High Strangeness: 2013

Friday, December 27, 2013

Fuzzy Edges

Should I be worried that name of the witness in the UFO case to which I've just been assigned is "Farce?" That's the last name, by the way, not the first. "Nxxxx Farce," I kid you not.

The case itself is kind of interesting, though. It involves a woman and her daughter in their car at night sighting a bright light that started to behave suspiciously... "We pulled onto the road facing east and sat there watching it flicker and dart in ways that proved to be it was not an airplane, and I watched it ascend upward at a slight angle OVER the trees and descended in front of them towards us."

The narrative gets more interesting from there, but there are a couple features of this case report that caught my eye before I even got to the narrative description... One was that the witness reported psychological effects during the sighting. I don't think I've ever come across this before, and I'm curious to learn more about how the witness was affected. What's more, in the section of the case report where the witness is asked to check off anything the object did during the encounter, there is a list of 53 possible behaviors from which to choose, and while most witnesses will check one or two or maybe three, this witness checked off an even dozen!

Here's the rest of the witness' list:
  • Changed Direction
  • Turned Abruptly
  • Hovered
  • Descended
  • Ascended
  • Over Powerlines
  • Over a Building
  • Blinked
  • Pulsated
  • Had Fuzzy Edges
  • Glowed
  • Affected Me Psychologically
There's a lot going on there... To top it all off, when the witness and her daughter arrived at their destination, they were so shaken that the witness had her boyfriend pick them up and drive them home. Whatever it was that these two witnesses saw, it was not your ordinary light in the sky.

Or was it?

Talk about "Fuzzy Edges..." New guidelines from MUFON will make it easier to identify flying objects such as this one.
That brings me to another item of interest. My superiors at MUFON have just released an updated list of Classification Categories for us Field Investigators, with, I hope, much clearer guidelines on what distinguishes an "Unknown Other" from an "IFO" from a "Hoax" from an "Information Only." I haven't had a chance to delve into the document too deeply, but I will share my insights on the new system over the next few posts, and I will share the details of my next investigation as we find out whether MUFON's modified categories will prove to be the bomb on their first trial.

Of course... this whole thing could prove to be a Farce.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Little Green Men -- Part 3

I just love the little green men of Kelly-Hopkinsville, even though they haunt my dreams. As I'm writing about the Kelly-Hopkinsville Little Green Men case (or KHLGMC) for my book about Dr. J. Allen Hynek, I find myself continually amazed at the way the Sutton clan fought off the little beasties that invaded their isolated Kentucky farm that August night in 1955. If the aliens had some gland plan to make contact with the human race by approaching a remote farmhouse after dark, they sure botched it when they picked the Sutton house.

My appreciation of the Suttons has grown even greater since I had the privilege of interviewing Geraldine Sutton-Stith, the daughter of Elmer "Lucky" Sutton, the man who led the fight against the alien invaders that night. From Geraldine, who was born several years after KHLGMC, I learned that her Daddy and her grandmother, "Miss Glennie" Lankford, made a formidable duo, and have earned places of honor in the pantheon of unwilling UFO celebrities.

To recap, on an August night in 1955, a bright shining object landed in a gully behind a Kentucky farmhouse. Shortly after, 11 adults and children in the farmhouse were besieged by silent, expressionless little glowing men who kept appearing outside the windows and doors and scampering over the roof. Three of the men in the house armed themselves and blasted away at the beasties every chance they could, but the little creatures simply flipped over and scrambled away... except, of course, for the times when they floated away. (And how many were there? News stories reported that a dozen creatures surrounded the house, but Lucky and the others never saw more than two creatures at the same time.)

The siege went on for hours, and finally the whole family escaped in the two family cars and reported the attack to the police. Over a dozen law enforcement officers went over the house and lot and found no sign of any alien presence. But once they left the siege began again, and in the morning the aliens just went away of their own accord. By rights they should have been picking lead shot out of their little green hineys for days afterwards, but they never seemed phased by the gunshots. The case has been investigated countless times, and the Suttons have never backed off from their story. KHLGMC remains one of the great unexplained UFO mysteries of all time.

It's a great story, but now I love it even more. I talked to Geraldine a lot about her Dad "Lucky" and what he went through that night. She told me that she always knew "something" had happened to her family before she was born, but her Daddy never spoke of it. Until one day many years later when a man and woman came to the door and asked Lucky to tell them his story, and he agreed. When he led the visitors into the living room, Geraldine followed... She sat on the floor, quiet as a churchmouse, completely transfixed as her Daddy told the strangers what happened that night.

She told me that her Daddy was small of stature, but was a fierce fighter. Even when Miss Glennie tried to convince Lucky and the other men to stop shooting at the creatures, Lucky wouldn't relent. “If they’re coming up to the doors and windows, they want to get in. And what are they going to do when they get in?" Geraldine said to me. "He wasn’t going to give them that chance!” We talked a lot about what kind of fear it would take to make such a self-reliant man race into town to get help from the police, and Geraldine said that Lucky's concern for his family's safety trumped all other considerations--the man knew when it was time to get help.

As for Miss Glennie, she would not allow any alcohol or tobacco on her farm, which became a factor when investigators suggested that Lucky and the others had been drinking and dreamed the whole thing up. “Miss Glennie didn’t believe in drinking or smoking or any of the bad things you could do to your body," according to Geraldine. "If you got caught in a lie, you might as well get ready for the wrath of momma and her God.”

Twice that night Miss Glennie was scared half to death by the creatures, once when the first alien approached the front door of the house and then again a few hours later when she woke up and saw one staring at her through the bedroom window... And even then she implored Lucky and the others to stop shooting at the creatures. After all, they didn't seem to want to hurt anyone, and they were probably just as scared of the humans as the humans were of them.

What did this creature do to upset Alene Sutton so?
All in all, I can't think of anyone better than Miss Glennie Lankford to represent the human race when we first make contact with an extraterrestrial civilization. Of course, if the story is true, she has already done so...

There's another part of the story that intrigues me, and unfortunately Geraldine was not able to help me with this stickler... In the most thorough write-up of KHLGMC, "Close Encounter at Kelly" by Isabel Davis (1978, Center for UFO Studies), it is revealed that Miss Glennie did not believe her son Lucky's claims that there were strange little men outside the house until her daughter-in-law (and Geraldine's aunt) Alene Sutton came back in the house “...terrified, white, nervously shaking, saying that she had seen one of the little men. She was terribly upset..."

This is a bombshell, yet Davis never seems to have followed up on it. With the men guarding the doors with guns, how did Alene Sutton get out of the house, and why did she go outside when she knew there were strange creatures lurking in the yard? There was a kitchen door that was left unguarded, but from the house plans Davis drew in her report, Lucky would almost certainly have seen Alene slip outside from where he was stations. So did she not want Lucky to stop her?

