Saturday, June 13, 2009

Video: UFOs Follows Airliner - Same Route Used By Air France Flight 447

Statement: UFO's hover and follow Air France transatlantic flight on same route (used by Air France Flight 447) from Brazil to Paris. This video was caught on tape after 30 minutes into the flight.

NOTE: OK...very little information is available on this video so far...only what is posted with the video. As with all submitted videos, we'll take a 'wait and see' attitude. I'm not going to get too excited until I learn more, though the prospects are intriguing...Lon

Disgusting! Federal Whistleblower Fired For Reporting Illegal Mountain Lion Hunting


Washington, DC — A federal agent who reported that his colleagues had illegally used government airplanes to hunt mountain lions was fired in retaliation, according to filings released today by Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER). The legal complaint filed by Gary Strader, a professional hunter for U.S. Wildlife Services, is one of the first whistleblower cases arising during the Obama administration. How the case is handled may give important clues as to whether civil servants can expect a respite from the heavy-handed personnel practices that characterized the Bush administration.

Gary Strader worked for Wildlife Services, an arm of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, as a hunter and tracker, principally of coyotes, out of the agency’s Ely, Nevada office. His job was abruptly eliminated after he reported both to his regional office, as well as the FBI, that his agency co-workers had –

* Illegally shot as many as five mountain lions from government airplanes. These actions constitute a felony under the Airborne Hunting Act, as well as violating Nevada state hunting laws; and
* Filed false statements to cover up the offenses.

Mountain lions are difficult to track overland in rugged Nevada terrain. Federal employees in search of trophies (the heads were removed but the animals were not pelted) took the easier course of spotting and shooting mountain lions from the air.

After his supervisors determined that Strader’s reports would not likely result in prosecution, he was notified that there were no longer funds to support his position. When Strader asked whether his termination was due to his pursuit of the violations, the Director of the Nevada Office for Wildlife Services, Mark Jensen, responded affirmatively. The Whistleblower Protection Act forbids the discharge of a federal employee in connection with his or her disclosures of crimes or other waste, fraud or abuse.

Strader’s whistleblower complaint will be heard this summer by a judge of the U.S. Merit Systems Protection Board, the court system for the federal civil service. His lead attorney is Salt Lake City attorney April Hollingsworth assisted by lawyers from PEER, a national environmental whistleblower defense organization.

“This is a blatant case of reprisal,” stated PEER Staff Counsel Christine Erickson. “It is now up to the Obama administration to either defend this crude retaliation against Mr. Strader or to restore him and clean house at Wildlife Services.”

Besides the legal violations and misuse of taxpayer funds, aerial hunting is an inherently dangerous activity. Nevada has had several aerial gunning accidents in recent years.

Wildlife Services has also drawn growing opposition from conservation, taxpayer and humane groups who see the agency as a misguided, ineffective subsidy for agribusiness. Each year, Wildlife Services kills approximately 87,000 coyotes as part of an annual wildlife take of more than 2 million animals.

NOTE: this is an absolute travesty! Click the press release link for a PDF of the full case log and other information. I'm going to be watching this one...Lon

Big Cat Reported Roaming North Georgia

It's the third sighting of a large cat in the past week, but officials have still found no evidence of its existence.

The latest report came in from the Mount Vernon area.

“We have not found any kind of evidence at any of the locations where we’ve had the reports at,” said Department of Natural Resources Region Supervisor Ken Riddleberger.

Riddleberger said officials have not even confirmed whether or not the animal is a cat.

“We don’t have any large cats that are native in the state of Georgia,” he said.

He said that if the animal is in fact a cat it is more than likely an escaped exotic cat or possibly an illegal exotic animal.

“We don’t believe we have any population of mountain lions or cougars in the state,” said Riddleberger.

The three sightings have occurred within the last week. Riddleberger said that the sightings have been between four and five miles apart. He said the descriptions of the animal vary, but the animal has always been described as a large cat.

Anyone who spots the animal is asked to contact the Hall County Sheriff’s Office.


Here is a first sighting report from June 9th

County Receives 2 Reports of Roaming Lion in North Hall

Authorities have found no evidence to confirm a lion was out on the prowl on Ga. 60 early Tuesday morning after a motorist reported seeing just that.

Then again, there’s nothing to prove one wasn’t.

Officials say one thing’s for sure: If a golden-brown lion was strutting down the side of the road in the predawn hours near the Hall-Lumpkin county line, as a northbound driver reported to sheriff’s officials, it wasn’t native to this area. If it escaped from captivity, it wasn’t owned legally.

The report stirred sheriff’s officials in Hall and Lumpkin counties enough to conduct a search of the area with several deputies, and the owner of a nearby animal preserve was quickly contacted to make sure he had no escapees on the loose.

The Chestatee Wildlife Preserve, a facility off Ga. 115 that houses a number of exotic big cats, is about five miles from where the motorist said he saw the animal.

All the preserve’s animals, including two lions and five tigers, were accounted for, said Chestatee Wildlife Preserve owner C.W. Wathen.

Wathen said he went out with sheriff’s officials before dawn, armed with a tranquilizer gun, in case there was anything to the reported sighting.

"We didn’t see any signs" of a lion, Wathen said, but added that obvious indications such as paw prints aren’t always found. Wathen said the witness described the animal as being at least 6 feet in length. The animal did not have a mane, according to the witness.

Hall County Sheriff’s Col. Jeff Strickland said the witness was "adamant" that the creature he saw was a lion. The man did not stop his car but called sheriff’s officials after reaching his destination shortly before 5 a.m.

The report followed a sighting about two weeks ago in the Lawton Drive area off Sardis Road, where two people seemed certain they spotted a mountain lion roaming undeveloped property near a tract of woods.

State wildlife officials occasionally field reports from people who believe they’ve seen a mountain lion, also known as a cougar, according to Ken Riddleberger, the Georgia Department of Natural Resources’ area supervisor for game management in the wildlife resources division. There are no populations of mountain lions in Georgia, or for that matter anywhere in the Southeast, with the exception of Florida panthers, Riddleberger said.

Many times folks may be mistaking bobcats, large dogs or even house cats for lions, if they’re seeing them a distance.

