Sunday, October 15, 2017

X-Zone Broadcast Network - Tony Angiola and Ben Moss

Ben Moss
A few weeks ago, I had said that I’d have Ben Moss on the program, but various problems kept that from happening. This week I had planned to talk with Tony Angiola and we were able to get Ben to the microphone as well. The topic was the Socorro UFO landing. They had been continuing their investigation into the sighting, and as I said, some of the things they had told me a year ago sparked my interest in the case. For example, they had said that three people had called the Socorro Police Department to say that they had seen a blue flame or a light in the sky the same evening that Zamora had found the landed craft. I was able to find a report written by Captain Richard Holder that very night that mentioned those telephone calls (Well, it wasn’t much of a find because it was right there in the Project Blue Book files for all to see so we have a very good provenance for it.) What was interesting was that the calls were
Tony Angiola
made prior to Zamora reporting anything about the landing to the police dispatcher. Unfortunately, the police dispatcher didn’t take the names of those reporting the sighting. Holder’s report does verify that the calls had been made and what was said. You can listen to the program here:

In my book, published in the last few days, I report on the trail to that specific information that tends to corroborate Zamora after a fashion, and the documents created at the time that do verify the telephone calls. During the program we do talk about why no one in Socorro in 1964 tried to find those witnesses. It wouldn’t have been all that difficult since the path of the object over Socorro was known, Socorro wasn’t all that large, and there was huge interest in the story… though, I suppose the counter argument would be why didn’t those people come forward with their information.

For those who wish to learn more about the Socorro case, including what I discovered in my investigation over the last year, you can find the book here:

The cover of the book, obviously.
I should also point out that the Socorro landing didn’t happen in a vacuum. There were other sightings around that time in New Mexico. True, some of them were hoaxes, and I believe that two men who claimed to have been driving through Socorro at the time of the sightings were not telling the truth. However, we did talk about some of the good sightings that happened within days of the Socorro landing. We gave a good overview, but for those who want the full story, take a look at Encounter in the Desert, my book about this.

Next week’s guest: Brad Steiger

Our topic: Halloween Spooktacular (yeah, I’m a little embarrassed about resorting to that Spooktacular phrase, but hey, it fits… more or less.)

Saturday, October 14, 2017

Tom DeLonge and UFOs

I must be doing something wrong.

For months I have been hearing about Tom DeLonge, he formerly of Blink-182, who has entered the UFO arena with, allegedly, some highly-place contacts who will assist him in bringing the truth about alien visitation to the public. This began around 2015.

According to Rolling Stone:

DeLonge contacted [John] Podesta [Hillary Clinton’s campaign manager] again this January [2016], sending an email with the subject, "General McCasland," apparently a reference to a former Air Force official with (according to DeLonge) information relating to the infamous Roswell crash. In the email, DeLonge insisted that McCasland was not a skeptic — despite the General's own previous insistence — and added, "When Roswell crashed, they shipped it to the laboratory at Wright Patterson Air Force Base. General McCasland was in charge of that exact laboratory up to a couple years ago. He not only knows what I'm trying to achieve, he helped assemble my advisory team. He's a very important man."
Of course, I suppose, we could look at this as so much hyperbole. It does sound impressive to say that he was in communication with an Air Force general who was
Tom DeLonge
in charge of the exact laboratory where the Roswell material was sent. The problem is that William McCasland didn’t take over the post until 2011, according to his official Air Force biography and the laboratory was created in October 1997. It was, however, a combination of four other labs, but there is no way of knowing if any of them were the ones to which Roswell material would have been sent in 1947 or if material had been sent there it would have remained until 2011.

Anyway, that just sort of shows that DeLonge had been talking about UFOs and mentioning Roswell for a number of years. He did have, and does have, the ear of some people with impressive sounding credentials, which, of course, doesn’t mean they have anything of interest to say about UFOs or Roswell, only that they have been around the government for a very long time and moved in some of the rarified atmosphere in Washington, D.C.

However, it does seem that DeLonge’s messages have been heard by the UFO community. In February, 2017, at the International UFO Congress, he was named UFO Researcher of the Year. This seemed a tad bit odd since he hadn’t done much in the way of original research or published much in the way of what he had learned that hadn’t been said before. He did say that in a couple of months that he would make an announcement about some “serious sh*t” he was into and that he was making some serious progress.