I really want to get to the bottom of this, and I think I will find out more on my next visit to the CUFOS archives. The answer will surely be in the transcriptions of the interviews local radio host Bud Ledwith conducted of all the adults the day after the siege. But what if it isn't?? Anybody have any leads I can follow?

P.S. Geraldine has a slick website and a wonderful book about the encounter: "Alien Legacy." Read it!

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Chewed Out! -- Part 3 or Stifling a Yawn

Boy, readers sure are worked up over my posts about being bored with my most recent UFO cases here, here and here. I appreciate the sentiments behind the comments being posted both criticizing and supporting my bout with UFO boredom, but it's a little bewildering, to be honest.

Over the two and a half years that I've been writing High Strangeness, I've been supporting of and sensitive to the UFO witnesses I interview at least 95% of the time, and I generally only gripe about the witnesses who make the UFO report about themselves (like the guy and his terrifying wife who insisted that alien greys were planning to kill him in 48 hours because he gave up on his dream of being a musician after he and wife fought about it) or those who seem to have never heard of Occam's razor (like the guy who saw two glowing red "eyes" in his alley one night, reflected in his kitchen window, and was absolutely certain they couldn't have been the taillights of his neighbor's car).

The recent witness about whom I commented in the blog post that started this whole kerfuffle had reported seeing what J. Allen Hynek would describe as "nocturnal meandering lights." The witness reported seeing unusual lights that moved from one part of the sky to another before he lost sight of them. The witness had further reported that the lights were completely silent, and when we talked about that he started to list several rescue helicopters by name that the silent lights didn't sound like, but whose sounds he could identify instantly.

Whatever that guy saw, it wasn't this.
Now, it should be self-evident that a silent object doesn't sound like anything, except, of course, another silent object. What I was objecting to was being kept on the phone for several extra minutes so the witness could impress me with his voluminous knowledge of rescue helicopters, which, as I think anyone can readily see, has absolutely bupkis to do with the UFO report. These are extra minutes of my life, not yours, and I object to having them wasted.

Ultimately, each case report I file gets automatically rated for credibility on the Ballaster-Guasp Evaluation tool, and this particular case came up at a rating of... well, I can't tell you now because the MUFON Case Management System is crashing as I write this and I can't look up anything. But I do remember that the credibility index on this particular case was shockingly low, among the lowest of any case I've investigated.

But in my view this does not necessarily mean that the case is any less likely to be authentic than another with a higher BGE score (I have problems with this evaluation tool and I have written about it before here). This case got a low credibility rating because there was so little data to work with, and because there was only the one witness, and because the object just moved from point A to point B and didn't do anything "anomalous" in between. A case like this is guaranteed to get a low BGE rating, because there is so little data to work with, and because the investigation generally lasts less than 30 minutes. Why? Because there's just not that much to talk about besides what the witness already described when reporting the sighting in the first place, and I'm not going to keep someone on the phone longer than I have to just to boost the credibility rating. Because that would be a waste of everybody's time, it would render the credibility rating meaningless, and we would all be stifling yawns...

So, to the person who had a strange UFO experience in Wisconsin and is using one entry in my blog as a reason not to report the incident, I say go ahead and report it, because you will probably feel better for having done so, and because, as Chief Investigator for Wisconsin, I can see to it that another investigator gets the case. Just be sure to talk for >30 minutes!

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Colin Wilson, R.I.P.

I was saddened to learn of the death of my idol Colin Wilson this past week. When I first started to explore expanded consciousness, the paranormal, and other unexplained phenomena on the fringes of science, Colin quickly became my go-to writer and thinker. His belief that there's far more to the world than our five senses reveal to us, and that anybody can develop the skills to perceive more has always rung true to me, and I have followed him faithfully over the years as he has explored and refined his philosophy. I am proud to own an autographed copy of his science-fiction novel "The Philosopher's Stone," and even once owned a copy of the movie "Lifeforce," a piece of crap very loosely based on another mind-bending Wilson science-fiction novel, "The Space Vampires" (This book may soon be turned into a TV series, and I hope to God these people do a better job with the material).
Colin Wilson (1931-2013)

Along the way Colin wrote one of the most thought-provoking UFO books I have ever read, "Alien Dawn: An Investigation into the Contact Experience." I'll say straight out that it is not for everybody. Readers may be extremely confused by Colin's attempts to link UFO contact with other mysterious manifestations, and extremely frustrated by Colin's refusal to draw any definite conclusions, as this GoodReads review shows.

But that's one of the reasons I love the book. Colin is smart enough to know that he can't prove any of his theories, but courageous enough to let his expansive imagination take him wherever it will regardless.

And it's not like he was the first writer to talk about the Loch Ness Monster, poltergeists and crop circles in a book that is supposed to be about UFOs. Colin is no more out there than someone like John Keel, whose books left nothing out of bounds and are phenomenally entertaining as a result.

So, anyone willing to entertain the possibility that there is a psychic element to the UFO phenomenon will find "Alien Dawn" an interesting read.

Colin also wrote a book called "Afterlife," and I can't help wondering if Colin is out there somewhere right now, wishing like crazy that he could revise that book...

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Little Green Men! -- Part II

How does a UFO incident get its name?

The Phoenix Lights are named after a place in Arizona, but the Chiles-Whitted incident is named after two airline pilots (who, technically, were in the air and so were not in any actual place with a name, but still...). The Pascagoula abduction is named after the town in Mississippi where it occurred, but the Barney and Betty Hill abduction is named after the abductees... Then there's the ever-popular Roswell incident, which actually took place very, very far from Roswell, but the evidence of which was allegedly brought to an Air Force base in Roswell. So, who decides if a UFO encounter is forever named after the person who experienced it or the place where it occurred or the place where the evidence was allegedly taken?

I've been pondering this question since I blogged about the Kelly-Hopkinsville "Little Green Men" incident a while back, because Kelly and Hopkinsville are both towns in Kentucky, but the Kelly-Hopkinsville Litle Green Men incident didn't take place in either town.

The Sutton family farm, where the invasion of the little green men took place, is technically adjacent to the tiny so-called hamlet of Kelly, but when the Suttons and their kinfolk decided to make a run for it, they had to drive the ten miles or so south to Hopkinsville, because that's where the closest police station was...

