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The Anomalist



August 19

Nowadays when folks want real journalism, they turn to independent bloggers. Even if it means ratcheting the skepticism up to eleven. Our favorite Martian, Tim Binnall, has a crackerjack story straight outta Pueblo, Colorado guaranteed to mess your trousers. In fact, the account goes much deeper than a mere abandoned 911 call. Meanwhile the mainstream press continues to circle the drain. Most bitterly, the vaunted New York Times now focusing on the fodder of British tabloids than hard, local, national, and global news stories when they're not beating the political drum. If you've been living under a rock, Gabe Cohn illustrates How Slender Man Became A Legend. Gabe, bubele, the answer is Something Awful and Marble Hornets. Doesn't get deeper than that. On the bright side, even if the Gray Lady's peddling bullshit they're not peddling his bullshit. Maybe Dean Baquet should consider hiring South Africa's very own Damon Beard after reviewing his exposé on The Tokoloshe. Is it just a myth or a scary reality? Let's just say for some people it's a little from column A and a little from column b, and based on an unsettling voice message, the argument for column b is stronger than Superman in sunshine. Far from the bustle of the Big Apple and its subways redolent of urine and diesel, a Possible Chupacabras Been Spotted In Deer Creek, Oklahoma and Jessica Bruno has a screenshot and video of the critter in action. (CS)

First things first, article's behind a (very) soft paywall and the price is an email. Anyone's email. Now that's out of the way, Amy Paturel has a remarkable assessment of the phenomenon of coincidence imbued with equal parts of science and psychology with some tips on keeping track of these events. Further down the path of non-human agency, Nigel Warburton considers The Unreality Of Luck. Luck does exist, but like all things one's perception colors whether it's good or bad evinced by two wartime anecdotes. Even machines can be lucky, experiencing coincidence as humans perceive the phenomenon, much like the storied Vela Hotel satellite. The confluence of Radioactive Sheep, An Anomalous Flash, And A Nuclear Mystery gets far deeper after Lars-Erik De Geer and pals begin reviewing evidence no government could squirrel away as being top secret. (CS)

Is this a case of the third-man effect, actual intervention from beyond, or a hillbilly icon screwing with his fan base? Khadrice Rollins has a transcript of Dale's tale, but there's so much more on episode 229 of the Dale Earnhardt Jr. podcast where Dale debunks Bigfoot. It's one thing to speed 500 miles, but that's nothing compared to the long hauls over America's haunted highways by truckers. Phantom hitchhikers, creepy little girls, wolves in sheep's clothing, and Large Marge, are just the tip of Brent Swancer's iceberg of Bizarre Truck Encounters With The Paranormal. When the fuzz pick you up for hitchhiking, forcing you to cool your heels on the county's dime, be sure to tell your fellow inmates The Anomalist sentcha. Now that's a segue if I ever wrote one, and Tim Binnall's has a wheelbarrow full of dead presidents for a Haunted Jail For Sale out in Jim Thorpe, Pennsylvania. With a history of gruesome executions and bloody prison riots, no wonder this joint's suffused with dark energies. (CS)

August 18

The genius behind the "god helmet" has shuffled off this mortal coil at the age of 73. For those of you living under a rock, Persinger figured out that tickling the brain with magnetism gave folks the sensation of a presence. But Greg Taylor wants you to know that Persinger was more than a one-trick pony. Also in line at the Pearly Gates is Robert Michaels, a zoologist and supporter of cryptozoology. Karl Shuker takes a moment to Remember His Longstanding Online Friend And Cryptozoological Colleague. Keeping with the cliché of "Everything happens in threes", Red Pill Junkie eulogizes his friend Bernd Stramm, An Earthling Who Has Blasted Off Into Space and leaving behind friends and an intelligent legacy which will be missed by The Daily Grail community. (CS)

In Frank Herbert's Dune, the Bene Gesserit would trip on the Water of Life and draw upon the experiences of their forebears. The same happens, according to John Higgs, with Timothy Leary dropping acid, surprise surprise, then apprehending his place in an ages-old magickal lineage going back further than Aleister Crowley. Not unlike Timothy Leary, Colin Bennett also liked connecting the dots when it comes to Bigfoot, Mysterious Men, And The Occult. As Nick Redfern discovers, there's a strong correspondence between MIB and sasquatch encounters. Hopefully all will be revealed soon since Brett Tingley and The Internet Are Crowdfunding The Release Of CIA Mind-Control Documents. The situation is compelling since the Powers-That-Be have already said they have the papers, and John Greenwald just has to pony up the cash. (CS)

