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The Berenst#in Bears Problem

Discussion in 'Article Discussion' started by Melody Bot, Sep 5, 2016.

  1. Melody Bot

    Your friendly little forum bot. Staff Member

    This article has been imported from for discussion. All of the forum rules still apply.

    Somehow I missed this when it was going around the internet last year, so in case I wasn’t the only one, enjoy being weirded out:

    A couple months ago, someone left an innocuous comment on my post 4 Weird “Clues” that Parallel Universes Exist. The comment was this:

    “You need to look up the Berenst#in Bears problem.”

    My response at first was probably what yours is now: The what? But after a quick Google search, I realized what this person was talking about. The Berenstein Bears.

    Now, if you don’t know about The Berenstein Bears, they were a series of children’s books, and eventually a cartoon, created by Stan and Jan Berenstein. They focused on a family of bears, and did the usual educational children’s book/tv series thing. Simple enough. I remember them, vaguely, and I believe I owned a book or two when I was a kid. It’s been a while.

    So what’s the problem?

    They’re not The Berenstein Bears. They’ve never been The Berenstein Bears.

    I would have bet my life on it being “Berenstein.”

  2. Colby Searcy

    Is admired for his impeccable (food) tastes Prestigious

    Haha not sure why but I've actually always pronounced them correctly
    Essie and Dan O'Neill like this.
  3. rst


    Pretty sure its just this...

    Aoccdrnig to a rscheearch at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, it deosn't mttaer in waht oredr the ltteers in a wrod are, the olny iprmoetnt tihng is taht the frist and lsat ltteer be at the rghit pclae. The rset can be a toatl mses and you can sitll raed it wouthit porbelm. Tihs is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe.

    The "stein" sound is very familiar in names in history and presently. The "stain" sound isnt familiar. The spelling between the two is off by only two consecutive middle vowels in a three syllable word so our brains dont even notice and we go with the familiar "stein" sound that we know. The authors are named Berestain but id bet their name was originally Berenstein and they either changed it to either sound less jewish or it was just a mistake somewhere along the line which happened all the time.
    PandaBear!, Dan O'Neill and jpmalone4 like this.
  4. disambigujason

    Trusted Supporter

    i too would have bet my life it was with an "e," and on a somewhat related note, i just discovered the other day that the british show is not "downtown" abbey, but "downton." blew my mind.
    Colby Searcy likes this.
  5. The Mysterious

    Yes...but a thing isn't beautiful because it lasts

    wait WHAT.
    Essie and Colby Searcy like this.
  6. jpmalone4

    Stay Lucky Supporter

    It's still pronounced "stein" though, right? I think maybe its because most of us read these books as children while developing our literacy and we didn't catch on to the subtle difference between "stein" and "stain," especially since they sounded the same in this context.
    Carmensaopaulo likes this.
  7. grimis16


    I kind of agree with your theory. I always thought it was Stein, up until I started teaching 2nd grade and noticed the title in my classroom library. I still pronounce it Bear-in-steen. Also I think I had the whole collection growing up and that's how my mom pronounced it, so I never questioned it or tried to actually sound the word out on my own, I just accepted it as fact. Still good books!
  8. heymattrick

    Pool Boy at the Vampire Mansion

    I remember what a mind-fuck this was. I swear it was always Berenstein. I had all the books as a kid, including audio books.
    AshlandATeam likes this.
  9. Colby Searcy

    Is admired for his impeccable (food) tastes Prestigious

    The proper pronunciation is "stain"
  10. kpatrickwood

    Give what you can.

    Yeah I've been team stain my whole life since that's how my mom pronounced it. I'm glad this came up though because I'm always looking for reason to dig up this picture.

    AndrewSoup, NotBruce, tshreve and 4 others like this.
  11. Ben

    Trusted Prestigious

    definitely always thought it was stein.
  12. disambigujason

    Trusted Supporter

  13. iam1bearcat

    i'm writing a book, leave me alone.

    same! i've only said the name of the show out loud to probably 3 or 4 people but i always read it and say it as "downtown".
    js977 likes this.
  14. TedSchmosby


    Berenstein Bears doesn't sound familiar to me, so I'm pretty sure I was a Berenstain kid growing up.

    I thought that the Flintstones were the Flinstones until a year or two ago, though
    Colby Searcy likes this.
  15. TheFrontBortles


    El-P from run the jewels devoted a lot of time to researching this last year
    Zac Djamoos likes this.
  16. Jason Tolpin


    My girls love talking about this conspiracy!
  17. Woohoo!


    There is also the thing about did Nelson Mandela die a few years ago or a few decades ago. Apparently there is a very large percentage of the population that thinks he died in jail a long time ago. They swear that they saw news reports about it and stuff.
  18. Colby Searcy

    Is admired for his impeccable (food) tastes Prestigious

    That's awesome but no way that's real?
  19. kpatrickwood

    Give what you can.

    Haha no it's not. There's quite a few fake ones floating around though.

  20. iam1bearcat

    i'm writing a book, leave me alone.

    there's also people that believe he was never a real person and / or released from jail and changed his name to Morgan Freeman.
  21. crunchprank Prestigious

    This blew my mind when I found out, and I only found out recently too. I watch Good Mythical Morning sometimes, and they did an episode on the Mandela Effect which is how I found out about the Berenstain Bears and a few others. The Mr Rogers one is surprising as well.

  22. LightsOut


    Very interesting!! Never heard about it before ! Ive spend the last 2 hour reading about it!

    Sorry ´bout my english
  23. DearCory


    My sister was Mama Bear at Cedar Point back in the early 90s, and they were referred to as the BerenSTAIN bears. But when I just asked her how it was spelled, with an A or E (and told her not to look) she said with an E.

    She's shocked that it's with an A :-|
    Colby Searcy likes this.
  24. dlemert


    like flint and stones put together, omg it took me 25 years to just now realize this
  25. Schooner


    This is so good. I love these kinds of phenomenons. The Folie au deux one came up in the news this week (from the fall out boy title) about an Australian family were the wife went mad, then the father went mad, packed up and went missing, then the kids went with them and crazy. But separated they're fine.
    Bizarre tale of Tromp family road trip cloaked in mystery

    Ps. So much nostalgia over these books. I loved these. And those ones about the skeleton family with the skeleton dog