High Strangeness: Swamp Gas Fever!

Monday, November 23, 2015

Swamp Gas Fever!

I've just gotten updates about the two big speaking engagements I have lined up for 2016: the Great Roswell Debate, in which I will face off against Roswell brainiac Donald Schmitt to debate something or other about the Roswell saucer crash mystery; and the Swamp Gas UFO Conference, commemorating the 50th anniversary of the still-controversial Dexter-Hillsdale, Michigan, UFO sightings of 1966.

First off, the gentleman who is putting on the debate informs me that the big event will take place at the Milwaukee Paranormal Conference, next October 15-16. It will probably be the prime-time event that Saturday, but the schedule is not set in stone at this point.

He also had this to say about the debate:
"I spoke to someone from Marquette University's Debate Team, and he said he'd be glad to sit down and talk with me about running a debate effectively, giving me an overview on formats and such. I also got leads on people versed in debate that might make a good team to help run the event."
His approach gives me confidence that this could be a very good event, so stay tuned...

Then, I got this in the mail:

You know you want to be there.
This is pretty exciting to me. I'm thrilled that the folks at Michigan MUFON are putting on this event, and I am tickled to death that I get to take part.

I am sad to say, however, that the administration of Hillsdale College has declined to host any portion of the event or be involved in any way. Do you suppose the administrators were worried about the College's image? That seems to be the likely explanation, and if it's true then I think they made a bad choice, for their College, for their students, and for their community.

Nothing to do but move on... The only question for me now is, what exactly will I talk about?? With five other speakers on the program, I don't want to overlap with anything anyone else is doing, and I do want to make it worthwhile for people in the audience, so I want to provide some new and surprising information about the Dexter-Hillsdale event, the aftermath of which Dr. Hynek once described as "the low point of my career." I have given this a lot of thought, and I have decided on a few possibilities:

  • I can talk about why the American public were especially primed for a spectacular UFO event in March, 1966
  • I can divulge the real details of how and why Dr. Hynek was forced into giving a press conference at the Detroit Press Club before he had had a chance to fully investigate the sightings 
  • I can describe how Hynek's investigation of the sightings was hampered by the Air Force, the Michigan media, the local police, and even the witnesses
  • I can talk about how and why Dr. Hynek came up with the "swamp gas" hypothesis leading up to the Detroit press conference
  • I can tell the story of how Hynek turned the low point of his career into stupendous success, recognition and fame 

What do you think? If you could make it to Ann Arbor in March, what would you like to hear me babble about?


purrlgurrl said...

I vote for: "I can talk about why the American public were especially primed for a spectacular UFO event in March, 1966".

Anonymous said...

Is "emceed" now officially recognised (Australian spelling) as a real word?

Terry the Censor said...

As usual, PG is right. I too vote for #1.

I don't know how such things are organised, but I would hope that whoever is overseeing the speakers would help you all work this out well ahead of time.

(No, I do not want to be in charge of the event! Though I am originally from Windsor, Ontario, just across the river from Detroit.)