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[{"ID":194469,"Title":"Export Posts","Date":"2021-06-25T17:01:52+10:00","Author":"","Tags":"","Categories":"","Body":"","MP3_sq":"","MP3_hq":"","Thumbnail":""},{"ID":197248,"Title":"Levitation Demonstration, Gilgamesh Gone, Giant Worms and More Mysterious News Briefly \u2014 July 29, 2021","Date":"2021-07-29T21:13:38+10:00","Author":10080,"Tags":"biology, Bizarre, Einstein, invasive species, natural world, psychedelics, Science, space, technology","Categories":"Bizarre,Modern Mysteries,Natural World,News,Psychedelics,Science & Technology,Space & Astronomy","Body":"

Mysterious News Briefly \u2014 July 29, 2021<\/strong><\/p>\n

From the \u201cWhat did Elon say today?\u201d file \u2013 Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk tweeted<\/a> \u201cPopulation collapse is potentially the greatest risk to the future of civilization.\u201d Not to mention electric vehicle sales and space tourism reservations.<\/p>\n

A series of recent studies found that psychedelics and prayer both produce alterations of perceptions and mood<\/a>, and both have anxiolytic, analgesic, and antidepressant properties because both cause significant changes in the cingulate, frontal, and temporal cortexes of the brain. However, praying for LSD does not double your chances of scoring some.<\/p>\n

Engineers in Japan have developed a new way to levitate and manipulate tiny objects<\/a> from reflective surfaces using acoustic levitation or sound waves \u2013 they built a hemispherical acoustic array that lifted a 3-millimeter polystyrene ball from a reflective surface. The next new Olympic sport?<\/p>\n

Goodbye Gilgamesh -- federal authorities in New York seized the \u201cGilgamesh Dream Tablet,<\/a>\u201d a 3,500-year-old clay tablet containing part of the Epic of Gilgamesh, a Sumerian poem considered one of the oldest pieces of literature, from Hobby Lobby, which had it on display at the Museum of the Bible, and is returning it to the Iraqi government. You can still get a jigsaw puzzle of it or a kit to make a needlepoint version.<\/p>\n

Yet another invasive species showed up in Florida \u2013 this time it\u2019s the Rio Cauca caecilian<\/a>, (Typhlonectes natans<\/em>), a reclusive blind wormlike creature that is a separate species of amphibian which can grow up to five feet long and have a pair of sensory tentacles located between their eyes and nostrils. \u201cTastes like chicken,\u201d said chefs in Louisiana.<\/p>\n

A new viral video shows a two-headed snake<\/a> \u2013 the result of bicephaly \u2013 called Ben and Jerry devouring two mice in each of is fanged mouths. After watching the Olympics, a three-headed snake named Larry, Curly and Moe decided not to go for the record.<\/p>\n

For the first time, astronomers have directly detected reflected light in the form of X-ray echoes bending around from behind a supermassive black hole<\/a> 800 million light-years away, confirming one of Einstein's predictions in his theory of relativity. Someone in the afterlife give him a high five.<\/p>\n

Scientists from Cambridge University and NTU Singapore have found that slow-motion collisions of tectonic plates drag more carbon into Earth\u2019s interior than previously thought<\/a>, suggesting that only about a third of the carbon recycled beneath volcanic chains returns to the surface via recycling and giving a possible new way to store carbon dioxide removed from the atmosphere. Has anyone bothered to see how the Earth feels about this?<\/p>\n

Nervous men rejoice -- researchers have developed magnetic, biodegradable nanomaterials which can be guided to the testes and heated with magnetic fields, making them reversible male contraceptives<\/a>. Men will still ask if they come in extra-large.<\/p>\n

The sate of Indiana has hired the German company Magment to test out new, high tech streets made with magnetic particles in the concrete that automatically charge the battery of any electric vehicle<\/a> outfitted with a special receiver driving on them. Can it also zap the cell phones of anyone driving while texting?<\/p>\n","MP3_sq":"","MP3_hq":"","Thumbnail":"https:\/\/\/wp-content\/uploads\/2020\/08\/breaking-3-150x150.jpg"},{"ID":197229,"Title":"Strange Historical Technology Hoaxes That Fooled Everyone","Date":"2021-07-30T01:24:29+10:00","Author":9886,"Tags":"Bizarre, Conspiracy, historical oddities, Hoaxes, modern mysteries, mysterious people, Science, technology, unsolved mysteries, weird science","Categories":"Bizarre,Conspiracy,Modern Mysteries,Science & Technology","Body":"

Since the dawn of time human beings have moved forward through resourcefulness, invention and technology. It is what brought us up from mere apes cowering in the dark, to the advance being we are today, travelling to the stars and unravelling the secrets of the universe. Discovery and innovation have driven us to be the most advanced species the world has ever known, and all of this comes from the discoveries and inventions of those who have managed to unfurl the layers from what we do not understand. But discovery and invention are hard. It takes a lot of work and trial and error, and so for as long as amazing discoveries have been around there have been those who have just tried to fake it. Here are some of the boldest, cunning, and most baffling technological hoaxes from the annals of history.<\/p>\n

A very early hoax involved a type of robot before robots were ever even really a thing. In 1769, a Hungarian nobleman by the name of Baron Wolfgang von Kempelen built what he claimed to be a fully-functioning, chess playing robot, which at the time were typically referred to as \"automatons.\" It appeared as a large wooden box filled with gears, cogs, wires, and other fancy looking technological stuff, and atop this box sat a wooden mannequin dressed in Turkish clothes for some reason, and with maneuverable arms and hands. There was a large handle on the side, which Kempelen would wind up to activate the automaton, after which it would creepily spring to life to play chess. It had dexterous hands, could pick up and move chess pieces on its own, and not only that, it was touted as having the ability to \u201cthink,\u201d planning strategies and studying and reacting to its opponent\u2019s moves.<\/p>\n

When Kempelen first unveiled his creation it caused a major stir, as no one had ever seen any automaton that could do anything other than merely mimic humans and animals at the most rudimentary level. By all appearances, this was an actual thinking robot able to interact with an opponent, which was mind-blowing at the time. Kempelen then toured all over the place giving demonstrations of his wondrous machine. A typical show would be for him to crank up the robot, which was affectionately nicknamed \u201cThe Turk,\u201d and then invite someone from the audience to come up and try to play chess with it, and they almost always lost to it. He was always very willing to show that it was not an illusion, opening the side of the machine to allow spectators to see that there was not a man hidden inside, and no one could quite figure out how it all worked. Before long, these demonstrations were immensely popular, bringing in nobles, aristocrats, and even Benjamin Franklin, who lost a chess match to it. Everyone was held in awe.<\/p>\n

[caption id=\"attachment_197239\" align=\"aligncenter\" width=\"570\"]\"\" Kempelen's chess-playing robot[\/caption]<\/p>\n

These demonstrations would go on until 1790, when Kempelen would have his creation taken apart and put into storage. Upon his death in 1805, it was sold by his family to a German by the name of Johann Nepomuk Maelzel, who put it back together and began touring it around America. As it began to gain more fame, speculation on how it worked began doing the rounds again, with many skeptics surmising that there had to somehow be a person, maybe even a dwarf, hidden within the box or even the wooden Turk itself. It would not be until 1837 that the secret would finally come out, when those involved with the scam came forward to tell how it was done. It would turn out that various chess masters had been hidden inside the box as many had expected, and that a series of sliding panels, mirrors, and a rolling chair had been used to conceal them while audience members inspected the inside of the box. \u00a0It was then just a matter of using magnetic pieces over the hidden player\u2019s head to gage where the opponent had moved, and then use a system of levers to move his own pieces. In the end, it was quite a simple explanation for a device that had baffled and delighted audiences for the better part of a century, and it caused great disappointment. The Turk itself would be put back into storage, and its days were finally put to an end by a warehouse fire in 1854.<\/p>\n

At the same time that Maelzel was touring the chess-playing robot, another inventor was widely promoting what he claimed to be an actual, fully functioning perpetual motion machine. The concept of what has become known as \u201cperpetual motion\u201d is simple at its core. It basically describes an object or body that remains in continuous motion forever without any external energy source. If a machine were to be built using some sort of perpetual motion technology, it would theoretically run forever without any needs of fuel, batteries, or power of any kind. This means basically unlimited energy, freeing us from the tethers of finite sources of fuel and giving us devices that will never wind down or die out. It has become a sort of holy grail for certain individuals, who continue to plug away at this seemingly unobtainable dream, and it is just how amazing how much the idea of perpetual motion has enthralled people over a large portion of history. One of these was first unveiled in 1812 by an until then rather unknown man named Charles Redheffer, who began exhibiting his invention in his home in Philadelphia, in the United States.<\/p>\n

His fantastical machine featured a gravity-driven pendulum with a large horizontal gear on the bottom, and a smaller gear that interlocked with the larger one, with the large gear and the shaft able to rotate independently. On the gear were two ramps that held weights, and it all supposedly worked by these weights pushing the large gear away from the shaft, which would create friction that would cause the shaft and gear to spin. This spinning gear would then power the interlocked smaller gear, and on and on it would go, supposedly forever unless the weights were removed. The machine was put on display and immediately became a smash sensation, drawing in droves of amazed spectators and scientists alike, all of whom were charged a hefty admission fee by Redheffer and none of who could figure out how it all worked. It was largely whispered that he had finally cracked perpetual motion, that he had achieved the seemingly impossible dream. Before long Redhefer was getting quite rich off of his oddball machine, and there was much excited speculation that he had actually done it and achieved true perpetual motion, despite raised eyebrows from the scientific community.<\/p>\n

[caption id=\"attachment_197236\" align=\"aligncenter\" width=\"570\"]\"\" Diagram of Redheffer\u2019s machine[\/caption]<\/p>\n

Redheffer, emboldened by the response to his device, actually requested funding from the state of Pennsylvania to build a much larger version, and on January 21, 1813, state inspectors were sent to take a look at the machine before any money would be paid. Unfortunately for Redheffer, he had never let anyone ever take a good, close at his device, and it would soon become apparent why. The inspectors arrived and were immediately suspicious when it turned out they could only view it through a window into a locked room. Even so, there were cracks appearing in Redheffer\u2019s claims when it was noticed that the gear cogs were worn down in such a way as to suggest that the weights, shaft, and large gear were not powering the smaller gear, as Redheffer claimed, but rather the other way around. To them this was an obvious hoax, but the way they dealt with it is rather amusing. Rather than call out Redheffer on his scam, inspector Nathan Sellers hired a local engineer by the name of Isaiah Lukens to build a replica that was more compact and set within a solid baseboard with a square piece of glass at the top. There was no discernible way as to why it could work, yet concealed within the machine was a wind able motor that was wound through the covert use of a wooden decorative finial. With a little sleight of hand, the illusion was nearly perfect, and when he saw it Redheffer himself was so incredibly surprised to see what he took to be a real perpetual motion machine that he allegedly secretly offered Lukens a large amount of money to know the secret. After this, the news did the rest of the work and Redheffer was undone and exposed through a taste of his own medicine.<\/p>\n

Amazingly, this did not put a stop to Redheffer. Undeterred, he simply moved to New York to set up shop there where his reputation hadn\u2019t been as tarnished, once again enjoying some amount a fame and drawing in droves of curiosity seekers. One of these was an engineer by the name of Robert Fulton, who noticed something fishy as he observed the mysterious device in action. He could see a slight wobble to it, and also noticed a very slight unevenness to its speed and the sounds it made, both things that should not be present in a real perpetual motion device. A real device of this type would need to be frictionless and perfectly silent because friction and sound would be a loss of energy, so these were glaring clues that something was off, especially to his trained eye. Realizing that it was obviously being somehow powered by crank motion, Fulton confronted Redheffer on the spot, but the inventor amazingly held his ground, insisting that the machine was real.<\/p>\n

Fulton then challenged Redheffer to allow him to search for any possible source of outside power, to which Redheffer foolishly agreed. After this, Fulton simply tore out a section of wall in full view of a gathered audience to find a concealed cable that led to an upstairs room, where an old man was found operating a crank. The spectators, who had all paid good money to see the amazing \u201cperpetual motion machine,\u201d were less than thrilled. They reportedly immediately took out their frustrations on the machine itself, smashing it to pieces, and might have done the same to Redheffer if he hadn\u2019t already hi-tailed it out of there to later skip town. Unbelievably, Redheffer would claim several years later that he had created another machine, and that it was totally, for sure real this time, and he even got a patent for it in 1920, but since it was never put on display or examined and the patent was lost in a fire who knows if there was any truth to it.<\/p>\n


Such an invention would be groundbreaking, completely changing our world, and it is a fascinating thing to think about it, yet according to our current knowledge of physics it simply just isn\u2019t possible, as such a machine would violate one or more of the laws of thermodynamics. To put it in simple terms, the First Law of Thermodynamics basically is about the conservation of energy, and says that energy cannot be created or destroyed, only transformed from one form to another, making the idea of a machine constantly creating its own energy without any outside influence impossible. There is also the Second Law of Thermodynamics, which in simple terms more or less says that an isolated system will always move toward a state of disorder, for instance heat will always dissipate and energy will be lost on any number of variables, including moving parts, friction, even sound, with the more energy formed meaning the more energy wasted. It is all much more complicated than this very basic explanation, but the gist is, a perpetual motion machine is impossible according to our current understanding of the universe and the laws of the conversation of energy. Alas, all of the many supposed perpetual motion machines have proven to be hoaxes.<\/p>\n

In 1875 we have the strange story of John Worrell Keely, who founded the Keely Motor Company. Keely made the rather bold claim that he had invented what he called a \u201cvibratory generator\u201d that could purportedly wrest enough power out of a quart of water to pull a fully loaded train. He would give some seemingly successful demonstrations of this amazing device, and soon had investors throwing money at him to develop it. He would keep taking their money and stalling as he fine tuned his device, but after more than a decade of this suspicions began to arise. Nevertheless, it was such a potentially ground breaking marvel that there was still hope it might all be real. Sadly, when Keeley died in 1898 it was discovered that he had been pulling the wool over everyone\u2019s eyes, with him having merely used a clever ruse of having a compressed air machine hidden away that would provide power to the engine. This would not be the last time someone would try to fool everyone into thinking they could turn power into fuel, and we will get to another case later.<\/p>\n

[caption id=\"attachment_197237\" align=\"aligncenter\" width=\"570\"]\"\" John Worrell Keely[\/caption]<\/p>\n

Not all bogus inventions were for benevolent purposes. In 1876 a self-proclaimed \"Professor\" by the name of James C. Wingard, of New Orleans, came forth with what he claimed to be a weapon that he had designed that could utterly destroy Naval vessels. It was supposedly essentially a death ray that he said projected a \u201cnameless force,\u201d and which could devastate any vessel \u201cso as to leave no trace of them in their former shape\u201d from a range of up to 5 miles. Wingard heavily promoted his device as the future of warfare, and promised that any one who had possession of it would rule the seas and be unstoppable, able to annihilate any enemy. This obviously had the attention of the military, and he went about arranging a demonstration on June 8, 1876 at Lake Pontchartrain. As a large crowd looked on, Wingard engaged his device, aiming it at a large wooden schooner. There was apparently a lag of around a minute before the schooner exploded into a rain of fire and smoke, after which the vessel rapidly sank.<\/p>\n

It would soon be found that the schooner had been completely obliterated, with one statement saying \u201ceven the small timbers aft of the mainmast were broken all to pieces,\u201d and the test seemed to have been a resounding success. Wingard then formed a stock company in Boston and continued his work on refining his groundbreaking weapon, attracting many investors. As with Keeley, they were soon demanding results, so he set up another demonstration in Boston Harbor. However, when he activated the device, there was an explosion far from the target vessel, and an investigation would find a disintegrated rowboat and two bodies in the water. Wingard cancelled the demonstration and that was all highly suspicious, with skeptics now suggesting that he was merely sending a crew out on a rowboat to secretly plant explosives on the target vessel and then using a triggering mechanism to ignite it. Wracked with guilt, Wingard would come clean and admit that this was the case, and that his team had died when the explosives had accidentally gone off. The death ray had been a sham all along.<\/p>\n


Moving onto 1896 we have the bizarre story of Rev. Prescott Ford Jernegan, of Middletown, Connecticut, who claimed to have developed a way to extract gold from sea water with a device he called the \u201cGold Accumulator.\u201d It was not a new idea at the time, but no one had ever even come close to accomplishing it. He first came to a jeweler named Arthur Ryan with this amazing invention, and offered to perform a demonstration. The machine itself looked like a simple wooden box with holes that water could pass through, with the inside containing mercury that would be electrically charged to activate a \u201csecret ingredient.\u201d The box was to be lowered into sea water, left overnight, and when it was pulled up the next day it would be filled with gold due to some mysterious chemical process. When Ryan agreed to see a demonstration, Jernegan simply gave him the box and told him he could do it on his own.<\/p>\n

In February of 1897 Ryan went about testing the device on a wharf outside of Providence, Rhode Island, along with several colleagues. They used it as its inventor had instructed them to, lowered it into the water, and the next morning sure enough there were flecks of gold within it. It wasn\u2019t as much as they had been expecting, but it was still over $100 dollars of gold in today\u2019s money so it was seen as promising. If a collection of such machines could be set up running day and night, it could prove to be quite lucrative indeed. Jernagan said he could churn out a further 1,000 devices within the year, and there were dollar signs dancing through Ryan\u2019s eyes. Jernegan, Ryan, and a team of investors founded the Electrolytic Marine Salts Company, and got to work on getting stinky filthy rich.<\/p>\n


They set up an array of accumulators in Maine and Boston, and began pulling in more gold from them, \u201cproving\u201d it worked and attracting people wanting to buy stock in the company. Investors were pouring in money, interest was high, and it seemed to be too good to be true, and sadly, it was. In July of 1898, Jernegan suddenly vanished without a trace, later found to have hi-tailed it to Europe under a fake name. Not long after they were gone, the accumulators stopped producing gold, and it didn\u2019t take a genius to figure out that they had all been scammed. It would turn out that Jernegan had an assistant named Charles Fisher, who also happened to have been a trained diver. It turned out that he had been secretly diving into the sea to load the accumulators with gold, a small price to pay considering how much they were pulling in from investors. As soon as the orders for their machines had gone up, they had taken all of the invested money and made a run for it, making a cool $200,000 each, about a bajillion dollars in today\u2019s money. The two scam artists were never caught, but the idea of extracting gold from sea water remained for quite some time.<\/p>\n

In 1909, we have the clever hoax of an inventor named Wallace Tillinghast, from Worcester, Massachusetts, who claimed that he had built an amazing new type of airplane. This was only a few years after the Wright Brothers had made their first flight, and aircraft were still in their infancy, slow and only capable of short stints with little extra weight. Indeed, the longest flight up to then was Louis Bl\u00e9riot\u2019s solo flight across the English Channel, which had gone only 22 miles. In comparison, Tillinghast claimed that his own design could hold three passengers and fly over 300 miles at an average speed of 120 miles an hour, which might as well have been magic at the time. He further claimed that he had performed several test flights of his aircraft that confirmed these numbers, and excitement was high.<\/p>\n

Through all of this, Tillinghast was very secretive as to how his airplane worked, claiming that he did not want the plans to get into the wring hands, but he assured the public that he would come forward with his amazing invention. In the meantime, there were alleged sightings of the new airplane all over New England, with thousands of witnesses and many claiming that it often shot a searchlight below it. However, there were many skeptics. Wilbur Wright himself dismissed Tillinghast\u2019s claims as \u201ctoo palpably absurd from the first to take seriously,\u201d and reporters who had been following him and even staking out his home could find no evidence that he had any such plane or workshop where he claimed to be working on it.<\/p>\n


As this was going on there were still numerous sightings of a mysterious airship the like of which no one had ever seen, and Tillinghast insisted that he was telling the truth. Eventually, a local man named C.D. Rawson admitted to causing the sightings with lights and reflectors attached to owls as a hoax, but Tillinghast did not budge from his adamant position that his invention was real. 1910 came and went with no further word on the amazing new airplane, and the public ended up merely shrugging their shoulders and moving on. It would largely be looked at as a huge hoax, with no evidence that Tillinghast had any such aircraft or had ever made a flight at all, and he would just sort of fade away into the background.<\/p>\n

Moving on into more modern times, we have still more mysterious supposed inventions that could have had world changing implications. In the 1970s, a man named Thomas Ogle claimed to have developed a new type of car carburetor that supposedly could make gasoline into a pressurized vapor and utilize it on the engine\u2019s firing chambers in an incredibly super efficient manner, allowing vehicles to allegedly run over 100 miles to the gallon. In addition, Ogle claimed that any car could be modified to use the new system easily and for not much additional cost, making the whole thing seem almost too good to be true. Ogle himself showed off a Ford Galaxie that had supposedly been fitted with the new miracle carburetor and was clocked at around 113 miles to the gallon.<\/p>\n

Unfortunately we will never know. Ogle died in 1981 without ever having divulged just how the vapor carburetor worked, and even his death has sparked controversy, with some saying he was intentionally poisoned by someone within the big gasoline companies who stood to lose the most from such an innovative product. Considering that no one has ever been able to replicate the process, it has been speculated that the whole thing could have been a hoax, with Ogle simply showing an illusion utilizing hidden fuel tanks, but other have defended his invention as having been real, and in the end the fact is we simply don\u2019t know. All we know is that it would have been a revolutionary development way ahead of its time.<\/p>\n

[caption id=\"attachment_197232\" align=\"aligncenter\" width=\"570\"]\"\" Thomas Ogle[\/caption]<\/p>\n

Getting back to perpetual motion machines, one was unveiled in 1979 by American inventor Joseph Newman. The machine was called the DC motor, and according to him worked by using \u201cenergy in a magnetic field consisting of matter in motion,\u201d and which he claimed could produce more energy than was put into it. He even went about seeking a patent for his invention, but it was denied as the Patent Office could not see how it could feasibly work. When Newman appealed this decision, it was found in an investigation by the National Bureau of Standards that the device\u2019s power output was never above 100% of the power supplied to it, which was not promising. Newman would continue to adamantly insist that his machine really worked, but he sort of fell into obscurity after making all manner of other crackpot claims over the years. Whether his supposed perpetual motion machine ever really worked or not remains unknown, but everything we know about science says probably not. For now, the notion of a real working perpetual motion machine really does sit in the realm of science fiction, and it has mostly been a pursuit abandoned by most real scientists. It has come to be relegated to mad inventors working in their garages against all odds to try and make the impossible possible.<\/p>\n

Our species is always going to reach towards the horizon and penetrate into the mysteries that we don't understand, further opening up new discoveries and propelling our progress. This is an innate feature of our kind, and to be sure there will be leaps and bounds made over the coming decades that will bring true progress. Yet looking back at cases such as these it seems that for as much progress as we make, there will always be those willing to fake it for fame or money.<\/p>\n","MP3_sq":"","MP3_hq":"","Thumbnail":"https:\/\/\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/07\/vortex-radio-waves-150x150.jpg"},{"ID":197203,"Title":"The Erratic Enigma: A Few of These Ancient Geological \u201cOrphans\u201d Remain Mysterious","Date":"2021-07-30T01:12:54+10:00","Author":948,"Tags":"erratics, geology, glaciers, ice age","Categories":"Ancient Mysteries,Natural World","Body":"

During the nineteenth century, many a traveler throughout America\u2019s heartland found themselves transfixed by their observations of large, errant boulders which occasionally sprang from the landscape in the middle of large stretches of forest or fields. These mysterious stony outcrops appeared to defy the expectations of geologists, since they were not associated with any native veins of similar stone. The question at the time had been, if not of natural geologic origin, what was the origin of these massive stones?<\/p>\n

Known today as erratics<\/em>, a word derived from the Latin word meaning \u201cto wander,\u201d these massive stones are believed to have been transported by the movement of glacial ice during the Pleistocene. However, to nineteenth-century travelers, the mysterious misplacement of these massive stones had presented serious problems and aroused a number of creative theories about their origins.<\/p>\n

[caption id=\"attachment_197205\" align=\"aligncenter\" width=\"640\"]\"\"<\/a> Example of an erratic known as \"Tripod Rock,\" resting atop three smaller boulders as it has remained for thousands of years at Pyramid Mountain, New Jersey (Credit: Wally Gobetz<\/a>\/Flickr).[\/caption]<\/p>\n

One leading theory among investigators at the time had been the notion that erratics represented evidence of the great flood described in the Christian bible, or at very least, some similar flooding event that occurred sometime after Earth emerged from the most recent ice age. According to this view, the colossal energy of floodwaters would have provided the necessary force to have moved the stones. However, by the middle of the nineteenth-century research by those like Swiss naturalist Ignaz Venetz began to focus on how glaciers offered a better explanatory mechanism for the mysterious erratics.<\/p>\n

Following Venetz, the publication of Charles Lyell\u2019s Principles of Geology <\/em>also offered an explanation for the curious movement of erratics with the aid of glaciers. Similar observations had been made by the German polymath Johann Wolfgang von Goethe and several colleagues that stones found along the slopes of the Jura Mountains had likely been deposited after the movement of glaciers during the last ice age. Even naturalist Charles Darwin, best known for his contributions to the theory of evolution, had taken interest in these geological wonders of the ancient world and wrote of his observations of erratics from aboard the HMS Beagle <\/em>while sailing south of the Strait of Magellan.<\/p>\n

[caption id=\"attachment_163540\" align=\"aligncenter\" width=\"570\"]\"\"<\/a> Charles Darwin[\/caption]<\/p>\n

Of course, while glacial movement appeared to be a reliable mechanism for the movement of such massive stones, the question remained as to what might have placed them on top of glaciers to begin with. The leading theory about this among nineteenth-century scholars had been that landslides and rockfalls, occasionally helped along by the movement of the encroaching ice itself, had likely resulted in stones coming to rest upon the ice sheets, which were thereafter carried along as the glaciers moved. Once the ice sheets began to melt and the glaciers receded again, these stones\u2014some of them carried along for great distances\u2014would have found their way to their present positions on the ground far from where they originated.<\/p>\n

While such geological mechanisms are well understood today, there are still some erratics that maintain a few unusual aspects. Along the coasts of Washington and Oregon today, several erratics can be found which appear to have spent a significant amount of time below ground. Mostly of basaltic origin, these peculiar stones are otherwise similar to other known glacial erratics, although the evidence suggesting that they have spent significant amounts of time as much as 40 kilometers below Earth\u2019s surface seems to preclude their movement above Pleistocene glaciers. So where did they come from, and how were they moved to their current positions?<\/p>\n

Geologists have noted that these unusual erratics are in an area where few fossil discoveries have turned up. Some have gone so far as to suggest that there is evidence of some kind of disruption or another mechanism that causes this part of the northwestern coast to appear \u201cupside down,\u201d at least geologically speaking.<\/p>\n

[caption id=\"attachment_197212\" align=\"aligncenter\" width=\"640\"]\"Yeager<\/a> Yeager Rock, another obvious erratic visible on the Waterville Plateau, Washington (Public Domain).[\/caption]<\/p>\n

In 1980, researcher Robert Muir Wood offered a theory about the origins of these curiosities in his New Scientist <\/em>article \"Orphans of the Wild West.\u201d The theory proposed for the region\u2019s odd appearance and its potentially non-glacial erratics suggests that these stones were forced down to great depths in the ancient past, and later carried back to the surface by geological pressure that squeezed the surrounding soil, causing them to rise again to their present aboveground positions.<\/p>\n

While the theory appears to make sense, not everyone saw it as the most viable explanation for the curious non-glacial erratics that appear to have been left \u201corphaned\u201d along the coasts of certain western states. While the debate over their origins remains, the question over what mechanism might have actually led to these seemingly \"non-glacial\" erratics is, of course, a fascinating one.<\/p>\n

Hence, perhaps at least a few of these mysteries of the geological past remain unexplained today, and no less perplexing to the modern scientists who continue to marvel over them.<\/p>\n","MP3_sq":"","MP3_hq":"","Thumbnail":"https:\/\/\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/07\/erratics-150x150.png"},{"ID":197167,"Title":"Warning to Aliens — Get Ready for the Space Marines","Date":"2021-07-30T01:29:49+10:00","Author":10080,"Tags":"military, Science, space, Space Force, technology, US Marines, warfare","Categories":"News,Space & Astronomy","Body":"

Aliens thinking about invading Earth need to be ready to start hearing cries of \u201cSemper Fi!\u201d now that a select group of \u201cspace Marines\u201d have commenced training at the Army\u2019s Space and Missile Defense School in Colorado Springs, Colorado, where they will prepare to fight our country\u2019s battles from the halls of Montezuma to the shores of Tranquility \u2026 on the Moon and beyond. Someday soon, if extraterrestrials ever look on heaven\u2019s scenes, they will find our skies are guarded by United States Marines.<\/p>\n

\u201cWe are in our initial building stage of SOPs (standard operating procedures) and TTPs (tactics, techniques, and procedures) and force structure. Right now this is a capability that doesn\u2019t exist in the Marine Corps. It\u2019s always us reaching out to the joint force to provide it.\u201d<\/p><\/blockquote>\n

It wouldn\u2019t be a military announcement without acronyms, so the press release<\/a> quotes Marine Capt. Jacob Loya, a communications officer with a background in satellite communications working with 1st Space Brigade to train the Marines, had a few to say. The Marines are part of the newly activated Marine Corps Forces Space Command at Offutt Air Force Base in Omaha, Nebraska, and after training will embed with Army Space Support Teams. The training will include, situational awareness of space capabilities, space assets, space products, and the impact of space on operations. According to the press release, the goal is from the Marines to eventually establish their own autonomous Marine Space Support Teams.<\/p>\n


What about the Space Force?<\/em><\/p>\n

\u201cWith the renewed emphasis on space and the standing up of the Space Force and Space Command, the Marine Corps needs to have skin in the game. We want to be able to operate independently and that starts by learning all the TTPs built out by 1st Space Brigade<\/a>. It\u2019s a knowledge base we just don\u2019t have.\u201d<\/p><\/blockquote>\n

The Space Force is a separate branch of U.S. uniformed services, although it\u2019s considered to be a sister-branch of the U.S. Air Force. It\u2019s responsible for organizing, training, and equipping space forces, which are then deployed by the United States Space Command. So, according to the chain of command and distribution of responsibilities, it appears the Space Force trained the Army\u2019s Space and Missile Defense School personnel which then trains its own Army and Marine space support teams, which in this case are the Space Marines \u2013 although that\u2019s not their official designation.<\/p>\n

According to Task and Purpose<\/a>, the space Marines will be a part of the Army Space Support Team (ARSST) providing enhanced \u201cintelligence and operation planning capabilities\u201d for units in the field, especially in the area of space-based military capabilities like satellite intelligence and communications. They will also be able to jam enemy communications and take part in \u201cnavigation warfare.\u201d<\/p>\n

[caption id=\"attachment_190845\" align=\"aligncenter\" width=\"570\"]\"\" John Glenn[\/caption]<\/p>\n

It\u2019s the 100th anniversary of his birth, so we\u2019ll salute the most famous space Marine \u2013 John Glenn. Glenn trained as a Navy pilot, but accepted a transfer to the Marines and flew missions in World War II and the Korean War before becoming a test pilot and eventually one of the first U.S. astronauts \u2013 the first American to orbit the Earth. (That\u2019s real space travel, Bezos and Branson.)<\/p>\n

Would John Glenn be interested in becoming an official Space Marine and fight alien invasions? He never hesitated to serve when his country called, so it\u2019s easy to answer that question.<\/p>\n

\u201cFrom dawn to setting sun; We have fought in every clime and place
\nWhere we could take a gun.\u201d<\/p><\/blockquote>\n","MP3_sq":"","MP3_hq":"","Thumbnail":"https:\/\/\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/07\/marine-corps-77951_1920-e1627569855460-150x150.jpg"},{"ID":197165,"Title":"California Missing Person Case Aided by Ghost Sighting","Date":"2021-07-29T18:24:28+10:00","Author":10080,"Tags":"ghost, mysterious disappearances, unsolved mystery","Categories":"Ghosts & Hauntings,News","Body":"

If you have any information about this individual or if you have been in the area south of Merced Pass and Buena Vista Crest during July, please email<\/a> us (preferred) or call 209\/372-0610, even if you didn't see her or abandoned gear.<\/p>\n


She was last seen Saturday, July 4, 2020, near the Chiquito Pass Trailhead in Madera County. She was camping alone in the Sierra National Forest, had crashed her vehicle, and was seen walking away.<\/p><\/blockquote>\n

When the National Park Service in California posted a notice<\/a> asking for help finding Sandra Johnsen-Hughes, they never expected to get a tip from a ghost. Yet that may be the best one they\u2019ve received to date as the search for the 54-year-old woman has been unsuccessful so far.<\/p>\n

[caption id=\"attachment_197186\" align=\"aligncenter\" width=\"570\"]\"\" Sandra Johnsen-Hughes (Photo credit: National Park Service)[\/caption]<\/p>\n

\"He was just in our car and he was pointing out to a certain spot in the meadow. He goes 'Yeah there\u2019s a lady over in the meadow in a black shirt' and I got goosebumps. He says 'She needs our help but she\u2019s dead and she\u2019s laying face down with her legs up and she can\u2019t talk to me but she\u2019s over there, we need to go help her.'\u201d<\/p><\/blockquote>\n

Media sites<\/a> and<\/a> reported this week that California residents Jake Gorba, his wife Victoria and their three kids had stopped for lunch on the way to Shuteye Peak in the Sierra National Forest in Madera County when their three-year-old son Kaiden began talking about a dead woman he could see in a field. Victoria said Kaiden kept pleading for her to \u201ctrust me, mom,\u201d so she was spooked enough to venture into the field, hoping she wouldn\u2019t find a dead body, which Kaiden described right down to her blue hair.<\/p>\n

Not finding anyone in the meadow, they did what any family would do \u2026 they turned around, went home and posted their story on Facebook. Madera County Sheriff Corporal Chris Williams saw the Facebook post and contacted the family to further investigate \u2013 especially since some photos show Sandra Johnsen-Hughes in a black shirt with blue hair. Jake Gorba posted <\/a>what happened next.<\/p>\n

\u201cWent up today in the sheriff side by side with Larry Rich and deputy chambers with my son and took them to the spot. we couldnt find any indication of a human being in the area no tracks (other than ours) only other tracks found were deer bear and of course cattle even ran into 5 cows while out looking around. I do not know anything about the ongoing investigation into the missing woman around the area as to what the sheriffs office will do next being we didnt see anything today. To put my nerves at ease i am glad we didn't find anything.\u201d<\/p><\/blockquote>\n

The Madera County Sheriff\u2019s Office confirmed to the media that they did receive a report of a possible sighting and investigated the site without finding anything. As a result, the case is still open.<\/p>\n


What did little Kaiden Gorba see? It\u2019s quite a coincidence that he was suddenly talking about a woman in a black shirt with blue hair a little over 20 miles from where a woman in a black shirt with blue hair disappeared. It\u2019s eerie that he thought she was dead. It\u2019s sad that she still hasn\u2019t been found.<\/p>\n

While the ghost hasn't been seen again, it has drawn needed attention to the missing person case of Sandra Johnsen-Hughes. If you have any information or see the ghost yourself, contact the National Park Service by email<\/a> or phone at 209\/372-0610.<\/p>\n","MP3_sq":"","MP3_hq":"","Thumbnail":"https:\/\/\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/07\/forest-fire-2828933-e1627500369894-150x150.jpg"},{"ID":197149,"Title":"Strange and Sinister Characters Who Popped up in History","Date":"2021-07-30T01:18:21+10:00","Author":2159,"Tags":"James Forrestal, The Traveler, Umbrella Man","Categories":"Bizarre,News,UFO Phenomenon","Body":"

The theme of today's article is a very strange one: odd and creepy characters who surface at crucial times in history. Who are they? I'll say right away that I have no idea. But, they're out there, for sure. We'll begin with the world's most famous UFO case: the Roswell affair of July 1947<\/a>. The late Frank Joyce was a key figure in the story<\/a> of Roswell. When the \"whatever-it-was\" crashed to the ground on the Foster Ranch, Lincoln County, New Mexico, Joyce was a radio announcer with the KGFL station. Not only that, Joyce was the first to speak with rancher William Ware \"Mac\" Brazel, the man who stumbled on the huge field of strange debris. And, some have suggested, Brazel may have even seen a damaged body or two on the ranch. Joyce, Jud Roberts and Walt Whitmore, Sr. were all part of KGFL. And they were all threatened not to talk about the incident. It wasn't long at all - around forty-eight hours - before Whitmore, Sr. asked Joyce to go with him to the ranch. Now, we come to our first creepy, weird character. When Joyce got in the car, he couldn't fail to see there was someone else in the car - on the back-seats. It was a man who came to be known as \"The Traveler.\" Here's where it gets really weird. The man in the back was wearing a bright gold outfit. It was somewhat akin to an outfit that a military pilot would wear. The strangeness progressed: on the drive, Joyce popped a soda. There was, however, something strange about that soda. Very<\/em> strange.<\/p>\n

It became clear to Joyce, and quickly, that he had been dosed with, well, with something<\/em>. The story gets even more bizarre: Joyce was sure he and the Traveler were communicating via something akin to psychic phenomena. Of course, Joyce - high on that mind-manipulating drink - was toasted to the gills at the time. So, it's hard to know how much of that part of the story was real or not. On finally getting to the ranch, Whitmore and Roberts went inside the home. Joyce, though, was told to wait in a nearby shack on the property. Suddenly, a very worried Brazel entered the shack, warning Joyce to stay silent about the now-famous incident. Joyce, although still not in his right mind, agreed to say nothing. When Joyce got back to the vehicle, The Traveler in gold was nowhere in sight. In their 2016 book, The Children of Roswell<\/a><\/em>, Tom Carey and Don Schmitt reveal something incredible: that the military was \"\u2026still not sufficiently convinced by Joyce's pledge not to say anything, as he was shortly thereafter gathered up and physically removed to a military hospital in Texas for the next year.\" The whole thing occurred under very strange circumstances and never really resolved. Moving on, let's take a look at Umbrella Man<\/a>.<\/p>\n

[caption id=\"attachment_87103\" align=\"aligncenter\" width=\"570\"]\"\" The location of the \"Roswell crash\" (Nick Redfern)[\/caption]<\/p>\n

\"As Kennedy\u2019s presidential limousine passed by, carrying driver Agent Bill Greer, Agent Roy Kellerman, Governor John Connally, Nellie Connally, President Kennedy and Jackie Kennedy, onlookers waved and attempted to get the president\u2019s attention. Some had small flags, some had handkerchiefs, but most waved their own hands or hats. One onlooker, however, had something far more interesting. As Kennedy\u2019s limo rolled past, the onlooker opened a black umbrella and lifted it into the air. As the limo continued on, he seemed to wave the umbrella in a clockwise motion, as if signaling something. Coincidentally (or perhaps not at all) the opening and waving of the umbrella seemed to coordinate perfectly with the shots fired at the president.\" Those are the words of Katie Serena in an article on Umbrella Man<\/a>. Now, it's time for another strange saga.<\/p>\n

Within the field of Ufology there are longstanding rumors that the May 22, 1949 death of James Forrestal \u2013 the first U.S. Secretary of Defense \u2013 was linked to the UFO phenomenon<\/a>. So the story goes, while suffering from severe depression and anxiety, and ultimately spiraling into a complete nervous breakdown (as a result of his exposure to what the U.S. Government knew about UFOs), Forrestal was on the verge of revealing his knowledge of an alien presence on Earth. The theory continues that powerful figures decided such a thing simply could not be allowed to occur. The result was that Forrestal had to go. And \"go,\" he certainly did: out of a window. In the early hours of May 22, Forrestal plunged to his death from the 16th floor of the Bethesda Naval Hospital. The big question is: was he pushed or did he jump? That's a question for another day. However, we are not short in strange characters in the saga of James Forrestal.<\/p>\n

Just a few days before he ended up in the hospital, Forrestal had a curious experience which had distinct Men in Black overtones attached to it. On the day in question, Forrestal received a visit from one of his friends, a man named Ferdinand Eberstadt<\/a>, someone who was deeply concerned about Forrestal's fragile and paranoid state of mind. Eberstadt (a lawyer, a banker, and the author of a historic 1945 document, \"Task Force Report on National Security Organization\") was floored by what he saw when he arrived at Forrestal\u2019s home. All of the curtains were closed. Forrestal told his friend \u2013 in hushed tones \u2013 that listening-devices were all over the house. Sinister characters were watching his every move. His life was in danger. To demonstrate this to Eberstadt, Forrestal carefully opened one of the blinds and pointed, knowingly, in the direction of a pair of shabbily-dressed men on the street-corner.<\/p>\n

[caption id=\"attachment_162771\" align=\"aligncenter\" width=\"570\"]\"\" James V. Forrestal[\/caption]<\/p>\n

\"They\" were a part of a deadly plot, Forrestal assured Eberstadt. In no time at all, the doorbell to Forrestal\u2019s home was heard ringing. The last thing Forrestal wanted to do was answer the door. Fortunately, one of his staff was on hand to do exactly that. A brief conversation took place, but which neither Forrestal nor Eberstadt were able to hear. The facts, however, quickly came to Forrestal from his houseboy. According to what the two men were told, the visitor at the door was trying to generate support that would hopefully allow him to become postmaster in his hometown. Could he come in and speak with Forrestal and have him offer some help and advice? Due to Forrestal's fraught state of mind, the man was sent packing. Eberstadt and Forrestal watched carefully as the man walked directly towards the two badly-dressed men that already<\/em> had Forrestal in a state of turmoil. It was even more evidence of a conspiracy against him, Forrestal grimly concluded, when he saw the three clearly engaging in conversation. The strange trio was quickly gone. And, in a very different way, Forrestal himself would be gone very soon<\/a>.<\/p>\n


