The Good Times Are Killing Me
I come into work and Pooh grabs me by my elbow the minute I step out of the elevator. It's like he's been waiting for me or something. "Have you heard?", he says anxiously. His breath is particularly sweet. Obviously he's been dipping into that special Hunny we got him last year. The misspelled stuff so hard to find in America.
"Have I heard what?," I say testily, yanking my arm away. He turns on his heel and is back in 3 seconds with a computer printout in his paw. "Disney Loses Court Ruling Over Winnie the Pooh Rights," he reads. "Sound familiar at all?"
"Since when have you started reading Bloomberg.com?," I ask. I shift through the papers, reading. "And who's this Slesinger guy that won?"
Pooh moans in a kind of exaggerated fashion and collapses onto a footstool. "A publisher. Apparently he acquired the U.S. and Canadian merchandising rights to me and mine," he indicates Kanga, Eeyore, Tigger, and Piglet who're engaged in a game of euchre in the corner. "He got them from that Milne fellow in 1930."
"Really?" I read on. "So where does Disney come in? Aren't you, like, their second highest grossing character of all time?"
Pooh mumbles something about a mouse under his breath. "Yes, of course. Disney got some rights from Milne's widow in 1961. But I just cannot tell you what a nightmare all this has been for me. Never knowing exactly when my likeness will be used. Getting calls at all hours of the night from people who want a statement. I'm just glad it's over."
"Silly old bear," I say with a smile. He can be a pain but the guy has his heart in the right spot. He even joined in on the euchre game a little later. Eeyore, as you might expect, totally got creamed.