Personally, I don't think Hopkinsville deserves to be in the name. The honor should go to Kelly, clearly. But that could be a problem too, because Kelly is too small to show up on Google Maps, so I'm not sure if it's real. Kelly fares somewhat better on MapQuest, where it appears to be a bump in the middle of U.S. Highway 41, but I'd say that's damning it with faint praise. Even more disturbing is the fact that on Kelly's official website, Kellyky.com, the town of Kelly shows an address in Crofton, KY, some seven miles to the north. Seems to me that if a town's address is another town, that town doesn't really exist.
Sure, Kelly, KY has a festival, but that doesn't make it real.

So why not ditch the names of the towns and name the incident after the Suttons? The Sutton Little Green Men incident has a nice ring to it, I think. But there's a problem with that as well. Of the eleven witnesses to the Sutton Little Green Men incident, only four were Suttons, and only two of those were Suttons by birth; the two others married into the clan. There were also two Taylors, four Lankfords (three by birth, one by marriage), and a Baker thrown in for good measure.

Now, lets parse that out. The farm was rented by twice-widowed matriarch Miss Glennie Lankford, and there were more blood Lankfords there than any other family, so by rights it should be the Lankford Little Green Men incident. But Elmer "Lucky" Sutton, one of Miss Glennie's sons from her first marriage, is generally regarded as the hero of the story, because he took charge when the invasion commenced, so he would seem to have the naming rights all wrapped up. But then the first shot was fired at a little green man by Lucky's best friend Billy Ray Taylor, and Billy Ray was also the only one of the group who saw the brightly-lit object with the rainbow exhaust land in the gully behind the farmhouse, so we could just as accurately call it the Billy Ray Taylor Little Green Men incident.

But then there's the fact that the little green men weren't green at all. They had shiny silver skin (or clothing--no one seemed sure), and their huge eyes glowed yellow... 

So, in the end, pretty much everything about the name The Kelly-Hopkinsville Little Green Men incident is false. And if there's one thing the field of UFO research does not need, it's for prominent UFO cases to be named after towns that don't exist or where the sightings didn't actually take place or creature colors that were never seen or reported. This web of lies is a house of cards, and it cannot stand.

There's got to be a better way...

Monday, December 2, 2013

Chewed Out! -- Part Two

Ok, it happened again. I got chewed out a second time for being "negative" about my UFO investigating career. This was after responding to the first scolding with an explanation of where my negativity was coming from...

Here's what I wrote to the scolder the first time:
"Criticism taken, but if you read more than just the one post you'd see that there's much more to my blog. From time to time I need to vent my frustrations with UFO people, and when I do I usually take on an exaggerated tone... But the majority of the UFO people I run across are pretty cool and I treat them with respect. I hope you keep reading"
Short, sweet and sincere, right? But not good enough for the scolder, who wrote this the next day:
"I did read more than one post, but that doesn't change the fact that you speak rudely about your contact with witnesses. People who have seen things already have to contend with the fact that a lot of people think they are crazy or were hallucinating or saw a bird or what ever. For someone like me, who had an experience so bizarre that I have never found any evidence of another sighting like it, & who has been searching for answers, it is disheartening to discover that the WI mufon investigator speaks disparagingly about witnesses.
"Whether you meant it light heartedly or not, it gives someone like me pause in wanting to share with you. I will continue my search for answers as I want to believe that my husband & I cannot be the only people who have experienced what we have. Witnesses need to know that there is a safe place to go to seek answers as we are sick of the name calling & disbelief that we receive."
Is this when the witness experienced? Sadly, this writer may never know.
So, okay, bad on me. I don't want my writing to discourage anyone from reporting UFO a sighting. Especially a sighting that is apparently so bizarre that the witness has never found evidence of another sighting anything like it. I can only assume from this letter that the witness and her husband have shared their story before and were met with disbelief and mockery, and it's unfortunate that they came across my blog when they did. Then again, as I think I have made clear many, many times, I would never suggest that anyone come to this blog looking for "answers."

I would love to hear about the witness' experience, but I'm pretty sure that won't happen now. I do hope, however, that they will report their experience to someone, somewhere, sometime.

As for me, I don't have a single case lined up right now, which is just how the UFOs like it.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Chewed Out!

Well, I've taken some heat for my recent blog in which I griped about the boring UFO cases that have been coming my way in past weeks, and I want to respond to that in two parts:

Part 1: I write this blog to entertain myself and, I hope, a few others along the way. As such, much of what I write here I write in jest. Because there's just so much stuff in the UFO world that's so darned funny. In fact, when I started this project, my aim was to write the world's first UFO blog that didn't take itself the slightest bit seriously, and in that I think I have succeeded. That's not to say I don't take the UFO phenomenon seriously, because I do, and if you read the blog a few times you'll see that. On the other hand, if you want to read a UFO blog that takes itself really really seriously, and is written by a UFO investigator who takes him- or herself really really really seriously, you have some options. A few thousand, in fact.

Part 2: Lighten up. I have a right to get bored with my UFO cases if they amount to the same danged silly lights in the sky over and over again, and if investigating the incidents doesn't produce any more information than the witnesses originally described. Both of those things can make Jack a very dull boy. And I have a right to gripe about the boring aspects of this job from time to time.
Yes, writing this blog can be like this.

On the other side of things, some very fun things have been happening lately...

I recently had the pleasure of interviewing Geraldine Sutton Stith, the daughter of "Lucky" Sutton, the man who personally unloaded a few boxes of ammo into the "Little Green Men" of the Kelly-Hopkinsville UFO Invasion, and she was a pleasure to talk to. Geraldine wasn't born in 1955, when the event occurred, but she had good stories to tell about her Dad and how the event changed his life. I feel very fortunate to have this material, and a lot of it will be used in my Hynek book.

Also, today I noticed that Robert Hewitt Wolfe, one of the nice guys I used to work with when I wrote for "Star Trek: Deep Space Nine" was doing an "ask me anything" on twitter (@writergeekrhw), and I was happy to see that a few people out there are still fans of the show. "DS9" was kind of the red-headed stepchild of "Star Trek," and was perpetually in the shadow of "The Next Generation," but IMHO it had stronger, more interesting characters, and a better overall narrative arc than "TNG." But that's just my O.

I also had a meeting recently with a film producer who is reading a few sample chapters of my Hynek book, and if he likes my stuff he wants to go out and try to get it set up as a moving picture somewhere out there in Los An-gell-eeze. And the best part is, he's an old friend, so if he doesn't like the book, he'll break it to me gently! And I'll still get it published anyway, so there.

Oh, and I got a mysterious email today from special effects guru Douglas Trumbull who you remember from this post, but I can't figure it out so I think it may be an elaborate special effect email. He said he was sending me a google file, but when I clicked on the attachment nothing appeared... I can't help thinking it's some sort of intelligence test and that only way he'll tell me anything more about his super UFO camera is if I solve the puzzle... Trouble is, I already wrote back telling him I couldn't open it.