During the next several months, there had been hints about this announcement, some of them centering around Disclosure and some of them hinting about new information or new evidence concerning the Roswell crash. The speculation was that he had some incredible inside information that came about through his association with his former band. Somehow that had resulted in the contacts that provided the information.

After months of waiting, the announcement came on October 11. No, there wasn’t anything about new UFO evidence, it had nothing to do with Disclosure or government secrecy but everything to do with making money. Let’s look at that.

According to a story in the Huffington Post, by Leslie Kean, there had been “something extraordinary revealed today [October 11].” It told of high-level officials and scientists who had not been seen by many but who, apparently “have long-standing connections to government agencies which may have programs investigating unidentified aerial phenomena (UAP/UFOs). You can read the whole article here:

What strikes me in that very first paragraph is that we have been provided with a number of conditions. They have connections to agencies that may have been investigating UFOs… but then, may not. We eventually find out who these people are, but they are those in middle management or maybe in second tier bureaucrats but not the top people.

Then we learn that this is not about Disclosure, or about providing some stunning evidence of alien visitation, but about the “official launch of To The Stars Academy of Arts and Science,” or as they abbreviate it, TTS/AAS which they describe as a public benefit corporation. This organization will have three components, which are science, aerospace and entertainment. That last concerns me. Entertainment is not necessarily restricted to fact and we learn in other places that DeLonge has been planning the entertainment aspect since he left Blink-182. According to Rolling Stone:

But since DeLonge parted ways with Blink-182 in 2015, his interest in extraterrestrials has become more than a hobby. "The more I got into it, the more I realized it was all real," he tells Rolling Stone. "Then I was like, 'OK, what am I going to do about it?'" So he started spreading the word. He began creating a multi-part, multi-platform rollout of an entirely new philosophy, one based on the theory that aliens have been visiting Earth for most of our species' existence – and the only way for us to have a prosperous future on the planet is if we take that into account, and soon.
The newest addition to this project is the book Sekret Machines: Gods, the first in a non-fiction trilogy he's co-writing with occult historian Peter Levanda.
Already we see some promotion for the books that DeLonge is writing which would be incorporated under the umbrella of TTS/AAS and get a hint about the financial aspects of all of this. In fact, Jason Colavito, on his website, looked deeper into the financial arrangements of the organization. You can read his entire analysis here:

Colavito lays out, in detail, how money will be raised by selling stock in the company and how much DeLonge is guaranteed for his part in all this. Colavito wrote:

DeLonge is soliciting investment by registering TTS AAS as a public benefit corporation—notably not a nonprofit—and he is framing his sale of $5 per share stock in the company as a chance to democratize investment. Under the 2012 JOBS Act, companies may sell stock directly to the public through a crowd funding website without needing to file an IPO with the SEC. DeLonge is taking advantage of this to sell $200 stock packages. The 2015 Title IV Regulation A+ allows companies to raise up to $50 million without a formal IPO…
It's interesting to see the difference between TTS AAS’s public face and what they confess in their financial filings. Publicly, TTS AAS is an educational enterprise divided into a number of units focused on cutting-edge fringe research. The science division is pursuing consciousness research and psychic phenomena. The aerospace division is looking for exotic propulsion technologies. The entertainment division is producing the Sekret Machines books, and a dystopian young adult franchise. Note carefully that space aliens and “disclosure” don’t occur as a research subject or a purpose for the company. And yet, the public protestations about using the company to promote human knowledge are belied by what we see in the financial documents. That’s not to say that there won’t be “educational” material, only that the company’s primary purpose isn’t science and education, as it pretends…
DeLonge, though, is certainly a beneficiary. Documents laying out what he gets paid make pretty clear that this is intended to be a very lucrative investment for him. DeLonge has a constellation of corporate entities that control the intellectual property he creates as a musician and now filmmaker. TSA, which the company abbreviates as TTS AAS, is legally obligated to pay all of DeLonge’s expenses in using his existing intellectual property to develop new TTS AAS multimedia products.
But, those of us interested in all aspects of UFOs and not the inner workings of a corporation created to make some money and produce multi-media products wanted to hear something about UFO sightings. Eventually we treated to one UFO report provided by “TTS Academy member Chris Mellon” who was, at one time, Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Intelligence for two administrations. “He gave a synopsis of an event from 2004 that involved the battleship [sic] USS Nimitz.” I’ll give Mellon the benefit of the doubt here by saying that in his position he should have known that the Nimitz was an aircraft carrier and not a battleship. I suspect the reporter got it wrong. According to the story:

“Two F-18s approach, the four aviators see that the object has no wings or exhaust — it is white, oblong, some 40 ft long and perhaps 12 ft thick”, he [Mellon] said. “One pilot pursues the craft while his wingman stays high. The pilots are astonished to see the object suddenly reorient itself toward the approaching F-18. In a series of discrete tumbling maneuvers that seem to defy the laws of physics, the object takes a position directly behind the approaching F-18.”
The lengthy event occurred in broad daylight off the California coast, and gun camera footage was taken. At one point the object went from hovering at 80,000 feet to dropping at supersonic speeds, and came to a complete stop at 50 feet above the ocean. “More F-18’s are dispatched but with similar results,” Mellon stated. “The secret machine easily evades the F-18s. Dozens of military personnel aboard the various planes and ships involved are privy to these interactions.”
Okay. Not an overly spectacular sighting but it does suggest some evidence in the form of gun camera footage. It mirrors other sightings that have been reported over
USS Nimitz complete with aircraft.
the years that include radar images, photographs of the radarscopes and many witnesses on the ships involved. Investigation into them have yet to provide the evidence to prove that there is alien visitation.

There was one other aspect of all this that bothered me as well. One of those now part of this was identified as Luis Elizondo. The Huffington Post reported:

Lue had resigned his position at the DOD literally the day before we met. I was able to verify who he was and what his tasks were at the Pentagon. He received the highest commendatons [sic] from his superiors. I was told that important unclassified [emphasis added] data and documentation are expected to be released through the Academy’s on-line Community of Interest (COI) in collaboration with the US government, which will be set up soon.
Unclassified data? The Internet is awash in unclassified data. The vast majority of the Project Blue Book files can be found at Fold3. John Greenewald’s Black Vault is loaded with all sorts of unclassified documents relating to UFOs. Even the FBI’s website provides information about UFOs. And now we are to be treated to another source that will provide us with unclassified documents. Wow.

In fact, this was underscored when Rolling Stone reported, “Subsequent books in the Sekret Machines trilogy will move away from ancient texts to focus on claims of interactions with aliens documented by government agencies since the 1940s, many of which are available by Freedom of Information Act requests and a recently digitized cache of CIA documents.” More unclassified documents that can be obtained by anyone who cares to do so.
Which, of course, moves us away from any meaningful research and puts us back in the entertainment camp. There are too many shows today that rely not on solid research but on the entertainment value of the show. Tell us a story, no matter how ridiculous and we’ll climb onboard even if it is so incredible that it can’t be true. Entertain us first and worry about the reality later. Ironically DeLonge and his co-author had something to say about that. According to Rolling Stone, “…they’re not claiming that everything you've seen on shows like Ancient Aliens is real. ‘Humans are responsible for building the pyramids, for instance,’ says [Peter] Levanda. ‘I think we can agree on that. But what was the impetus behind it? What we're saying is the initial contact is what prompted all this. Not that there were aliens out there telling us how to build pyramids. I think that just devalues the entire conversation, and we're trying to get beyond that.’"

That, of course, is something that many of us have said for years. I didn’t single out Ancient Aliens in the past but have pointed a finger at Hangar 1 and Unsealed: Alien Files which seemed to be based more on speculation and wild stories than on cases that added some real value to UFO research.

There is one other point that has been mentioned in the past that should be bothersome to all those interested in UFO research. According to Rolling Stone, “DeLonge's plan is bigger than just a few books. In addition to the nonfiction series, he is writing a historical-fiction trilogy with novelist A.J. Hartley, the first book of which was released last spring, as well as a documentary and a scripted film, all of which discuss the theory that we're not alone.”

And the additional irony here is that I point this out. Almost since I published my first book on UFOs, one of the criticisms is that I also write science fiction as well. I have kept the science fiction away from my UFO writings and I’m not the only one who has investigated UFOs and who has written science fiction. Bruce Maccabee, Whitley Strieber, Don Ecker and Nick Pope have all written fiction. The difference here, subtle though it might be, is that we have not put the science fiction under the same umbrella as our UFO research. And, of course, DeLong’s plan might not affect the rest of the organization’s goals, but it is just one more worrisome aspect of all this.

