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The Anomalist

November 21

They are calling it "Oumuamua," from a Hawaiian term for messenger or scout. (It was detected by a telescope in Hawaii.) It's the first space object identified as having come from outside our solar system. The object is extremely dark and red, a color that's the hallmark of organic (carbon-based) molecules. And its elongated cigar-shape--about the length of one of the Petronas towers in Malaysia--gives this visitor, if it were a spaceship, a kind of steampunk appearance. No hint of a golden record onboard with nifty tunes. Just a space rock, folks, albeit one that's more exotic than usual. And there are likely many more out there. (PH)

Leave it to Nick Redfern to add something new to a hoary UFO tale. It doesn't exactly "breathe new life" into the alleged Coyame, Mexico, 1974 case that Noe Torres and Ruben Uriarte call "Mexico's Roswell," however. The story, mostly based upon the highly-suspicious "Deneb Report," is widely regarded as a hoax, and Nick's not challenging this analysis. Rather, he finds parallels we hadn't surmised with one of arguably the most important novels and movies of all time. Nick's on a roll with UFO, Helicopter, or Something Else? The protagonist in this story had a career itself worthy of a movie, aside from what happened at 2:45 p.m. on January 7, 1966. UFO case or not, this is a fascinating story about a remarkable woman. Nick's account comes from scrutiny of declassified files from the U.K.'s National Archive; Jack Brewer's been trying to pry information from the U.S. National Archives and Records Administration. In FOIA Appeal Update Jack explains he's looking for information on the operations of an agency called Joint Security Control, following upon the work of James Carrion on this group. The "JSC" apparently implemented deception operations both in war and peacetime after World War II. It's an interesting article both for the history Brewer seeks and the methods he and other researchers are using to uncover it. (WM)

When did it become standard protocol to declare every photographic anomaly a paranormal event? We love checking out the latest videos as much as any avid believer, but sometimes we just want to shout, "Seriously?" Fortean Ireland shares an old story with the right approach though. A Profane Spook hails from the very early 1900s, detailing a poltergeist-like harassment that local police eventually put down to a clever joker. Hard to say what was really going on, but we're glad we weren't at the receiving end of the prank. Bit hard on the nerves, that one. (CM)

Michael Horn Interview A Different Perspective
Kevin Randle and the Authorized American Media Representative of Swiss contactee-claimant Billy Meier have a contentious interview covering key areas of Meier's photographic and prophetic output dedicated to establishing the reality of Meier's encounters with ETs called, originally, Pleiadians, and, more recently, Plejaren. Kevin's been blogging about some of these claims and this podcast was in a sense the concluding "showdown" with Michael Horn. The conversation is important, but it helps to have done some reading upfront about Meier, his religious followers, and detractors. Kevin's also posted Meier Photographs--An Extensive Analysis, which criticizes several claims about independent examinations of photos provided by the Meier camp, and in particular the work of Jim Dilettoso, a producer and engineer who supports the authenticity of the Meier images. With Billy Meier Predictions--The Short Version Kevin tackles some of the multitudes of predictions that Meier has made over the years since his alleged first contact as a five-year-old with the Plejaren in 1942. Much of the debate about Meier centers upon the philosophical question of who bears the burden of proof, Meier or his opponents. However, sober evaluation of the specific evidence pro and con, as well as of the fallacies of argument employed throughout the various discussions, may produce an overall opinion about Meier's claims. (WM)

November 20

Cheryl Costa tackles the problem of certain UFO sightings in which the extraordinary phenomenon is perceived for a short period of time, only to apparently "wink out," leaving the witness doubly mystified. Costa suggests this "flash perception" occurs in an altered state of consciousness, in which our reality perception widens enough to see something that is real but that we wouldn't be attuned to seeing under normal circumstances. What Happens when a Person Sees Something Bizarre, Like a UFO? asks Rich Reynolds, and suggests that visual perception is not a physical/biological process where an image is translated accurately to memory, but one affected by a person's psychological make-up and even personality. Rich fleshes out his theme with appropriate quotes and useful links. Alejandro Rojas deals with the application of visualization techniques in UFO Sightings Visualization Competition Held by Data Crunchers. Included here are some rather nifty interactive "maps," "infographics," or "vizs." Follow the instructions under each of the two dataset "vizs" to test them and their limits. Rojas also has thoughts on those limitations and presents his own way of looking at such data. (WM)

It's said to be the eighth sighting of Nessie this year, "the most we have had this century," said Gary Campbell, the recorder and keeper of the Official Loch Ness Monster Sightings Register. A "genetics expert" and her family snapped a ripple on the Loch and ... well, you know the rest. Her son whom she claims has a "healthy level of skepticism" went armed with a boat and ropes to haul in the beastie if it showed. Well, he's nothing if not ambitious. No doubt he'll be interested in a Follow up to the 1975 Underwater Photos. Glasgow Boy gets wordy about the lighting and camera distances used to take the famous potential-plesiosaur image that continues to stoke debate. (LP)