Still, Riddleberger isn’t ready to dismiss the latest report out of hand.

"You never know what people might see," Riddleberger said. "I wouldn’t discount it immediately. Some people may have certain animals in their possession, legally or illegally."

"We know we don’t have any wild populations of large cats in Georgia," Riddleberger said. "If there’s a large cat, it’s an escapee that someone has illegally."

In Georgia, owning any big cat like a lion or tiger as a pet is illegal, Riddleberger said.

Wathen, who is licensed to own his big cats, agrees that a reported lion sighting can’t be automatically discounted.

"You never know, someone could be traveling with one or have one illegally," he said.

Mountain lions, which continue to thrive in western states, haven’t had natural habitats in the Southeast since the early 20th century, when they were wiped out by farmers who didn’t want their livestock endangered.

Much smaller bobcats, however, are fairly common. These wild cats, which average 30 to 35 pounds, are seldom seen, since they’re nocturnal and don’t tolerate humans well, Riddleberger said.

Wathen acknowledged that people sometimes mistake smaller wild cats such as bobcats for bigger animals, but said folks should "still be on the lookout."

"We’re all concerned here," Wathen said Tuesday. "We’re still loaded up and ready in case we’re called out."

County Receives 2 Reports of Roaming Lion in North Hall


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Friday, June 12, 2009

Apparitions Scare Staff at Refurbished Church

The haunted halls of a Bishop Auckland (County Durham, UK) church converted into a community center have become a hotbed of paranormal activity say spooked staff.

In the past few months, staff and visitors at the Four Clock’s Center on Newgate Street have sensed spirits, captured orbs on cameras and heard mysterious footsteps in empty rooms.

The community center, which is home to several organizations including the Citizen’s Advice Bureau and Bishop Auckland Town Council was opened in 2002 after a major refurbishment inside the 1914 built church.

Center coordinator Pamela Hope said: “Our CCTV camera captured what looked like a very hazy figure in the back passageway and also what looked like a circle of light moving across the floor and through the wall.

“One member of staff said she saw a woman in a hat which fits with it being an old church.

“During winter I had all the lights on and was sat at my desk when a shadow crept across my computer screen. At first I though it was somebody coming up behind me but when I turned around there was nobody there.

“There was also one night where a few of us had stayed late and we heard footsteps coming from the room upstairs.

“I was scared that there might be someone locked in who would be a bit angry but again there was nothing.”

Employee Helen White said there had been several cases of doors shutting themselves and being locked on the inside.

She said: “This church went through some dramatic changes when the center was created and you can’t help but wonder whether the building work disrupted the spirits.

Several people have said they have sensed spirits although they all say they are benign so at least we don’t have to worry about having a violent ghost.”

Ghost hunter Dean “Midas” Maynard from Crook said the building is the sort of place that would attract spirits and has offered to spend a night there. He said: “It’s a fantastic building and I have heard rumors about ghosts being there. I would love to spend a night and see what we find.

“A lot of ghosts hang around a place where they were happy in life and I think, because it was a church, it could hold some happy memories for some spirits which is why there is so much activity.

It’s got that look about it that you know there’s something going on and it’s no surprise that there is some residual energy there.”

'Phoenix Rising From the Ashes' Crop Circle - Yatesbury, Wiltshire - 6/12/2009

NOTE: this crop circle was discovered early morning 6/12/09 local time. I was told later that there was surveillance in place while this crop circle was formed (an associate called me from Wiltshire, UK). To what extent, I don't know...but this crop circle was formed just a few hundred yards from the 'dragonfly' crop circle that was discovered last week...Lon

Video: Pulsating UFO Over Erlanger, Kentucky - 6/6/2009

MUFON Report: I left a friends house in the early morning of June 6th, around 2:30am. On the way, I noticed an oddly bright light in the north sky. It appeared about 3-5x bigger than the brightest star in the sky. Just a little more than enough to clearly define that it was not a star. When you looked close with a naked eye, it seemed to be strobing through different colors. So I rushed home to get my camera. This was my 3rd time witnessing strange lights in the sky, none caught on camera, so I was very eager to get this one. I live about 45 mins south of Wright Patterson AFB located in Dayton, OH. I'm in Erlanger, KY. I believe this could explain my multiple sightings.

When I got home I immediately grabbed the camera, which ironically had no charge, it was left running the last time i used it. So after getting my power cord, finding it was too short to reach, unplugging the fish tank(poor guys), grabbing the extension cord, and plugging everything up, I was finally able to begin rolling around 3:00am.

Everything was recorded from my 2nd floor balcony, with my Panosonic SDR-S7 camcorder. I filmed the light for at least an hour, using both manual and auto zoom. zooming in, zooming out. In the zoomed video you can clearly see the strobing plasma lights and its overall, beauty, i guess is the best way to say it. It's really bright and weird aurora's and strobes are visible, clearly. I had no tripod, but I did stablize the camera on my balcony banister with my right hand, and used my left hand to prop it up towards the light. It's pretty good footage, even capturing 700x zoom, while somehow keeping the craft in frame. When zoomed in, the light flattened out durastically. Basically, it looked like a dog bowl shaped disc, as it appeared to be circular with depth. Also, zooming in revealed the strobing, or pulsing, plasma-like lights were coming from the top of the craft or light. At this point I knew it was a craft of some kind, beaming with light energy, or something!

After filming the object for over an hour, I was very tired, I had left my friends to go straight to bed, until I saw the light. Although I very badly wanted to record all night, into the next day, I had just enough satisfaction from catching it on tape, that I was able to go to sleep. I checked on it for the last time sometime after 4:00am, and it was still there. After that night, it hasn't been there since.

Attached is about 3 minutes of the best segment of footage I have, using manual zoom. At one point, when the object is out of focus, it appears as a blur, but this blur is perfectly flat on the bottom. I am not sure if this is anomolous, or just a normal thing. Definitely adds to the video though. I have 20-30 mins total of unedited footage that I am more than willing to upload all of it if you are interested.

Bye-Bye, Betelgeuse?

The nearby, well-known and very bright star may soon explode in a supernova, according to data released by U.C. Berkeley researchers Tuesday.