Oh well, Happy Thanksgiving to all my American readers!

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

UFO Boredom

Someone, please, save me from my UFO boredom... After months and months of being assigned spectacular Close Encounter cases and entity contact cases, and being named to the MUFON Top Ten of 2012, and being interviewed for the newspaper and stuff, the past few months have been an absolute drag.

I guess it all started a few weeks back when I was informed that documentary filmmaker Morgan Spurlock of "Supersize Me" fame was looking for an interesting UFO case to profile for his new CNN series, "Inside Man," and that one of my cases was being considered for the segment. The segment was going to show how a Certified UFO Field Investigator investigates a perplexing UFO case, and I figured I had a lock: I'm young, I'm telegenic, I'm articulate, and my cases, truth be told, kick ass. But then I learned that Spurlock had chosen a case in Georgia instead. Good luck with that, chum.
Good luck in Georgia! You'll need it.

Then I started getting all these boring ass cases assigned to me, almost as though I was being punished for being so good at what I do. Case after case was the same: glowing orange orbs, glowing white orbs, glowing green orbs, all silently zooming through the night sky from south to north and disappearing in the distance. Whoop-de-friggin-do.

And this is what the "investigation" consists of: The witness has described maybe three or four "facts" about the event in his or her report, so I call the witness and ask him or her to repeat those three or four facts, and then I write down those three or four facts and add them to the case report alongside the witness's original mention of the very same three or four facts. Not sure what this is accomplishing, really, but I know it's not a good use of my time.

Of course, tonight's interview had a twist. When I tried to cover the three or four facts with the witness, he kept adding more and more facts, none of which were relevant to the case in the slightest. In addition to hearing about his UFO sighting, I learned about how he has recently lost both his binoculars and his night-vision goggles. In addition to learning about the surrounding terrain where he saw the UFO, I learned that the trees in his back yard are actually cherry trees, and don't normally grow more than 7 feet high. In addition to learning that the white orb made no noise, I learned that the witness can identify any aircraft you can imagine just by hearing its engine noise, and that he could say for damn sure that the light was not a Robinson helicopter, or a Coast Guard Rescue Dolphin helicopter, or a Eagle Three Rescue chopper. Holy shit, witness.

And then there's the mini controversy I started at the MUFON State Director's Forum on Facebook by asking how many times I should try to contact a reluctant witness before giving up. It's been like five days and people are still posting opinions.

I need an entity. I need a CE3K. Shit, I'd settle for discovering an Atacama Humanoid.

Saturday, November 16, 2013

UFO Investigating is Hard

I've been having a serious hangup with my UFO investigation work. For several cases in a row now, the witnesses have failed to respond to my multiple attempts to contact them by email and phone, and I have reluctantly had to close out those no-contact cases with a designation of "insufficient information" and call it a day. To begin with, I was very diligent in trying to contact each witness by email and/or phone at least three times... Then that dropped down to two attempts... now I'm ready to make one attempt then close out the case. Ain't nobody got time for this.

Obviously, this is no good for the UFO research. How can we ever solve the UFO mystery if people report sightings and then shy away from talking to a Certified UFO Field Investigator? I mean, what have they got to lose?
Why can't all UFO witnesses be as sharp as this one?

Facing three more cases this week that seem to have lost their pulse altogether, I did something very rash: I reached out to fellow MUFONers for help. Because MUFON state leaders have a special and very active forum on Facebook where we can all argue about whether we should have color-keyed ID badges, I decided to present my concerns to my colleagues:

"How many times must I try to contact someone," I asked in a post, "when he/she doesn't respond to my emails or phone calls?"

The responses were immediate:
  • "Two emails and a phone call is what I usually attempt," said Rxxxxx.
  • "Yes............three and ur out........I would actually rather you closed it out as...information only," said some guy who I didn't know was my boss.
  • "Mark.... this is a typical response that my team also faces here in PA," said a guy from PA. "Normally, we try to contact via telephone ( when available ) and email at least two times. If no response after that, I recommend to close the case as 'information only' and move on. A clue to how you'll do with witness response is how they answer to question on wanting to be anonymous. If they answer yes, you can bet that you'll not get any response from them.. This is why I suggested a click on button which states 'do not contact me '. If the witness selects this option, then the case should be classified as Information Only 'by default' and not even show up on the CMS for investigators to follow up on, as this would be a waste of time."
  • "I agree. There should be an option 'do not contact me'" said Cxxxx.

Then the conversation took and odd, and some might say, controversial turn:

  • "Cxxxx, as you know, I have been trying to get the option of do not contact me for two years now and the request falls on deaf ears," complained Fxxx. "Many investigators that I have spoken to do not feel that they should have to feel out the complete form when they cannot get a hold of some one or have some type of physical evidence. Some one could be fudgeing the report with informtion for us to file. I believe if we are going to be a scientific organization, we need to verify information not take it at face value and close out the case as information only."
  •  "Agree about 'I do not wish to be contacted;'" said Rxxxx. "I had that discussion with Jan H in 2012 and there is an opposing case to it, that he gave, I won't get into it here. I'm undecided, maybe Jan is right (But good to see others see it). As for what we call No-Replies: I talked to many people at the '12 Symposium, Dave McD., Marie Malzahn, others. May others by email since. Concensus to me was as follows: Make a good faith attempt to contact them, use what they give you (i.e. both email & phone if they provide); and after a reasonable amt of time, close as 'Info Only.' You Do NOT have to fill out the Form1 beyond what they gave; can't, really. I've told the GA FIs no more than 2-3 weeks; 4 absolute tops. We have to move on. I lose 30 to 40% of my reports annually to No-Reply. 'Info Only' is to be used for these, Not Insufficient, has been made clear to me. Hopefully others of you were advised the same!"
  • To which Dxxxxx replied: "So let me get this straight: if we can't get a hold of the witnesses then we can just put info only? I've told my investigators to assess the cases with what has been submitted because sometimes a witness will put a lot of info in the report but doesn't want to be contacted. I want to see evidence in the FIs report that they attempted to get a hold of the witnesses."
  • "I've asked my FI's to use the Investigative Report Section of the CMS case file to essentially document every action they perform ( similar to a log ) with regard to the case," said the guy from PA. "I have them enter date, action they did ( i.e. attempted to contact witness by phone, no response, left voice message. ) and then initial that entry. The next time they attempt to contact witness would be 'logged' into this area, and so on. This way, I and my SD or anyone else can see that there is work being done, even though there is no contact being made. Of course, I use this format for successful contact with the witness as well -- again a log."

