Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ category

“Werewolves in America…”

November 5, 2016

 

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A recent episode of Werewolves in America airing on the Destination America network covered several classic werewolf tales, most of which we’ve heard and seen packaged elsewhere.  The Beast of Bray Road in Wisconsin has been seen more than 100 times, with a flurry of sightings in 1989 of upright wolf creatures.  In fall of 1989, for example, a local bar manager when driving home saw an animal on the road holding road kill.  It locked eyes with her, and she barely got her car restarted in time to escape the creature.  Animals have been reported found suspiciously dead and dismembered by the creature.  A sanitation worker reporting a sighting in 2006 described the creature as standing about 7′ tall, and looking like a wolf on top of a bear’s body.  

Slidell, Louisiana features the Cajun Werewolf, perceived as a person who’s been cursed.  Such creatures may be set forth by the swamp as a warning.  In Chauvin, Louisiana a 13-year-old boy went hunting on All Saint’s Day despite admonitions not to, encountering what he described as a dog shaped in human form which chased him. Werewolves have also been reported in Montegut, Louisiana where they are also seen as cursed souls.

The town of Holly near Detroit, Michigan reports “the Man-Dog of Holly,” also known as the Michigan Dogman. Described as a spirit-based creature rather than one of flesh and blood, over 500 sightings of the Dogman have been reported, including one reported in 2005 by a repo man seeking out a vehicle late one night.

Whether sighted in the old or new world, werewolves and their legends continue to fascinate and intrigue us…

 

 

“Mystery Lights” on Monsters & Mysteries Unsolved

July 31, 2016

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Unexplained lights of unknown origin, mystery lights appear without warning or explanation, and were featured in a recent episode of Monsters and Mysteries:  Unsolved.

…Marfa, Texas, for example, is considered a mystery light “hotspot.” While the glowing orbs usually appear bouncing around on the horizon, in a 1994 incident the Marfa lights appeared to chase a moving vehicle, leading some to speculate that there was an intelligence behind them. Dr. James Bunnell, a former NASA engineer and Marfa lights researcher, has constructed autonomous viewing stations, and feels that the lights represent a chemical process going on.

On Brown Mountain, North Carolina, lights have been seen for hundreds of years, and have been considered spiritual, a kind of residual haunting. A more scientific perspective is that granite deposits in the mountain create electromagnetic fields that power the phenomena in a piezoelectric fashion. Dr. Dan Caton, an astronomer at the Dark Sky Observatory, considers the lights to be related to ball lightning. Footage captured by paranormal researcher Joshua Warren on Brown Mountain was examined by Dr. Onad of Princeton University, who thought the light source high energy, and possibly related to gamma or x-rays.

Lights have also been associated with earthquake activity in places like Japan. Dr. Freund in studying the phenomena there found that rocks produce electric current when deformed and pressured.

Mystery Lights in the sky have been studied by Project Hessdaler in Norway for over two decades. The lights are found to interact with the landscape in strange ways, and to move like anything known on Earth. This leads us to a UFO connection, with author Nick Redfern noting that WWII fighters saw luminous “foo fighters” felt to exhibit intelligence. Many pilots since have witnessed mystery lights. In an example cited, Dr. Torres in Manston, England in 1957 engaged a target at 32,000 feet; although himself traveling at almost Mach 1, the target eluded him, and was estimated to be moving at Mach 10. The pilot was told not to talk about his mission, which was finally declassified in 2006.

So whether you believe that mystery lights in the skies are a natural process, spiritual, or of extraterrestrial origin, heed the advice of 1950’s sci fi movies, and watch the skies! Doing so has got to be better than watching reality TV, right?  

“Alien Encounters” on “Monsters and Mysteries Unsolved”

July 1, 2016

 

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The good news is that at last there’s a new paranormal show airing new episodes, but the jury is still out on “Monsters and Mysteries Unsolved,” which debuted on the Destination America channel with a first episode titled, “Alien Encounters.”

Now don’t get me wrong…I really want to like this show, but I’m not sold yet.  There are some things that I liked, such as the inclusion of actual astronomers, astrophysicists, and other credentialed people on the show.  The episode simply didn’t have a great flow or direction to it, bouncing around episodically and unevenly from one UFO sighting to another without much unity to it in a manner I found unsatisfying.  Some of the material was old, familiar stuff; considerable time was spent on Roswell, for example, without adding anything new to what we’ve already heard many times before.

Reference was made to the “Phoenix Lights” sightings in 1997 when a large, delta-shaped object was witnessed flying in a mile-wide formation by hundreds of people in Arizona, with more individual lights later seen.  Aspersion was cast upon the official explanation of the lights as being “military flares.” Also covered was a December 1980 incident at Rendlesham Forest in England where strange lights were seen on successive nights and investigated by the military. Another 1975 incident from Pensacola, Florida involved a former U.S. Marine pilot on a training flight who observed a round, red object with defined edges that moved unlike anything he had seen before or since.

To me the most interesting segments of this show involved the efforts of special effects photographer and movie maker Doug Trumbull, who is taking powerful investigative equipment in a specially modified vehicle to locations deemed favorable to UFO sightings. Perhaps through his efforts and others like himself, more credible investigations may be performed.

In my area, Monsters and Mysteries Unsolved airs Thursday at nine p.m. on the Destination America channel, which is kind of paranormal central for shows of this type. Spread the word, and hopefully upcoming episodes will be more satisfying…  

Camping with Flo’s Family…

May 6, 2016

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I’d probably feel strangely at home with the commercial family of Flo from Progressive Insurance; there’s not a normal person among them.  Take sister Janice, for example; she’s so bored camping that (in her own words) she’s dead!  Who among us has not shared that sentiment at a family gathering, at least some of the time?  Then there’s Mom, as cheerfully upbeat as always.  She thinks camping with the family (“Fampling”) is the greatest thing since S’mores! Grandpa is swatting bugs and trying to enjoy peace and quiet; that doesn’t mean talking, and disappointing him more!  Flo’s brother and sister are tormenting one another (“I hate it wherever you are!”) while Dad appears too liberal with lighting fluid at the grill.  

Flo as usual is surreal in her spotless and wrinkle-free white uniform that she wears everywhere, complete with name tag, ever a fish out of water as she babbles about insurance…and by the way, it takes an hour to do Flo’s retro hairstyle for these commercials, and another hour to apply her make-up.  Beauty is hard work, apparently…

Mantis Man; Spottsville Monster; Tornado Phantoms…

March 23, 2015

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In the S3/Ep07 installment of Monsters and Mysteries in America, the first segment concerned a huge, hostile Bigfoot-type beast reported in Spottsville in the northwest part of Kentucky. Reports of the creature date back to 1892, but the segment largely concerned the Nunnelly family who in 1975 moved to a farm house in the back woods, where they sensed something strange. Chickens went missing, and two brothers in the family found a dog carcass, later finding eight dogs killed and mutilated in the same manner. Family members heard rustling sounds in their yard, and reported seeing a seven to nine foot tall hairy creature with piercing eyes covered with hair and emitting the odor of rotten eggs…

…well, the family reported coming under siege from the creature, who would rattle their door knobs and screech on their porch. They repeatedly called the police, who would investigate and discover nothing, finally refusing to come further. Deciding to take matters into their own hands, family members and friends staged a stake-out on their roof one night. They heard sounds, released their dogs, and fired with shotguns into the area with no result. They finally left the house, fearing for their lives. One unrelated Kentucky native put out a recorder in the general area, and recorded an eleven second scream which wildlife experts said matched no known species…

…on a more benign note, the second segment concerned “butterfly people,” luminous beings of light with wings who were reported seen largely by children during a devastating tornado in Joplin, Missouri which occurred on May 22nd, 2011. The entities reportedly shielded people from debris during the tornado. Curiously, forty to fifty children reported seeing the same thing, which only one adult witnessed, describing the beings as angels or guardians.

Last was the account of the Mantis Man, a huge, hideous, insectile-type creature reported in Hacketstown, New Jersey. The monster was described by two unrelated fishermen as standing about seven feet high, having mandibles, and large intense black eyes. One observer described the creature as fading as it moved up the river bank where it was spotted, leading to speculation that perhaps the beast was using camouflage and blending into its surroundings. The second observer reported hearing a humming and feeling tingling sensations, and seeing the mantis-man spread its wings when observed by him in a threatening gesture. The fisherman felt like the big bug was somehow sucking information from him. It also eventually vanished as if into a fog. Speculation followed that the giant, scaly creature was psychic, and may have even been an insectile type of alien…better summon multiple exterminators for this one!

SubterAlien on”Monsters Underground”

October 15, 2014

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The Destination America network has become a kind of mecca for shows on cryptic creatures and the paranormal, and a series airing there called Monsters Underground follows in the shoes of such shows as Mountain Monsters.  One episode of the former series covered a creature called the SubterAlien, a reputedly intelligent, armed, and hostile being that is both a kind of alien and a hidden life form as well, providing something for the fanciers of both genres.  

The essential format of the show is familiar, and time-tested on similar series.  An investigative team under the leadership of Bill Brock in the episode mentioned went to the supposed habitat of the SubterAlien, an abandoned mine system in Calaveras County, California.  In the 1840’s, the Shadow Mine was a working gold mine which closed when 13 men perished there.  It has since been believed that the SubterAlien was responsible for a series of bizarre occurrences, including the disappearance of electronic equipment.  This burrowing alien stands upright, has huge black eyes, and likes to tinker with the electronics to make other devices of unknown purpose.  At least this guy recycles and re-purposes human technology, kind of like The Thing.  I like to see aliens keep stuff out of landfills!

Well, the exploratory team set up trail cameras, and went into the depths of the winding caverns armed with radiation detectors as the creature’s presence is said to spike radiation levels.  The team did find electronics inexplicably strewn in the tunnels, and heard strange noises.  Radiation levels appeared to be rising, and an alarm was triggered on one of their trail cameras.  Tremors in their location about 200 feet underground caused the team to fear being trapped in an unstable, collapsing mine, and they accordingly beat a hasty retreat, pausing only to recover their trail cameras.  When safely outside, the alarm-sounding camera was scrutinized, and found to contain a blurry image of something passing before the camera lens and obstructing it…a scenario we’ve again seen repeated elsewhere!

Bloodless Howler of Harrison County!

July 19, 2014

 

 

wpid-wp-1405813063343.jpeg – -You’ve gotta admit that “Bloodless Howler” is a far better name for a supposed monster than “Hogzilla” or “Sheepsquatch,” and in S2/Ep13 of Mountain Monsters the AIMS team is hot on the trail of this feline/canine hybrid, reputed to weigh 350 lbs. or more, and to have a feline head with a canine-type body.  Interestingly enough, the creature is a “blood sucker,” draining its prey of blood but not consuming their flesh.  Yet another “monster” indigenous to West Virginia, the Howler was first sighted by coal miners who heard its howl, and found prey drained of blood.  One more thing: the creature is reported to be bulletproof, with bullets passing harmlessly through it…

First interviewed was “Cornbread” (not to be confused with Cornfed, the pig-detective on Duckman), who heard a howling noise and saw something with red eyes that was half coyote and half mountain lion.  He fled from it but fell, firing four rounds into it from the ground that didn’t seem to have any effect but thereafter able to regain his footing and flee.  During their first night’s investigation, the team found a “piss post” marked with the creature’s urine, and thought that they saw a large, white creature.  They heard howling and decided to retreat, in that process seeing a dead deer drained of blood with its throat torn out.  

Team members Willy and “Wild Bill” then built a tiger drop box trap, with low comedy provided by “Wild Bill” sliding about by intention on the snowy frozen terrain and at one point making multiple attempts to drive a nail, in the process of which one nail struck him in the face and drew blood.  “Tom,” a mechanic, was interviewed who reported seeing a creature with the body of a dog and a lion-like head.  He also presented a video which showed something going between two vehicles in his junkyard.  Last interviewed was “Charlie,” a farmer, who returned to hogs he was butchering to find a bucket of blood drained.  The bucket was presented to the team, who found the bucket pierced with bite marks.

Well, the trap was set up on Tom’s property, baited with deer and hog blood.  In light of the beast’s reputation for being bulletproof, “Wild Bill” prepared a pointed stick to go after it with.  The team split into two, seeking to drive the creature from opposite directions towards their trap.  “Buck’s” team found a scent post and an apparent den, calling then upon “Trapper’s” group but losing radio contact.  The two factions reunited, however, seeing a thermal image in the junkyard.  These guys are anything but stealthy, making enough noise and commotion to wake the dead.  Converging on their trap, “Wild Bill” saw something in it, but whatever it was managed to escape by digging through a weak point in the back of the trap with the ground having been softened by thawing weather conditions.  

Once again, no catch…but team member “Huckleberry” seemed happy to claim “Wild Bill’s” pointed hunting stick for future use as a back scratcher…and oh yes, next week is the season finale!  I’m sure we can hardly wait…  

 

Snallygaster of Preston County…

June 22, 2014

wpid-1403393359636.jpgWest Virginia continues to be a hotbed of unknown species with the Snallygaster   (S2/Ep11, 2014), said to be a huge, flying reptile with a twenty-foot wingspan that weighs in at about 800 pounds.  First seen in the mid-1700’s, the Snallygaster was known to German immigrants. Multiple sightings occurred in more recent times in the 1990’s.

 The Mountain Monsters team first interviewed an eyewitness, “Bub,” a trapper whose coyote traps were being robbed of their catch and ripped from the ground.  “Bub” reported hearing a loud screech and beholding something about 7′ tall with a beak.  Their first night’s investigation followed, with area coyotes appearing stirred up and parts of “Bub’s” traps found.  Noises were heard up high, and fearing aerial attack the team took refuge under logs, vacating the scene thereafter.  

A second eyewitness, “Ty,” was interviewed the following day.  This squirrel hunter reported that one of his dogs was slain by something unknown, finding the animal dead with a puncture wound.  He had set up a trail camera, sharing two images which seemed to show something on the ground with wings.  A third eyewitness, “Mark,” a farmer, reported hearing coyotes fighting with the creature near his farm.  Remarkably, “Mark” also presented a large fractured egg, said to be one of the Snallygaster’s.  Speculated then was a scenario where the coyotes had stolen the eggs of the Snallygaster, causing it to essentially go to war with coyote-kind.  The coyotes needed a champion, and Wile E. Coyote was nowhere to be seen.  

A reverse catapult trap to catch the flying reptile had originally been designed, but the box component of it proved too heavy to support aloft, resulting in the team resorting to a simpler box trap.  On their final night’s hunt, the team as was their usual practice split into two groups to flush the beastie towards their trap.  They saw two sets of eyes in the darkness, suggesting that there were at least two of the creatures.  One of the team groups found a ground nest with a deer leg in it; they radioed the other team members, and fearing attack took refuge jointly in an old cabin. In a scene reminiscent of the original Night of the Living Dead movie, the united AIMS team was put under attack (or so it was presented) in their cabin refuge, with impact thumps heard to the roof and walls.  Feeling themselves to be sitting ducks in the cabin, the team members fled the location, taking off down the mountain in their all-terrain vehicles while apparently under pursuit for part of the distance by presumably the Snallygasters.  The dragon-like beasts abandoned their pursuit of the humans when they were partway down the mountain, possibly feeling that they weren’t worth their time…

 

Death Cat of Cherokee County…

June 9, 2014

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It was another case of a ferocious feline on a recent episode of Mountain Monsters (S2/Ep10, 2014).  The Death Cat in question weighs in at 500 pounds, measures 6′ long without his tail, and has a shaggy coat.  He was first spotted in the early 1800’s in Cherokee County, North Carolina so that was the location to which the AIMS team made haste.  An interesting wrinkle was the fact that this cat was not your ordinary Death Cat, having mythical qualities.  His initial appearances clocked in at about the time of the infamous “Trail of Tears” death march on which Native Americans were sent in the early 19th century, and this feline is supposedly kind of a payback for that injustice.  Supposedly, if you see the Death Cat, you will die…this is the kinda cat that not only gets your tongue, but the rest of you as well!

