A roundup of mysterious, paranormal and strange news stories from the past week.
A video surfaced this week of a number of UFOs observed over the Atlantic Ocean in February by pilots of multiple airliners who discussed it over a common frequency as the orbs formed a triangle, moved around and did other unpredictable maneuvers while maintaining a constant distance away from the airliners over about a 20 minute period – air traffic controllers reported no strange aircraft in the area. Were the passengers who saw them charged a “UFO Sighting Fee’ by the airline?
A woman in Guangxi province, China, claims she went to visit the grave of her newly buried deceased husband after his funeral and was shocked when she believed she heard her husband’s voice coming from the grave, dug up the coffin and found him alive – this mix-up may have been caused by the husband’s poor health and mounting bills which forced the woman to leave him with her parent while she works, and the parents and a doctor thought he was dead when actually his severe diabetes led to his cold skin and extremely weak pulse which kickstarted back to life when he began gasping for air in the coffin. That’s what they told the funeral director when they asked for a refund on the coffin.
A new study proposes that a tiny near-Earth asteroid that is actually orbiting the planet as a quasi-satellite may be an old chunk broken off of the Moon – tiny Kamo'oalewa is just 40 meters (131 feet) in diameter and maintains a constant distance from Earth, so China’s space program is developing a 2025 mission called Tianwen-2 which will drop a nano-lander on it and learn more about the ancient Moon. Has anyone trademarked Mini-Me-Moon yet?
Zero-G, the self-described “world leader in zero gravity flights” announced it will offer a new zero gravity concerts series where musicians perform their top songs with a small group of fans and a DJ while floating in zero gravity – the concerts will be held in the company's G Force One airplane which flies in parabolas to induce about 30 seconds of temporary weightlessness about 15 times in a 90-minute flight. If you’re one of those people who barfs at concerts, now you can blame it on zero-gravity.
From the “Kids, don’t try this at home” file comes the story of a man named Joe Mellen who thought he would get really high if he drilled a hole in his head – it took him three tries but he claims that the trepanation was successful as after he heard a 'schlurping' sound as he took out the drill, he felt a “lightness” like he had been restored to a youthful level of vitality. This is the kind of thing that makes clerks quit the hardware store and go back to flipping burgers.
IBM CEO Arvind Krishna says the company plans to suspend hiring for about 7,800 jobs that could possibly be done by AI — including human resources and eventually up to 26,000 positions where employees do not come face-to-face with customers. IBM’s slogan for employees used to be “Think” … now it should be “Think Twice Before Taking This Job.”
Scientists at the University of Texas at Austin have invented a language decoder that can translate a person’s thoughts into text using an artificial intelligence transformer similar to ChatGPT connected to a functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) machine which records human brain activities. We are just steps away from Siri saying, “I'm sorry, Dave. I'm afraid I can't do that because I know what you’re really thinking.”
Hopes were high that a hidden cache of riches stolen by German soldiers in 1944 was buried in the Dutch village of Ommeren after a WWII-era map that allegedly revealed the burial location was found, but a team of archeologists, metal detectorists and historians followed the map for four hours and found nothing but an unused 9 millimeter World War II-era bullet, some scrap metal and iron wire. When will people stop trusting Nazis?
Italian historian Silvano Vinceti says he’s convinced that the Romito di Laterina bridge in the province of Arezzo is the bridge in the distant background of Leonardo da Vinci’s Mona Lisa painting based on its four arches and documents showing Leonardo lived in the area for a few years. Someone needs to check the painting at the Lourve and see if Mona Lisa is winking.
From the “I’m not drunk” file comes photos of an extremely rare albino echidna known to live in the area was spotted by a man driving near the city of Bathurst who helped the white spiny anteater across the road (photos here), while a guide at the Mala Mala Game Reserve in South Africa photographed a rare pink baby elephant looking healthy despite its genetic condition known as leucism. If you see a purple alligator, that’s the mushrooms talking.
Speaking of mushrooms, a team of scientists who ventured into a forest and attached electrodes to six small, tan-colored ectomycorrhizal mushrooms known as Laccaria bicolor discovered that not only do the mushrooms communicate with each other using electrical signals, those signals increase after a rainfall. Being mushrooms, they’re probably reminding each other that April showers bring May rotted trees.
Millions of black light posters may have to be changed after astronomers at the Purple Mountain Observatory in Nanjing, China, used highly precise measurements of star locations to develop a more accurate map of the Milky Way and found that instead of the familiar spiral with four main arms, our galaxy looks more like a two-armed barred spiral and that the other more distant arms have split off to form minor arms. Whatever the shape, it still looks better with Pink Floyd playing in the background.
A Renaissance-era trash dump discovered inside the Forum of Caesar in Rome was found to be full of 500-year-old urine flasks which doctors used to smell and even taste a patient’s urine in order to examine its color, sedimentation, smell, and flavor to diagnose conditions such as jaundice, kidney disease or diabetes, which makes urine smell and taste sweet. No, these doctors were not called pee-diatricians.
On its 51st flight on Mars, NASA’s magnificent Ingenuity helicopter captured spotted what looks like a metallic object on the Martian surface which had many people thinking “it’s aliens” but NASA claims the shiny triangular object is a fragment of debris from the rover’s entry, descent, and landing system since it was found so close to Perseverance. It may be exciting to NASA, but spending millions of dollars to find trash sounds like the minutes of a local city council meeting.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved the first pill manufactured from donated human poop - called Vowst, the pill contains live bacteria and is used as a preventive treatment for recurrent infections with the bacterium Clostridioides difficile which is often acquired in hospital or health care settings after patients have taken antibiotics for a different infection. No, your local pharmacy won’t be adding a rest room … yet.
Psychic spoon-bender Uri Geller claims he plans to use his “inner mind” "to penetrate" the most sacred part of King Charles' upcoming coronation – he hopes to channel his and his followers’ collective minds to bend the ancient sacred spoon used to anoint Charles III with sacred oils. If that happens, Charles should admit defeat and crown Uri king.
In some bad news for writers currently on strike, Marvel movies director Joe Russo predicts that within two years AI will be able to create a complete sci-fi action movie in your own home based on suggestions you give it through your smart TV. You know you’re of a certain age if the first movie you create is “Black Widow Does Dallas.”
In some sad news from ancient Egypt, researchers using computed tomography (CT) to non-invasively scan the mummified remains of ancient Egyptian children found that one-third of them had signs of anemia which was probably caused by malnutrition, parasitic infections and genetic disorders. Look for the next mummy movie to include a scene where an Egyptian tomb raider tries to distract a mummy with liver.
A study of 26 years' worth of wolf behavioral data along with an analysis of the blood of 229 wolves found that wolves infected with the parasite Toxoplasma gondii, which is spread by cats and can infect humans with the potentially fatal disease toxoplasmosis, makes them 46 times more likely to become a pack leader because it may increase testosterone levels which heightens aggression and dominance. Not surprisingly, cats aren’t interested in the study.
The debate over the skin color of Cleopatra continues as the Egyptian Supreme Council of Antiquities has accused Netflix of the “falsification of Egyptian history” by portraying Cleopatra in a new documentary a black African woman – saying she had “Macedonian origins” and should be show with “light skin and Hellenistic (Greek) features.” Next time, shoot the documentary in black-and-white.