Archive for the Sighting! Category

Waterspout sighting, Key West

Posted in Nature gone amok, Sighting!, True Story with tags , , on September 30, 2008 by Eric S.

The bastard children of tornadoes and whirlpools, waterspouts provide all of the visual oohs and ahhs of more damage-heavy climatalogical events with (if the number of gawkers in this footage is any indication) the danger potential of a drugged circus cat. I saw footage of this particular event on the morning weather, and rushed to see if it had made YouTube yet. The news footage had not, but here’s a fine piece of work by resident/witness virgkw:

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30 minutes from the Bigfoot press conference

Posted in Plots, Roadside attractions, Secret origins, Sighting!, Uncategorized with tags on August 17, 2008 by Eric S.

Here’s a half hour of the press conference which, on account of not coming from a WordPress-approved video source, will require you to leave the safety of my site.

Link to liveleak.com

And here’s the photo Tom Biscradi describes as “the actual creature, standing up, walking away,” courtesy of huffingtonpost.com:

Looking at it, I’m having a little trouble seeing the ears, nose and eyes Tom points out, but I’m also not wearing my glasses.

Bigfoot press conference barely rates as a disappointment

Posted in Fact Checking, Mysterious origins, Rant, Sighting! with tags on August 16, 2008 by Eric S.

Okay, come on, really now… who’s actually suprised at how this whole We Done Caughted Us um Bigfoot press conference has played out? Believer, skeptic, undecided or uninterested, at the end of the day there’s only so much stock you can put in a press conference announced on a website with a masthead enshrouded in gif animation flames:

(image reproduced sans flame effect, as is displays in masthead of www.searchingforbigfoot.com, apparently due to WordPress cheese-supression filters)

Coverage of the event plastered across the ‘Net just about everywhere except, peculiarly enough, searchingforbigfoot.com:

From the New York Times (reproduced in full):

Results from tests on genetic material from alleged remains of Bigfoot, made public at a news conference in Palo Alto held after the claimed discovery swept the Internet, failed to prove the existence of the mythical half-ape and half-human creature. The story was fueled by a photograph of a hairy heap, bearing a close resemblance to a shaggy full-body gorilla costume, stuffed into a container resembling a refrigerator. One of the two samples of DNA said to prove the existence of the Bigfoot came from a human and the other was 96 percent from an opossum, said Curt Nelson, a scientist at the University of Minnesota who performed the analysis.

From the Sydney Moring Herald:

Of three samples in a preliminary DNA test, one came back inconclusive, one contained traces of human DNA and one had traces of opossum DNA, probably from something the creature ate, they claimed.

They didn’t produce a Bigfoot corpse; that is in a hidden location, they said, after being moved from a freezer that broke down a couple of times. They will not say exactly where they found the creature and claim they saw a band of other Bigfoots watching them. Neither will they allow anyone other than their own hand-picked scientists to examine the body of the dead animal.

In honor of Terry Hulk Hogan’s immortal words proclaiming that professional wrestling is “as real as your imagination”, I leave the Scientific Method Slo Motion Replay to the likes of David, who’s already gotten started back here in the comments on Wednesday’s post. Honestly? What I find most shocking about event is the brilliance with which it’s nestled itself between instantly-dismissible poppycock and headline news. Yes, yes, I know that that’s the exact zone that local news teams and the purveyors of the Fox Pop-Sci Flavor of the Week live, but this one was covered by the New York Times.

Let’s review some facts:

  • The conference didn’t include actual bigfoot remains. Which, given the vigilance of airport security personnel, is hardly surprising (and also a swell indication that we’re all still safe from freedom-hating haters of freedom — go TSA!). While in legal proceedings neglecting to bring evidence actually works against your ability to make a case, in situations like this, they actually work against your critics. Because, hey, who are you going to believe: an actual eye witness, or some so-called ‘scientist’ who hasn’t even looked at real actual evidence?
  • The DNA analysis revealed traces of human DNA as well as traces of opossum DNA. Come on, admit it: when you heard opossum, your first reaction was something along the lines of WTF? And thats the brilliance of it: anything more reasonable (say, a new species of hominid) would have quickly disolved into boring, scientific analysis; anything less (say, a part human, part extraterrestrial hybrid) would have rung the bell of anyone that likes their toast toasted on both sides. But a part human part marsupial? That just gives you pause. Pause long enough to think through a couple of impossible scenarios. Pause long enough to make a couple of previously impossible-sounding scenarios seem even a little bit less impossible. Only as real as your imagination, folks.
  • The remains have not shown up on Ebay or been purchased by goldenpalace.com. Yet.

What does all of this mean? I don’t claim to know. I suspect this will ultimately turn out to be a seemingly well meant but honest mistake, that some money will exchange hands, that a few more fifteen-minute intervals of fame will make the rounds, and that the mystery will continue. And have no doubt that that last part is a good thing. Why? Becuase as long as there’s enough of the planet left unpaved for there to be even the possibility of an undiscovered species of 7’6″, 1,000lb wookies to be roaming around, there’s a chance this whole imagination thing will be a skill we take with us when we skip along to a new rock.

