High Strangeness: Truckers Know

Friday, November 18, 2011

Truckers Know

The woman at the Vortex Conference who told me, somewhat erroneously it turns out, that the Nine Circles of Hell had been relocated by the U.S. Government to the inside of a hollowed-out mountain in Dulce, New Mexico, was there with her husband. They were awfully nice folks, and I hope to God they have kids someday, because the stories they had to tell really deserve to be passed on from generation to generation, they were so wonderfully wigged-out.

There was the Hell in New Mexico thing, of course, and you'd think that story would be pretty hard to beat, but the husband gave it one heck of a try. He's a trucker, hauling mail on overnight runs between the Twin Cities and towns in northern Wisconsin, and he told me that truckers who drive all night see things that no one else sees... which makes sense, because the rest of us are all sleeping.

A lot of truckers, he told me, have experienced a temporal anomaly on a stretch of I-94 in western Wisconsin between Menomonie and Knapp. That puts it smack-dab in the middle of my trucker friend's mail run to and from the Twin Cities, and sure enough, he has experienced the anomaly himself on more than one occasion. He explained that truckers who pass through this anomaly often find themselves 15 minutes ahead of schedule when they get back into real time-space. Strangely, it also works in reverse, causing some truckers to fall 15 minutes behind. Which explains why you never know when your mail will be delivered in northern Wisconsin.

I was intrigued. I had just driven that route several weeks earlier, moving my son to his new apartment at the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, and decided that when it was time to go pick him up again I would make the trip at night in an 18-wheeler. But I didn't have to, because shortly after I talked to the trucker I had a flashback to that recent trip... and it suddenly seemed to me that I had blanked out along that same stretch of interstate, and that I had completely missed an exit that I had thought about taking to look for some dinner. Had I actually lost 15 minutes passing through the strange anomaly? Or had I just spaced out along a boring stretch of highway? My wife and kids have one theory; I have a different one.

See what I mean about hoping this couple has kids?

Later, at the book signing, I ran into the trucker again, and we got into a conversation with the Roswell guy. The trucker revealed that he used to be a cop in Arizona, and that his partner's dad had once worked a security detail at Area 51... Do you sense a story coming on? So did I, and so it did.

I'll keep it brief. The partner's dad once told his son about a memorable day at Area 51 when the base Commanding Officer had ordered that LSD be slipped into all the lunches served at the Commissary. I know what you're thinking: Employee Appreciation Day. Wrong. It turns out that some alien corpses recovered from a crashed UFO were due to arrive at the base that day, and the C.O. was taking precautions against a possible leak. You see, the government classifies any person who has ever, ever taken a hallucinogen as a psychotic. Therefore, after the LSD experience, everyone who worked on base was officially psychotic. Therefore, if any base employee ever leaked any news about the government capturing alien corpses, the government could simply dismiss the reports as the ravings of a psychotic.

I know, it sounds too silly, and too complicated. And yet...and yet, it follows a certain perverse logic. And I was so thoroughly entertained by the trucker's endless stories and the excited certainty with which he recounted them that I had to buy in.

My son is coming home from college this weekend. I told him to pay attention to the flow of time between the exits for Knapp and Menomonie, just in case.

No comments: