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bear parade

by ellen kennedy and tao lin

this is the ninth book in the bear parade series.

Tao Lin and Ellen Kennedy have a small press together called ASS HI BOOKS.

Ellen Kennedy is the co-founder, co-owner, co-author, art director, CEO, violin section leader, and publicist for Ass Hi books. Her writing has appeared in The Alice Blue Review, Juked, 3am Magazine, and The 2nd Hand. She is a poetry editor for 3am Magazine and is looking for ways to pay her rent without getting a job.

Tao Lin is the author of ten books, including TRIP: PSYCHEDELICS, ALIENATION, AND CHANGE and LEAVE SOCIETY, which is forthcoming in 2021 from Vintage Books. He edits Muumuu House. His website is at and he has a Twitter account and a blog.

pear and nuts


People aren't blurbing, but whatever. I know it used to be a blog. This is something people should realistically enjoy and feel free to talk shit about. I get very happy reading this book.

- Gene / April 4, 2007 11:12 PM

I will blurb. I like this book.

- Tao / April 5, 2007 6:15 PM

i really liked this book
it made me wikipedia hikikomori
then i got excited about the idea of japanese young adults sitting in their rooms eating soybeans
i also linked this book on my facebook so my friends will read it
overall, it was pretty good
i got up a few times during it to run around, and to eat mashed potatoes
i did not listen to music while reading this book

- maya / April 8, 2007 11:34 PM

I feel this book wrongly glorifies the Hikikomori lifestyle. It may encourage the youth of America to lock themselves in their rooms with hamsters and other items.

- Jason / April 11, 2007 1:36 PM

This shit is weird

- Thomas / May 1, 2007 9:12 PM

What is going on. Actually, whatever. You guys are like pretentious but in such a promiscuous way, it makes me sick to my stomach. Alternatively, though, it's quite delicious with all that jazzy snazzy writing. Honestly, I can't resist buckling into a fantastic, semi-undesirable life described by the Hikikomori lifestyle!

- Akshizzle / May 15, 2007 9:19 PM

I think im kinda a Hikikomori. But Im not scared about the outside social world. But I stay inside alot.

- "Rone" / July 20, 2007 3:40 PM

I stay inside all the time. I'm 20 and I almost never ever leave my room. I browse the internet all day and look at funny pictures and tell people in chatrooms how great my life is and is going to be, but I never actually do anything besides stay inside all day and look at funny pictures on the internet.

Your stories make me feel a deep sense of regret. Is that good or bad?

- Hal / July 28, 2007 5:00 AM

I should have read this on Thursday. On Friday I ate soy beans in their shells and didn't know to take the shells off, so I ate them whole. If I had read this first I would have known what to do. So I think everyone should read this at least once if only because knowing how to eat soy beans the right way can sometimes be important.

- Gabriel / July 30, 2007 12:24 PM

Remember: Everything is equivalent to Nothing.
So i thought about this and really considered a decent sleep time. No conclusions.
Enjoy Soybeans.
Lets speculate, jobless writers, freedom.

Who needs linear thought? Whataboutthe/ a esoteric junction of epiphanies constructing...? Everything. Now (Remember) Revel in that...

- Tripmonkey / August 3, 2007 5:29 PM

Someone hacked up art at the beginning of the twentieth century. It hasn't been able to walk the same since.

- Niel / August 4, 2007 11:19 AM


Art had it comin

- Gabriel / August 20, 2007 8:26 PM

me like
like a lot

- dom / September 14, 2007 10:21 AM

If I were a piano player, I'd play it in the goddamn closet.

- andrew / December 16, 2007 2:12 PM

i feel sad but also kind of tingly.
my stomach is growling.

- lina / December 23, 2007 7:13 PM

I'm...not sure I want to finish this.

- Roo / January 21, 2008 12:54 PM

hahaha. vunderbar~

- lauren / January 21, 2008 9:19 PM

hey this is like, fantastic, it makes me want to write using small details like hotplates and ugly fish all the time.

- tory / January 23, 2008 7:45 PM

That was weird, but great, really...

- Casey / February 15, 2008 5:11 PM


i like this book a lot
it makes me want to change my mind

you, tao and ellen, also noah and stuff everybody like that always make me want to change my mind. it is distressing. please write something about how i should stay exactly the same and i am okay, please.

- tory / February 15, 2008 5:49 PM

i like these letters/book/story it was very entertaining i started on 13 and read until 20 and then went back to 1 and read until the end. when it was over i said no and was upset that it was over. i did not reread 13 through 20. i think that tripmonkey is pretentious. i think you are pretending.

- mark / February 20, 2008 7:54 PM

i feel lonely too.