We learn, at the end of the news conference, that TTS/AAS “… intends to release game-changing information of the type interested people have been seeking for a long time.”

But the problem here is that this is the same claim that has been made for months about DeLonge’s research and activities and no matter who he has pulled in, he has yet to make any stunning revelations, other than he is forming a corporation to exploit the UFO field. This announcement ended, not so much with a bang, but with a whimper. We have learned nothing that we didn’t already know and it seems that we were promised much the same thing that has been promised by so many others over the last half century. The real point doesn’t seem to be research but entertainment, which, of course, is not always a bad thing… it’s just there has been too much entertainment in the UFO field and not enough research.

Friday, October 06, 2017

The Bernalillo "UFO" - Identified

Proving, once again, what a wonderful tool that the Internet can be, it seems that we have a solution for the pictures that Rob Swiatek mentioned on the radio show and that I posted to my blog. Remember, I mentioned, several times, the blog’s address and that the pictures were there for all to see.

Also remember that both Rob and I believed that the solution was something manmade and something on the ground. The pictures and later the video showed, basically, the same array of lights. They were taken months apart which argued for a mundane solution, not one that involved alien visitation.

Less than 48 hours after posting the pictures, we have the answer. Someone named, or rather identifying him or herself as Rossome, posted the following:

I am quite certain that the photographs are of the Ivanpah Solar field near the Nevada/California border north of I-15. The design is not based on solar collectors, but rather, thousands of mirrors that aim the sunlight toward a tower (the center of each of the three arrays of mirrors). The focused sunlight then heats the water system to turn to turbines and make electricity. This facility is in fact visible from the ground as well (seen a few times) and look pretty interesting. I have photos from the ground if anyone is interested.
Well, I would have been interested, but then I learned of pictures of the Ivanpah Solar Field from the Internet and recovered several pictures from various sites. There seems to be little doubt that Rossome was correct with the information. One of the pictures shows an aerial view of the array, minus the bright lights, in about the same “formation.”

I passed the information along to Rob because I don’t know how often he visits the blog, but he responded in a couple of hours. He wrote:

Wow!  That cinches it, beyond the shadow of a doubt.  I compared online pictures of the Ivanpah Solar Power Facility with the lights and terrain in the CMS photos and it’s a match.  It can’t be anything but the Ivanpah Facility.  It also appears the towers of the Facility generate a certain amount of light—at least at times during their operation—so this would account for the brightness across a long slant range during the day.  As Bruce Maccabee depicts in his recent book on the Arnold sighting, a square of highly reflective material (the Ivanpah towers have a square cross-section) appears as a circle when seen from a distance.
We can now write this off as a true IFO – Identified Flying Object – which, of course, is merely the vernacular for UFO sightings that have been identified. I suppose we could call it an Identified Grounded Object, but whatever the term, this is no longer part of the UFO phenomenon.

Thursday, October 05, 2017

X-Zone Broadcast Network - Rob Swiatek

This week I spoke with Rob Swiatek, he of the MUFON Board of Directors and someone who has been studying UFOs and UFO sightings for quite a long time. We
Rob Swiatek
first talked about MUFON and the list of speakers for their recent (or not so recent) symposium that included a few who might not have both oars in the water. Of course, we did mention a couple of them who seemed firmly grounded in science and research which I thought cancelled out some of the nonsense. You can listen to the interview here:

While Rob and I were conducting the pre-interview (which is my way of saying that I was checking to see if the Skype link worked) we talked about a UFO sighting near Albuquerque, New Mexico. Trying to pin things down, we discussed which county it had been seen in and Rob thought it might have been Jackson… the county due west of Albuquerque is Grant, though I’m not sure it makes that much difference. The aircraft which was carrying the photographer was apparently heading to the west. Rob did point out that a short video had been made of what seemed to be the same formation of lights some months later which, of course,
suggests some sort of permanent, manmade structure as opposed to something of an alien nature. A frame of that video is included here. The other four photographs follow this post.

We also touched on abduction research and the types of UFO sightings being reported today. Rob suggested that MUFON had received from 4000 reports since the beginning of the year, but a very large percentage of them can be identified as something mundane. Or, in other words, the situation today is much as it has been in the past with people reporting things they see without being able to identify them themselves. IFOs as they’re called get in the way.