The red giant Betelgeuse, once so large it would reach out to Jupiter's orbit if placed in our own solar system, has shrunk by 15 percent over the past decade in a half, although it's just as bright as it's ever been.

"To see this change is very striking," said retired Berkeley physics professor Charles Townes, who won the 1964 Nobel Prize for inventing the laser. "We will be watching it carefully over the next few years to see if it will keep contracting or will go back up in size."

Betelgeuse, whose name derives from Arabic, is easily visible in the constellation Orion. It gave Michael Keaton's character his name in the movie "Beetlejuice" and was the home system of Galactic President Zaphod Beeblebrox in "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy."

Red giant stars are thought to have short, complicated and violent lifespans. Lasting at most a few million years, they quickly burn out their hydrogen fuel and then switch to helium, carbon and other elements in a series of partial collapses, refuelings and restarts.

Betelgeuse, which is thought to be reaching the end of its lifespan, may be experiencing one of those collapses as it switches from one element to another as nuclear-fusion fuel.

"We do not know why the star is shrinking," said Townes' Berkeley colleague Edward Wishnow. "Considering all that we know about galaxies and the distant universe, there are still lots of things we don't know about stars, including what happens as red giants near the ends of their lives."

Eventually, the huge star may become a nesting doll of elements, with a mixed iron-nickel core surrounded by onion-like layers of silicon, oxygen, neon, carbon, helium and hydrogen.

As the iron fuel runs out, it may explode into a supernova, blasting newly created elements out into the universe and leaving behind a small, incredibly dense neutron star.

All the heavier elements in the universe — including all the oxygen, carbon and iron in your own body — were created in such a way.

It's possible we're observing the beginning of Betelgeuse's final collapse now.

If so, the star, which is 600 light-years away, will already have exploded — and we'll soon be in for a spectacular, and perfectly safe, interstellar fireworks show.

Yellow Lobster is a 1 in 30 Million Rarity

This lobster will catch your eye, but not because you're imagining its tail dipped in butter. It is bright orange and yellow, even though it's never been near a boiling pot.

Specialists tell The Boston Globe it's called a "yellow lobster" and it's one in 30 million.

The lobster now named Fiona was recently caught off Canada. It was given by a friend to Nathan Nickerson, the owner of Arnold's Lobster and Clam Bar in Eastham, on Cape Cod.

New England Aquarium director of research Michael Tlusty says a rare genetic mutation produces yellow lobsters.

Life isn't easy for such animals. Their bright colors make it easy for predators to spot them.

Nickerson said the human predators at his restaurant will never get Fiona. He said it would be like steaming a Rembrandt.


Are you interested in the paranormal, cryptozoology, UFOs and conspiracies? Go to Phantoms and Monsters Wiki and become a member of this unique network. Start a page on a subject or add your input to an existing page or thread. Phantoms and Monsters updates are posted daily at Twitter. Signup today!


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Thursday, June 11, 2009

Tony Iommi Recalls Black Sabbath's Ghostly Encounter

Perhaps the name of the band is at fault, with its hellish hints of demonic rituals.

Whatever the reason, Black Sabbath have always been viewed as a group capable of sneaking up on the supernatural.

Now Tony Iommi, the lead guitarist with the Brummie rockers, has admitted that it’s all true – he has seen a ghost. And he wasn’t alone when it happened.

However, being a rock god ravaged by time and the trauma of hard-living, it’s not surprising that he remembers the ghost, but not who he was with at the time.

Though the 61-year-old does recall it being a fellow band member – either lead singer and future reality TV star Ozzy Osbourne or rhythm guitarist Terry “Geezer” Butler.

Back in the early 70s, the group were holed-up in Clearwell Castle, in the Forest Of Dean, to take part in a writing session for a new album, which would eventually be released as Sabbath Bloody Sabbath, in 1973.

Which is when the ghost made its entrance. “We definitely saw one,” says Tony in an interview with Guitarist magazine. “We were setting up the gear in the dungeons and were the only people there.

“It was myself and Geezer, or myself and Ozzy, and we were walking down the hallway and we saw a cloaked figure coming towards us.

“We thought, who is that? It walked into a room, and we followed it to see who it was and there was nobody there.

“The room was an armoury with all the weapons on the wall, and there was nothing else in there.

“We told the people about it who owned the castle; we thought they’d think we were mad, but they just said, ‘Oh yes, that’s the castle ghost’.”

Tony has certainly lived a remarkable life, and not just because he spotted a spirit.

From the early days of his career in music, he has always been a bloke who could beat the odds.

In 1965 he was working in a factory when he lost the tips of his two middle fingers in a machine press accident. Digits that were essential for a budding guitarist.

The 18-year-old didn’t give up. Eventually he made his own artificial fingertips, and re-invented his guitar style to accommodate his infirmity.

The new style he created came to be known, the world-over, as Heavy Metal.

Tony was also instrumental in creating Black Sabbath’s most famous song, Paranoid, the idea of which he came up with while the rest of the band had gone for lunch.

It was recorded in no more than half an hour, yet it went on to become a song that epitomised the hulking hammer sound of Heavy Metal.

The Aston-born strummer also reveals that he is working on his autobiography.

“I’ve been working on it for ages,” he says. “It seems to be taking forever because of everything else going on.”

However, he says it’s important that he finishes the book eventually, as he believes no other biography has captured the spirit of the band.

“I don’t think one book on Sabbath has got it right, yet,” he explains. “They come up with all this bull****, but you can only get the right story from the people who were there.”

Mississippi Bigfoot Sightings Keep Legend Alive

Columbia, Miss. Police Department is investigating a slew of Bigfoot sightings near the Pearl River, according to The Columbian-Progress.

The police chief indicated he believes it's a hoax, but it makes you wonder, "What if it's not?"

The next time I'm sitting in the deer stand and it's dark and murky, I will probably spot one.

And then like the hundreds of other witnesses to the cultural phenomenon will have no tangible proof, and then everyone will think I'm crazy.

I first learned of Bigfoot while watching TV in my camp amid the swamps. It's way out there - 30 minutes from the nearest Piggly Wiggly and just one bar with Verizon Wireless. And what pops on the TV, a Bigfoot special. Scared me to death.

I almost forgot about sasquatch (well, minus those beef jerky commercials) until some friends from Columbia were talking about it last week.