I was shocked, and dismayed, and disappointed. Part of me was hoping they would all let me off the hook. "Hey, Mark, you tried your best; time to move on," was what I was hoping for. Instead they all seemed to be saying that I have to work harder to solve the UFO mystery. Ugh.

So, shamed by my colleagues into further action, I decided to contact my three losers witnesses one more time. First thing I found out when I looked through my emails was that one of these witnesses had, in fact, written back to me two weeks ago. Problem was, instead of replying to my email, she had created a new email with no information in it, so I had no idea who the email had come from, or why. So I'm going to try to call her today. Then I emailed the other two on my list to give them one more chance, and, lo and behold, one of them replied this time! I will interview her next Monday. 

So, yeah, more work for me, but maybe it will all pay off. Maybe one of these two cases will turn out to be The Big One. The other one, who still hasn't replied.... screw him.


PS: Replies to my question are still coming in! If anything noteworthy happens, I'll report it to you here. I'm not lazy when it comes to my blog!

Friday, November 15, 2013


Sometimes I hate technology.

Last weekend when I was in Kalamazoo, the inestimable Michael Swords lent me a clutch of old cassette tapes of interviews with the late, great Dr. J. Allen Hynek. This is a veritable treasure trove of research materials, in addition to the 650 scanned documents I came away with. It's almost too much to handle, but handle it I must. As always, readers, I do it for you...

What's that, you ask? What's a cassette tape? Um, well, back in the day cassette tapes were what we used to record and preserve audio. Unlike an MP3, you could hold a cassette in your hand, drop it, break it, unspool it, anything you can imagine! So what was the cassette itself exactly? To the best of my understanding, they were little plastic rectangles with MP3s stuffed inside somehow, don't ask me how. Anyway, you could pop one in a cassette deck -- or, better yet, a "boom box" -- and sound would come out! Music, talking, whatever.
Boom box tip: always point the speakers away from your head.

And now I have a bunch of them with Dr. Hynek on them, and I have to figure out some way to extract the MP3s inside the cases without smashing them, then copy the MP3s to my computer and burn them on something called a "CD." What's a CD, you ask? Not now, please, I'm still exhausted from explaining cassettes.

What I can tell you is that my fancy little MP3 cassette deck arrived in the mail today, and I am trying to figure out how it works. But it is small. The gizmo itself is scarcely bigger than the cassette. The CD with the driver is microscopic. The User's Manual is subatomic. How do they print things that small??

I am now trying to figure out how the accursed thing works without going blind or crazy, and it's not a pleasant affair. I have succeeded in making a trial conversion of what we used to call a "music tape" and, well, so far so good: I have converted it to a file that I can listen to on iTunes and am listening to it now. So that's good, I think. Trouble is, I have already forgotten what I did to get to this point...

If I ever do get this figured out, here's what I have in store from the cassettes Michael gave me:

Cassette #1: Coyne Crew interviews; Hynek recollecting the Robertson Panel; Final part of Gill; Hendry private interview.

Cassette #2: J. Allen Hynek's Swamp Gas talk for Voice of America Radio.

Cassette #3: J. Allen Hynek's Latest UFO encounters.

Cassette #4: Hynek 1980.

Cassette #5: Al Chop, Donald Keyhoe, J. A. Hynek, and More...

Cassette #6: Hynek Address to 1977 International UFO Congress.

Cassette #7: J. Allen Hynek lecturing on astronomy to the public in Lima, OH, just weeks after the Robertson Panel.

Cassette #8: J. Allen Hynek, 1980 radio show.

Cool, huh? Should I be lucky enough to get my gadget figured out and get these buggers downloaded or uploaded, I'll let you know what dark truths I discover....

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Little Alien Pricks

I just had an amazing day of UFO research yesterday, and as a result I am no longer afraid of aliens!

Let me tell you how it all came about. Yesterday, accompanied by my wife Mxxxxx, I drove to Kalamazoo. Michigan to explore the J. Allen Hynek files of the great UFO historian and blogger Michael Swords. Michael is the de facto head of the UFO Council of Elders about whom I have written before.

When we arrived at his cozy home, Michael was in the midst of writing a new post for his exceedingly entertaining blog, The Big Study, about "pookahs," or ghost dogs. It's a very fun read, as always. The guy is curious about and fascinated by everything, not just UFOs, and he has files and books on everything... So while my wife settled into Michael's library looking at his many books on Poltergiests and haunted houses, I went to work scanning Michael's files with my nifty new scan wand, purchased specifically for the day's mission.

Four hours and about 500 scanned pages later, Mxxxxx and I were chatting with Michael about his work as an educator and researcher, and the man just amazed us repeatedly... We talked about visiting mystical sites in Ireland and Michael had been to them all. We talked about John Keel and "The Mothman Prophecies" and Michael produced a huge binder full of clippings and stories about Mothman, Thunderbirds, and other mysterious winged creatures.We talked about Dr. Morris K. Jessup and the strange case of his annotated UFO book and....

Wait, you don't know the story of Dr. Jessup and the annotated UFO book? My God, it's one of my favorite weird tales of all time...
The wigged-out book that started it all.

In 1955, Jessup wrote a book called "The Case for the UFO," in which he tried to establish that UFOs are a real phenomenon and then went about explaining many of the world's great mysteries throughout history as manifestations of the same phenomenon. In the normal course of the events, Jessup would have sold a few thousand copies to "true believers" and then probably faded into obscurity. But the normal course of events never seems to unfold where UFOs are concerned, and Jessup's case was no exception.

Two years after his book came out, a copy of the manuscript was delivered to the U.S. Navy's Office of Naval Research in Washington, D.C. It was wrapped in paper and labelled, "Happy Easter." The margins of the manuscript were filled with  notes written in three different hands (or claws, or talons), all apparently alien beings commenting on, and sometimes arguing over, Jessup's wild conclusions. The aliens came to be identified as "Jemi," "Mr. A" and "Mr. B." The essence of their notations was that Jessup was dangerously close to divining their true nature and plans for earth and warning that something needed to be done. Two years later, Jessup was found dead of an apparent suicide.

At the Navy's behest, a publishing company called VARO published a small quantity of annotated manuscripts for official use, and, lo and behold, Michael is in possession of one of those rare copies... And he let me look through it.

You can't imagine what it felt like to thumb through those pages. This manuscript is quite possibly the most significant and valuable artifact in the history of UFOlogy, and I was holding it in my hands and looking through it.... Simply amazing.

