If You Sh*t In The Woods, Is There A Bear Under The Outhouse?
The reaction in Wonkette's Seckrit Chatcave to this Associated Press story was unanimous this morning:
rebecca: NOPE. NO NO NO> ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — An Alaska woman had the scare of a lifetime when using an outhouse in the backcountry and she was attacked by a bear, from below.
rebecca: IT WERE IN THE TERLET
rebecca: <da bears dot gif>
So Dok that will be your EOD [end of day story]
I love my job.
So yes, that is the thing that happened out in the woods, about 20 miles northwest of Haines, in the northern bit of the Alaskan panhandle. Shannon Stevens, her brother Erik, and Erik's girlfriend had snowmobiled out into the wilds on February 13, or at least the semi-wilds, where Erik had a yurt. Go have some fun, get away from the fast life in Haines, camp in the yurt, fun times. Until nature called, Ms. Stevens answered, and nature got a bit too goddamn personal.
"I got out there and sat down on the toilet and immediately something bit my butt right as I sat down," Shannon Stevens told The Associated Press on Thursday. "I jumped up and I screamed when it happened."
Her brother and his GF, who doesn't even seem to have a name in this narrative (can't imagine why she'd want to remain anonymous) heard the screaming and went to find Shannon trying to clean her wound. "They at first thought she had been bitten by a squirrel or a mink, or something small."
Right, and Ellen Ripley thought those were just a bunch of big dead eggs.
Erik brought his headlamp with him to see what it was.
"I opened the toilet seat and there's just a bear face just right there at the level of the toilet seat, just looking right back up through the hole, right at me," he said.
It was apparently not the patient bear from the memes.
"I just shut the lid as fast as I could. I said, 'There's a bear down there, we got to get out of here now,'" he said. "And we ran back to the yurt as fast as we could."
That seems like a sound strategy, although the AP notes the yurt was only about 150 feet (45.72 meters) from the outhouse, which does not strike us as far enough away. Our idea of a good safe distance from any bear we encountered in the underneath-part of an outhouse would be more like "Delaware." A parking garage in downtown Delaware, to be specific.
Once back in the yurt, they got Shannon's butt-wound patched up; it didn't seem serious but they decided they'd head back to Haines if she got worse, even though that clearly wasn't far enough, as it is stubbornly still in Alaska. Dopey kids.
Once they emerged safely from the yurt the next morning, the bear had left the terlet, but had left tracks all over the snow, including some going right up to the comfort facility.
They figure the bear got inside the outhouse through an opening at the bottom of the back door.
"I expect it's probably not that bad of a little den in the winter," Shannon said.
Also too, remember that crazy-ass American Patriarchy Organization dude Bryan Fischer, who was obsessed with bears and how they need to be killed because God demands human dominion over the wild, especially bears? After a deadly grizzly bear attack in Yellowstone, Fischer explained,
God makes it clear in Scripture that deaths of people and livestock at the hands of savage beasts is a sign that the land is under a curse. The tragic thing here is that we are bringing this curse upon ourselves.
Cursed, specifically, by allowing bears in a national park instead of helping them go extinct, yes, that was what he thought. We're not going to look to see whether he has thoughts on this story.
For the sake of journalistic due diligence, the AP sought comment from an actual expert:
Alaska Department of Fish and Game Wildlife Management Biologist Carl Koch suspects it was a black bear based upon photos of the tracks he saw and the fact that a neighbor living about a half mile away sent him a photo of a black bear on her property two days later.
That homeowner yelled at the bear but it didn't react. It also didn't approach her but lumbered about its business, like it was in a walking hibernation mode.
That's a pretty good theory, though it's also an entirely apt description of any US political blogger at any time since roughly March of last year. Did the homeowner notice whether the bear was wearing sweatpants and muttering about Donald Trump?
Also, did anyone think to look for a Missing Ursines report?
Koch (if he is any relation to the famous family, we are glad he is doing something useful with his life) said there have been a record number of problem human-bear encounters in the Haines area, what with crappy wild berry growth and a bad salmon run. "It is also possible a bear couldn't put on enough fat when they go in the den, that they might be out and about more often or earlier," he added. Apparently, even bad enough to drive a bear into the shitter.
Koch also got out of his lane with what sounds to us like an unlicensed medical opinion, telling the AP he suspects Shannon Stevens's injury
was caused by the bear swatting at her with a paw rather than being bitten. Either way, the location might be a first.
"As far as getting swatted on the butt when you're sitting down in winter, she could be the only person on Earth that this has ever happened to, for all I know," Koch said.
Erik Stevens said he will now be sure to carry bear spray with him for future woodland adventures, instead of doing something sensible and moving where there's plenty of concrete.
Also too, his sister says, "I'm just going to be better about looking inside the toilet before sitting down, for sure."
Seems like a good call. She's undoubtedly got a story that should be good for free beer any time she wants, but a repeat of the incident would just be an embear-assment.
We got through this entire blog post without mentioning those creepy fucking Charmin ads, and now it is your OPEN THREAD.
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Doktor Zoom's real name is Marty Kelley, and he lives in the wilds of Boise, Idaho. He is not a medical doctor, but does have a real PhD in Rhetoric. You should definitely donate some money to this little mommyblog where he has finally found acceptance and cat pictures. He is on maternity leave until 2033. Here is his Twitter, also. His quest to avoid prolixity is not going so great.