And as God as my witness, one of friends went out searching for it last week.

Let me tell you about Laura. I just met her two weeks ago, a friend of a friend. She lives in the outskirts of Columbia, and every evening, she sits on her porch with a cigarette, listening to the cackle of her police scanner.

I knew instantly she was my kind of person.

She didn't find Bigfoot, but she did discover a track. No lies.

I wanted to make Mississippi famous, something other than Frank Melton stories.

I called CNN; no bites. I called Fox News; they said they couldn't cover it because it could mock their viewers.

So, I decided I would write about it.

You may think I am kidding about the whole thing. No, it's on the Progress' Web site now. And even better, the police chief said "an out-of-state organization had visited the area with specialized equipment for primate study and had found no evidence of anything unusual."

I know what you're thinking; I looked into the matter.

During my research of Bigfoot, I stumbled upon some nifty facts (all from the Bigfoot Field Researchers Organization):

# Mississippi has had 18 sightings confirmed by the BFRO. The BFRO's Web site said it investigates sightings and only posts information of likely ones.

# Clark and Lauderdale counties lead the state in sightings with three each.

# Bigfoots are not dangerous, says the BFRO's Web site. But sometimes they can get territorial and stalk people, which - allegedly - spooks off humans. They do eat aggressive pets though.

It does make me wonder why, despite hundreds of sightings, that tangible evidence has never been left behind. Although most sightings are reported along the Pacific Coast (469 in Washington and 411 in California), you think someone in the South would've trapped one.

Why hasn't anyone in Columbia trapped it or at least got close enough to snap a photo?

Whether it's a hoax, folklore or the imagination of some crafty individuals - sightings, real or not, make the legend live on.

Maybe they are out there; they may just be that good.

NOTE: I realize the author is a bit tongue-in-cheek in this opinion wasn't posted here to downplay the existence of sasquatch. Since I had a close encounter with a creature 28 years ago, other people's ridicule just brings a smile to my face and a good feeling that I know the truth...Lon

Crop Circle Activity Likely to Increase Beyond Wiltshire

It has been almost two years since the last crop circle was spotted in Kent and nearly four years since The Meopham Circles appeared.

But crop circle enthusiast Graham Tucker, who contributes to the Medway Crop Circle website, says the circles could reappear in the area this summer.

He said: “The season so far has been quite promising, which started with circles appearing in April, mostly in Wiltshire.

“It’s quite likely we will see some this year, however it’s a very unpredictable phenomena.”

Over the last 10 years, the north Kent area has had its own fair share of possible paranormal activity, with circles cropping up repeatedly in Farningham, Istead Rise, Eynsford and Nurstead, near Meopham.

Mr Tucker, who lives in Walderslade, explains that the circles are usually linked to places steeped in ancient history.

He said: “Where they appeared in Eynsford is close to a Roman villa (now Lullingstone Castle).

“They appear to acknowledge the past, that’s why we see so many in Wiltshire, where there’s Stonehenge, Avebury Circle and Silbury Hill.”

Andrew Fowlds, who runs the Medway Crop Circle website, says crop circles could be the work of aliens.

The 41-year-old IT developer said: “I certainly believe there's a real mystery about where they come from, it takes years to get your head round the idea there could just possibly be a real non-human phenomenon happening.

“We have the UFO phenomenon and people argue that's real, bearing that in mind it could be aliens.

“Crop circles never cease to surprise or amaze you, it's a fascinating mystery, there are still a lot of unanswered questions.”


July 2005 - The Meopham Circles, Wrotham Road
This field, found near the ancient village of Nursted, and could have been used by the Romans for wine production. Nearby Nursted Court is more than 1,000 years old and used to be a Saxon Manor.

August 2005 - The Nookie Bear Formation, Wrotham Road
Almost twice the size of the Meopham Circles, this was the first time Kent had two formations in the same field.

July 2001 - The Lullingstone Event, by Lullingstone Castle, Eynsford
Mentioned in the Domesday Book, perhaps the crop circles are attracted to that castle, one of England’s oldest family estates.

April 2000 - The Farningham Triangle, Farningham
Kent’s first circle of 2000, which could be seen from the M20.

May 2000 - The Celtic Knot, Wrotham, near Farningham
The second formation of 2000, this Celtic design could be seen from the M20. It is thought the Celts first arrived in Kent during 5BC.

June 2000 - The Circle of Circles, Eagle Heights, Eynsford
Found on hillside overlooking the Darenth Valley, just half a mile away from the Lullingstone Roman villa.

July 2000 - The Star of Istead, Istead Rise

April 1999 - The Istead Wreath, Istead Rise
Found near to the old Roman-built London Road at an ancient crossroads that’s now known as The Tollgate. A former pilgrim route from Southwark and Lambeth to Canterbury, as mentioned in Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales.

Visit the Medway Crop Circles website

10 Everyday Phenomena Explained

This list has ten explanations of common, every-day things that you probably did not understand. And if you did understand them you’re far cooler than us. Using this knowledge you can impress your friends, family, or romantic interests, because nothing is more attractive to the other sex than knowing how random things work.

1.) Falling Sensation:

Have you ever woken up to a falling sensation and a strong muscle twitch as you are simply lying in bed? This phenomenon is known as hypnagogic myoclonic twitch or “Hypnic Jerk,” and studies have shown that roughly 70% of people have experienced it. There is no definitive answer on why this happens, but most scientists have agreed on the following explanation. When you are falling asleep your muscles become very relaxed and enter what is essentially a state of temporary paralysis. While your body is making this transition the brain can misinterpret the sudden relaxation of the muscles and instead think that you are falling. Instincts kick in and send signals to your muscles to jerk you upright which leads to a rude awakening. Studies have found that “Hypnic Jerks” occur more frequently with people who suffer from sleep anxiety, fatigue and discomfort because the brain is more easily confused. Either way, it is a normal part of the sleep process and poses no real danger.