Even breakingier news on the Bigfoot front

Posted in Evidence!, Mysterious origins, Sighting!, The Unexplained, Travesties of nature with tags , , , on August 13, 2008 by Eric S.


Among other reputable news sources, Fox News and local station KTVU report that a crack team of Bigfoot researchers, including Tom “Ain’t Never Seen a Bear Skeleton” Biscardi, claims to have recovered a genuine Bigfoot carcass. And in the interest of both setting the scientific record straight and shutting the yapps of know-it-all bloggers, they’ll be hosting a press conference this Friday in Palo Alto. Here’s details for anyone in the area, courtesy of SearchingForBigfoot.com:

Date: Friday, August 15, 2008
Time: From 12Noon-1:00pm
Place: Cabana Hotel-Palo Alto, 4290 El Camino Real
Palo Alto, California 94306
(A Crown Plaza Resort)

Purporting to present DNA and photographic evidence, this press conference will summarize the Bigfoot learnings of body-discoverer Matthew Whittington (for unreported reasons also known as Gary Parker), his bigfoottracker.com co-founder and Georgia resident Rick Dyer, and aforementioned ursine mortality skeptic Tom Biscardi. What can we expect? I have to tell you, I’m more anxious to find out than I am to watch Olympic Women’s Beach Volleyball. Stay tuned for details as they emerge.

Video of high-speed chupacabra pursuit leaves sheriff baffled

Posted in Hysteria, Sighting!, The Unexplained, True Story with tags , , , on August 12, 2008 by Eric S.

First, special thanks to field correspondent David for tracking down this video of Dewitt (TX) County lawman Brandon Riedel’s pursuit of what may be a chupacabra:

Second, a special commendation to Corporal Riedel and partner for having the presence of mind to do what seems to have escaped all but the fewest of witness of strange and unusual occurances, and remembering to turn on the camera. Yes, yes, everyone thinks they’re remember to do it if it ever happens to them, but it takes a special presence of mind to remember mundane things like removing lens caps and pushing power buttons when you’re face to face with a mythical beastie, extraterestrial being or, say, killer robot. Koods to you, Corporal.

And third, jeers to CNN for being unable to resist using the word “baffled” in describing the reaction of a rural Texas sheriff to this incident. Sure, I appreciate the compulsion. A small, podunkesque town on the Texas/Mexico border? A C-list X-files premise? An authority figure on top enough of his jurisdiction’s law enforcement needs that he can probably spend a good amount of time with his boots on his desk (which, in the video, is suspiciously clear of heel marks) spinning yarns about the old days when things weren’t quite so peachy? Honestly, I’d have a tough time not takinga few Dukes of Hazzard jabs at him myself. But you, CNN? Come on… that’s the sort of crap we expect from Fox News.

Breaking news on the Bigfoot front

Posted in Roadside attractions, Sighting!, The Unexplained with tags , , , , , on July 3, 2008 by Eric S.

As seen on Fox News, 7/01/08:

What’s truly shocking about this is that Fox — the network responsible for full hour explorations of how the moon landing may have been faked, among other hot button pop-sci topics — is the voice of reason in this report.

Out of all the bears that everybody hears about, talks about and they see on vacation, how come nobody’s ever found a skeleton of a bear?”

So says subject matter expert Tom Biscardi in this report. Hey, Tom? Just in case you Google yourself and come across my blog:

(Image appropriated from www.jamd.com sans permission)

This and approximate 200,000 other images resulted from an image search for bear skeleton. If that’s not good enough, I have no doubt Troy Hurtubise can turn one up for you in a jiffy.

In all fairness, I appreciate how being grilled by Ken and Barbie might lead to words coming out of your mouth in an order other that you intended. Feel encouraged to set the record straight here.

Chupacabra sightings

Posted in Mysterious origins, Sighting!, The Unexplained, Travesties of nature with tags , , , on June 23, 2008 by Eric S.

Coming across this two-year-old news story on what may have been a sighting of the elusive desanguinator of goats, el chupacabra, I set to looking for a followup story:

Sadly, all I was able to find was that, though posted in March 2006, that newscast was in fact from August 2005; the fact that the initial report took that long to work its way onto YouTube was not a good indication that I’d find an update of the situation. Though Google turns up plenty of mentions of the report by Ms. Rivas on Channel 9 News (2,320 or so) and the hairless dog/rat/kangaroo farmer Reggie Lagow captured and handed over to authorities at Texas Parks & Wildlife, a search for chupacabra coleman TX yielded a suspiciously low 0 search results. In their defense, I suppose, one could argue that Texas is, after all, the size of a planet, and look how long it’s taking those NASA guys to search Mars.

There was, however, an incident in the Dominican Republic in March of this year leading to the demse of this creature, which blogger Faustino Perez suspects may be a chupacabra:

If, like me, your Spanish isn’t so hot, you can read a translation of Perez’s post in the first comment down this page, but the short version is that folks in the DR don’t take kindly to unusual looking beasties drinking out of their toilets.

Truth to tell, I’m skeptical on both of these accounts. Having been in the company of goats on a couple of occasions, I can promise you neither the dog-kangaroo nor the albino rat-otter would stand a chance of draining a goat of it’s blood. Unless, of course, they had some sort of hypno ray…