- Uglyfish / March 5, 2008 1:50 PM

I am a hikikomori. Except here in America, we don't have a word for it. We are just loser shut-ins.

- hikikUSA / May 11, 2008 11:52 PM

i laughed so hard and then i cried and made an organic smoothie.

i feel alone too

- amanda / May 24, 2008 8:12 PM

I read this book all the way through, twice, and enjoyed it very much. I researched hikikomori for a grant I applied for a few years ago, so this was especially interesting to me. Also, I think natto is delicious. Thank you for sharing this on the Internet, Tao and Ellen.

- Meg / June 20, 2008 12:28 AM

lovely :3

- >:3 / August 9, 2008 8:18 PM

i just renamed a folder on my desktop "richard yates wearing a hotplate suit."

- olivia / September 2, 2008 5:57 PM

I stumbled across while doing research on hikikomori for my Japanese Society class. Not only was this a great piece, it provides an interesting Western perspective for my research. I read this. Then I bought a hotplate on ebay.

- YongJoon / October 14, 2008 5:57 PM

I really enjoyed this.

- Kristen / October 25, 2008 11:13 AM

i bought tao lin on ebay last week.

today richard yates's corpse wearing a hotplate suit came in the mail.

i am okay with this.

- jesse / November 6, 2008 4:48 AM

dear ellen and tao

today i read a book on the internet. it was ok. sometimes it was nice but mostly i thought it was too silly.

later i got up to take a piss. afterwards i didn't feel like moving so i fell asleep standing up in front of the toilet.

now i feel lonely.


- john / December 10, 2008 8:58 PM

this is very spectacular, what you have written together.

- chlobot / January 17, 2009 12:28 PM

Kind of creepy, but good, although I still don't know what hikikomori is. Perhaps I'll look it up on the internet. This book is like a David Firth film, but with more words.

- L / April 5, 2009 1:30 PM

i started reading this on some day of the week, but got sad and had to stop. then i went to the kitchen and thought about eating some almonds. i picked up eight or ten almonds in my hand, but i didn't eat any because i don't like almonds. sometimes i don't like anything.

- laura / April 28, 2009 9:43 PM

I have eaten fermented tofu before, and I can honestly say that it is the most revolting substance I have ever put it my mouth.

- anon / May 5, 2009 1:58 PM


- mario / May 11, 2009 7:43 PM

this book is ok i guess.

i will go cry now

- ben / September 10, 2009 10:55 PM

i read this carefully and that is so

- maria / September 29, 2009 2:00 PM

uhhh weird stuff....weird stuff..

- Joemonkey333 / October 10, 2009 3:26 PM

i noticed that above the blurb box it says "it will show up with a delay."

i wondered how long the delay is.
i stopped thinking about it and went into the kitchen and picked up a planter's jar of peanuts. i ate them.

afterwards, i went back to the computer, read this some more and fell asleep. i woke up with tears streaming down my face.

- mira / January 14, 2010 4:57 PM

this made me sad. i read this an hour ago or so when i was talking online to my friend and they showed it to me and they said it was creepy but it wasn't. it was sad.
or at least i think they said it was creepy. she said it was mentally scarring but it wasn't.

sometimes i feel like a hikikomori because i spend a lot of time in my room but i actually don't like spending a lot of time in my room i hate it i like going outside and seeing people and i go out a lot. at least everyday.
but i feel alone a lot and that makes me sad.

like today i went outside so i could see my therapist and her name is brenda. she makes me draw stuff about myself and its weird but i like it kind of. but i dont like her much even though we share a lot of interests. i dont like her because she makes me feel like im making her mad.
so i went home and i was quiet in the car because cars make me sleepy.
and then when i went home i talked to my friend who showed me this again and that made me happy because then i didn't feel lonely like i do a lot and i told her i didn't like my therapist and she said
is she kind of annoying? or nosy? or too nice?
so i said
I always feel like I'm making her mad
and she said
fffff dude
therapists never get mad.
and then i realized she was right and i felt better.
and then i ate a pringle. they're kinda stale but they're still crunchy and taste good.

but they still taste weird.

- mae mae / January 18, 2010 4:21 PM

Bicycles in my stomach go faster each day.

- shirley / June 16, 2010 11:15 AM

i wish it were true that all of these comments were fake and written as a strange new web 2.0 spin on poetry. they read like that might be true. but i guess actually all of these people wrote all of these words and they happen to sound poetic in an absurd and desperate kind of way. so it still works.

chapter 6

i am drinking cider and reading the internet at work wishing that i were drinking cider and reading the internet not at work.

- tim / October 14, 2010 1:38 PM

the thing about fiction is it gives you pangs and makes you want to change your life but also tells you its impossible to change your life

- alex Klein / December 7, 2010 12:55 PM