Jul 05, 2024 I Paul Seaburn

Unidentified Driving Objects, Dinosaur Wine, Mysterious Ringing Bells, Strange Crop Circles and More Mysterious News Briefly

A roundup of mysterious, paranormal and strange news stories from the past week.

While most people look to the skies to spot an unidentified flying object, the Crawford County Sheriff's Department in Missouri was doing its job watching the roads recently when officers spotted an unidentified ‘driving’ object shaped like a flying saucer cruising down Interstate 44 – the officers posted photos on social media of the ground saucer which was heading west to Rosewell, New Mexico, for the annual festival; the cops said the occupants were "friendly humanoids, who have come in peace" and let them off with a warning to stay under the speed limit and keep their "phasers on stun". The ‘UDO’ was from Indiana, so maybe ‘Hoosiers’ are actually aliens.

LATE BREAKING UPDATE: The Oklahoma Highway Patrol posted on its Facebook page that Trooper Ryan Vanvleck #722 also pulled over the unidentified driving object on the Turner Turnpike yesterday for an obstructed tag. Trooper Vanvleck let them go with a warning, but real aliens might not be so lucky.

If you’re in the market for a haunted house, the Derwydd Mansion in Carmarthenshire, Wales, is up for sale – the 14-bedroom, four-bathroom, 12,758-square-foot house dates back to 1485 and is the house where Henry Tudor was said to have taken shelter before the Battle of Bosworth, but the most interesting resident is the legendary White Lady ghost who only reveals herself to unmarried men; also known as Gwen Vaughan, she also appears at the window of Sir Rhys ap Thomas's room just before the death of the family head; the asking price is a low, low $2.5 million. For that kind of money, the White Lady should appear only to single billionaires.

Scientists from China’s Haihe Laboratory for Brain-Computer Interaction and Human-Computer Integration at Tianjin University and the Southern University of Science and Technology announced they had developed a lab-grown human brain organoid with a brain-computer interface that was then connected to a robot which then learned to perform basic tasks like moving its limbs, avoiding obstacles and grasping objects while also exhibiting some intelligence functions of a biological brain – their study described this as having a “revolutionary impact” by helping develop hybrid intelligence. Did they draw straws to pick who got to be Dr. Frankenstein and yell, “It’s alive!”?

Employees at the Red Rocks Amphitheatre in Colorado submitted a report to the National UFO Reporting Center describing a June 5th sighting around 1 am of an unidentified “large disc-shaped craft" with "three levels of windows" like a three-story office building that remained completely silent even while maneuvering around the 12 witnesses for 30 seconds before heading east at about 5-10 mph and vanishing – unfortunately, there are no photos or videos. Did the aliens leave after finding out the Rolling Stones weren’t playing there that night?

If you’ve ever wondered how urban legends began, a good example comes from the Kisatchie National Forest in Louisiana where the Natchitoches Parish Sheriff's Office received a 911 call from a group of 17- and 18-year-olds teenagers setting up camp claim to have heard a growl and saw what appeared to be an animal with glowing eyes that stood about five feet tall – the officers who showed up found no evidence of a bear or a Bigfoot, even though that’s what the NPSO speculated on its Facebook page, and escorted the Houma high school graduates back down the Back Bone Trail to their car. The deputies need to mark the date on their calendar because this could become an annual event – unless it really was Bigfoot.

Maybe Bigfoot just needed a new tent.

The latest crop circle in England has an unusual starfish shape, but what really sets this one apart is that it’s located very close to the Stonehenge Visitor's Centre, making it about 500 feet from Stonehenge itself, which is under heightened security because of recent damage done by protesters, as well as right next to an ancient burial mound – so far, no one saw it being made and no one, human or alien, has taken responsibility for it. Uri Geller said the spray-painting protest at Stonehenge would upset the aliens – is this a sign that he was right?

Derry, Pennsylvania, is the latest town to see Bigfoot as a money-making partner as members of the Derry Borough Council set up the Derry Bigfoot Committee to promote the many Bigfoot sightings in the local Chestnut Ridge area, a fact supported by Bigfoot researcher Stand Gordon, who also told the committee that the Derry area is an unusual geographic area where UFO sightings are also a common occurrence – ideas for monetizing this are a Bigfoot statue, a festival or a museum with historical information, track castings and other items from Bigfoot witnesses. If Bigfoot is intelligent, it won’t be long before it is demanding a cut of the fees.

The Chicxulub impact event caused by an asteroid or comet hitting Earth in the vicinity of the Yucatán peninsula in Mexico around 66 million years ago gets credit for the extinction of the dinosaurs, but a new study now gives it a more positive distinction as the source of the wine we drink today – researchers from the Field Museum in Chicago found fossil grape seeds that date back to between 60 and 19 million years ago in Colombia, Panama and Peru and one species is the earliest known example of Western Hemisphere grape plants which were given the chance to grow and flourish with no dinosaurs trampling them and the forest trees their vines needed to climb. T. rex wouldn’t have cared anyway because its tiny arms were too small to lift a glass of wine to its lips.

Lori Graves, the owner of the property in Colorado where a mysterious metallic monolith appeared recently says she’s considering having it removed because of all the trespassers it has attracted, with a crowd of 800 in one day driving customers away from her Howling Cow Café by “being disrespectful and leaving trash all over the place" with one actually driving a car through one of their corn fields for a better look – removing it would be expensive because whoever installed somehow poured a concrete base first which it is firmly attached to. “Been there, done that, start raising wolves” said farmers with crop circles in England.

Mysterious booms are common around the world but businesses and residents around the 50th Street subway station in Manhattan, New York, are dealing with a mysterious ringing bell that has no obvious source (the Metro Transit Authority swears it’s not their doing), sounds like a classic school bell, changes pitch and volume in different spots in the tunnel, and is so constant that restaurants are keeping their doors closed – it’s been ringing a few weeks but no one can explain the mysterious Manhattan bell ringing. We saw the Manhattan Bells open for Archie Bell & the Drells doing The Tighten Up.

The hunt for DNA evidence from the clip-on tie left behind by hijacker DB Cooper when he jumped with a suitcase of cash from the passenger plane he commandeered in November 1971 hit another roadblock when longtime Cooper investigator Eric Ulis received a negative response from the FBI to his Freedom of Information Act request – the FBI said that any information within the bureau's Combined DNA Index System (CODIS) (CODIS) database is specifically exempt from FOIA requests; Ulis and forensic investigator Tom Kaye are now testing a sample taken during tests to analyze the tie for traces of certain metals, chemicals, and pollen in hopes that they can conduct metagenomic DNA analysis which allows for the separation of individual strands of DNA. The next step might be to find a presidential candidate willing to open the Cooper files.

The Antikythera mechanism – the ancient mechanical computer discovered in 1901 at a sunken shipwreck near the Aegean island of Antikythera and dated back to the second century BCE – was thought to have had 365 holes to follow the Egyptian calendar, but new research using the statistical analysis techniques of Bayesian analysis and the Markov Chain Monte Carlo has determined that it had 354 holes to track the Greek lunar year and that the holes were precisely positioned with an extraordinary average radial variation of just 0.028mm between each hole that “would have required highly accurate measurement techniques and an incredibly steady hand to punch them” that “helped people keep track of the heavens nearly two millennia ago”. What would be even more amazing is if it linked to a social media device that told when your friends’ birthdays were.

It’s not as famous as King Arthur’s mythical “Excalibur”, but the sword of Durandal is a real sword stuck for 1300 years in a stone in the ancient tiny French town of Rocamadour where it once belonged to a knight named Roland who fought for Charlemagne in the eighth century – the sacred sword was said to contain a tooth from St. Peter and a piece of cloth from Mary, the mother of Jesus, in its hilt, and was believed to be the strongest in the world when Roland tried to destroy it to keep it from enemy hands but instead impaled it in a rock where it has stayed until recently when it mysteriously disappeared; the police have no suspects and the locals are distraught at their loss. Is there a nearby lake with a lady in it who might be questioned?

Where can they find a knight on a night like this?

The Egyptian pharaoh Ramesses II is better known as Ramesses the Great and made sure everyone knew it by leading his army in 15 military victories and then leaving many huge statues to honor himself, but we didn’t really know how accurate those depictions were until recently when researchers led by Brazilian graphics expert Cicero Moraes used a 3D model of the king's mummified skull and recreated his face at the time of his death at about age 90 or 91 – the depiction has his eyes closed but clearly show Ramesses II with a “wise” face but having a less delicate forehead and lips and a less pronounced chin than the statues, plus a skin tone based on anthropometric and DNA data from ancient Egyptian populations; it also shows the pharaoh had a pronounced overbite but was still a “very handsome” ruler. How many sculptors were fired before they stopped making statues showing that overbite?

Former GQ editor Dylan Jones, the author of “David Bowie: A Life” and the new book, “These Foolish Things”, claims that the ghost of the Thin White Duke is often seen on the island of Mustique in the Caribbean, especially at the Cotton House Hotel or at Basil's Bar where jones says Bowie was a regular and often sang and jammed with the house band, and caroused with friends Mick Jagger and Bryan Ferry. Keith Richards should stop by and jam with Bowie because he already looks a little dead.

How much would they charge for tickets to see the ghost of David Bowie in concert? 

Black Sabbath is considered to be one of the first heavy metal bands, but founding bass player Geezer Butler revealed recently that credit should also be given to an orb he saw as a child – in an interview, Geezer remembers living with his parents and six siblings in a tiny Victorian house built in 1873 in Birmingham, England, when claims he was visited by an orb that he compared to a crystal ball which showed him an image of a man on stage playing a guitar – an image he believes was sent to inspire him to become a rock star – before it disappeared into a fireplace and up the chimney. Ozzy Osbourne never saw any glowing orbs, which probably inspired him to become the Prince of Darkness.

The weekly paranormal news wouldn’t be complete without a report from so-called ‘living Nostradamus’ Athos Salomé, the Brazilian psychic who claimed in December 2023 that an “asteroid abundant with rich materials” would fly past earth safely and now brags he was proven correct when Asteroid 2024 Mk, a 500-foot-wide space rock discovered on June 16, 2024, safely flew past Earth on June 29 a distance of only 184,000 miles or slightly more than three-quarters of the distance between the Moon and Earth. If he’s so good with flying rocks, maybe he can tell us who will win the shot put at the Summer Olympics in Paris.

According to a study by Elodie Freymann from the University of Oxford published in the open-access journal PLOS ONE, wild chimpanzees have been seen eating plants with medicinal properties to treat their various illnesses and injuries, including a fern that helps reduce pain and swelling, a bark from the cat-thorn tree that treats parasitic infections and dead wood from a tree in the Dogbane family which has strong antibacterial properties. Self-treatment beats waiting until they have enough bananas to afford a chimp doctor.

Astronauts Butch Wilmore and Suni Williams are stuck on the International Space Station because their Boeing-made capsule is still having helium leaks but NASA is taking the ‘silver lining’ approach to the helium clouds by pointing out that nothing really serious has gone wrong (so far) so the Starliner capsule can stay docked past its usual 45-day deadline and remain there for as long as it takes the agency and Boeing to figure out how to fix the problems. This is like your mechanic telling you your car is OK because it’s not on fire but it would still be better to leave it in the garage.

The paranormal world met the sports world this week as the spokesperson for the Yeti mascot of the city of Herriman, Utah, addressed "rumors and speculation" that the creature would abandon its seven-year association with the city and become the official mascot of Utah’s new NHL Professional hockey team, stating clearly that "I am Utah's original yeti mascot and my home and heart forever belong to Herriman!" but hinting that "my brother might take the hockey gig". The Herriman Yeti should not give up so easily – the NHL mascots have a benefits package and a pension.

Another Star Trek plot becomes a reality as environmental scientists from China released a report describing how Mars could be terraformed from the Red Planet into a green planet using the extremely resilient Syntrichia caninervis moss found in extreme desert environments from Tibet to Antarctica where it grows on barren rocks under harsh environmental conditions and could do the same on Mars, thus enabling the growth of other plants – in trials, the S. caninervis plants “maintain high levels of sucrose and maltose following stress; these sugars serve as osmotic agents and protectants that help preserve and stabilize cellular architecture. Subsequently, the sugars provide the energy needed for rapid recovery upon relief from stressful conditions". Matt Damon thinks eating moss would make for a terrible movie plot.

Paul Seaburn

Paul Seaburn is the editor at Mysterious Universe and its most prolific writer. He’s written for TV shows such as "The Tonight Show", "Politically Incorrect" and an award-winning children’s program. His new book, “What Would You Say to a Naked Space Alien?”, is a collection of his favorite stories of close encounters of the absurd kind. His “What in the World!” podcast is a fun look at the latest weird and paranormal news, strange stories and odd trivia. Paul likes to add a bit of humor to each MU post he crafts. After all, the mysterious doesn't always have to be serious. For contact information, visit his web page.

Join MU Plus+ and get exclusive shows and extensions & much more! Subscribe Today!