2.) Cracking Joints:

You may not be a knuckle cracker yourself, but chances are you have heard someone doing it. This noise is caused by pockets of gas that are escaping from the joints in the hand. There is something called synovial fluid that lubricates joints and contains nitrogen, oxygen, and carbon dioxide gas. When the joint is put in an abnormal position, bubbles of these gasses are rapidly released which causes the cracking noise. The reason a knuckle can rarely be cracked twice is because it takes time for the gases to build up again. Some claim that cracking knuckles leads to arthritis, but the studies claim that it only causes minor damage to soft joint tissue. A similar cracking noise can be produced with the knee or the ankle but it is not due to escaping gas. Tendons can be pushed out of place as joints move, and when they return to their original position they can create cracking noises. Because gas does not have to build up like it does in the knuckles, this noise can often be made repeatedly.

3.) Goose Bumps

Goose bumps are the dots that form on the skin when a person is cold, afraid, or experiencing strong emotions. The reflex that causes goose bumps is known as horripilation and it occurs in other mammals as well. The goose bumps are caused when individual muscles at the base of each hair contract which make the hair stand straight up. This reflex is linked to the sympathetic nervous system which is responsible for most fight-or-flight responses. Goose bumps provide no known benefits for humans, but the reflex makes sense for animals. When humans are cold, horripilation causes their hair stand up, but humans in general do not have much body hair. For animals with fur, air pockets are trapped between the hairs which create an extra layer of insulation. In response to fear or anger, raised hair would make an animal seem larger and more intimidating. The best example of this is the porcupine whose spikes stand up when threatened. It seems that horripilation is simply a reflex left over from the evolutionary process, a constant reminder that humans were not always as they are now.

4.) Wrinkled Fingertips

If you have ever spent time in a hot tub for too long then you most likely emerged with wrinkly fingertips. They go away soon after you dry off, but what causes them to get that way? The body has three layers of skin, the subcutaneous tissue (fats, nerves, large blood vessels), the dermis (small blood vessels, nerves, hair roots, sweat glands), and the epidermis (protects the skin beneath and keeps water inside the body from evaporating). These layers are tightly connected, and biologists have found that when the skin is submerged for a long time the epidermis begins absorbing water. Because it is so tightly connected to the dermis underneath, the skin warps which leads to the wrinkles. The reason this mostly occurs on the fingers and toes is because the epidermis in those areas has calluses which take in more water.

5.) Eyebrows

Many people see eyebrows as just another facial feature to be self conscious about. Some spend a great deal of time plucking, waxing, trimming, preening, shaving (frat parties), penciling, or essentially worrying about their appearance, but have they ever thought why humans have them in the first place? Evolution has removed hair from most of our bodies so why would two little strips above our eyes remain? Eyelashes and eyelids work to keep dust and other debris out of the eye, but they can not do all of the work. The eyebrows divert sweat and rain around the eyes which makes it much easier to see. If you have ever had saltwater in your eyes you know how irritating it is, and it was just annoying enough for natural selection to create eyebrows.

6.) Chopping Onions

No matter how manly you think you are, cutting onions will make you tear up. Onions release an enzyme known as Lachrymatory-factor synthase into the air when they are cut open. The enzyme converts the sulfoxides (amino acids) in the onion into the unstable compound sulfenic acid which rearranges itself into something called syn-ropanethial-S-oxide. Syn-ropanethial-S-oxide is a chemical irritant which causes the lachrymal glands to release tears when it comes in contact. If you have never cut onions yourself than you may not be so convinced, but shortly after the knife cuts the onion you are sure to notice. Three ways to help prevent this is to run water near to where you are cutting the onion, to put the onion in the fridge half an hour before cutting it, or to avoid cutting the root. If you still tear up while cutting onions, and have nothing better to spend your money on, you can always purchase the incredibly useful Onion Goggles for $19.95 (available in black, white, or pink!).

7.) Freckles

Freckles are flat tan, brown, or black spots that can appear on skin that has been exposed to the sun. These spots are abnormal collections of melanin, a pigment that is produced by cells in the skin called melanocytes. The melanocytes create freckles to protect the skin from sunlight, and therefore they occur more often on those with lighter skin that burns more easily. Freckles are more common on the face, arms, and shoulders because those areas get the most sun. For many people freckles fade during the winter only to return during the spring and summer months. In some cases too much sun exposure can cause certain cells to become cancerous, so any suspicious looking freckles should be checked out by a dermatologist. The best way to prevent skin cancer from developing is wearing clothing or sunscreen when exposed to the sun.

8.) Sunscreen

Sunscreen is something many people trust to keep them from getting sunburnt but how exactly does it keep the skin safe from harmful UV rays? The reason sunscreen works so well is because it uses multiple active ingredients that each do their part in protecting your skin. Most sunscreens use inorganic ingredients such as titanium oxide or zinc oxide to reflect UV radiation away from the body while organic ingredients such as octyl methoxycinnamate or oxybenzone convert the remaining UV rays into heat. The end results are creams with varying SPFs (Sun Protection Factors) that keep the body protected from UV radiation.

9.) Songs Stuck in our Heads

Almost everyone has at one point or another had a song stuck in their head, and it can last hours until that annoying tune goes away. Whether it is a backstreet boys song, a simple beat, or “It’s a Small World,” the constant repetition can drive anyone crazy. So what exactly causes songs to get stuck in our heads? Scientists blame something they refer to as “earworms” which create a “cognitive itch” that makes the brain to fill in the gaps in a song’s rhythm. Songs trigger activity in the auditory cortex of the brain, and studies have found that the part of the auditory cortex that is active when you’re actually listening to a song is reactivated when you just imagine hearing the song. In other words, imagining a song will “scratch” the cognitive itch, but this just makes it worse. In any case, the song will eventually go away by itself but if you can’t wait that long you can try listening to other music or distracting yourself to get it out of your head.

10.) Hiccups

Hiccups are triggered by uncontrolled impulses of the phrenic nerve which lead the diaphragm to spasm. These contractions result in a quick intake of breath which is what we refer to as a hiccup. Hiccups can be caused many ways such as by eating or drinking too quickly, consuming spicy or cold food, drinking alcohol, or by quick breaths because of surprises, laughs, coughs, or sneezes. In some cases they occur for no real reason at all, which can be quite annoying. So how exactly does one cure the hiccups? I have heard of many remedies including drinking water upside down, holding your breath, eating peanut butter, distracting yourself one way or another, or getting someone to scare you. Some of these may seem ridiculous, but all of them either distract you or cause you to hold your breath which allows the diaphragm to relax and can help stop the spasms. If none of these remedies works, and the hiccups do not subside, it may be necessary to get medical attention. The longest case of hiccups ever recorded was with a man named Charles Osborne whose fit lasted 68 years. He hiccupped an estimated 430 million times and averaged from 20-40 hiccups a minute throughout his lifetime. Next time you find yourself complaining about hiccups, just be glad that they will be gone sooner than his were.

Today's Weather Forecast....Tadpoles?

Meteorologists in Japan say the rainy season has just started in Tokyo, but residents in a small coastal town have reported a different phenomenon -- tadpoles dropping out of the sky.

An office clerk in Nanao said he first noticed the anomaly when he heard a dull thud in a parking lot last week, news reports said. Looking around, he saw about 100 dead amphibians splattered on car windshields and the ground.

More reports followed from bewildered residents in Nanao.

"People speculate that a waterspout picked them up and dropped them from the air," an official at a local weather observatory told AFP. "But from a meteorological point of view, I have to say it is most unlikely."

"We have checked the weather conditions of last week, thinking gusts of wind might have hit the area but confirmed no damage," he said. "To be honest, I don't think it was anything caused by a weather condition."

Similar events -- in what is sometimes called the "Fafrotskies" phenomenon, short for "fall from the sky" -- have been reported around the world, with whirlwinds passing over water bodies and picking up frogs, jellyfish or other unfortunate animals before dumping them back to earth.


Are you interested in the paranormal, cryptozoology, UFOs and conspiracies? Go to Phantoms and Monsters Wiki and become a member of this unique network. Start a page on a subject or add your input to an existing page or thread. Phantoms and Monsters updates are posted daily at Twitter. Signup today!


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Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Resurrecting Nikola Tesla's Mystery Car

From Bill Moore - EV World

At the bottom of this page are two diagrams sent to me by Andy Janson. They purport to be similar to the circuits that Nikola Tesla is said to have used in his fabled Pierce-Arrow electric car in the summer of 1931.

As the story goes, he had the gasoline engine removed and replaced with a 80kW electric motor. He then installed a mysterious "black box" from which rods protruded. Wires connected the box to the motor, providing it with enough electric power to achieves speeds of over 90 mph.

What was inside that box remains a mystery. It wasn't large enough to house the batteries of the time or a generator. It is presumed that it contained some type of circuitry that was able to tap into and dramatically amplify the energy that Tesla believed is all around us.

The circuitry below shows two antennas that are believed to correspond to Tesla's two rods, one for energy input and the other for output. Between them are vacuum tubes and resistors that connect to the 80 hp AC induction motor, another Tesla invention. In essence, the earth is a huge battery that Tesla believed he could inductively (wirelessly) plug into with one antenna representing the positive electrode and the other the negative.

Not being an electrical engineer, I asked our Tech Editor, Mike Brace for his analysis of the circuits. A former aerospace engineer, he noted there...

... has been a proposal for years to put a tethered satellite in geo-synchronous orbit using a conductive tether line. As the tether 'cuts' through the earth's magnetic field (due to the earth's rotation) it would generate substantial electricity. But that is an awfully long antenna. I am not too sure how he proposes to generate that much electricity from such small amount of line. Maybe the occiliations have something to do with it...

There is enough evidence to suggest that Tesla did [indeed] discover a way to generate enough electricity from a small box to drive a car around, but that secret was buried with him.

NOTE: I ran across this piece late today...not sure how old it is but it is interesting. Some of our readers are Tesla enthusiasts and have a page and thread on Phantoms and Monsters Wiki - Tesla, Leadskalin, Hutchison & Others...Lon

Coming to America? UFO Hacker McKinnon's Extradition Seems Imminent

Former home secretary Jacqui Smith made a "flawed" decision in giving the green light for the extradition of a Scots-born autism sufferer to the US, the High Court in London heard yesterday.

A QC for UFO-obsessive Gary McKinnon argued that Ms Smith, who left the Cabinet last week, had rammed through the extradition agreement without giving thought to his Asperger's syndrome.

Mr McKinnon was accused by the US government of mounting the "biggest military hack of all time", involving 97 computers belonging to organisations including the US Navy and Nasa.

Edward Fitzgerald QC told Lord Justice Stanley Burnton and Mr Justice Wilkie that Ms Smith had been given access to medical evidence warning her that extraditing Mr McKinnon would lead to serious psychological problems.

He said Ms Smith had "erred in law and reached a flawed decision in response to the medical evidence".

He continued: "She underestimated and misrepresented the gravity of the situation without obtaining evidence of her own, made no inquiries and sought no assurance as to the grant of bail before, and repatriation after, trial in the US."

Mr McKinnon could face eight to nine years in a high-security US prison, lawyers said. He has said he will plead guilty to hacking offences if he is tried in the UK. He maintains he was searching for evidence of UFOs.

Home Office lawyers argued that extradition was justified and would not be disproportionate, given the very serious charges Mr McKinnon faces.

They said in written submissions that, although extradition might result in mental suffering, the "degree of suffering" would fall far short of the levels that would justify High Court intervention.

Even if there was a real possibility that Mr McKinnon might become suicidal it would not necessarily be unjust or oppressive to extradite. The US authorities had given assurances he would be provided with appropriate treatment. But family and friends fear the 43-year-old could be at risk of suicide and his mental condition will deteriorate further.

The High Court hearing is expected to end today although a ruling may not be received for weeks. Mr McKinnon, born in Glasgow but now living in north London, is seeking judicial review of the decision made last October by Ms Smith.

This is his last attempt to avoid being sent to an American jail.

Yesterday his plight won the backing of Scottish musicians The Proclaimers.

Band member Charlie Reid said: "Given his condition and the conditions in American jails, and the possible severe length of the sentence, we are very concerned about his health."

He added: "It does seem that maybe the (UK] government could play a bit tougher with the Americans."

Previously his case had been rejected on other grounds by a district judge, the High Court and, in July last year, the Lords. The European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg also refused to intervene.

NOTE: most Brits feel Gary McKinnon should not be extradited to the U.S. because of his 'medical' problems. He did gain unlawful access to NASA and military computer files and probably deserves to be punished...but he'd need to be isolated from the general population. It'll be interesting to see what happens the next few weeks.

Photos: Triangle Shaped UFO Over Greenville, South Carolina

From UFO Casebook

Greenville, South Carolina - 05-26-09

The UFO Casebook received the following submission with three photographs.

On May 26, 2009, at 12:30 PM, I was outside watching some thunderstorms pass by over my home. I had my camera with me, hoping to get a photo or two of some lightning.

Instead this strange looking jet plane came from the northwest, and headed south. I thought that maybe it was a new type of aircraft the military was flying.

I didn't hear any engine sound, but then again, there was thunder in the background.

The sighting occurred in Greenville, South Carolina. Camera used was a Minolta Z5.


C. Salvo

NOTE: I'm kind of wary of these photos, though, the photographer has provided a zip file with the EXIF data (UFO Casebook has a link for the zip file). Let's see if any other information comes to light.

UFO Activity Reported Over Tierra del Fuego, Argentina

The strong flash seen on Sunday's dark evening in Tierra del Fuego left no doubt whatsoever to the presence of an unidentified flying object over the Darwin Range.

"The vehicle remained motionless for some 20 minutes in the sky. It was then that we began observing it more intently, and the first thing we saw was the apparent "break-off" of a small, brilliant orb," said attorney Juan José Arcos.

Regional UFO researcher Eugenio Bahamonde admits that there has been an increase in the number of sightings.

Fifteen days ago, he was sent photographs of an alleged "landing", which left a circle in the ground.

Photo: Leviathan 'Yacumama' Anaconda Found in Peruvian Jungle

It sounds like an Indiana Jones adventure. After 23 years of research including the detailed study of ancient art, cultures spanning 3000 years and three continents to the latest in satellite imaging technology, a father and son make an extraordinary trip deep into the heart of the Peruvian Amazon to confirm their theories that this is where a giant anaconda with a difference lives.

But that's precisely what Mike Warner (73) and his son Greg (44) have done, seeking evidence that this was the home of the Yacumama and actually capturing a picture of the creature. A leviathan of the jungle, which reports say reaches 40 metres in length and two metres in diameter, it dwarfs any snake known to science.

This anaconda is not green but dark brown and is known by the locals as the 'black boa' or 'Yacumama'.

"Yacumama is translated as Mother of the Water and reports of this giant snake abound throughout the Amazon basin and history."

Mike, who is partially sighted, has spent 23 years researching the beast but it was only six months ago when his son discovered his research documents and they decided to take part in the incredble journey.

Cryptozooologist Mike of Hillhall spent his life savings setting up the expedition with Greg to find out more about the snake, which reports say can engorge water then shoot a monkey out of a tree like a water canon.

The team spent 12 days in March using the latest satellite equipment to take images of the huge reptile and were able to officially announce the discovery on May 2.

The explorers were dogged by hazardous weather conditions in the middle of the rainy season but eventually managed to take off by hydroplane from the Amazon River on day five of the expedition.

"Despite being buffeted by a freak storm we managed several flyovers at an average altitude of 400 feet recording video footage from two cameras at either side to the rear of the aircraft and Greg, located in the front with the pilot, taking around 300 still photographs" said Mike who had his 73rd birthday while in Peru.

After an exhausting 12 days in the jungle and a 30 hour trip back home the father and son team were finally able to examine their photo evidence in more detail, over 700 photos and five hours of video

"The data is immense and will take months to fully appreciate but already it supports our theories of 'channels' created by these giants as they make their way through the dense jungle knocking down trees 90 feet tall, but more importantly we managed to catch one of these reclusive giants on camera as it made its way through one of its watery channels."

It was Colonel Percy Fawcett, who was commissioned by the Royal Geographical Society of London in 1906 to map an area of the Peruvian Amazon in a dispute over rubber production who, after an encounter with a giant anaconda, first documented large 'trails 6 feet wide' or what are now called 'channels'.

And according to Greg it was the link made between his account and the evidence of large irregular 'channels' at the site they visited that led to the discovery.

They have now shared their findings with the Peruvian government, the National Geographic Society in Washington and Queens University in Belfast.

The team will now spend months analysing the footage and plan to return to same location in October to get thermal imagery which will help find the numbers of anacondas. This time they hope to bring with them a television crew.

Greg concluded: "The real hero is my father. It must be incredible to have spent 23 years researching this and then to succeed in an expedition where others had failed."

There was an amazing postscript to their trip when an anaconda, believed to be the one they located in March, is thought to have been responsbile for smashing the house of an elderly couple in a small village in Peru earlier this week.


Are you interested in the paranormal, cryptozoology, UFOs and conspiracies? Go to Phantoms and Monsters Wiki and become a member of this unique network. Start a page on a subject or add your input to an existing page or thread. Phantoms and Monsters updates are posted daily at Twitter. Signup today!


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Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Revealed: Two Prominent Illegal Arms Foes Aboard Air France Flight 447

The puzzling crash of Air France’s Flight 447 killed two of the world’s “most prominent” illegal arms trade and international drug trafficking foes, according to a little-noticed report.

In a revelation sure to fuel conspiracy theories over the plane’s demise, the report reveals that two key figures in the neverending internecine battle against global arms and drug trafficking perished when the plane abruptly fell out of the sky. Both were particularly active in efforts to stem illegal arms trading in Latin America.

A 39-year Argentinian man, Pablo Dreyfus, was said to be a major player in an effort by Brazilian authorities to stop flow of arms to drug gangs in Rio. He was a consultant for Small Arms Survey, a Geneva-based thinktank.

Another consultant for Small Arms Survey also died in the crash, “Ronald Dreyer, a Swiss diplomat and co-ordinator of the Geneva Declaration on Armed Violence who had worked with UN missions in El Salvador, Mozambique, Azerbaijan, Kosovo and Angola,” according to Scotland’s Sunday Herald.

“Both men were consultants at the Small Arms Survey, an independent think tank based at Geneva’s Graduate Institute of International Studies,” the Herald reported. “The Survey said on its website that Dryer had helped mobilise the support of more than 100 countries to the cause of disarmament and development.”