Finally, there are the mysterious Men in Black<\/a> who descended upon Point Pleasant, West Virginia in the 1960s. Mothman appeared, too, of course. A woman named Mary Hyre played an integral role in the series of 1960s-era events that led John Keel to write The Mothman Prophecies<\/em>. As an example of many, in January 1967, Mary was visited by a creepy, bowl-haired MIB of around 5-feet in height and who had oddly hypnotic eyes. Throughout the encounter, the black-clad \"man\" kept staring at Hyre\u2019s ballpoint pen. To the point where Hyre told him he could keep it. He took it, laughed loud in a strange fashion, and vanished as mysteriously as he first arrived. As The Demoniacal notes<\/a>: \"Mary Hyre was the Point Pleasant, WV, correspondent for the Athens, OH, newspaper titled, The Messenger<\/em>. Hyre documented strange occurrences happening in Point Pleasant in 1966-1967 and was well loved by locals due to her professional and open-minded take on the subjects. In one weekend alone, Hyre received 500 reports of UFO sightings from locals. Hyre\u2019s fascination with flying saucers stemmed from her own sighting of a UFO which she claimed flew over her backyard.\"<\/p>\n

Connected characters? Creepy figures with their own, separate agendas? And why did all of these strange people arrive at specific, notable times in history? The questions could go on and on. The answers, unfortunately, are few.<\/p>\n","MP3_sq":"","MP3_hq":"","Thumbnail":"https:\/\/\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/07\/walkers-486583_1920-e1627570968943-150x150.jpg"},{"ID":197135,"Title":"Monkey Wars, Martian Menus, Swimmer Brains and More Mysterious News Briefly \u2014 July 28, 2021","Date":"2021-07-28T20:53:14+10:00","Author":10080,"Tags":"biology, Bizarre, marine biology, modern mysteries, natural world, Science, space, technology","Categories":"Ancient Mysteries,Bizarre,Natural World,News,Psychedelics,Science & Technology,Space & Astronomy","Body":"

Mysterious News Briefly \u2014 July 28, 2021<\/strong><\/p>\n

Those waiting for the Tesla Cybertruck got some bad news from company CEO Elon Musk -- during the company\u2019s second-quarter earnings call this week he admitted that, if made in low quantities, each one could \u201cliterally cost a million dollars apiece<\/a> or more.\u201d Then, to show what a million dollars looks like, he shoved his hand between the cushions of his couch and started fishing around.<\/p>\n

The Edisto Beach State Park (South Carolina) sea turtle patrol found a rare live loggerhead sea turtle hatchling with two heads,<\/a> which they photographed and released into the ocean. Sadly, it was probably gone before you can say \u201cTwo heads are better than \u2026 never mind.\u201d<\/p>\n

in what appears to be an ongoing problem, hundreds of macaque monkeys swarmed the streets in the Lop Buri, Thailand, and stopped traffic to engage in what the Thai media calls a \u201cmonkey war\u201d<\/a> between two rival groups of monkeys\u2026 the street monkeys and the temple monkeys. Time for a musical \u2018Macaque Side Story\u2019?<\/p>\n

In Ireland, sheep brought in to eat the overgrowth around headstones in a cemetery in Co Cork are discovering lost historic graves<\/a> dating back to its opening in 1788. Not only is it great for historians, all those sheep are putting restless ghosts to sleep.<\/p>\n

As the use of psychedelic drugs to treat substance abuse grows, researchers are looking at a lesser known one \u2013 ibogaine<\/a> or Tabernanthe iboga \u2013 a plant native to West Africa where indigenous people ingest it to combat fatigue, hunger and thirst and, in higher doses, to induce visions in initiation rituals and religious ceremonies. Ibogaine poses serious health risks to those with pre-existing heart conditions, so check with your doctor before packing your machete and heading to West Africa.<\/p>\n

Researchers studying Earth's lava caves (lava tubes) to figure out how humans can survive on Mars discovered that many bacteria growing on the walls ignore food from the surface and instead eat rocks for energy<\/a>. \u201cWe\u2019re gonna need more dentists,\u201d thought Elon Musk.<\/p>\n

Just in time for the Olympics, new research suggests that swimming is better for the body<\/a> than other aerobic activities because it boosts brain health by improving memory, cognitive function, immune response and mood, as well as helping to repair damage from stress and forge new neural connections in the brain. What we really need to know is which one is better if you're just watching.<\/p>\n

A bipedal robot developed at Oregon State made history by learning to run and completing a 5K run<\/a> in just over 53 minutes \u2013 the trunk-with-legs-but-no-torso-or-head robot fell twice when its computer overheated and it took a turn too tightly. On the plus side, it never needed to stop for Vaseline for chafed thighs.<\/p>\n

The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) reports that the number of Cuban crocodiles (Crocodylus rhombifer<\/em>), a black and-yellow freshwater reptile found only in Cuba, has declined more than 80 percent over three generati<\/a>ons due to amorous American crocodiles (Crocodylus acutus)<\/em> swimming over for sex and cross-breeding the species to extinction. Even reptiles hate American tourists.<\/p>\n

During a search for stolen Nazi art, authorities in the northern German town of Heikendorf found a WWII Panther tank<\/a> hidden in a cellar and a court is now trying to determine if its 84-year-old owner violated Germany's War Weapons Control Act. In addition to giving up the tank, he also had to surrender his \u2018Coolest Man Cave in Germany\u2019 plaque.<\/p>\n","MP3_sq":"","MP3_hq":"","Thumbnail":"https:\/\/\/wp-content\/uploads\/2020\/08\/breaking-4-150x150.jpg"},{"ID":197116,"Title":"Outlandish Behavior, Strange Clues, and the Mysterious Death of Mitrice Richardson","Date":"2021-07-29T18:18:56+10:00","Author":9886,"Tags":"Bizarre, Conspiracy, modern mysteries, mysterious death, mysterious disappearance, mysterious people, unexplained phenomena, unsolved crime, unsolved mystery, vanishing","Categories":"Bizarre,Conspiracy,Modern Mysteries","Body":"

Some strange disappearances certainly dip rather deeply into the realm of the odd and unexplainable. Such cases are surrounded by puzzling clues and bizarre circumstances that push them beyond just a normal vanishing or mysterious death, launching them into the annals of the truly weird. One such case happened to a ostensibly unassuming young woman, whose life would unfurl into a very strange case of bizarre behavior, baffling clues, conspiracies, and a mystery that has never been solved.<\/p>\n

By all appearances, 24-year-old Mitrice Richardson seemed to be a happy, outgoing, and well-adjusted young woman who had a lot of friends and was very close with her family. She had recently graduated in 2008 from California State University, Fullerton, with a degree in psychology, and the attractive young woman seemed to have a bright future ahead of her, yet things would start to unravel for her in 2009. In the fall of that year, she had a series of personal problems, including breaking up with her girlfriend, and her communications with friends and family became increasingly more erratic and not a little bizarre. She would leave odd messages on social media such as \u201cI just wanna sleep lol, but u know me and my crazy ideas...lets see where they take me\u201d and \u201cwatch the news today, it\u2019s going to shock the hell out of you,\u201d among many others, and she texted her own mother, \u201cI\u2019m trying to find my way to Michelle Obama to see if she will talk to Mr. Obama about creating my position within the white house\u201d and \u201cI heard in the Bible Jesus dies so we can live forever\u2026now I have to prove the \u2018unlogic.\u201d To everyone who knew her this was nothing like Mitrice, totally out of character, but although at this point people were a little concerned, there was no real alarm yet, with no one possibly predicting the bizarre sequence of events that was about to unfold.<\/p>\n

[caption id=\"attachment_197121\" align=\"aligncenter\" width=\"570\"]\"\" Mitrice Richardson[\/caption]<\/p>\n

In September of 2009, Mitrice embarked on a drive up the coast of California from her home near Long Beach to Malibu, along the scenic Pacific Coast Highway, which meanders along the scenic coast. This in and of itself was not particularly odd, as Mitrice was known to sometimes go on long drives, but it is unknown why she chose Malibu, as she didn\u2019t know anyone there and had no known reason to want to go there. Upon her arrival in Malibu she would begin to derail, showing incredibly bizarre behavior. It started when she went to a fancy, upscale restaurant called Geoffrey\u2019s, where the valet took her vehicle to park it, but when he came back Mirtice was in his own vehicle fumbling through the glove compartment. When she was confronted about this, she mumbled nonsensically about a woman named Vanessa with tattooed arms and asked the valet if he knew her. When asked why she had gotten in the car to begin with, she merely stated \u201cIt\u2019s subliminal,\u201d and rambled something about avenging the death of Michael Jackson before heading on into the restaurant to continue her weirdness.<\/p>\n

Once in the restaurant she sat alone at a table and ordered her meal, but before it had even arrived, she got up to make her way to a large group of people sitting nearby. She then butted into their conversation with oddball talk about astrological signs and aliens, before telling them she was headed to Hawaii and would tell them all about it when she got back. At this point, she was merely told to go back to her own seat, which she did. She then enjoyed her expensive meal and got up to leave, waltzing right out without asking for the check. The manager confronted her and asked her how she was going to pay, to which she allegedly responded, \u201cI am busted. What are we going to do?\u201d She then appeared to go into some sort of daze or trance, and began babbling about aliens and being from Mars before offering to pay for her meal with sex and then producing a joint from her pocket. It was all very odd considering that Mitrice was a well-educated honors psychology student at Cal State Fullerton and had never been known to do drugs or engage in such bizarre behavior, although she did have a case of bipolar disorder. At this point things had gotten strange enough that the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department was called, and considering her bonkers behavior that night it was thought that Mitrice must surely be drunk or on drugs of some kind. While the deputies were on their way, Mitrice would continue to act strangely, saying that God had instructed her to take the afternoon off, and that she had no parents, just her great-grandmother, Mildred, which was untrue.<\/p>\n

When brought in, it was not only found that Mitrice really didn\u2019t have much money on her, but that she was not under the influence of any sort of substance of any kind. She was completely sober and had only a very small amount of marijuana on her which she had not smoked. At the station she was also reportedly completely lucid and acted totally normally, exhibiting no signs of the outlandish behavior that had landed her there to begin with. In fact, she could only be charged with refusing to pay the bill, and she was then released that evening. Her car, which still had her identification, purse, all of the little money she had, and cellphone in it, was impounded and she set out on foot from the police station. After her release the strange behavior continued, as one resident in the area reported the woman going around peering through windows into people\u2019s homes. Then, she simply disappeared off the face of the earth.<\/p>\n

[caption id=\"attachment_197122\" align=\"aligncenter\" width=\"570\"]\"\" Mitrice Richardson[\/caption]<\/p>\n

It was all kind of strange from the outset, as the authorities had been contacted by Mitrice\u2019s worried mother and been told not to release her just yet, but they did anyway, without a ride, money, or even a phone with which to contact anyone. It was also procedure to put such sketchy suspects on 72-hour hold for psychological evaluation, but this had not been done. Why hadn\u2019t the authorities kept her for longer rather than releasing an obviously troubled woman back out into the night on her own, despite procedures put in place and the fact that the young woman\u2019s mother had specifically requested that police keep her overnight when contacted? No one knows, no one could find her, and it would not be until three days later that any sort of search of any kind would be carried out, and this was rather pathetic, using only four deputies who only did a cursory search of the area where she had last been seen. It would not be until the news started picking up the story of this missing black woman and the lack of any effort to find her that things would pick up. It would lead to one of the largest-scale searches in the history of the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department. Hundreds of personnel and volunteers would scour Malibu Canyon, utilizing aircraft, tracker dogs, and cutting-edge technology, but no trace of her was found.<\/p>\n

It would not be until nearly a full year later, on August 9, 2010, when Mitrice\u2019s skeletal and partially mummified body would turn up in a secluded, rugged wilderness area called Dark Canyon by Sheriff deputies investigating an illegal pot farm, tucked up within the rugged and remote Santa Monica Mountains around just 2 miles from where she had last been seen. Considering that there were no signs of blunt trauma or stab wounds, authorities concluded that there was no sign of foul play and that she had probably just fallen to her death or been injured and died of exposure, but it was not conclusive and the official cause of death was listed as \u201cundetermined,\u201d which was partially due to the fact that Sheriff\u2019s deputies had moved the remains without following usual procedures, asking for permission from the family, nor even waiting for the coroners to arrive. They also failed to photo-document the scene or in situ positions, and didn\u2019t collect any soil samples. There was also the fact that several residents in the area had heard a woman screaming several nights after Mitrice had gone missing, but police did not look into it and homicide wasn\u2019t pursued, they brushed it off.<\/p>\n

It was also odd since no one could figure out why she would have wound up out there in the mountains in the first place or where she had been in the year since she was last seen, and there was also the mysterious fact that her clothes and shoes were found to have been removed and placed around 100 feet from the body, but there was no sign of sexual assault and the clothes seemed to have been taken off normally. According to authorities, the removal of the clothes was attributed to scavengers, even though there were no signs of bite or scratch marks on the body, the belt had been unfastened before being removed, the shoes neatly untied, and indeed the clothes were also undamaged. As a matter of fact, one forensic specialist would lament, \u201cIt\u2019s absurd to suggest this was the work of animals.\u201d There was another within the Sheriff\u2019s department who would scoff at the idea that animals could do this, and suggest that it was irresponsible to rule out foul play, with one saying:<\/p>\n

Removal of trousers and even her undergarments and the belt are not acts of nature. I\u2019ve always felt that it should have been treated from the offset as a possible homicide\u2026. When you say it\u2019s not a murder, you better know what you\u2019re talking about, and I don\u2019t think we\u2019ve been able to conclude that.<\/p><\/blockquote>\n


Another strange detail was that the clothes were in remarkably good condition, clean, with no rust on the zipper, generally not looking like they had been sitting a year out in the wilds and which an investigator commented upon as looking like they \u201ccould have been worn after a washing.\" Also rather odd was that Mitrice\u2019s right leg was found up the hill from her body and with the femur of the leg cleanly removed from the soft tissue and no signs of damage from animals. Why should this be? Also why had the body become mummified, even though the clothes seemed to not show signs of wear consistent with having been in the elements for 11 months? The position of the body\u2019s arm was also an anomaly, as it had mummified across the chest at a weird angle, and one forensic investigator named Clea Koff said of this:<\/p>\n

The left arm\u2019s flexion could not have been created by the environmental conditions where the body was found. There was nothing present to hold the arm in such a position\u2014it was defying gravity.<\/p><\/blockquote>\n

It was all rather baffling, and also adding to the mystery were the many balls dropped with the handling of the case and the crime scene, even with Mitrice\u2019s original arrest. The mishandling of the body, the eyebrow-raising official prognosis, and Mitrice\u2019s early release from detention were indeed suspicious enough to the family of the victim to suspect that law enforcement officials might have had a hand in the whole odd disappearance, and they pushed for the FBI to look into the department while filing several wrongful death lawsuits against the Los Angeles County Sheriff\u2019s Department. The FBI would eventually refuse, as the case was not within their jurisdiction. Indeed, there has never been any internal investigation or probe into the department, there has been very little action at all taken since the discovery of the body on the part of authorities, and it is still treated as an unexplained death rather than a homicide, despite the family\u2019s strong objections, leading to accusations that this stems from the fact that Mitrice was African American. As far as mishandling of any potential evidence goes, no one involved with the handling of the case has ever been prosecuted. A family friend named Ronda Hampton thinks that there is some form of cover-up going on, saying, \u201cI think some people were negligent. I think some are willfully involved in a cover-up, protecting their own.\u201d<\/p>\n


Although the authorities continue to disregard this as a case of foul play, many do not agree, although who could have been responsible is anyone\u2019s guess. Some have speculated that it was illegal marijuana growers, while others think it was an opportunistic predator or even a pornography or human trafficking ring. There is also the possibility, considering Mitrice\u2019s bizarre behavior before her vanishing and death, that she had suffered some sort of psychotic break, and that someone may have taken advantage of that. Her mother, Latice, has said of her thoughts on the matter:<\/p>\n

Mitrice is not a hiker. My daughter is a city girl. She did not wander into that canyon. I believe she was suffering from mental illness, and somebody took advantage of that. I believe she was possibly raped, definitely killed, and eventually dumped.<\/p><\/blockquote>\n