Gobekli Tepe continues to intrigue us. A symbol from Aboriginal culture has been found carved at the site, which opens up the possibility that Australia's indigenous people had a hand in its construction. As if that's not enough to feast upon, we hear that an Italian Archaeologist Claims That the Trojan Horse Was Really the Trojan Boat. Jason Colavito writes intelligently about the possible mis-translation of hippos, which may mean horse or boat, leaving room for historical error. And while America's future occupies the minds of many, in its past we learn that there were No 'lost tribes' or aliens: what ancient DNA reveals about American prehistory. The origins of America's earliest humans is a large and complex subject, but is neatly condensed in this piece by The Guardian. In short, we still don't know who they were and remain a long way from finding out. (LP)

British ufologist Dr. David Clarke has a new book out, stemming from his successful work to get the Ministry of Defence to make its UFO files public. Clarke's'book is bound to be a useful addition to the history of UFOs in popular culture. Now we go from witness drawings to photographs, with The Punta Cuevas UFO--A "Repeater"? Luis Burgos shares evidence for two visits of the same or a similar object to Argentinian skies not long prior to the 1975 case he recently described at Argentina: As Seen on the X-Files. And in Kevin Randle's Socorro Book Inspires Facebook Debate, Rich Reynolds provides some reasoned counterarguments by Facebook commenter "Mrherr Zaar" to a perceived "drift" in Kevin's new book Encounter in the Desert towards an ET explanation. The book's "commercial" subtitle "The Case for Alien Contact at Socorro" apparently has stimulated sharp reactions and the attendant free attention, as well. (WM)

November 19

On The Alien Question: Where Are They? New Hampshire Public Radio
Setting the stage for our extraterrestrial meditation, Marcelo Gleiser has a pessimistic outlook when it comes to you-know-who, but a firm grasp on "Where is everyone?" Since little green men won't come to Muhammad, then Muhammad must go to the little green men illustrated by Paul Seaburn rocking out to those Scientists Transmitting Songs To A Planet With Potential Alien Life. What makes it different is how 'Sónar Calling GJ273b' is broadcasting their tunes. Just 'round the corner, by astronomical reckoning, Alison Klesman heard some Russians are hoping to answer, "Is Life Locked In Ice On Mars?" The soul of their hypothesis is "As above, so below", drawing upon what puny humans comprehend about our own extremophiles. Yet with all of Elon Musk's bloviations for colonization, what's the target for this here Secret Planet X Probe To Be Launched By SpaceX? Tim Binnall finds himself caught up in the conspiracy theory hype and has more than a little fun. (CS)

Maybe these structures were meant for farming, or maybe it's the ruins of Abdul al-Hazred's hometown, but their discoverer got the opportunity of a lifetime. Enjoy this vicarious thrill, as Nicholas St. Fleur has the scoop on David Kennedy's once-in-a-lifetime trip. Also from the fringes of archaeology, some mavericks hailing from Beijing's Chinese Academy of Sciences are toying with the possibility that a Ancient Hominin Skull From China Suggests Humans Didn't Evolve Just From African Ancestors. We find it interesting that mainstream outlets were quick to announce those Moroccan skulls pushing back the clock, yet keep mum when it comes to the similarly-aged Dali skull. Speaking of which, Nick Redfern's pretty certain we're not descended from selkies, based on The Strange Saga Of The Sea People, but what exactly inspired these queer tales of cross-species romance? At least the Scots were enamored with damp fairy folk, while Greek ardor leaned more towards necrophilia. Swoon like a 14 year-old girl with Esoterx when you hear this odd tale of Love And Longing In Ancient Amphipolis. The saving grace? Turns out the decedent loved her man so much, she came back! And you won't believe what happens next! (CS)

Louisville's Hoodoo Dog Haunted Ohio Books
Keen readers will remember Oscar, the nursing home cat who can predict deaths, but he's not the first critter with this uncanny knack. Chris Woodyard's done some poking in the morgue, digging up yarns of a pooch who's relatively unlucky to his humans even after death. If you want to push your luck, join Brent Swancer at the Traveling Museum of the Paranormal and Occult where Greg Newkirk and Dana Matthews show how Technology Meets The Paranormal By 3D-Printing Cursed And Haunted Objects for fun and profit. And by fun Greg and Dana mean night terrors, unexpected deaths, voodoo curses, among other craziness. For those of more meager means, preferring something off-the-shelf, join Tim Binnall who spied a Spooky Anomaly Filmed At A Texas Store's parking lot. Reckon they shouldn't have paved paradise. (CS)

