A roundup of mysterious, paranormal and strange news stories from the past week.
Richard White became famous in 1997 when he captured what many have agreed is one of the clearest photos ever of the Loch Ness monster showing what appears to be a creature emerging from the loch and leaving visible ripples in the water behind it; White is now the focal point of a new series of interviews with Nessie witnesses to celebrate the 90 anniversary of the first photograph of an alleged Nessie taken by Hugh Gray on November 12, 1933, near where the Ness River flows into the loch – a photo skeptics say is a dog or a swan or an otter. As long as it helps sell tours and T-shirts.
Investigators in San Diego finally proved what many people have been saying about some UFO sightings for years – mysterious lights seen in the sky over the city on November 5 were actually flares being held by members of the U.S. Navy Parachute Team "Leap Frogs" jumping to a landing at the Snapdragon Stadium where the San Diego Wave FC in the Women's Soccer League was competing in a semifinal playoff match. That had to be disappointing for the Wave players who thought it was a sign they were the favorite team of extraterrestrials.
The Chamber of Deputies, the lower chamber of Mexico’s congress, took time from helping its citizens recover from Hurricane Otis to listen to another presentation by paranormal researcher José Jaime Maussan and Peruvian doctors on alleged mummified “non-human beings that are not part of our terrestrial evolution” he claims were found in Peru – the presentation included photographs and x-rays which Maussan claimed proved the “non-human being” was a “new species” because it had no lungs or ribs. If these are real aliens, they need a better PR person.
After UFO whistleblowers like David Grusch, the former intelligence official who claims the U.S. federal government maintains a secretive UFO recovery program and is in possession of "non-human" spacecraft and "dead pilots," began complaining about him, head of the All-Domain Anomaly Resolution Office (AARO) Dr. Sean Kirkpatrick has decided to leave the post at the end of 2023 – whistleblowers are hoping Fitzpatrick is replaced by someone more open to disclosure of the U.S. X-files. Perhaps José Jaime Maussan is available.
In Mexico, Paulina Martinez and her two children, aged eight and nine, all claim that they regularly communicate with Pleiadean aliens that one child calls his “purple” friends who take him on trips to their planet; Paulina says she’s been in contact with the Pleiadeans for six years and they have taught her about “The Matrix"; her son refers to a gateway which sends waves of energy to Earth as their means of communication, but the aliens promise they will show up physically between 2025 and 2028. Do they know the mummies?
Also in Mexico, Gerameraz Rivera, an employee at a bodega in Torreón, posted a video of what he claimed is a ghost or some other specter moving around at the end of an aisle at 3:20 am when the store was empty except for the employee – they video of the mysterious black figure got millions of views on TikTok with many people believing it was a ghost. It couldn’t be human because it was in a bodega at 3 in the morning and didn’t appear to be drunk or shoplifting.
There is a one letter difference between UFO and UFC and one person has a connection to both: Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) strawweight fighter Angela Hill is the granddaughter of Barney Hill, who with his wife Betty became famous when they claimed they were abducted by aliens in New Hampshire in 1961 and had their memories erased by Men in Black; they later learned of their experience through nightmares and hypnosis – Angela never met her grandfather but says her dad’s family confirmed Barney Hill’s story and believed it. Angela Hill versus a Man in Black for the rights to the real story of Betty and Barney Hill – sounds like the makings of a great pay-per-view UFC fight.
We are approaching the end of 2023, which means it’s time for the prognostications for 2024 from the blind Bulgarian psychic Baba Vanga, who predicts that Russian president Vladimir Putin will be assassinated, terrorists attacks in Europe will increase and biological weapons may be used, there will be a global economic crisis and many global climate disasters, power grids and physical infrastructures will suffer from cyber attacks, cures will be found for cancer and Alzheimer’s, and there will be a major breakthrough in quantum computing. Is it just me or is Baba Vanga starting to sound like a tech billionaire?
