Vermont Gov. Peter Shumlin said Friday that he was chased by one of four large bears in his back yard the night prior… absent his pajamas.
Speaking to the editorial board of Valley News in Vermont, the first-term Democrat said he noticed the bears in the back yard late at night, outside his rental home near Monteplier, where they were nosing at his bird feeders just feet from his windows.
After shouting at them from relative safety, for some reason Shumlin said he decided to fetch the bird feeders, explaining that he didn’t want the bears to become a frequent feature on his property.
“The (bear) charges me on the porch — I’m tearing through the door,” he reportedly said. “You almost lost the governor. Security was not there. I was within three feet of getting ‘arrrh.’”
Shumlin is also quoted as saying: “I sleep like many Vermont boys, without too much clothing at night. I’m not a big pajama person. The bottom line is: The bears were dressed better than I and they could have done some real damage.”
He also showed a brief video of the encounter to the Valley News, though it’s not clear what exactly the footage revealed.
Shumlin concluded that leaving bird feeders in Vermont yards during the spring time is inadvisable because it may attract bears.
“I had a tough night,” he reportedly said.
Shumlin’s bizarre tale marks the second bear encounter to hit national media this week: A Los Angeles man came upon a bear in the alley behind his home just two days ago, and footage from a news helicopter showed him walking directly at the creature with his head down and a mobile device in his hand.
His reaction when he finally noticed the bear became the source of jokes over the week, but chances are people will be snarking on Shumlin for much longer.
Stephen C. Webster is the senior editor of Raw Story, and is based out of Austin, Texas. He previously worked as the associate editor of The Lone Star Iconoclast in Crawford, Texas, where he covered state politics and the peace movement’s resurgence at the start of the Iraq war. Webster has also contributed to publications such as True/Slant, Austin Monthly, The Dallas Business Journal, The Dallas Morning News, Fort Worth Weekly, The News Connection and others. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenCWebster.
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