Next week, with luck, I’ll be talking with Ben Moss (who was postponed from the week previously) along with his partner, Tony Angiola.

The topic will be the Socorro UFO landing. They’ll mention some of the things they have discovered in the last year, and I’ll be talking about some what I learned after their first visit. Much of that is in my book, Encounter in the Desert, which is, of course, about Lonnie Zamora and what he saw land in Socorro.

Monday, October 02, 2017

Bernalillo (Albuquerque) Sighting of June 17, 2015

Rob Swiatek, a member of the Board of Directors of MUFON, told me about a sighting that is interesting but not necessarily something of an extraterrestrial nature. As he reported, it seems that the objects, or lights, were on the ground. Neither the witness nor the investigator was able to identify a source for the lights. According to the information supplied:

The principal witness obtained them about 12 noon at 34K feet over Bernalillo (Albuquerque), New Mexico, as the aircraft flew by on June 17, 2015.  The lights were said to be so bright as to be painful to the eye.  In his account, the photographer opined they were on the ground, but somehow shielded by the land so they wouldn’t necessarily be observable at ground level.  Anyhow, the relative positions of the lights/reflections one to another don’t change from picture to picture, even with respect to features of the terrain (at least in my opinion).  A few other details about the lights were included with his communication to MUFON.  
In the world today, it struck me that we have an opportunity here, if the pictures were available to a wider audience. They follow:

All photographs are copyright by MUFON, Rob Swiatek and Kevin Randle.

Rob’s thinking, and mine, is that if this is something on the ground, it is probably some sort of even environmental phenomenon or something constructed by people. We just don’t know. We thought that someone reading the blog might have an explanation. Rob will appear in a couple of days on the radio version of A Different Perspective. If we don’t have an explanation, and if Rob doesn’t have additional information, maybe someone listening will be able to help.

If you have any idea about the lights, let me know and I’ll forward that information onto Rob.

Meier Explains the Alien Autopsy

There are those who read my blog who say that they really don’t want to hear any more about Billy Meier and his alleged contacts with alien beings. There are others who say that arguing with true believers is a waste of time because no matter what evidence is presented, it will never be enough to show them the errors in their true beliefs. But sometimes I just have to poke the stick into the Hornet’s Nest (capitalized as a small tribute to the 116th AHC) to see what flies out.

The latest evidence that Meier might not be the sage some say that he is, revolves around the Ray Santilli alien autopsy hoax. According to the information, “In the 253rd Contact from 1995 and in the 256th Contact from 1996, Pleiadians, Florena and Ptaah claimed that in regards to the famous Santilli alien film, it was not about the alien, but the figure of a 16 year-old girl having been abused to make the autopsy film. According to them the girl is supposed to suffer from the strange illness ‘proteria,’ and this illness has nothing to do with the illness more widely known as ‘progeria.’”

You can find this prediction on a number of websites. Two of them are:


Here’s the trouble with this. The alien autopsy is a hoax and those who were involved in it have confessed, repeatedly to that hoax, explaining how it was done. I
John Humphreys works on the alien. Photo copyright
by Philip Mantle
have reported on this in this blog and in the book, Alien Mysteries, Conspiracies and Cover-ups. It includes pictures of the alleged alien as it is being constructed for filming showing that it was not a human being.

More to the point, I can find nothing about the strange illness of proteria. There is Angina Pectoria, which simply is chest pains and something called protean which is about changing shapes. The example was of an amoeba. But it seems that the very existence of the disease, proteria, is controversial and isn’t found in medical books or any of the medical definitions and diseases cited on the Internet.

Humphreys and the creature. Photo copyright by Mantle.
The point, of course, is that his prediction is in error. It suggests that those making the alien autopsy film had subjected a minor girl to some form of abuse. But the creature in the film was created by those making the film, it wasn’t a real person. And Meier’s pals’ claim of the disease is in error as well.

At the same time, I was looking at this claim that Meier had 80 photographs of UFOs and this was documented in a 1964 English language newspaper in India. Actually, it said, “He has about 80 photographs of the space objects…”

About 80 is not the same as 80. That is, of course, splitting a fine hair, but it is something that the Meier crowd does on a regular basis. I will note the same article said that he had taken many more but that some 400 had been stolen. I’m not sure why anyone would steal 400 UFO photographs, but I do have an idea of what might have happened to them… they just weren’t very good.

