seemed to jostle their bellies in delight. "Excellent! Just fill this out and you will be a member of WUN." The grizzly handed him the clipboard, and David took it in his big hairy paws. This was so awkward, but he did manage to work the pencil betwen his claws. He wondered if it was the drugs compounded with alcohol that was making his dream so vivid. Still, he did manage to fill out the form and hand it back to the bears.

Matt pulled from his briefcase what appeared to be a diploma. Inside the decorative gold band appeared to be the image of a bear wearing shorts. "Here is your certificate of membership in WUN. You should proudly display it upon your wall. And here is another brochure explaining what it means to be a Mary Kay Bear."

As David took them in his bewildered paws, Banjo added. "Since we are a fledgling organization still, here is our number in case you have any questions or concerns." The new bear took the number down, wondering if it really meant anything. Perhaps he could call it just to see when he woke up, just to convince himself that this was all a dream after all. Of course if he found any yellow pairs of shorts lying around when he got up he was going to go right back to bed.

"We are still in the process of setting up our hotline 1-800-URSINE8. Eventually that will be the number you call."

"Right." David nodded.

"Well, I hope you enjoy your benefits as a member of WUN. Once the paperwork is finished, you should receive your fisrt batch of fish. We will send more shorts as inventories permit." Banjo losed up his briefcase, as did Matt, and the two bears rose to head for the door. But both stuck out their paw at him. "Congratualtions, you've made the right decision."

"Thanks." David shook both their paws as they left. He then stared back at the certificate and the brochures that they had left. What a vivid dream!

As they leftt he apartment complex, Matt and Banjo looked at each other curiously. "He took it rather well I think," the polar bear remarked.

"Definitely. I was expecting him to be a bit more curious as to why he was a bear," Banjo agreed.

"Well, shall we go to a computer store and pretend to be mascots for a while?"

"Absolutely." the grizzly smirked. "The kids can't get enough of us."

"One size fits all." Matt smiled holding up a small pair of the yellow shorts. The two bears chuckled as they continued on their way.

Only three hours later, the WUN received their first call from a very worried David Adams!


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