High Strangeness: Aliens Among Us

Friday, February 3, 2012

Aliens Among Us

This is big: In the next few days, the human race may come into contact with one or more alien life forms...

What's really amazing about it is, the alien life forms are right here on earth.

Two miles under the ice sheet that covers Antarctica is a huge body of liquid water called Lake Vostok. How can there be a lake in Antarctica? The ice sheet moves; the land mass does not. This creates just enough friction to keep a layer of water melted between the rocks and the ice, creating a 6,000 square-foot "lake" -- one of the 15 largest lakes in earth -- that has been sealed off from the earth's atmosphere for as much as 15 million years.

What kind of exotic life might exist in this frigid water that has been cut off from the rest of the world since before Turok of the Cave People was born?

Lake Vostok is even older than this guy.
A lot of scientists have been trying to find out for very many years. In fact, they've been trying to drill through the ice to reach Lake Vostok since 1998. I know what you're thinking: those are some slow scientists. How hard can it be to drill through two miles of constantly shifting ice? Well, in addition to getting through all that ice, the scientists also had to grapple with the question of whether penetrating into the water would contaminate this pristine lake and endanger whatever life forms may live there. We don't want to discover a whole new world of amazing little alien beasties only to kill them all off on the very first day. Or, on the flip side, we don't want to unleash some prehistoric pestilence that could wipe out the human race in a matter of days. Either way, it could ruin your day and probably endanger your funding. So they stopped drilling for a while to grapple with this ethical dilemma. Then, in the tradition of generations of scientists before them, they decided, "Oh, the hell with it," and commenced to drilling again.

Could Lake Vostok be swarming with evil creatures like this "ice worm?"

Here's where it gets weird.

The Russian scientists at Vostok Station have been racing to complete their final drilling before the Antarctic winter sets in. For some reason they get their winter in the summer, I don't know why, and it seems to take the scientists by surprise every year. So here they are working like crazy to make this phenomenal scientific breakthrough, the possible discovery of completely alien life forms here on earth, while countless other scientists and researchers the world over breathlessly await the news... and... they go silent.

No shit. According to foxnews.com, no one has heard from the Russian scientists at Vostok Station for over five days. Meanwhile, the temperature is plummeting. The Lake Vostok site holds the distinction of having registered  the lowest recorded temperature on earth, ever: -129 degrees Fahrenheit.

I'll be watching this news closely and reporting in. Best wishes to those scientists.

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