Why do I say that?

Because I read a description of some of the 80 photographs that Meier managed to hang on to. The article said, “… a fourth is a big, bright cross and others bright zigzag lines.”

Those others are obviously of bright lights in which the camera is moved, creating those zigzag lines. It is not the motion of the light that caused them. Anyone who has examined UFO photographs have come across similar faked photos.

I have seen a few of these Meier pictures and most of them are not very good. As noted, one is of a big, bright cross and anyone who had ever developed his or her own black and white photographs knows how it was done. Once the photographic paper is set in the frame; a cross is set on top of it and the enlarger lamp is turned on. After the enlarger is turned off, the cross is removed and it is turned back on for a moment giving the impression that the clouds can be seen through the cross.

Another of these pictures is of eight bright, shapeless blobs seen in the sky. Clearly something had been put of the photographic paper to block the enlarger light, leaving white spots on the paper. This is why it is important to see the negatives. This sort of manipulation is obvious and if the negative is examined, it would be clear that the object in the print is not seen on the negative.

But it seems, based on this, that not all the photographs were of UFOs or alien spacecraft. A bright cross hovering over the landscape is in no way the same thing as a spacecraft. All it did was provide a clue about how some of the pictures were faked.

The final, hilarious, statement in the newspaper is one that we hear all the time from those reporting UFOs. They don’t want any publicity and yet they turn up in the newspaper. The article said, “He doesn’t want any publicity, he doesn’t care if anyone believes him or not.” But if not, how had the reporter learned that he had the UFO photographs? And if not, why tell the wild tale of hundreds of UFO photographs and visits to three planets. That is not the way to avoid publicity.

Monday, September 25, 2017

Swallowing Spiders and UFOs

You’re probably wondering what swallowing spiders in your sleep has to do with UFOs and the answer, simply, is “Nothing.”

A really ugly spider, much to big to swallow.
It is the research behind attempting to learn where this “fact” originated that is of importance here. Tyler Adkisson of Newsy, decided to learn where this idea originated because, apparently, he found it improbable that people swallow spiders in their sleep. He noted that there were only a few ways that it could happen, such as the spider using its silk to parachute into a sleeping person’s mouth, but a biochemist in Australia thought that you’d have to be really unlucky for that to happen. You can read Adkisson’s article here:

So, unhappy with the theory, Adkisson wondered where the idea came from. The most often cited source for the tale was Snopes (which describes itself as the definitive fact-checking website for, well, basically, checking facts, urban legends, myths and folklore). Adkisson reported, “It [Snopes] claims in 1993, a writer named Lisa Holst wrote an article for PC Professional about misnomers circulated via email. To prove her point, in the article she included the eating-spiders myth. Ironically, that became ‘one of the most widely-circulated bits of misinformation ... on the Internet.’”

The fact was supposed to have come from a book, Insect Fact and Folklore that was published in 1954. The book has no section on spiders (which, by the way, aren’t insects… I mention this so you all know that I was paying attention), and the sleeping human eating spiders fact is not in there.

Further chasing of the footnote (sorry, but this is, in essence, what chasing footnotes is all about), someone asked about the magazine, PC Professional. The Library of Congress could find no reference to it… and, in fact, no one could find the writer, Lisa Birgit Holst either.

Adkission’s conclusion is that we don’t have to worry about eating spiders in our sleep but mine is that we take too much information we read as accurate without question. In the world today, with the Internet available, we can all check out the dubious facts we read about or hear about. The information is there and often we can attempt to trace it to its source… and if the source is not credible then neither is the information. And if the source is found to be nonexistent, then that would be the real clue that the information is bogus… but the point is that we all now have the capability to attempt to verify what we read or hear, if we only take the time.  

Ironically, this was all that I had intended to post and had even found a picture of a frightening spider to accompany it, but then, as I was proofreading it, I was struck by the fact that I hadn’t, well, fact checked it myself. I accepted the information from Adkission and Snopes without seeing what I might find out, using the Internet as I had suggested others do.

First, I attempted to find that PC Professional magazine. I found one called PC Pro, which is a publication in the United Kingdom. It was created in 1994 and looking at their website, it doesn’t seem that an article about sleeping humans and spiders would fit into their publishing philosophy. But then, the original article, as described by Snopes, seemed to be about debunking Internet rumors rather than actually making the claim that sleeping people swallowed spiders. That might fit into their magazine, but I wasn’t going to subscribe to find out. Besides, according to the available information, the original article was published before the creation of PC Pro, which rules it out.

