What do you get when you combine a tragic loss, a severe case of credulity, and entrepreneurship? In this case, you get Huggable Urns.
I’ll admit that when I first saw the URL huggableurns.com, I immediately wondered what “hugga bleurns” was supposed to mean. One cup of coffee later, I was surfing the site and discovering oh-so-much about the newest way to cheapen — I mean honor — the life and death of a loved one. Simply reduce his or her lifeless corpse to a pile of ashes, and then stuff those ashes into a plush doll. Say, for instance, a plush cat that might be found for $12.99 at Amazon.com. Speaking of, one of the kitties at right really is $12.99 at Amazon.com and one is $90 at huggableurns.com. Can you tell which is which? I’ll give you a hint: the one from Amazon does not contain the worldly remains of your father.
The founder of Huggable Urns claims that the idea came to her via the supernatural: her recently deceased father began having long conversations with her, during which time he gave her the inspiration to sell stuffed toys at 1000% mark-up. Profit margins aside, I doubt that this woman is lying to scam a buck — on the contrary, I think she probably really does believe that her father is communicating to her from beyond the grave, and the most important information he has to convey is about stuffed toys. The “favorite sites” she’s listed include The Secret, Coast to Coast AM, Ramtha, and What the $%^&*(#^@#$ Do We Know.
That’s where the skeptical angle comes in — Huggable Urns have apparently received a good amount of attention, not just because they’re creepy as hell to many people, but because of the story of a dead father connecting with his daughter.
Reading the testimonials, I come away from this site pretty mixed. On the one hand, it’s creepy, cheapens life, and peddles an absurd paranormal claim. On the other hand, some people will gain comfort from having these bears on their shelves (or from taking the bears to family gatherings as the founder does . . . *shudder*), and if they can afford it then there’s no immediate harm.
What do you guys think? And how would you like your ashes to spend an eternity nestled inside a Beanie Baby?