In the short time I had to page through the gigantic manuscript, a couple things jumped out at me: 1) Dr. Jessup, like Michael Swords, was curious about everything... His book is an amazing work of investigation and speculation; it would demand a great deal of patience to absorb it all, but the end result would be well worth the effort. 2) These aliens who wrote in the margins of Jessup's book were hilarious! Their notes are, in turns, sarcastic, profane, unintelligible, profound, backbiting, and completely wigged out. And they make it clear that there are different types of aliens, and they don't always hold each other in very high regard...

One passage in particular caused me to lose my fear of aliens forever, and I share it with you now. In one chapter, Jessup spends some time talking about UFO incidents at sea, and recounts some stories where entire ships' crews vanished into thin air, saying:
"To attempt to postulate motive for space inhabitants kidnapping crews from ships--not to mention isolated individuals to which we shall come momentarily--is in the realm of pure speculation. On the other hand, bearing our two possibilities in mind as to the origin of space contrivances, in either case our space friends would want to know what has happened to us since they left, or what has happened to us since they put us down here. Again, there is always the possibility that the open seas provide an easy catching place."
After which "Mr. B" writes:
"Ought to, the Sea is the Natural home of the Little bastards. The little pricks come-aboard at nite and go Wandering about the Decks, Scares the Crews but No Crew Man meeting one, ever says so, Just quits drinking."
Not exactly sinister, is it? I just stared at this passage for a long time, then started laughing, then read it aloud to my wife and to Michael. "Little pricks?" This is what aliens call each other when humans aren't around?

My head is still spinning... From holding that amazing book in my hands and seeing it with my own eyes, and from the realization that this whole UFO thing could just be one massive cosmic practical joke on us humans...

Friday, November 8, 2013

UFO Spy vs. Spy

The other day I blogged about another UFO blogger whose Twitter account I follow who made what I thought was a rather counter-productive statement in a recent tweet:

"After 66 years since the UFO wave, no one has yet to come forward with proof that aliens exist. Come on people. Send some proof. Please."

Well, my friend is at it again. Today I got another gem... First the blogger says this:

"Strange, several accounts associated with MUFON all the sudden are following me. Are they trying to learn from a pro or UFO espionage? LMAO"

Then one of his followers responds with this:

"some believe mufon has members that are actually spies for the govt which I totally believe...keep tabs on truth seekers"

Well, wow. So many problems with this exchange. 

First, the English teacher in me has to point out that the correct expression is "all of a sudden," not "all the sudden." I realize he could have been cutting corners to get his tweet down to 140 characters, but I'm a writer and I don't approve.

Second, as a MUFON Certified UFO Field Investigator, I resent the accusation that anyone from MUFON who follows him on Twitter is "trying to learn from a pro" or spying on him. I don't believe for a second that this guy is a pro UFO investigator; in fact, it says right on his website that he works for an engineering firm. And how the hell would MUFON "spy" on this guy's twitter account, which is specifically intended to allow him to share every bloody thought that passes through his head the instant he thinks it with everyone on earth?

When will these two numbskulls ever learn?
Third, "LMAO"? I swear, every time I see someone using LMOA in a message I just laugh my ass off. Sometimes I even roll on the floor.

Fourth, I resent the suggestion that I'm a government spy keeping tabs on "truth seekers." Having been a MUFON Certified UFO Field Investigator for a year and a half now (not coincidentally the best year and a half of my life), I'm pretty sure there's nothing for the government to keep tabs on. MUFON meetings are open to the public, usually held in public libraries, their website openly lists all the UFO cases that are reported to them, they desperately fish for new members every chance they get, they're all over cable TV, and if you want to read all the supposedly secret case reports that MUFON supposedly refuses to share with the public, you can spend $20 to join and read any damn thing you want. Again, I ask: what's to spy on?

Dumb. Just dumb.


Monday, November 4, 2013

Third-String Aliens -- Part 2.5

Two unrelated yet related things came up today, so I thought I would blog about them both, and give you, my lucky readers, two blog posts for the price of one!

The first item is a sensitive one, as it involves a fellow UFO blogger and a tweet he tweeted... Now, this is a guy who says he wants to reinvigorate UFOlogy for the 21st Century, which is great. I heartily applaud that sentiment, and I respect the energy that this guy brings to that mission. But this tweet today really jarred me, because to me it sets the field of UFOlogy back about, oh... 66 years:
"After 66 years since the UFO wave, no one has yet to come forward with proof that aliens exist. Come on people. Send some proof. Please."
So wrong, on so many levels. This tweet is based on the somewhat shaky assumptions that 1) UFOs can somehow "prove" that aliens exist; that 2) there could exist some sort of proof that this is true; and that 3) someone out there is sitting on that proof. If one goes into UFOlogy thinking they one is going to be able to prove that aliens exist, they are in for a long, disappointing journey. Interrupted by many speaking engagements at UFO conventions. But, still. To me, UFOlogy means trying to find out what UFOs are, not trying to prove that they are one thing or another. 'Nuff said.
Hey, get a load of that UFO! No, look higher. And to the right...

The second item of interest was a comment here in the blog from my old frienemy "Anonymous," in response to my recent post, "Third-String Aliens." Here's the comment, in all its odd entirety:
"Mark, we appreciate you sharing this case with us. Please keep us updated on any new development." 
You get that? "Anonymous" is really a "we," and "they" appreciate my sharing this case with "them"....

So just who in the hell are you, "Anonymous?" Are you the Men In Black (not the Will Smith/Tommy Lee Jones Men IN Black--the REAL Men In Black!)?? Are you CIA??? Are you... aliens????

If you're aliens, that makes a lot of sense. I've suspected for a long time that you aliens were monitoring my successes as a UFO Field Investigator by reading this blog (In fact, that's always been the purpose of this blog, from day one: to get you hooked on my witty writing and ensnare you in my web).

I demand you show your face at once and tell me why I should update "you" on any new development? AND tell me what's in it for me. Because if you could give me proof of what that other UFO blogger is begging for, "we" could set the science of UFOlogy on its ear and propel it into the next century! That would be something.

Friday, November 1, 2013

Code Word: Excitement!

This is big! I've come across an interesting bit of secret U. S. Air Force code while working on my book about Dr. J. Allen Hynek. At first I wasn't sure if I should share it here in the blog, knowing how sensitive it might be. National security and all that. But upon further reflection, I decided to take a stand. The public deserves to know.

What have I got? Well, back in August, 1953, while Hynek was working as a consultant on the Air Force's UFO study, Project Blue Book, a big case came in. In one night, over the course of three hours, as many as eight separate unidentified flying objects were sighted and tracked in the sky over Rapid City, South Dakota and Bismarck, North Dakota, some 220 miles to the northeast. Two things made the sightings remarkable: 1) every last one of the witnesses was a skilled, trained observer; and 2) the objects were picked up simultaneously by ground observers, radar operators and, in South Dakota, by Air Force pilots.