While it seems that there is no American magazine named PC Professional, there are two in Europe… or possibly only one. PC Professionell is listed in some locations as a German magazine and in others as Dutch. It probably is the same magazine. Anyway, at The Mclovin Times found at:

there was this comment, which is relevant to our discussion:

The closest anyone seems to have come to finding this mysterious PC Professional is a German magazine called PC Professionell . However, commenter Zagrobelny said:

"I placed an interlibrary loan request for the article with the Snopes information from the German magazine PC Professionell. I work in an American library, so only two German libraries were available as lenders through OCLC. (Why? I have no idea.) Those two libraries both reported that the Holst article was "not found as cited", meaning it's not in that issue of PC Professionell. Does it mean that it does not exist or does it mean Snopes has some part of their citation wrong? I don't know, but now I'm more inclined to think this is mistake or copyright trap by Snopes or whoever wrote that particular entry."

There is more information available on all of this. For those who wish to follow more of the trail, you can find that addition information here:

and here:

It seems that all this research has taken me back to the original source, which is the Snopes article but I can’t find anything else. There are hints in the various forums about other sources, but no one else has found them either. While there are magazines around the world with names similar to PC Professional, none of them have an employee, writer or editor with the name of Lisa Birgit Holst and none of them have ever published an article about people swallowing spiders in their sleep.

I believe the final nail in the coffin is that Lisa Brigit Holst is an anagram for “This is a big troll.” That is just too much of a coincidence. That, I believe, is the stake in the heart of this story. It goes back to Snopes and no further and some have suggested that Snopes invented the tale so that they could debunk it. Or to see who was stealing their stuff without proper credit.

Remember that commercial when the women said, “They can’t put anything on the Internet that isn’t true.”? Well, this proves that statement to be false in a rather left-handed way. Snopes did put something on the Internet that was true, that is, the myth that people swallowed spiders was untrue and that morphed into the idea that people do swallow spiders. Others then put the false story on the Internet.

My point is that we have followed this as far as we can, we have looked at cited sources and found them wanting, have looked for the writer and not found her, and we have found nothing that we can confirm that predates Snopes article. We did learn that people don’t swallow spiders and that the Internet did help us resolve the problem.

Sunday, September 24, 2017

Curse of Oak Island: The Fifth Season

I was cruising the net, looking for something interesting to read and came across a story entitled, “Michigan Man Unearths 220-Year-Old Hidden Treasure.” Quite naturally I clicked on the story and came to another headline that said, “Have Two
Oak Island
Brothers Cracked the 220-Year-Old Oak Island Mystery?”

Well, looking at the calendar, I could see that winter was coming (thought in Westros, winter has come) and the treasure hunting season in Nova Scotia would be winding down. I hadn’t heard anything, but maybe this was telling me that the Lagina brothers had finally succeeded in penetrating the Money Pit and put their hands on the treasure. In fact, on the first page leading to the second, there was a picture of a chest that seemed to be filled with old coins that suggested they had found more than just the couple of coins that the last several seasons of The Curse of Oak Island had produced. You can read the whole story (all forty pages to click through if you’re so inclined) here:

That is if this incredibly long link still works (and no, I didn’t convert to a tiny.url because this one is more fun... sort of).

To save everyone the aggravation of having to click through 40 pages of limited text and piled high with ads, I’ll point out that the story is mostly about the history of Oak Island from the alleged finding of the Money Pit through the various attempts to defeat the booby traps including those encountered by the Lagina brothers. We all know that story, and we even know some of the variations of it that suggest more legend than fact. Eventually we get to the Laginas and their attempts to get deep into the Money Pit.

I had hoped that the tale would tell us something about what they had found this summer, but, of course, that would wreck the ratings for Season Five… apparently the ratings for Season Four were good enough, in fact the highest of the series run, that there will be a Season Five. But I learned nothing about what they had found, if anything, and since the news of a discovery would be difficult to contain, I’m thinking they had no more suggest this summer than they did last… other than the ratings. And if they had found something, I’d think the ratings would be even higher.

