He was attacked by a grizzly bear twice in one day

He was attacked by a grizzly bear twice in one day

From Red Bull: "Suddenly she was on top of me with her 3-inch claws digging into my lower back. And that's when the first bite tore deep into my shoulder and ripped open my deltoid muscle. That was followed by bite after bite on my arms, back and head. And then it was over and the bear was gone. I felt so relieved and lucky to have survived as I started hiking back to my truck. And then without warning, the bear attacked again. I heard and felt the crunch of the bone in my arm and the tendons getting ripped off the muscles. My eyes filled with blood as the bears claws ripped a 5" gash along the side of my head. I thought I may die right here on the trail in a pool of my own blood."

Unlocking the secrets of the ancient Voynich manuscript

From The Conversation: "The Voynich manuscript has long puzzled and fascinated historians. Carbon dating provides a 95% probability the skins used to make the manuscript come from animals that died between 1404 and 1438, and the document is covered in illustrations of stars and planets, plants, zodiac symbols, naked women, and blue and green fluids. But the text itself – thought to be the work of five different scribes – is encrypted with an unknown cipher. My coauthor and I propose that sex is one of the subjects detailed in the manuscript – and that the largest diagram represents both sex and conception, both of which were considered at the time to be 'women's secrets.'"

The creator of Charlie Brown got rid of a character in a gruesome way

Charlie Brown Wallpapers - Top Free Charlie Brown Backgrounds ...

From Mental Floss: "In November 1954, readers of Charles Schulz’s Peanuts were greeted with a new agitator in the life of Charlie Brown. Her name was Charlotte Braun, and her defining character trait was being incredibly loud. So loud that Snoopy is forced to tie his ears together to be spared from her presence. Charlotte made just 10 appearances in Peanuts before vanishing entirely, never to be mentioned again. It would be decades before fans had a better idea of where she had gone and why. Her fate involved an irate reader, a slightly peeved Schulz, and the poor little girl with a literal ax in her head."

Editor's note: If you like this newsletter, please share it with someone else. And if you really like it, perhaps you could subscribe, or contribute something via my Patreon. Thanks for being a reader!

The surprising history of the word ‘dude’

Alamy (Credit: Alamy)

From the BBC: "Jeff Bridge’s portrayal of The Dude in the Coen Brothers’ film The Big Lebowski epitomised the seductive spirit of dudeness. But the word itself seems to have entered popular discourse in the early 1880s as shorthand for foppishly turned-out male followers of the Aesthetic Movement, a short-lived artistic vogue that championed superficial fashion and decadent beauty. It’s thought that ‘dude’ is an abbreviation of ‘Doodle’ in ‘Yankee Doodle’, and probably refers to the new-fangled ‘dandy’ that the song describes, originally sung by British soldiers to lampoon the American colonists with whom they were at war."

Terrifying sound resembling a woman's voice recorded deep in the Pacific Ocean

Loud 'terrifying' sound resembling a woman's voice recorded deep in the Pacific Ocean

From Upworthy: "On March 1, 1999, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) recorded one of the ocean's strangest phenomena—a deeply unsettling sound from the eastern equatorial Pacific. The sound was captured with the help of a variety of hydrophones that were kept hundreds of kilometers apart. Hydrophones are a special kind of microphone that is capable of detecting sound waves underwater. What made the sound so creepy was the fact that it resembled a woman's voice. NOAA posted the sound on their website, calling it Julia since it sounded like a woman."

Thousands of years ago the fox might have been a man's best friend

From CNN: "In an ancient grave in what’s now northwestern Argentina, a person was buried with a canine companion — but this animal friend wasn’t a dog, according to new research. The burial held the skeleton of a type of canid that may have once competed with dogs for human affection: a fox. Analysis of evidence from a Patagonian burial dating back about 1,500 years hints at a similar close connection between a hunter-gatherer in southern South America and the large extinct fox species Dusicyon avus. Examination of collagen in the fox’s remains revealed that it ate the same food that this group of humans did. Along with the skeleton’s placement in the grave, the animal’s diet suggested that the fox was tame and may have been kept as a pet."

He built tiny cars and taught his pet rats to drive them

Acknowledgements: I find a lot of these links myself, but I also get some from other newsletters that I rely on as "serendipity engines," such as The Morning News from Rosecrans Baldwin and Andrew Womack, Jodi Ettenberg's Curious About Everything, Dan Lewis's Now I Know, Robert Cottrell and Caroline Crampton's The Browser, Clive Thompson's Linkfest, Noah Brier and Colin Nagy's Why Is This Interesting, Maria Popova's The Marginalian, Sheehan Quirke AKA The Cultural Tutor, the Smithsonian magazine, and JSTOR Daily. If you come across something interesting that you think should be included here, please feel free to email me at mathew @ mathewingram dot com