Thieves In The Night JimHarold.com
Everyone's raving about Joshua Cutchin's latest contribution to the fortean oeuvre, Thieves In The Night. Especially Jim Harold who welcomes Josh to talk about the hardwired human horror of children being abducted by non-human entities. Sometimes kids choose to vanish, being absorbed into fringe religious organizations. Fortunately some do escape Cult Hell as illustrated in Janja Lalich and Karla McLaren's Escaping Utopia. Stronger still, as Lynn Picknett shares, is the necessity of broadening the definition of cult as mainstream religions tend to use the same tactics to engender helplessness and brainwash members. (CS)

August 17

UFOlogist and venture capitalist Jacques Vallee's presentation at the 61st Annual Convention of the Parapsychological Association surprised a lot of people. As RPJ recounts, Vallee spoke about the "hidden history" of Silicon Valley, and how the world wide web owes a big debt to psi research and the study of the untapped potentials of human consciousness--they both grew out of efforts he was involved in (ARPANET and the Stargate “psychic spy” program) at the Stanford Research Institute. The real surprise came when Vallee said he is stepping back from UFO research because ufology remains "too superficial to really get into the roots of the problem." Vallee said he now wishes to spend the remainder of his life on more fruitful endeavors! Maybe that means more psi research, which would be fine by psychologist Jim Carpenter who explains the Basic Terms In First Sight, First Sight being his model of the mind and a theory of the kinds of hypothetical processes that parapsychologists study. These terms or "constructs are useful in accounting for some aspects of how the mind works in producing experience and behavior out of unconscious processes." Surely Carpenter would agree with Vallee who said that parapsychology should lead the way, not follow. (PH)

The tragic end of conspiracy theorist-ufologist Max Spiers continues to puzzle, well after his July 2016 passing at age 39. Adding to the still-questioned cause of death is evidence that the Polish investigation of Spiers' demise was more than just botched. Tim Binnall has the details on this, as well as on the Alien Sighting Reported in Ohio. No spacecraft here, but something resembling a Tall Grey was seen crossing a road. Why is another matter. The same has been asked of the man who furnished the Video: UFO Filmed Over NC Lake. Binnall does not exaggerate when he says the footage is so shaky that it "may leave viewers feeling sea sick by the time the video comes to a close." Whether anyone has bothered to attempt an analysis of "stills," or just chalked it off as being the Goodyear blimp, is also another question. (WM)

Brett Tingley manages to say exactly what we've been thinking in this report of strange and inexplicable goings-on near Mount Vernon: Was the 7 to 8 feet all, hairless creature with light brown skin, a tall slender body, small neck and oval elongated head a reptilian swamp creature that crawled out of its office for a bit of sightseeing during the Congressional summer recess? Perhaps Nick Redfern's take on A Shape-Changing Chupacabra should be taken out of its South American context and applied to Tingley's more political setting. Redfern makes a good argument for shape-shifting monsters, those creatures who appear different depending on who is looking at them. Alternate facts anyone? (CM)

Spanish ufologist and journalist Jose Antonio Caravaca answers one of the more knotty problems in his novel "Distortion Theory" of close encounters. Jose's exposition is careful, comprehensive, and helpful in understanding this interesting construct. One wonders what trace case guru Ted Phillips would make of this, and it of course has ramifications for what those folks over at To The Stars and Earth Tech are presumably doing. Jose's application to radar returns apparently collectively experienced at different locations and with different equipment, such as in the 2004 Nimitz "Tic Tac" encounters, would also be welcome. Rich Reynolds reviews his views in Are "Alien Abductions" Real? Maybe. Rich ponders the possibility of a "reality" beyond those of the skeptics and "traditional" abduction researchers. Rich and Jose are honestly seeking explanations fitting the data while not labeling close encounter witnesses as merely crazy, mendacious, or intellectually challenged. (WM)

August 16

This first piece should probably be titled "Why It's Important To Perform Maintenance On Your Security Cam." 'Taint no spook crossing the road, ladies and gentlemen. 'Nuff said. Next, we have a Ghost Monk Spotted at Tintern Abbey in Wales. There's certainly enough history at the Abbey to warrant some spirit guests, but the images captured are suggestive of a camera fault. We will leave it to our readers to draw their own conclusions. Finally (and in direct competition with recent claims of Bigfoot naughtiness), It’s a Trend — Another Woman Admits to Having Sex With a Ghost. It's difficult to know how to respond to reports like these because--let's face it--uncovering evidence would be entirely outside our pay grades. We'll say this story falls under the category of Personal Preference and leave it at that. (CM)