The only thing I know, that some of you might not, is that Season Five will begin airing in November… which is, of course subject to change. But they are beginning the buildup, which I think is the point of the article. They’re letting us know that there will be a new season, and, of course, I’ll watch (and be disappointed). I still hope they’ll find a treasure, but I’m pretty sure that if there ever was any treasure there, it’s long gone… but I don’t think there ever was any treasure to find.

Friday, September 22, 2017

X-Zone Broadcast Network - Fran Ridge and NICAP

This week I reached out to Fran Ridge who has been hosting the NICAP website for
Fran Ridge
quite a few years. You can find it at It contains a wealth of information about UFOs that might not be found anywhere else, and given Fran’s knowledge about the subject, it is one of the most credible sites on the web. You can listen to the program here:

We did discuss a sighting that Fran had send out to what he thinks of as his “A” team, which is a group of researchers who have some expertise in various areas of human knowledge. They’re not only just those who have been around the UFO field for a long time, but people trained in other fields as well. The point was that he’d sent the limited details of the sighting and within twenty-four hours, a number of us had provided additional detail. That information can be found at:

I thought it was a rather interesting exercise and it did point out the value of having something like the “A” team available. Not only that, but we get to eliminate a sighting from the list that was dubious, but we also found another from around the same time that is much more interesting. All the details are in the posting.

One of the areas that we explored, all too quickly, was the Thomas Mantell case from January 1948. Fran mentioned an analysis that he had completed with a number of others including Brad Sparks. Jean Waskiewicz, and Dan Wilson. Their conclusions do not mirror my own. Fran did send a link to their analysis which can be found at the NICAP website, as can be mine. All that information follows this post as well.

Next week’s guest: Ben Moss

Topic: Encounters in the Desert (my Socorro book) and information that Ben has found in the last few months about the case.

Thursday, September 21, 2017

The Mantell Analyses

While I was talking with Fran Ridge, he of the NICAP website,, we drifted into a discussion of the Thomas Mantell UFO sighting of January 1948. Mantell was killed when his F-51 crashed in Kentucky.
Thomas Mantell
The case has been wrapped in controversy since then, mainly because a pilot died attempting to identify the UFO. Various theories have been offered over the years about what happened.

I had written a long analysis of it about a decade and a half ago. My plan had been to create an online peer review for UFO research. I had written the analysis and it was offered over the UFO Updates list when the draft was finished. I had hoped that those with expertise in various aspects of the case would be inspired to provide their analysis of my analysis. There were a few responses but most had to do with the performance capabilities of the aircraft rather than other aspects of the case. You can read that analysis here:

My secondary goal was to inspire some others to examine UFO cases with a similar eye to detail and analysis. Updates would be one of the ways that we would communicate, but no one followed the lead, much to my disappointment.

However, Fran mentioned that he had been inspired to look into the case when a local television station wanted to do a story about the crash just a few years ago. Working with several others, he produced a new analysis with a different conclusion. You can read that here:

Since we now have two detailed examinations of the Mantell crash, maybe we can move into something like a peer review of it. Take a look at both of these documents, try to put aside any personal bias about the reality of UFOs, or rather the alien visitation aspect of the case, and comment about it. I believe it will be interesting to see how this shakes out, given the research that has been done into the case, if anyone cares to comment about it.

Thursday, September 14, 2017

X-Zone Broadcast Network - David Booher

David Booher
This week I talked with David Booher who wrote No Return which is about the strange case of Gerry Irwin. I say strange case because it might have nothing to do with a UFO though it does seem he saw something strange in the sky. He believed, originally, that it fell to the ground on the other side of a ridge line but he never found it and those who followed later found no evidence of a crash. You can listen to the whole interview here:

This was a case that fell off the radar back in 1959. Jim and Coral Lorenzen of APRO had been deeply involved originally, had invited Irwin to their home, and were prepared to help him. But Irwin, an Army enlisted soldier, went AWOL and then was listed as a deserter when he was gone more than thirty days. According to Jacques Vallee in Dimensions, after he was listed as a deserter, “He was never seen again.” And that was what sparked Booher’s interest in the case.

For more information about the case, Booher has created a Facebook page which can be found here:

I also visited the case in The UFO Dossier but that analysis ended at the same place as did the Lorenzen’s investigation. And, of course, there is Booher’s book, No Return: UFO Abduction of Covert Operation? available from Anomalist Books.

Next week’s guest: Fran Ridge

Topic: NICAP and UFOs