The first sighting was made by a volunteer sky watcher with the U. S. Air Force Ground Observer Corps (GOC) in Blackhawk, SD, just a few miles from Rapid City. Crazy as it seems, back in '53 the United States had not yet gotten our early warning radar system up and running; all we had was a bunch of kids, housewives and retirees with binoculars scanning the skies for any sign of incoming Russkie bombers. They actually strapped these people to the radar dishes.

So this woman spots a bogie through her binocs, calls it in to the GOC Filter Center in Rapid City, they in turn call it in to the control tower at nearby Ellsworth Air Force Base, and for a for a few hours everybody goes crazy watching a series of red, white and green lights flit around the sky and behave "erratically." Two Air Force jets are vectored to intercept the lights, only they can never catch up with them, which spooks the pilots something bad. One of the lights zooms up to Bismarck where the whole thing starts up all over again.
TRUE FACT: In 1953, the Air Force sent out black and white jets like these to intercept UFOs.
The case is investigated thoroughly by both the Blue Book CO, Captain Edward Ruppelt, and Dr. Hynek. And it's a really big deal because it's Hynek's first actual field investigation, see? So both men interview witnesses and file very long reports... and it's while I'm reading these reports some 60 years after they were written, that I detect the secret code...

Both Hynek and Ruppelt pepper their reports with the words "excitable" and "excited," and as I see these words over and over and over again in the reports it hits me that they mean something more than just "excitable" and "excited."

They're secret Air Force code for: "UNRELIABLE"!

Don't believe me? See for yourself. Here, for your enjoyment, are every last mention of these secret code words in the two Project Blue Book reports:
  •  “Bennett is rated as excitable, but pretty sure about what he sees,” Hynek reported, but noted that Bennett had pegged Needham as the excitable one.
  •  “The (South Dakota) observers are more excitable and less matter of fact and certainly have less scientific background then (sic) the observers in Bismarck, with one or two exceptions.”
  •  “They had been interrogated by base personnel and were ‘all excited.’ It was believed Capt.  Ruppelt’s talking to them would only further excite them, needlessly.”
  •  Needham described Bennett to Hynek as “excitable.”
  •  “In Captain Ruppelt’s original report, he stated that although he did not visit Bismarck, he felt that in as much as they had been alerted to watch out for something, they became excited and ‘saw lights.’”
  • Killian was “an excitable and rather cocky individual, and in some respects overbearing.”
Is it just me, or is that just way too much excitement?

Thursday, October 31, 2013

UFO Swag

I am on the horns of a dilemma. As a MUFON Certified Field Investigator, State Section Director and Chief Inspector, I need to put my best foot forward when I go out on a case. It's not enough to act like I know what I'm doing--I need to look like I know what I'm doing.

MUFON understands this, and so they've just added a valuable new item of Certified Field Investigator Swag to the MUFON Store: Business Cards!

That's right: from now on, every time I go out on an investigation, I can hand out official MUFON business cards to the witnesses I interview, revealing all my personal contact information to them! I suppose there are times that could be useful, but in my year and a half of investigating UFO sightings I have only actually met a handful of the people I interact with. About 75% of my investigations involve a 45-minute phone call, and that's about it. No need for business cards there.
Nothing says "I think you saw an alien spaceship" like a galactic business card.
But in those 25% of cases where I meet the witness, I'm not sure that I want to pass out a business card that reinforces so many stereotypes:

Outer space imagery? Check!

Star Trek font? Check!

Silly title? Check!

Anyway... longtime readers may remember that a few years back my kids had some UFO business cards printed up for me. I have been using the hell out of these cards in all sorts of situations since I got them, so much so that they have become an integral part of my UFO investigator persona...
Seriously, how would you rather introduce yourself?

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Something Is Seen

When you write about UFOs, it's good to consider all the angles and remain open-minded. At least that's what open-minded people tell me. That's why I'm enjoying the latest addition to my burgeoning UFO library: "Flying Saucers--A Modern Myth of Things Seen in the Skies," by the noted psychologist Carl Jung.

You know Jung; he's the psychologist in that movie who spanked Kiera Knightly. He was never quite as famous as his friend and mentor Sigmund Freud, but then Freud never got to spank Kiera Knightly. Anyway, this guy has got the kookiest take on UFOs ever: "Something is seen, but one doesn't know what."

At first glance it seems like a pretty meaningless statement, like saying, "I believe in UFOs." But on second glance it's exactly what you would expect a psychologist to say about something like UFOs, agreeing to nothing but dismissing nothing. "This formulation leaves the question of 'seeing' open," he later wrote. "Something material could be seen, or something psychic could be seen. Both are realities, but of different kinds." Everybody's happy!
You won't find the answer to the UFOs in that book, Dr. Jung!
Actually, when Jung first uttered this comment he got in a bit of trouble because people incapable of the kind of insightful analysis I've just posted above took his comment to mean that he believed that UFOs were physically real. He did not, in fact, believe that.

"I expressly state that I cannot commit myself on the question to the physical reality or unreality of the UFOs because I do not possess sufficient evidence either for or against," Jung stated in his defense. "I therefore concern myself solely with the psychological aspect of the phenomenon, about which a great deal of information is available."

So what did Dr. Jung really think about the nature of UFOs? I am halfway through the book and I confess I am still struggling to keep up with his analysis of the problem. Nonetheless, I will share a choice quote from the book that made me smile, just because it is so vastly, delightfully different from anything else I will ever read about UFOs...
"Considering the essential weirdness of the UFO phenomenon, we cannot expect the familiar, rationalistic principles of explanation to be on any way adequate. A psychoanalytic approach to the problem could do nothing more than turn the whole idea of UFOs into a sexual fantasy, at most arriving at the conclusion that a repressed uterus was coming down from the sky."
Take that, Freud!

Sunday, October 20, 2013

UFO Youth Outreach

Back again after an intense week of working on my Hynek book... writing about the first time the good Doctor actually went out in the field to investigate a UFO incident, and it's a pretty cool story.

But in the midst of my busy week I got a call from Vxxxx, my MUFON State Director, who said, "Mark, I have a proposition for you." She explained that a news crew from CNN was going to come out to her and her husband's isolated desert bunker house in the middle of nowheresville, Arizona, to get some video of her husband training fresh-faced new MUFON Field Investigators. The catch was that Jxx, the new MUFON President, who set up the shoot, wanted the fresh-faced recruits to be "young." Meaning just out of diapers.