Andrew Benfield, a writer and meditation teacher, and political analyst Richard Horsey traveled through India, Myanmar, Nepal and Bhutan last year collecting stories about the Yeti for a BBC documentary about the Himalayan version of Bigfoot and revealed that they found a 6-inch-long hair in the Sakteng Wildlife Sanctuary in Bhutan which they cut and sent half to Charlotte Lindqvist, an evolutionary biologist at the University at Buffalo in New York – Lindqvist’s response this week was that DNA showed the hair belonged to an Altai horse, a mountain breed from Asia. Now horses don’t believe in the Yeti either.
UK cryptid researcher Andy McGrath says the Woodwose or Wild Man, the British version of Bigfoot, once existed as depicted in many artworks and tales from the 12th century and before, but his six-year search for any modern evidence of the beast turned up nothing and led him to conclude the Woodwose is extinct; however, he is convinced the Loch Ness monster is real and will be found. That’s too bad – the paintings of Woodwose dancing at parties make them look like really wild and crazy cryptids.
‘Au contraire mon frère’ say paranormal investigators in Wales who found what look like huge footprints measuring 16 inches in length (size 32 men's) in a rural woodland area near Caerphilly alongside what they described as some ‘stick structures’ they claimed could be shelters built by a Wildman or Woodwose or Bigfoot – Canadian Bigfoot researcher Jason Kenzie examined the photos and noted that the toes lacked a mid-tarsal break, an anatomical feature of the feet believed to be unique to Sasquatch and usually found in its tracks. Maybe this modern Wild Man wears corrective shoes?
In a new study, physicist Emma Thomas from the University of Leicester explains that an infrared northern lights-style aurora on Uranus directly connects the planet’s magnetic field and atmosphere and could help explain Uranus’ unusually high temperatures for a planet so far from the Sun and may one day help reveal alien life on the planet and how it got there. Let’s hope if the alien life is intelligent, it forgives us for the way we mispronounce Uranus and then giggle.
From the “Apes are smarter than we think” file comes a three-year study of two neighboring chimpanzee groups in the West African forests of Côte d'Ivoire which found that chimps climb up to higher ground to spy on rival groups in order to make sure the coast is clear before invading their territory – the chimps even refrain from making noise eating and foraging for food on the hill in order to avoid detection. Planet of the Apes becomes closer to documentary status every day.
We humans often blame our mental health on our parents, but a new study says the cause of your depression goes back much farther in your family tree to those ancestors who had sex with the Denisovans 60, 000 years ago – this now-extinct subspecies passed on a gene variant which causes lower levels of zinc in the body and zinc is a mineral associated with mood and happiness, along with strengthening their tolerance of the cold climate they lived in. Warm, depressed and horny for humans is probably how the Neanderthals described the Denisovans.
A new study from the University of Birmingham published in the Journal of Neurolinguistics shows how many people who hear or read grammatical mistakes actually experience a physiological stress response in their autonomic nervous system (ANS) similar to a “fight or flight” response which forces them to do something about it – in most cases, that means correcting the person making the grammatical error. This sounds like a good entrance exam for the Grammar Police Academy.
NASA's Lucy spacecraft recently passed the Dinkinesh space rock in the main asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter and sent back photos showing that ‘Dinky’ is a binary system asteroid with a small natural satellite orbiting around it – this week, NASA scientists determined the satellite is actually another type of binary system known as a "contact binary," meaning it is two small space objects in contact with one another and making Dinky the first asteroid found made of three components. “Threesome in Space” sounds like a NASA porn flick.
Two Brazilian tourists in Peru were saved before indigenous Peruvians killed them for being pelacaras or pishtacos, which are mysterious ‘face peelers’ believed to tear off the faces of their victims, cut their throats and strip them of their fat to sell – the two men were surrounded by 200 locals after taking a picture with a cell phone and were about to be strung up and lynched when two Peruvian National Police officers appeared, called for backup from eight more officers, and finally rescued them. And you thought the only person who feared face peelers was Mr. Potato Head.
