Photo by Franziska Kraufmann/AFP/Getty Images.
Newark Mayor Cory Booker’s dash into a burning house on Thursday night has romanced headlines, but Vermont Gov. Peter Shumlin had an arguably more harrowing brush with danger earlier this week when a bear chased him in his backyard in Montpelier.
The Associated Press reports that Shumlin says he peered out his back window at a rented home in the Vermont capital late Wednesday and noticed that four bears (likely a sow and three cubs) just out of hibernation were making a snack of his bird feeders. Shumlin tried to scare the bears off from inside, but when he failed, he ventured outside to take the feeders down—only to have one of the larger bears approach him. He said the bear was about six feet from him when he bolted inside and slammed the door.
Shumlin amusingly described the scene like so: "I sleep like many Vermont boys, without too much clothing at night. I'm not a big pajama person," he said. "The bottom line is: The bears were dressed better than I and they could have done some real damage." Earlier, he told an Vermont editorial board that he was within “three feet of getting 'arrrh.’" The governor wasn't injured.
Elsewhere in Slate: Jessica Grose recently wrote in about the danger hungry bears can pose with an in-depth investigation of two bear-related deaths in Yellowstone last summer, the first there in 25 years.