Berenstain Bears and Parallel Universes


Last year, the great purge happened.

My Aunt and Uncle – who had a huge property – had been storing boxes of old things for me (mostly books), some dating back to childhood. Well, the day finally came when they decided that they wanted to move. Since I didn’t have the space to store the scores of boxes that I had, I had to purge. I’ll fully admit that it was something that was long overdue.

Now, for a borderline hoarder like me, this was a difficult undertaking. Not because I was especially attached to most of the junk in the attic, but because there was just so much of it. I was overwhelmed. It was a daunting task. I resolved to do it, however. And, because everything was so disorganized, I found that I had to go through each box because there were certain and specific items that did have sentimental value. There were those small treasures that I wanted to keep.


How did I do it? One box at a time.

I ended up going through boxes and boxes of books – most of which I ended up selling to BMV Books in Toronto. Upon finding my well-loved collection of Berenstain Bears books (by Stan and Jan Berenstain), I remember being surprised because I very clearly remember those books being the Berenstein Bears and that they were written by Stan and Jan Berenstein. At the time, I thought it was strange that I was incorrectly remembering something so beloved, but I shrugged it off and went on to another box.

Well, as it turns out, thinking that just might mean that I come from an alternate/parallel universe.

Back in 2012, blogger Reece argues:

… at some time in the last 10 years or so, reality has been tampered with and history has been retroactively changed. The bears really were called the “BerenstEin Bears” when we were growing up, but now reality has been altered such that the name of the bears has been changed post hoc.

Somehow, we have all undergone a π/2 phase change in all 4 dimensions so that we moved to the stAin hexadectant, while our counterparts moved to our hexadectant (stEin). They are standing around expressing their confusion about the “Berenstein Bears” and how they all remember “Berenstain Bears” on the covers growing up.

So, those of us who remember the name as “Berenstein” have travelled from our “E” universe and into this universe (the “A” Universe), where the name is actually “Berenstain”.

According Caroline Siede over at A.V. Club:

This E/A mishap is just one of many examples of a phenomenon called “The Mandela Effect” in which a large group of people all misremember the same detail. For instance, plenty of people are certain Nelson Mandela died in a jail cell in the 1980s, that New Zealand is north of Australia, and that Chartreuse is “something other than yellow-green.”

Another example of this phenomenon is my very clear memory of a roller coaster at Canada’s Wonderland called the Wylde Beast. (According to Wikipedia, the old name of the Wild Beast roller coaster was actually Wilde Beast, so I am vindicated (partly)! Huzzah! However, there were plenty of arguments at the pub from people who were insistent that the name was, and has always been, Wild Beast.)


Human memory – and all of its faulty recollections – is a funny thing.

(Via A.V Club and MTV)


One thought on “Berenstain Bears and Parallel Universes

  1. I was young and uninterested in world affairs in the 1980s. But…I do remember feeling somewhat perplexed that Mandela was still alive after hearing a TV broadcast, but don’t remember when…

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