Starting this Thursday (Feb. 14) and going until next Monday (Feb 18) will be the International Bear Rendezvous, a yearly party for bears and bear lovers, sponsored by the Bears of San Francisco. What are bears, you ask? Bears are above-averagely hairy and/or fat men of the homosexual persuasion. Although considered a subset of the overall queer community, they were, arguably, quite popular for a brief moment in time, or so sayeth the holy word of Marc Jacobs.

SFBG's cub editor describes the annual gathering as such:

The conference/celebration takes place Feb 14-18 at the Holiday Inn Golden Gateway -- and it's pretty all-encompassing, with satellite pudge-parties and ravenous ribaldry (with Tiffany?!?), and also a few panels and local vendor booths (although the emphasis seems less and less on these each year).

We would love to attend, but all SFist contributors are required to be on a strict pin-thin diet of prune juice, Peruvian flake, perfumed air, and sleep deprivation. But we'll try to crash a party or two and bring back images of the large and in charge revelry.