Mitrice\u2019s inexplicably bizarre behavior leading up to her vanishing, her 11-month absence, her early release from detention on the night she was brought in, her death, the state of her body when found, and her presence in the Santa Monica mountains are all impenetrable mysteries that have never been solved. Just what is going on here and do authorities have any role to play in any of this? The case of Mitrice Richardson has become an enduring and puzzling case, and was covered in a documentary by Chip Croft called Lost Compassion: Someone Knows. What happened to this woman and what is the meaning of her odd behavior, the state of her body, her vanishing, the police ineptitude, and the general feel of something off about it all? No one really knows, and it is one of the weirder mysterious deaths out there.<\/p>\n","MP3_sq":"","MP3_hq":"","Thumbnail":"https:\/\/\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/07\/ef5c04212c6dea6c710b26f807af6f51-150x150.jpg"},{"ID":197114,"Title":"A Mystical Island and the Mysterious Death of the Occultist Netta Fornario","Date":"2021-07-29T01:18:34+10:00","Author":9886,"Tags":"Bizarre, ghosts, haunting, modern mysteries, mysterious people, mysterious places, Paranormal, Unexplained death, unexplained phenomena, unsolved mystery","Categories":"Bizarre,Ghosts & Hauntings,Modern Mysteries","Body":"

Some mysterious disappearances and deaths are odder than others. Sometimes there is a perfect storm of weirdness brewing, and it all leads the case to be held up high as a truly bizarre anomaly. Back in 1929 there was just such a case, which involves the trifecta of a strange occultist, a mysterious island, and bizarre clues that have been unsolved to this day.<\/p>\n

Born in Cairo, Egypt in 1897, Netta Fornario was born to an English mother and an Italian father, and spent her first years in Italy before moving to London after the death of her mother in 1898, being put in the care of her maternal grandfather, a tea dealer by the name of Thomas Pratt Ling. As she grew older, Netta got caught up in the occult, supernatural, and spiritualism, which was all the rage at the time in London, going on to become a member of an offshoot of the occult movement the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn, called the Alpha et Omega Temple and she would also become an officer in a Co-Masonry lodge in West London, which was a freemason lodge accepting both men and women. With a deep fascination with occult rituals, demons, fairies, and magical healing practices, Netta would perhaps be labelled as already quite odd by many people\u2019s standards, but her life was about to take a deep turn into the bizarre, and a weird unsolved mystery.<\/p>\n

[caption id=\"attachment_197127\" align=\"aligncenter\" width=\"570\"]\"\" Netta Fornario[\/caption]<\/p>\n

In the summer of 1929, Netta suddenly and without explanation left her home in London and made a journey out to the small, quiet Scottish island of Iona. Lying about 1 mile from the coast of Mull, Iona is a tiny speck of rock, just 1 mile wide and 4 miles long, yet it has a long history as a place of great magic and spiritual power, used for ceremonies and ritualistic purposes since the ancient Celts and Christians, and thought to be the realm of fairies and other supernatural creatures. It is very probable that the island\u2019s mystical reputation had attracted Netta to this wind slashed place surrounded by stormy seas, but since she did not tell anyone back home of her intentions it is hard to say. Once on the island, which back then only held a population of less than 200, she took up lodgings with a local named Mrs. MacRae, and since she had packed a large amount of her belongings, it was clear that she had intended to stay on the island for quite some time. Upon arriving and settling into her new abode, she promptly went about freaking everyone out with a series of odd and bizarre behavior.<\/p>\n

She began to wander around the island aimlessly during the day trying to contact the \u201cspirits\u201d she believed to be living there, and by night she would go into deep trances, sometimes for days on end, from which she would come out of claiming that she had received communications from the spirit world. Indeed, she often told of being contacted by spirits telepathically, and her clothing was also eccentric, consisting of a tunic and long flowing cape. Netta seemed to show an intense interest in the ancient Christian sites around the island, visiting as many as she could during her long, meandering hikes, and before long she was well-known around the island as being an eccentric weirdo. As the days went by, the increasingly spooked Mrs. McRae also claimed that she had witnessed odd phenomena orbiting her houseguest, such as one incident in which Netta\u2019s jewelry went from silver to a dark black in color overnight for no apparent reason, and she also spied Netta carrying out arcane rituals on more than one occasion.<\/p>\n

This went on until autumn, when Netta sent a cryptic message to her housekeeper in London stating that she had a \u201cterrible case of healing\u201d that she felt she had to perform, and that she would be gone for longer than expected. However, on November 17, she flew into a panicked frenzy and began frantically packing her bags to leave. When Mrs. MacRae asked her what was wrong, Netta allegedly claimed that she was under severe telepathic assault and had to return to London at once. When Mrs. MacRae calmly told the distraught woman that there was no boat running to the mainland that day, Netta apparently became enraged and locked herself in her room. Oddly, she would emerge a short time later in a much calmer state and proclaim that she had decided to stay on the island after all, before going out for one of her walks. She would never return.<\/p>\n

[caption id=\"attachment_197128\" align=\"aligncenter\" width=\"570\"]\"\" Iona Island[\/caption]<\/p>\n

When she failed to come back that evening, her room was searched to find that she had left all of her belongings behind, her clothes were neatly folded, her bed made, as if she would come back home at any minute. A search was launched the following day, yet despite the island\u2019s small size it would take 2 days to finally find Netta dead upon a \u201cfairy mound,\u201d or a magical mound or hill thought to be a home for fairies, near Loch Staonaig. The crime scene and state of the body were odd to say the least. A large cross had been etched into the turf on the ground with an ornamental knife that was found lying nearby, upon which Netta\u2019s body was sprawled out, dressed in nothing but a thin black cloak. The body itself was covered with myriad scratches and the soles of her bare feet feet were bloody and raw, perhaps because she had been frantically running over rough, treacherous ground. A further examination of the body did not provide any more answers and the coroner was not able to ascertain just how or when she had died, finally settling on the explanation that she must have died of a combination of exhaustion, heart failure, and hypothermia considering the frigid temperatures and the fact that she had not been dressed for the cold. The police could find no other clues, although one article in the Oban Times would claim that \u201ca number of letters of \u2018strange character\u2019 were also taken by the police, who passed them on to the Procurator-Fiscal for \u2018consideration.\u201d It is unknown what these letters contained or what connection they have to the case.<\/p>\n

Not everyone thought the case was so closed. Fellow members of her occult order would disagree with the official cause of death and claim that she had been killed by a potent psychic attack from far away. There is also the question of why that cross had been carved and why she just happened to have been found on a fairy mound. Was there some supernatural element to any of this? The island is very small, with only a few residents who all know each other, and no one was found to be a suspect, leaving everyone wondering who could have done such a thing. In the end we are left to wonder. What happened to Netta Fornario? Why was she out there running around barefoot with merely a thin cloak on such a cold night? What had caused the scratches on her body and why had her feet been so torn up? Had she been running from someone or something? What was the reason for her incredibly odd behavior upon reaching Iona and what significance do the mysterious letters found in her room have? It remains a mystery to this day.<\/p>\n","MP3_sq":"","MP3_hq":"","Thumbnail":"https:\/\/\/wp-content\/uploads\/2021\/07\/people-girl-woman-walking-150x150.jpg"},{"ID":197090,"Title":"The MU Android App is Now Officially Retired","Date":"2021-07-28T09:58:43+10:00","Author":7072,"Tags":"","Categories":"News","Body":"

It looks like the time has finally come to officially retire and lay to rest the MU Android app. The poor little guy held on for as long as possible but in the end he just couldn't go on. Scroll down for the solution, or keep reading to find out why.<\/p>\n

As you may have heard us mention on a recent show (was it a Plus+ Extension?) we are, as I write this, building a MASSIVE update to our website and the backend servers that run everything. Update perhaps isn't the right word. This is a complete REBUILD of everything that runs our business from the ground up, including a rebranding, new site design, new servers, and a custom CMS to replace the Wordpress site we currently use. We wish we could show it to you right now because it looks amazing and will be 100x faster and more stable than anything we currently run. We're hoping to launch towards the end of this year, more info to come.<\/p>\n

A big feature of our new system will be the ability to use your Plus+ membership in ANY podcasting app you like, from Apple Podcasts to Cpod on Linux. We believe this is a much better option as many of you obviously listen to other shows and already have a favorite app for podcasts. This way you can keep using your favorite app and just add your MU Plus+ subscription to it!<\/p>\n

This new change would mean however that our iOS and Android apps would stop working completely when we launch the new site. We had planned to make this transition as smooth as possible for everyone and give you plenty of time to switch but it looks like the Android app has thrown a spanner into that idea with this new bug.<\/p>\n

Currently it seems most users can no longer log into the Android App. To put it simply this appears to be a PHP issue but not something we can easily roll back or fix, hence our decision to retire the app early and encourage everyone to follow the instructions below to switch to another app.<\/p>\n

How Do I Get Plus+ on Android?<\/h1>\n