Nick Redfern uses Kevin Randle's The Decline of Roswell article as support for his theory that a Japanese-American balloon experiment gone horribly wrong caused the July 1947 Roswell crash. Nick makes a good case here. But there's More on the "No UFO Crash" at Roswell Saga, says Nick. He successfully brushes aside one effort to sustain the ET-Roswell connection, and then says if that connection is broken, "I predict that Ufology will unravel quickly." There's a great deal more to UFO studies than just Roswell, so Nick's Ufological Ragnarok prediction is hopefully too dire. For instance, there's Pascagoula: A 1973 UFO Close Encounter, Reconsidered by Micah Hanks. Hanks draws parallels between the 1973 Charles Hickson-Calvin Parker abduction and the 1957 experience of Antonio Vilas-Boas to suggest a non-ET origin for both. Hanks suggests humans using some type of stealth helicopters as an explanation. This tack presents its own problems, but at least it's more palatable to "Faithful devotees" rejecting the idea of an alien presence. But how to explain when an Astronaut Reveals Possible Alien Encounter on Space Shuttle? Paul Seaburn has fun with the answer, and modern Renaissance Man Leland Melvin sounds like a fun guy, as well. (WM)

The terrible collapse of the Silver Bridge that connected Point Pleasant, West Virginia and Gallipolis, Ohio, is the main subject of this passage from John Keel's files. Keel's reactions to the December 15, 1967, disaster and what he perceives as strange coincidences and fulfilled predictions are interesting. So is the information about "mysterious men in plaid or checkered shirts" or coats. They seem to be spiffier than your run-of-the-mill MIB, but at least as "foreign" and maybe even a bit more dangerous. (WM)

Brent Swancer scares the living bejeebus out of us with this piece. Everything about the anomalies described--"cases that hover out beyond our ability to really classify them or put a name to them"--appeal to our sense of abhorrence and  nightmare. Next, Nick Redfern discusses Strange Visitors and Altered States. Redfern proposes that the BEK/MIB and related phenomena occur only during altered states of consciousness. So if you're not prone to sleep paralysis or are immune to hypnotic suggestion you're in the clear, right? Sorry, it's unclear whether the dark eyed creeps show up After their victims are in an altered state, or if they in fact Cause the altered state. Keep your doors locked folks, and don't make eye contact...(CM)

August 15

David Halperin muses about what he perceives as a "media trend" that began last December and which "has continued, again on the venerable pages of the Times, over the past three weeks." But the main focus of Halperin's thoughtful piece is the London Review of Books, which might be considered another bastion of liberal thought. Specifically, it's an article by Nick Richardson, who speaks with respect toward the To The Stars...Academy of Arts & Science and its founder, then veers off to discuss favorably the ideas of Jacques Vallee. Halperin himself moves from this focus to another NYT article, this time a July 21st piece on an "Ancient Aliens" conference. While its author, Steven Kurutz, "is plainly unconvinced by the believers, Halperin says that "Kurutz's portrait of the 'ancient aliens' conferees is sympathetic and appealing." Halperin covers more, including the NYT post we recently reviewed about the July 1952 Washington, D.C. UFO "flap"; the New York Times' historical antipathy to UFOs; and, of course, Halperin's own contribution as to why "Donald Trump" is the "short answer" for this pivoting of the NYT's published attitudes towards the UFO subject. And Halperin would likely view the August 14th NYT article, They've Seen Things, much like he did the Kurutz piece. Instead of F/A-18s chasing "Tic Tacs," Rozette Rago's article highlights a group of apparently grounded, intelligent individuals fired and bonded by personal experience, expressing their passions in a manner that would make some ufologists cringe just a bit. Much like Kurutz, Rago provides a human-interest piece that seems written fairly. (WM)

Michael Mayes heads to Greenville, Texas, in this post, personally interviewing the seventh grade girl who recently encountered a large, long tailed black cat on her family's property. Kudos to Mike for mixing it up and allowing us to put a voice to a sighting, all while maintaining the young lady's anonymity. Next, there's been another Bigfoot Spotted in Upstate NY. An enormous and hairy bipedal creature was seen darting across a highway before disappearing over the barrier wall on the other side. This maintains the area's reputation as a hotspot for Sasquatch "road crossing" sightings but still doesn't prevent witnesses from hiding their identities for fear of ridicule. (CM)

