February 7, 2014

You've seen him on TV—but do you know if the Survivorman prefers pancakes or waffles?     Photo: Laura Bombier

Les Stroud Takes Reddit By Storm

Survivorman discusses Bigfoot, his worst survival illness, and his family camping habits in AMA

Les Stroud, host of the Discovery Channel's popular Survivorman show, took user-generated questions on Reddit yesterday as a part of the site's popular AMA (Ask Me Anything) series. Stroud's AMA was ostensibly designed to promote Survivorman's fifth season, his new book, and an album of environmentally-inspired rock songs he recently recorded—but, true to form, Redditors rarely stayed on topic. The Survivorman's answers didn't disappoint.

(For those new to Reddit, Stroud's username is "reallesstroud," and when he answers, his username is highlighted in blue. Other usernames indicate questions and responses to Stroud's answers.)

The AMA was with Survivorman, so of course Stroud had to include some basic survival tips.

He also talked about the survivalists who influenced him most.

Ultimately, one comment summarized Stroud's survival skills.

By the way, take comfort: Your pizza and beer diet is now Survivorman-approved.

Stroud debunked a survival skill popularized by Man vs. Wild's Bear Grylls.

He also took some time to talk about pooping in the wild.

But just because Stroud roughs it on television doesn't mean his family camping trips are the same way.

You're really making us want to ditch car camping, Les.

The flesh-eating parasites aren't the worst part of being a survivalist, though. Who knew?

Stroud also shared his biggest fears.

Tellingly, the Survivorman lacks major corporate sponsors. Redditors didn't miss out on a chance for humor.

Stroud's fans often tout his superiority to fellow Discovery Channel adventure host Bear Grylls. Turns out Stroud shares the sentiment.

The AMA was packed with Stroud's recommendations for getting into the great outdoors, best summarized when he showed some North American love. (In another response he cited the Yukon Territory as his favorite place on the continent.)

Stroud also provided some great stories from filming Survivorman. But who could resist some tasty Inuit trout and scotch?

An upcoming episode of Survivorman will include a possible Bigfoot sighting, Stroud revealed.

However, in the end, the Bigfoot debate boils down to one essential question.

Insane wilderness trekking may be Stroud's day job, but really he's just a normal dad.

Being a dad brought the AMA to a close—but not before one final bit of Reddit humor.

To see all of Stroud's answers, check out the rest of the AMA. Stroud also did an AMA last March, and he was the subject of an Outside profile in our November issue.

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Bruno Banani is no stranger to bold marketing moves.     Photo: Digital Vision./Thinkstock

Luger Changes Name for Underwear Sponsor

Tonga’s first Winter Olympian

Several years ago, the Polynesian island of Tonga held a tryout in hopes of finding the country’s first-ever Winter Olympian. They found Fuahea Semi, turned him into a luger, and changed his name to Bruno Banani—the same name as the provocative German underwear company that would sponsor his journey to the Olympic Games.

“We thought it was really cool and a little bit fun,” explained Mathias Ihle, who works for Bruno Banani’s advertising agency, Makai. 

“We have heard from other people who have names Bruno Banani. But this was a different kind of story, a great story. We watched him in a luge race in Germany, and we saw that he was coming down and doing a good job and he was finishing. So we said, ‘Let’s go for it.’”

Banani, who feels fortunate to have such an opportunity, qualified for Sochi after barely missing the Vancouver Games four years ago. Trained by his German coach, Banani’s Olympics will be defined by this weekend’s luge events.

After the Games, Banani hopes to continue competing and maintain his sponorship. But if it doesn't work out, he plans to return to Tonga and find a job with computers, according to the New York Times.

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Video that allegedly shows a sad and confused American military dog chained by armed and bearded Taliban fighter.     Photo: Marko Nikovalov/YouTube

Military Dog Captured by Taliban

Possibly the first four-legged prisoner of war

A military dog has allegedly been captured by the Taliban. According to the Washington Post, an individual who distributes Taliban propaganda posted a video to Twitter that shows the animal chained by armed Taliban fighters.

A Taliban spokesman, Zabiullah Mujahid, told the Post that the dog carries the rank of colonel. "The dog was of high significance to the Americans," Mujahid told the newspaper. "The mujahideen valorously put tough resistance against the troops for hours."

According to the BBC, the men in the video say the dog was captured after a raid by U.S. forces in December last year in the eastern Afghan province of Laghman. The dog, likely a Belgian malinois, is equipped with a tactical vest, GPS device, flashlight, and camera.

According to CNN, U.S. officials say the canine soldier belongs to British special forces, and the BBC reports that British ISAF officials in Afghanistan confimed a military dog went missing in action during last December.

Both British and American forces use Belgian malinois in the battlefield to sniff for explosives. A Belgian malinois named Cairo became a minor celebrity when U.S. officials disclosed it had been part of the Navy SEAL raid that killed Osama bin Laden.

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Action camera maker GoPro announced Friday that it will go public.     Photo: Associated Press

GoPro to Go Public

Latest tech company to file for secret IPO

Watch out, action sports world. California-based GoPro announced Friday that it plans to go public.

GoPro filed the first documents for its initial public offering Friday morning, according to a press release. The extreme action camera maker follows in the footsteps of Twitter and cloud storage company Box, both of which also filed for confidential IPOs.

The move lets GoPro keep much of its operating information secret until shortly before shares begin to trade.

According to the New York Times, JPMorgan is the lead banker on the offering. The financial services firm declined to comment.

Want to know more about the man who started it all? Read our story on Nick Woodman, GoPro's founder.

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Palestinians Prepare for Marathon

Hundreds support region’s first running group

Established running clubs can be found in nearly every town across America. Not so much in Palestine. In fact, the country’s first running club, the Palestine Marathon Training group, was founded just last spring in anticipation of the inaugural Right to Movement Palestine Marathon.

The marathon, which consists of four loops in the West Bank city of Bethlehem, was inspired by the United Nations' declaration that all people have the fundamental "right to movement," according to the Christian Science Monitor.

The race—and the now well-known running club—helps Palestinians overcome the struggles of living under Israeli occupation. The club has nearly 600 members on its Facebook page and is a source of inspiration for athletes of all levels. 

Everywhere else in the world, “a running group is just a running group,” marathon organizer George Zeidan told the Monitor, “In Palestine, we run for the freedom of movement in general, and for my female friends who still cannot move freely.”

The second annual Right to Movement Palestine Marathon will be held on April 11.

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