November 18

Correlation may not equal causation, but that doesn't stop many eggheads with high-falutin' letters after their last name from dabbling with a bit of superstition. Don't believe us? Well, Kendall Powell's met with the best and brightest who see no harm in unique rituals ensuring scientific success, and it's a darn fun read. Elsewhere on god's green internet, some savvy Twitter users like Brian Anderson want to know "Do We All See The Woman Holding An iPhone In This 1860 Painting?" First of all, Brian, it could be a Galaxy 8. Secondly there may be a 'rational explanation' for the little black item in the girl's hand, but perhaps it's just her device's manual? Still give it a chance and draw your own conclusions, true believers! Taking a left turn at Birmingham, Paul Seaburn's caught wind of this here Strange Boom In Alabama Has NASA Puzzled And Locals Alarmed. Never-A-Straight-Answer says it's an exploding bolide from the Leonids, which peak tonight, but we're interested in your crackpot theories! Hit us up on Twitter or Facebook and the best one will receive a gen-you-wine Anomalist pin! (CS)

People will gamble on anything. The Superbowl, EA's loot crates, and cryptids. 2017 has been a bumper year for Nessie sightings, reducing the odds for confirming Nessie as real. Of especial interest is Alison Campsie's look back on the number of sightings from previous years. Vegas hasn't weighed in on The Horse-Monsters Of Scotland, but Lucky Nick Redfern knows the score when it comes to kelpies. Should you wish to play it safe, Cleve Wootson, Jr. suggests putting your hard-earned cash on This Ancient Shark With A Snake Head And 300 Teeth. Frilled sharks aren't exactly rare, but it's notable when one surfaces beyond its bathypelagic neighborhood. Closer to the surface, Micah Hanks finds himself enamored with Killer Catfish and we're not talking creepers on the internet posing as someone else. These suckers grow superhuge, leaving many southerners gasping, "We're gonna need more cornmeal." (CS)

Do you (platonically) love John Keel? We sure do, and so does Nick Redfern who finds a worthy successor in John B. Alexander's Reality Denied (US, UK). It's a whirlwind world tour taking readers from Skinwalker Ranch to the Kingdom of Tonga for telepathic dolphins, giant wolves, psychic martial artists, and so much more weird goodness. For a little more on John Alexander, let George Knapp bend your ear on this Former Military Intelligence Officer Who Pursues The Supernatural. If you're keen on Bizarre Government Experiments And Strange Psychic Powers then look no further than Brent Swancer's vivid glimpse of the weird Cold War which once raged 'neath the shadow of the atom bomb. (CS)

November 17

Greg Taylor pens a fine tribute to Robert Jahn, a Princeton University aerospace engineer turned parapsychologist, who passed away on Wednesday at the age of 87. Jahn was a scholar of the highest order, a pioneer who brought respectability to the field of parapsychology despite unrelenting skepticism from the media and mainstream scientists. Bill Bengston, current president of the Society for Scientific Exploration, of which Jahn was a founder, called Jahn "a peerless giant among anomalies researchers" and "a magnificent human being." And it is indeed quite "hard to imagine there will be another like him." Farewell, Bob. (PH)

"Something quite out of the ordinary occurred in the skies over Oregon on October 25th, 2017." Thus Tyler Rogoway begins a most interesting story of "a mystery aircraft" that frustrated radar, jet interceptor, and visual efforts at identification. Rogoway details what is known about the incident and his efforts to get more information on the matter. He also links to the air traffic control audio exchanges during the event. Rogoway further links to a Reddit thread that is also a key source, and offers some theories as to the nature of the apparently white object that flew between 35,000 and 40,000 feet over the Beaver State. The thing was seen by commercial airliners, but distance and sun made its shape and size impossible to guess. Note: the Reddit thread user "The Flying Beard" whose detailed statements are quoted in the article apparently has "deleted his posts/account," according to another Reddit poster. Rogoway has filed FOIA requests, and hopes to update his readers eventually. (WM)

This repost from 1996 smacks of believability and depicts a large hairy cryptid reacting in the way one would expect any sentient creature to react when faced with humans in the dead of night. Just for that, we're putting Ohio on our road trip list. Just don't roll your eyes, and Don’t write off Sasquatch. Let’s research him. While some may not like the idea of homo sapiens coexisting with another hominid species, recent archeology would indicate that similar side by side evolutions have occurred throughout history.  On a lighter note, when we consider how shaggy our beloved Hairy Man reportedly is, we're not surprised by the stories of The Hair-Braiding Bigfoot and More!. Witches, fairies, hairy men...who do you blame when you awaken with a hair style you didn't have the night before? Was braiding horses manes the 13th century equivalent of cow tipping? Or do Sasquatch have a pliable trade? (CM)