First interviewed was a beef cattle farmer by the name of “Herbal,” whose cattle were being killed in the classic big cat style, namely bitten by the throat and suffocated.  A 10″ paw print was found in the area.  During their first night’s investigation, the team found claw marks on a downed tree, and saw a thermal image in the brush.  Team rookie “Buck” got a bit carried away at that point, rushing ahead to pursue the beast but only catching a glimpse.  

The next day, a trip-string drop trap was constructed out of locust wood.  Interviewed was “Boone,” a farmer whose horse had been attacked, mutilated, and partially eaten.  He had a trail camera image supposedly showing part of the beast as seen from the side.  “David,” another farmer interviewed, had lost sheep killed in his barn, and also had a trail camera image taken in his tool shed.  This suggested that the creature had lost its fear of man, and was becoming bolder in invading human habitations.  

The trap was baited with a mixture of goat, pork, and urine provided by team member “Buck.”  Team leader “Trapper” was not informed of the urine component nor its origin, and low comedy hilarity ensued as Trapper put out the bait bare-handed and then stroked his beard as he was prone to do.  On their final night’s hunt, the team sought to flush the Death Cat from high country to farm country in a pincher movement executed by the split team moving towards their trap.  They found another large print, and entered an old barn where a goat leg was found.  Thinking that they had interrupted the cat in his meal, the team advanced closer to the barn loft where it was assumed that the beast had fled.  Blood dripped from above onto “Buck” at that point, soon to be followed by a goat carcass crashing to the floor.  The creature was fleetingly seen by team members running out of the barn door, and was pursued to another farm building from which he again escaped, returning to the previous building to claim his goat and make off with it…

This cat was slick!- – Although flushed towards the trap pursued by multiple armed men, he knew better than to enter the trap, avoiding it and making good his getaway.  The team did capture a number of images from a trail camera that they had posted near the site, one of which showed what appeared to be a large predacious-type feline captured in side view.  The Mountain Monsters team seemed to be awfully pleased with themselves for getting that, and considered their work well-done…and long may the Death Cat continue to confound its pursuers!

Wild Bill’s “Bear Beast”

June 1, 2014

 

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The Bear Beast is a large, aggressive creature with a canine head and teeth and the body of a grizzly bear devastating the black bear population in Raleigh County, West Virginia.  Weighing up to 1,500 lbs.,the first sightings of the beast go back to 1887.  In an episode of the Mountain Monsters show (S2/Ep09), elimination of the bear beast is of particular interest to “Wild Bill” of the AIMS team, apparently because he desires the pleasure of hunting black bears himself.  Wild Bill is an “expert tracker” and former gung-ho marine member of the team whose speech is sometimes shown in captions due to its marginal intelligibility. 

Three eyewitnesses of the bear beast were interviewed by the names of “Badger,” “Pee-Wee,” and more commonly, “Joe.”  The trio had come upon torn-up black bears, the presumed victims of the bear beast.  On their first night’s investigation, the team found a trail path through the woods apparently used by the bear beast, heard sounds, and saw thermal images ahead.  “Wild Bill” charged ahead alone at that point, apparently not knowing the difference between an investigation and a hunt.  The sought beast was apparently run off by this charge.

The next day, team leader “Trapper” rebuked “Wild Bill” for his actions, and relegated him to bringing up the rear. A heavy trap was constructed out of a metal cylinder, later to be baited with putrid bear parts.  A hunter, “Jake,” was interviewed who had come across mutilated bear carcasses. He had a trail cam picture of something large shown in partial side view.  A deer hunter, “Mac,” was also interviewed who had a short video of the creature taken advancing at some distance from the side. A large paw print picture was also presented alongside which a human foot was dwarfed.

On their final night’s hunt, the team found digging marks and the remains of a cub.  An image was seen on their thermal camera, and in pursuit of it team members Jeff and Willy fell into a large den filled with animal carcasses.  Team members tried to cross a deep stream in pursuit of the creature’s perceived path, but member Willy lost his footing in the swift current, and required recovery. 

Returning to their trap, the team found it empty but heard growling and unloaded firearms in that direction, perceiving afterwards that they had struck the creature from “lung blood” (blood with air bubbles in it) found as they tracked the creature.  The bear beast was presumed to have returned to the stream and to have died there, although no body was found…