Ferocious Freckles

Last June, when Rachel's family came to visit, they brought lots of beanie babies and stuffed animals, so many that they weren't able to distribute them all to the kids in the hospital, and so when my parents were just here, they raided the stash, and made another distribution, which was enjoyed immensely, just as before.

One interesting feature this time, though. There was a consistent aversion to one stuffed toy, namely the above pictured leopard, a beanie baby whose name is "Freckles" based on the tag. It was the source of a lot of fear. This puzzled us, since he looks rather adorable.

We asked the staff why Freckles was not so popular: "It's considered an evil omen."

We asked Rose, Maggie's nanny: "It's because it looks like a snake."

We asked one of the Kenyan docs: "It's because it's a ferocious animal. They would be scared of lions, except that they are often used as logos for marketing different products."

Who knows? At any rate, Maggie has no fear, since she's never seen one in the wild. (Ever elusive) So she now takes Freckles to bed with her, the lonely leopard that none of the Kenyan kids wanted.