Polar bear woman was suicidal

By Razib Khan | April 14, 2009 5:59 pm

Teacher who survived polar bear mauling at zoo ‘was depressed over job’:

Rifles had already been issued to marksmen and Heiner Kloes, a zoo spokesman, said: “This woman’s behaviour not only put her life in danger but also that of the staff who had to rescue her.
“However, we do have guns and we would have been prepared to use them without hesitation if it was felt it was the only way to save the woman.”

On Monday it emerged that she is a teacher who had been driven to despair by her failure to find a job.

Related: Woman attacked by polar bear (live footage).

  • Eric J. Johnson

    Assuming one really has to die, I feel like this is really the method as far as getting an intriguing experience on the way out. I mean, why not make the final thirty seconds of your life something that’s really interesting to look back on and ponder during the final two seconds of your life. Though it would suck hugely if it ended up taking too long, which is perhaps too terrible to risk. And I do think using a zoo for this is too inconsiderate to other people. If you could hook up with an aggressive mother grizzly in the wilderness that would be your business and hers.

  • http://scienceblogs.com/gregladen/ Greg Laden

    Well, Polar bear was a good choice, then, because while they may take a while to kill their prey, I think they usually kill their prey. Brown bears (as contrasted with polar bears … they are really the same thing, PB being a population of BBs) seem to maim and immobilize human prey and not outright kill them more often than do PB’s
    But if you want it quick, jump into the big cat cage.

  • Pierce R. Butler

    Hey, everybody knows it was all Al Gore’s fault.

  • NoAstronomer

    I know this is crass but it’s what I’m thinking:
    She certainly didn’t seem very suicidal after the bear bit her on the shoulder. More like ‘get me the heck out of here’.

  • Eric J. Johnson

    > She certainly didn’t seem very suicidal after the bear bit her on the shoulder.
    I’m sure that’s common. More than one incomplete suicide has reported just that. The world can sure serve up a change of perspective. Once I watched a monster electrical storm from an open porch, and a truly sickening blast of thunder came off a strong bolt maybe a hundred yards out. I definitely believed in god for at least three or four seconds before settling back on agnosticism – “caused to think on repentance” as they say in the Arabian Nights. I apologized profusely to god for being out there trying to get a cheap thrill out of his thunderstorm when I should have been indoors memorizing the Bible.


Discover's Newsletter

Sign up to get the latest science news delivered weekly right to your inbox!

Gene Expression

This blog is about evolution, genetics, genomics and their interstices. Please beware that comments are aggressively moderated. Uncivil or churlish comments will likely get you banned immediately, so make any contribution count!

About Razib Khan

I have degrees in biology and biochemistry, a passion for genetics, history, and philosophy, and shrimp is my favorite food. In relation to nationality I'm a American Northwesterner, in politics I'm a reactionary, and as for religion I have none (I'm an atheist). If you want to know more, see the links at http://www.razib.com


See More


RSS Razib’s Pinboard

Edifying books

Collapse bottom bar