The "Col. W.V. Brown" who was one of three USAF officers to see a Project Blue Book "unknown" on August 20, 1950 was Colonel Willard Van Deman Brown, "one of the principal strategic deception planners from the early UFO era." So argues James Carrion. Carrion then goes through his evidence for connecting the Joint Security Control officer with the UFO witness, and it seems he's made his case. But even if Carrion is correct, this is just a mere coincidence, right? Nope, says James: "There is far more than meets the eye here. Stay tuned." (WM)

The Ghost of my Mother Hayley Is A Ghost
Our deepest condolences go out to Hayley Stevens who lost her mother very unexpectedly this past September. This piece is both poignant and wise, and of course very fortean. We agree with Hayley's opinion that whether or not a loved one can haunt us is not nearly as important as the comfort imparted by that belief. In other news, Ghost Smashes Glass at UK Pub? We're not buying the next round on this one. Hands up who among our readers has had a glass of beer go to pieces moments after it was placed on the table because the cold beer was too much for a hot glass fresh out of the dishwasher? Besides, if we were ghosts we'd drink the beer before smashing the glass. (CM)

November 16

Nick Redfern's piece on the famous Kelly-Hopkinsville "goblin attack" covers one of the outright weirdest and most frightening cases in UFO history. And it produced an Air Force "explanation" even more outrageous than the claimed events. Staying with UFO history, Luis Burgos offers a 1975 photo in Argentina: As Seen on the X-Files. Though classified at the time as "QUESTIONABLE," the Punta Cuevas UFO photo has become a source of pride to Argentinian ufologists, and the story Burgos tells is a pleasant one. Don't read Paul Seaburn's Donuts, Bowls and Rings are the Popular New UFO Shapes while hungry. You just may stop at the first case and head out to buy a dozen of the heavenly-looking fried cakes like the one pictured in the article. But then you'd miss Paul's premise, which holds even if all three photographic cases have plausible mundane explanations. With El Salvador: UFO Causes Social Media Uproar we're not so sure what produced the tiny light seen in the photo Ivan Gomez links to, which isn't the image heading the article. We couldn't access the video through the provided link, but found the mentioned Noticias Ya article at VIDEO: Reportan Un OVNI en la Capital de El Salvador. Its author Jackeline Quijano dates the sighting to Wednesday the 8th, instead of Gomez' stated "this [past] weekend." (WM)

Eva Weinstein posits in this article that perhaps the news has become bleak enough that we are prepared to accept the magical, the paranormal, and the cryptic as a means of not just distracting ourselves from the chaos and tragedy of daily life, but as a way of fostering hope and giving us a sense of control, however fleeting it may be. We've always thought the world needed to be more Anomalistic. Next, Chris Woodyard shares this tale of what may have been an encounter with an 18th century Polish fairy: Christopher Crellius and the Savior of the Swamp.  Given the dire circumstances of the main characters, one would have to at least entertain the notion that something "atypical" occurred the night a fleeing Unitarian family became hopelessly trapped in a swampy wood. Definitely not a story about goblins and swamp beasts. (CM)

Rich Reynolds shows how certain UFO cases, like philosophical questions, Latin translations, and great classical musical pieces, can intrigue the minds of some of us to a degree deemed extreme and certainly impractical by others. Rich's argument may seem supported by Zamora Versus People, Kevin Randle's attempt to split hairs about what exactly Lonnie Zamora reported (and saw) on April 24th, 1964. Yet that has important practical implications for Kevin's reconstruction of that iconic case in his new book Encounter in the Desert: The Case for Alien Contact at Socorro. And Jason Colavito's article Weekend Roundup: Tom DeLonge Rakes in Cash, "Curse of Oak Island" Rakes in Viewers, and a Russian Man Claims a Mars-Sphinx Link indicates there's apparently a wider market than just ufology "buffs" for this sort of thing, though at a crasser level. The contrast with the truly horrifying, disgusting, but critically and fundamentally important issues underlying the other news Colavito discusses might command reflection. (WM)

Father Emil Kapaun lived a short but impactful life, serving as military chaplain during the Korean War and receiving posthumously the Medal of Honor in 2013. His time in between was spent saving soldiers, fostering hope where there would otherwise be none, and serving as an example of both faith and courage during his time as a POW. Today, the Church is taking steps to have Father Kapaun venerated, and may one day have him declared a Saint. Next, a story relayed to Nick Redfern of A Wartime Hairy Human On The Loose has all the elements of a historical adventure--Nazis, crashed planes, men in black (sort of), and a doctor working to uncover a congenital, life altering disease. (CM)

Copyright 1996-2017. The Anomalist, Box 6807, Charlottesville, Virginia  22906 USA.