For me, it’s always a good day when I put the finishing touches to a manuscript. And, June 16, 2015 was the date on which I completed the writing of my book, Men in Black: Personal Stories and Eerie Encounters. Of course, the manuscript still had to go through the editing and proof-reading stages. And I had to dig out a bunch of photos, too. But, there’s a good feeling of satisfaction, while sitting at your desk, knowing that the bulk of the work is done. Plus, it was a hot and sunny day. The birds were singing in the trees outside my apartment. And that night I was due to see, with a bunch of friends, a Motley Crue tribute band play in a local beer and junk-food dive. It was all good! Except, that is, for one thing which occurred around 9:45 a.m. That was roughly the time when I made the final change to the manuscript, then saved and closed it. I was ready to email it to my agent, Lisa Hagan, for review.
Only barely a second or two after I closed the document, I heard a sudden bang coming from one of the rooms in my apartment. I frowned, stood up, and probably said something to myself along the lines of “WTF?” And, since my apartment home is a small one, it didn’t take long at all for me to find the cause of that bang; seconds, in fact. On walking into my bedroom, I saw that one of the many pictures I have on my walls had fallen to the floor. Despite the floor being carpeted, the black picture frame was broken and the glass had shattered, with pieces and shards all over the carpet. Dammit. Time to get out the vacuum-cleaner. What was particularly eye-opening, however, was the specific item which had fallen from the wall.
It was a framed letter written back in 1953 by none other than Albert Bender. He was the man who, arguably, birthed the mystery of the Men in Black. It was all as a result of his early-1950s-era traumatic experiences with a trio of glowing-eyed, vampire-like MIB in his hometown of Bridgeport, Connecticut. The strange tale was chronicled in Bender’s 1962 book, Flying Saucers and the Three Men. It wasn’t long after that initial encounter in the fifties that Bender, who had got into UFOs in the late-1940s, and who created the International Flying Saucer Bureau, couldn’t take anymore mayhem and menace in his life. Bender quit Ufology, only briefly returning at the turn of the sixties to write and promote the aforementioned Flying Saucers and the Three Men. And, after that, he did not look back. Well, maybe a glance or two, but certainly not much more. Now, back to my busted picture.
At the time, the maintenance guys at the apartments were working outside, hammering away at something. So, one could make a good, solid case that the vibrations from their tools dislodged the picture and – hey, presto – I’m left with a broken frame and glass everywhere. Maybe that’s all