Paul Seaburn, who has been dutifully following the sometimes queasy archaeological news from Egypt, advises us that "a second giant sphinx" was found by workers during the "Al-Kabbash Road project" between the fabulous Luxor Temple and the Karnak complex, to the north. Seaburn's is a clearer presentation than many others of what's going on, as visitors to those two Upper Egyptian tourist sites well know that tons of sphinxes connected these locations, and indeed performed apotropaic, guardian-type functions in "classic" temple complexes. Paul is also right to question the c. 2500 BCE date being bruited about for the sphinx. Closer to home, Micah Hanks contributes an excellent article in Dig Deeper: Paradigm Shifts and the Changing Face of North American Archaeology. This piece is highlighted by an outstanding video documenting Hanks's visit to a South Carolinian site that might set back the date for human occupation in the Americas well before 16,000-to-21,000 years BP (Before Present) noted for the Gault, Texas, site. (WM)

Called by the Dead Haunted Ohio
Chris Woodyard shares an old tale that both warms our hearts and makes our goose pimples pop. While we have heard stories of those near death having encounters with their dearly departed, this version has a twist in that the deceased seems to be more of a spiritual courier for the entire family--one who refuses to be sent away without his "package." Then, in Dead as a Doornail – The Carpenter of Doom we encounter Death not as a looming figure in dark robes wielding a scythe, but as a journeyman carpenter whose visits end in death. The final nail in the coffin, one could say. (CM)

August 14

Brent Swancer serves as our realtor and  guide in this veritable brochure of how to live in Tokyo and still afford to eat. The Japanese take their spooks very seriously, and their shunning of those who don't even more so. If only those real or imagined phantoms could have been shipped over to Ireland about a century ago. Spook Wanted is a near poetic column taken from an Irish newspaper in 1908, lamenting that any town worth its salt would at the very least have a resident ghost. Tying up this foray into who's who of the invisible world, Mark Russell Bell gives us a glimpse into his strange and synchronistic life in Messages from the Spiritual World & My Strange Disclosure. Mark has been dealing with his own health mysteries for some time now and still manages to notice the guidance coming from a place beyond this one. (CM)

The Decline of Roswell A Different Perspective
A reconsideration of some of the most iconic UFO cases begins with Kevin Randle's latest ruminations on the scant documentary information we have about the Roswell incident. The probabilities stemming from this review tend to weaken the idea that an extraterrestrial craft was deposited on a New Mexico ranch back in 1947. Elsewhere, Hadley Meares gives an even-handed and interesting account of The Unsolved Mystery of the Lubbock Lights UFO Sightings. The "quiet summer night in Lubbock, Texas" produced a conundrum only 4 years after Roswell's 1947 event. And sandwiched in between them chronologically was a really "up and close," harrowing experience chronicled in Alex Hollings's The Time a WWII Fighter Pilot Intercepted a UFO over North Dakota in his P-51 Mustang. Like the Meares article, Hollings's report is detailed and straightforward. Rich Reynolds helps history out by correcting Hollings's rather early date for Edward Ruppelt's coinage of the acronym U.F.O. in The 1948 Gorman ""Dogfight with a UFO". Finally, Emmetsburg [Iowa] Reporter/Democrat news writer Dan Voigt tells local variations of a 120-year-old "UFO wave" in An Old Mystery Comes Back to Light. The last tale in particular is outlandish, but Voight still notes "There has never been a definitive explanation of the 'airship' of 1897, and most likely there never will be." (Contrary to the editor's note, this appears to be the entire 2-part article.) (WM)

In the current election cycle, Joe Manchik's candidacy may have the highest ceiling for weird. Manchik has said "My distant relatives originally came ... from a planet orbiting a star in the Pleiades star cluster located in the constellation of Taurus." But his ancestry shouldn't affect Joe's eligibility any, because he himself comes from Hell. Well, Hell, Michigan, that is. Micah Hanks explains how this Green Party's local standard bearer affected the election for Ohio's vacant 12th Congressional District. Nick Redfern may have bettered Hanks with his UFOs: "Not Something to Encourage". Redfern focuses on Albert Bender, a UFO enthusiast who went off the rails when three MIBs "literally materialized in his attic-based abode." A shadowy group once enthusiastically "investigated UFO encounters" for some time, Nick believes after Taking a Look at the Interplanetary Phenomenon Unit. Kevin Randle has denied the unit's existence, and while Nick provides documentary mentions of the IPU, all he can conclude is "there appears to have been something to it, but precisely how much is anyone's guess." Maybe we'd know more about it if it had looked in the right places. Micah Hanks considers this in Extraterrestrial Flotsam and Jetsam: Earth's Moon and the Search for Alien Life. Hanks allows that star-traveling tourists may have consciously trashed the Moon with their equivalent of candy wrappers and spent soda cans. But maybe our closest heavenly companion has functioned for eons as a gravitational magnet for the wandering detritus of ET civilizations. (WM)


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