Naturally, Vxxxx thought of me first.

What could I say? I was flattered, of course, but I burst out laughing and said, "But Vxxxx... I'm not young" (I'm not sure which was more difficult: admitting I'm not young or pronouncing "Vxxxx"). She hesitated for a moment, then said, "Well, how old are you?" "Fifty-three," came the reply.

Vxxxx gasped. "What? You're fifty-three? I thought you were thirty!"

Then came my turn to gasp. "Thirty! I thought you were going to guess that I was twenty!"

Which one is the real UFO Investigator? Which one is me??
Okay, that last part didn't really happen. I was happy with thirty and I told her so. But she wasn't in the mood. She was sorely disappointed that I couldn't be part of the TV shoot. "Here I was all set to pay your way to fly out here to Arizona to be in the segment! Now I have to keep looking..."

Sharp readers will notice a couple problems with this scenario. One: Why does the Wisconsin State Director live in a bunker in the Arizona desert? I'm still trying to figure that one out. Two: Why does a 53 year-old seem like a youngster in the ranks of MUFON? I don't know, but you can be damn sure I'm going to use it to my advantage from here on out. Three: Young people watch CNN?

It's going to take me a while to figure that one out, but while I'm thinking about it, there's this to chew on:

In her delirium, Vxxxx told me about some of the workings that had gone into setting up this gig with CNN, most notably that Jxx, the MUFON National Director, insisted on young, 20- to 30-something trainees, so that MUFON would look cool and youthful. "I told Jxx that wouldn't exactly be accurate," Vxxx told me, "But he just said, 'Oh, come on, do you think anything you see in reality TV is real?'"

So there you have it. MUFON is founded on lies, and Jxx and Vxxxx expected me to be a part of their web of deceit, depicting MUFONers as being all cool, hip, handsome, funny, well-dressed, articulate, charming, brilliant and sexy when in fact, aside from me, there is no one in MUFON like that at all.

Friday, October 11, 2013

Third-String Aliens

It's taken a while, but I'm finally getting a taste of what it means to be the MUFON Chief Investigator for the state of Wisconsin. One of our investigators filed a report on this recent UFO sighting:
I was going back into the house after taking my dog for a potty break. I have been studying the stars with the help of my I PAD. Looking up one last time the stars were blinking out and coming back on. At first I thought tree branches were getting in the way,but realized there were no branches there. I could see no object . I carry a 2 million candle spot light and shone it at the black out stars area. Wow was I surprised to see a triangle shaped craft dull gray. The front was thinner and curved to a wider back. It moved very slowly from west to east. I kept the light on the craft for approximately 3 minutes. Then it started a smooth slow turn to the southeast. It stayed away from the city light glow and stayed in the darker areas. I was losing sight of the object and weny into the house to get binoculars. I went out on the top deck and searched but could no longer see it. The object made no sound.at any time. I live 10 to 20 miles from two airports. I saw one small airplane before and two small airplanes after I saw the object. I had horrible nightmares that night!
Behold, the Space Dumpster
Our Field Investigator, Lxx, did a great job interviewing the witness and checking up on the story, not to mention securing the truly awesome illustration above. His report caught the attention of MUFON's National Director of Research, who asked me, the Chief Investigator, to gather some more information--not many UFO witnesses have 2-million candlepower spotlights at their fingertips, so there was great interest in what the illumination actually revealed about the size, makeup and distance of the strange object... There were so many follow-up questions that I decided a whole new interview was in order, so yesterday I had a long talk with the witness. At first it was pretty straightforward--man sees flying dumpster in sky, shines spotlight on it and it flies away into the night--but towards the end the witness really threw me for a loop... and I'm still shaking from it.

Here's the report I wrote up last night...
When he first noticed the object it was over the tree line to the west of his back yard. The trees are about 70' and he now thinks the object was about 100' above them when he saw it (when he talked to Lxx he thought it was more like 1,000' above the trees). At first he just saw a dark shape obscuring the stars and moving slowly in his direction. It was heading roughly towards the nearby airport, and since he was a pilot his first thought was that it was a plane in trouble trying to make it to the municipal airport about 3-4 miles to the east. 1000 feet up made sense to him at first, because that would be a logical elevation for a small plane approaching the airport. But it was moving too slowly, not making any sound and didn't seem to have any wings. As it moved west to east it appeared to "bob up and down." He turned his Brinkmann Q-Beam spotlight on the object as it flew directly overhead and the 2-million candlepower beam illuminated the entire bottom surface of the object. It had a dull, matte surface, and looked almost like a "rusty dumpster." It had a pointed front, and a flat rear edge with a grille, and was the same size as 2 1/2 inches on a ruler held at arm's length. When the spotlight hit it, the object stopped its bobbing motion and turned to the SE and flew away. He feels very strongly that the object reacted to his spotlight.

After we talked about the object he told me about a dream he had that night. He dreamt that he woke up in bed and saw "two little fellows" in his bedroom. It's a 2nd story bedroom and the door was open, so he thinks they came in from the hall. The first fellow was just coming out from behind his dresser but stopped in his tracks when he saw the witness was awake and looking at him. He said "the fellow was as surprised as I was." The second creature remained behind the first. At first he thought they were alien greys, but they were brownish. "I got the third-stringers," he joked. They were about 36" tall, had round heads, round eyes, long hands and fingers. He didn't see any hair, clothes, noses or mouths, but he definitely felt that the first creature expressed surprise that he was awake and looking at him. At no time did the witness feel any fear or panic. After maybe 3 seconds he couldn't keep his eyes open and fell back asleep, but now he doesn't know whether he was dreaming or was actually awake.

He's confused by the "dream" for a couple reasons. He suffers from fibromyalgia and doesn't sleep well because of the pain. Once he's up, he's up, so if he was really awake to see the two fellows, it's very strange that he would have fallen right back to sleep.  Also, because of his sleep problems, he almost never dreams, so the fact that he had this experience at all seems unusual to him. His dog was in the room and slept through the experience. Also, his wife sleeps in a separate bedroom across the hall with the door closed--because of his sleep problems--and she didn't see or hear anything that night.

I asked him why he didn't mention the dream in the talk with Lxx, and he said he thought he had mentioned it, but didn't go into any particulars because he thought MUFON was "only interested in the facts." So, why did he talk about it today? I got the impression that after his talk with Lxx he had spent some more time in his yard looking up in the sky and trying to recreate the event, and the more he thought about it the more details seemed important to him.
That's what I said in my report. The truth is, I'd like to think he opened up to me about the dream because the "little fellows" chose me. But why?

And here's another puzzler: why would he think that MUFON is only interested in the facts??