This past weekend Michelle Eberhart and her friend were vacationing in a rented mountain cabin in Gatlinburg, Tennessee, when they received some unexpected visitors. Don’t worry, this isn’t the beginning of an axed-to-death story. It’s a much cuter “bears broke in!” story. That’s right. A black bear busted through a LOCKED DOOR and started ransacking the place while they were inside! Michelle and her friend tried scaring the bear away by clapping and making loud noises, but he (why have I decided the bear is male?) paid no mind, helping himself to junk food and drinks. Michelle and her friend ran upstairs to hide and take video of the rambunctious little intruder.
Michelle thinks two bears actually came inside to do the ransacking (one of whom is pictured above, in a faux-coy “Who, me?” pose), but she only saw one at a time. Three others hung out on the porch, waiting for their man on the inside to return with the delicious bounty. So that’s four in total. Damn, if they’d just kept it to three, it could have been a reverse Goldilocks situation.
Here’s the video:
Michelle told CNN she didn’t have a great view of what was happening, but she heard a lot of chaos downstairs:
“It knocked over the trash, it knocked over a book, and it destroyed a couple of decks of cards and it scratched up a lot of stuff. There were scratches on walls and the floor,” she said. She said they didn’t damage or knock over the furniture.
The humans had no choice but to call the police.
When an officer arrived and opened the door, the bear ran out of the house and jumped off a balcony, Eberhart said.The officer shooed off the other three bears and made a temporary repair to the door, so it would stay locked until it could be fixed.Eberhart said she saw 11 bears on Monday after their friends left. She and her husband also saw scratches on the side of the house where bears had climbed up and knocked over a grill.She said they heard another bear trying to get into the house early Tuesday morning. Her husband scared it off.“I did not sleep at all. It was very nerve-wracking,” she said. They decided to get up early and drive back home to Indiana, Eberhart said.
Jesus, does Michelle bathe in honey? Why is she such a bear magnet?
I lived in Jasper, Alberta when I was eighteen, and we were told black bears were relatively harmless. It’s those big ol’ brown grizzlies you had to watch out for. But black bears rarely attack or approach humans (usually it’s only when there’s a scuffle with the person’s dog). Matthew Cameron of the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency told CNN it’s also rare for bears to enter homes, but it does happen.
This time of year, he said, bears are surviving on emerging green vegetation, flowers, budding leaves, insects and their larvae.“Unfortunately, this lack of available, natural food drives some bears to seek out human foods and engage in nuisance behavior,” he said. “This aggressive behavior will continue until the summer berries begin to ripen, but that’s still over a month away.”
Larvae? Gross. I don’t blame the bears for wanting to expand their food horizons:
They got away with five pounds of Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, a pound of M&M’s, two pounds of Sour Patch Kids, two bags of potato chips, a tub of peanut butter pretzels and two bags of Dove salted caramel candy, Eberhart said. They also took two beers, two Diet Cokes and some of her allergy medicine.
Smart re: the allergy meds. ‘Tis the season, and the forest is full of pollen. And obviously the bears wanted to binge on some junk, hence the chocolate, candy, chips, and beer, but they balanced it out with the Diet Coke choice. After all, everything in moderation, even when you’re black bears on a B & E spree.