Winnie the Pooh has been in headlines recently, as Channing Tatum proved that Winnie was a lot hotter than any bear has a right to be.
Tatum might not have known it, but when he dressed as the iconic bear, he was breaking some important gender boundaries. That’s right, a recent revelation regarding Winnie’s gender has just hit the net: Winnie is a female black bear.
It doesn’t stop there. Winnie, full name Winnipeg, was discovered by a Canadian veterinarian on his way to administer to battlefield horses fighting in World War I. He disembarked a train in White River, Ontario, and bought a black bear cub from a trapper for $20 before reboarding. The bear stuck with him and became something of a regiment mascot. She did all the battlefield training but before leaving, the vet dropped her off at the London zoo for safekeeping.
War is no place to have bears, apparently.
We know all this because Canadian author Lindsay Mattick’s new picture book “Finding Winnie: The True Story of the World’s Most Famous Bear,” is a treasure trove of heretofore unknown Win-formation (sorry).
Mattick is the Canadian vet’s great granddaughter, so she has the inside scoop. Including how the real Christopher Robin, Winnie the Pooh author A.A. Milne’s son, re-named his own stuffed bear “Edward” to “Winnie” in tribute to the real, female bear.
“At some point, I knew I was going to have a child and I thought, there was no better way to explain to them this amazing family story than to do it as a picture book,” Mattick told Here & Now’s Robin Young. “And so when I found out I was pregnant a few years ago, I basically had this nine month kind of deadline to take my first crack at writing a picture book.”
The book is all sold out at the moment, but there’s still more than a month left before Christmas!