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Winnie the Pooh and the Very Medicated Day

    A brief foray out of writing retirement in 2009 (the foray didn’t last long; hopefully my current foray will last longer), this originally appeared at Metazen (now defunct) on October 15, 2009.

    Winnie the Pooh and the Very Medicated Day

    One day, when Rab­bit was tak­ing his med­ica­tions, Tig­ger bounced his car­rots to smithereens and Rab­bit had an idea. A won­der­ful, ter­ri­ble idea. Rab­bit, you see, when he was just a lev­eret, no older than you are now, had been diag­nosed as a manic-depressive bipo­lar and was treated with Depakote. Rab­bits, as you might know, are gen­er­ally quite bouncy fel­lows, bouncier even than tig­gers. But Depakote evens out the highs and lows, and this is why it was so rare for any­one in the Hun­dred Acre Wood to see Rab­bit bounce. And this was Rabbit’s won­der­ful, ter­ri­ble idea. He would pre­scribe Depakote to Tigger.

    “Tig­ger,” he said, as he gath­ered the pulped car­rots into a bas­ket, “have you ever tried Depakote?”

    “Why, Depakote’s what Tig­gers like best!” replied Tig­ger, although he almost cer­tainly had no idea what Depakote was. So Rab­bit gave Tig­ger a rather strong dosage of Depakote to be taken twice a day for the next month, after which they’d revisit Tigger’s diag­no­sis and dosage.

    Well, as you can imag­ine, the Depakote took the highs right out of Tigger’s springs, and the lows, too. Tig­ger walked on all four paws, just like the cat you used to have before it got run over by a car.

    Pleased with the suc­cess of his pre­scrip­tion, Rab­bit turned his eyes to another of his friends. One day, while Tig­ger was most def­i­nitely not ruin­ing Rabbit’s gar­den work, Pooh came to lunch. And as Pooh was wont to do, he ate every last smack­erel of Rabbit’s hunny. Every smack­erel but one, that is. Rab­bit had been hop­ing to have some honey in his tea with car­rot cake later that evening, and so he was perturbed.

    When he asked, with more than a lit­tle trep­i­da­tion, “Are you fin­ished, Pooh Bear?” and Pooh replied, “I was just won­der­ing if per­haps you might have a lit­tle bit more hunny? Just a smack­erel should do. I have a rumbly in my tumbly,” Rab­bit knew just what to do.

    With his back turned to Pooh, he mixed some Xeni­cal into his last jar of hunny before deliv­er­ing it to the fam­ished bear. Pooh pol­ished off the jar post-haste and soon there­after found his once prodi­gious appetite suppressed.

    From that day for­ward, Rab­bit con­tin­ued to dose the unaware and some­what unfor­tu­nate bear with dietary amphet­a­mines. Pooh never ate more than one jar of hunny for lunch at his good friend Rabbit’s house, and he grew notice­ably slim­mer. That his speech pat­terns rapid­i­fied was not of hor­ri­bly great con­cern. That he devel­oped a stut­ter that made it dif­fi­cult to dis­tin­guish whether the speaker was Pooh or his good friend Piglet was to have nearly tragic con­se­quences, however.

    One day, when Pooh and Piglet both vis­ited Rabbit’s house for lunch, Rab­bit mis­took Piglet’s request for hunny to be a request from Pooh. Well, as you may or may not know, many dietary aids also act as diar­rhet­ics. Within hours of Piglet’s con­sump­tion of the tainted hunny, I’m very sorry to say that liq­uids were stream­ing from both ends of his poor lit­tle per­son, much like the puppy you had that died of Parvo.

    For­tu­nately for the friends in the Hun­dred Acre Wood, Eey­ore was alarmed enough by the goings on to fetch Christo­pher Robin. Unfor­tu­nately, even when rushed, Eey­ore was not the swiftest mov­ing ani­mal. By the time Christo­pher Robin arrived at Rabbit’s house sev­eral days later, Piglet was naught but a deflated shell of bacon, Tig­ger was read­ing philo­soph­i­cal trea­tises in Owl’s tree­house, and Pooh had accli­mated him­self enough to his new speech pat­terns to lose the stut­ter, but also had devel­oped a very seri­ous addic­tion to, what in street par­lance is known as “speed.” And I know I don’t have to tell you, of all peo­ple, that speed kills, since I’m quite cer­tain you remem­ber the fatal seizures your sis­ter had while being sub­jected to strob­ing lights in an episode of “Speed Racer.”

    “I-think-that-I-should-like-to-be-a-pharmaceutical-company,” said Pooh, when he saw Christo­pher Robin, “because-pharmaceutical-companies-make-tremendous-amounts-of-money-and-I-should-then-be-able-to-purchase-as-many-methamphetamines-as-my-rumbly-little-tumbly-could-possibly-handle.” Except that there weren’t any hyphens in his speech—I’ve only inserted those to make his words more com­pre­hen­si­ble to your dyslexic lit­tle head. “And-I’m-not-afraid-of-needles-as-I’ve-stitched-up-my-own-stitching-many-times-and-it-would-be-ever-so-much-more-efficient-to-mainline.”

    “Silly old bear,” said Christo­pher Robin. “You can’t be a phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal com­pany. You have to lobby con­gress with lots and lots of money to be a phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal com­pany so that the FDA will let you mar­ket your mer­chan­dise before it’s been fully tested and allow you to hold a patent for many, many years with­out threat of com­pe­ti­tion from generic brands.”

    Which leads us to the story of Win­nie the Pooh and the Detox Cen­ter, but that will have to wait for another night. You need your sleep, as well you know. I’m cer­tain I don’t have to remind you of your col­icky baby brother who kept his par­ents awake all night until your mother smoth­ered him to death with a Boppy nurs­ing pillow.

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