Researchers at Kyoto University have finished building the LignoSat, a cube space satellite made from magnolia wood, and say it is ready to be launched into space next summer in a joint mission between Japan's JAXS space agency and NASA – the scientists say the wood is extremely sturdy and there will be no burning, rotting, and deformation because there is no oxygen in space and no termites or other wood-eating creatures. Are they sure this wooden satellite won’t get taken over by artificial intelligence and turned into Groot?
The age-old question of how did the leopard get its spots has been answered by a team at the University of Colorado Boulder which used 70-year-old research done by the famous British computer pioneer Alan Turing– Turing hypothesized that developing tissues produce chemical agents which diffuse through tissue in a process similar to adding milk to coffee, with some forming spots and others forming space between spots, and the researchers proved the theory with a computer simulation of the process now known as diffusiophoresis. Did Turing have any hypotheses on how many woods would a woodchuck chuck?
In their new book, "A City on Mars: Can We Settle Space, Should We Settle Space, and Have We Really Thought This Through?", husband-and-wife authors Kelly and Zach Weinsersmith consider the ethics of astronaut cannibalism in space and points out that the United Nations' international space law stipulates that a floating corpse in space would be considered a satellite and thus suitable for eating, and a group of stranded astronauts with dwindling food supplies might expect the largest one to sacrifice themselves to the others for sustenance. Let’s hope this forever remains just a movie plot.
A new startup company called Prophetic claims it has developed a device to be worn when sleeping that it claims will notify a person when they are in a dream state and allow them to turn it into a lucid dream where “You can fly, you can make a building rise out of the ground, you can talk to dream characters, and you can explore” – they plan to market it as an aid for helping with PTSD, reducing anxiety, and improving mood, confidence, motor skills, and creativity. If Mama Cass were alive today, she could record a version of her hit song for the commercial called “Dream a lucid dream with me.”
The U.S. Air Force is holding auditions to replace the mysterious “Janet” airline which operated a fleet of six Boeing 737-600s to carry workers from the Harry Reid International Airport in Las Vegas to Area 51 and other secret locations – the current contractor was EG&G, which has since been acquired by URS Corp. and AECOM, which flew about 9,000 trips and carried up to 490,000 passengers annually. Do passengers to Area 51 get their coffee served on flying saucers?
Colombia’s government announced it will begin operations to raise the so-called Holy Grail of shipwrecks, the San Jose, which was sunk by the British navy in 1708 off the port of Cartagena and is believed to have been carrying (and still holds) 200 ton of silver, emeralds and eleven million gold coins with a current value of $20 billion - Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos wants to raise it before his term ends in 2026 but a US salvage consortium called Glocca Morra claims half of it after it allegedly located the wreck in 1981, but the Colombian government says it found the wreck in a different location in 2015. When it is finally brought to the surface, it should be ‘Talk like a billionaire pirate’ day.
According to Psychology Today, studies of people who report seeing UFOs show that they are generally not psychopaths or individuals seeking attention, but are open to the possibility that they experienced something unexplainable and have a stronger sense of fantasy than the general population – the history of science shows that many ideas seem crazy until they are proven correct, so we shouldn’t jump to conclusions about those who claim to have UFO and alien encounters. That includes the people who report on UFO spotters too!
A 'chimera' is a single creature born from cells from more than two parents and scientists in China claim they have created a monkey chimera that had glowing green eyes, glowing yellow fingertips and a mix of organs which grew from the pluripotent stem cells of two genetically distinct fertilized eggs from the same monkey species (long-tailed macaque (Macaca fascicularis)) to create one chimera macaque – the glowing parts came from pluripotent stem cells labeled green fluorescent protein so they could be tracked to the tissue or organ they developed into. The scientists swear they haven’t tried this with human stem cells … yet.