Dreyfus and Dreyer were reportedly traveling to Switzerland to “present the latest edition of the Small Arms Survey handbook, of which Dreyfus was a joint editor.”

Dreyfus advocated for “stringent labeling” of ammunition produced by weapons companies, the paper said. He averred that such labeling would greatly aid the tracking of arms acquired by criminals.

Dreyfus focused in particular on Brazilian arms firm Companhia Brasileira de Cartuchos which bought Germany’s Metallwerk Elisenhutte Nassau in 2007 and another company in the Czech Republic. He said CBC should “consider the risk that some of these exports end up, via diversions, feeding violence in Brazil.”

“When Rio agents smashed a cell of drug traffickers who had sourced their weapons from the tri-border area, Dreyfus noted its leaders were prominent businessmen living in apartments in the plush Rio suburbs of Ipanema and São Corrado,” the Herald noted.

Though the cause of the crash has not been conclusively determined, most experts have focused on speed sensors that may have affected the plane’s course when it was caught in severe thunderstorms.

“A spokesman for a pilots’ union says all Air France jets taking off now have been equipped with two new-generation speed sensors,” AP reported Tuesday. “The so-called Pitot tubes on the outside of an aircraft are under suspicion in the crash of Air France Flight 447 into the Atlantic Ocean.”

Woman Killed During Exorcism 'Acted Like a Lion'

A Wainuiomata woman killed during a botched exorcism had been acting like a lion and speaking in "puzzles" after being possessed by spirits from a stolen statue, the High Court at Wellington has been told.

The Crown has finished presenting its five-week long case against the family of Janet Moses for the 22-year-old woman's October 2007 death.

Nine people, including five aunts and an uncle, were charged with manslaughter after water poured on to her face to lift a makutu, or curse, got into her lungs.

The video-taped police interview of the slain woman's aunt and co-accused, Angela Orupe, said her niece had been "fighting with her grandmother, acting like a lion and trying to claw her".

The makutu targeted her cousin, who took the statue, but affected Moses because she was weaker, Orupe said.

She described the lion as an "ugly statue", about 60cm high and "very, very old".

Two family members stole it from outside a Greytown pub after a drinking session.

After bringing the statue home, the family's children began getting sick and were unsettled, she said.

Following advice from a kaumatua in Porirua, the family drove in a hikoi, or convoy, to return the statue to the place it was stolen from.

Driving home after taking the statue back one of the cars in the hikoi got a puncture and had to pull over - violating the instruction the family had to leave and return to the grandmother's house together, she said.

That night, family members reported Moses speaking in "puzzles" and having a restless night, Orupe said.

"Things were coming out of her mouth - saying the same things - 'money', 'the funeral', 'the hits'. We couldn't get her to sleep."

She said Moses had spirits in her eyes that looked "like jellyfish - slimy little things".

In the ceremony, which lasted several days, the family had poured litres of water into the woman's eyes to lift the makutu, until she began convulsing.

Someone then put a spoon into her mouth to stop her biting her tongue, Orupe said.

Several of the whanau present attempted CPR.

"You honestly had to be there. To think this sort of thing could happen in this day and age," she told Detective Mike Philpott.

She questioned Philpott's assumption there was a "correct process" for exorcism, saying it was whatever her elders said it was.

Lawyers representing the nine accused called no witnesses.

The nine accused, who have all pleaded not guilty, are John Tahana Rawiri, 49, Georgina Aroha Rawiri, 50, Tanginoa Apanui, 42, Hall Jones Wharepapa, 46, Orupe, 36, Gaylene Tangiohororere Kepa, 44, Aroha Gwendoline Wharepapa, 48, Alfred Hughes Kepa, 48, and Glenys Lynette Wright, 52.

The crown will begin its closing address on Tuesday.

Rare Cryptic Slate Tablet Discovered at Jamestown

Archaeologists in Jamestown, Virginia, have discovered a rare inscribed slate tablet dating back some 400 years, to the early days of America's first permanent English settlement.

Both sides of the slate are covered with words, numbers, and etchings of people, plants, and birds that its owner likely encountered in the New World in the early 1600s.

The tablet was found a few feet down in what may be the first well at James Fort, dug in early 1609 by Capt. John Smith, Jamestown's best known leader, said Bill Kelso, director of archaeology at the site.

If the well is confirmed as Smith's, it could help offer important insights into Jamestown's difficult early years.

Records indicate that by 1611, the water in Smith's well had become foul and the well was then used as a trash pit. Archaeologists discovered the slate among other objects thrown into the well by the colonists.

Slate tablets were sometimes used in 17th-century England instead of paper, which was expensive and not reusable.

According to Bly Straube, Historic Jamestowne's curator, people drew games and wrote on broken roofing tiles, which could be washed off and used over and over again. "Inscribed slates from this time period are rarely found in England, so little is known about them," she said.

"A Minon of the Finest Sorte"

Archaeologists and other scientists are still trying to decipher the slate, the first with extensive inscriptions to be found at any 17th-century colonial American site.

The scratched and worn 5-by-8-inch (13-by-20-centimeter) tablet is inscribed with the words "A MINON OF THE FINEST SORTE." Above the words are the letters and numbers "EL NEV FSH HTLBMS 508," interspersed with symbols that have yet to be interpreted.

According to Straube, "minon" is a 17th-century variation of the word "minion" and has numerous meanings, including "servant," "follower," "comrade," "companion," "favorite," or someone dependent on a patron's favor. A minion is also a type of cannon—and archaeologists have found shot at the James Fort site that's the right size for a minion.

Drawings on the slate depict several different flower blossoms and birds that may include an eagle, a songbird, and an owl.

"The crude drawings of birds and flora offer dramatic evidence of how captivated the English were by the natural wonders of the alien New World," excavation director Kelso said. There's also a sketch of an Englishman smoking a pipe and a man, whose right hand seems to be missing, wearing a ruffled collar.

Although the age of the tablet is not yet known, archaeological evidence—including turtle and oyster shells, Indian pots, trade beads, mirror glass, early pipes, medicinal jars, and military items—indicates that it was deposited in the well during the early years of James Fort, which was established in 1607.

If it's Smith's well, archaeologists believe the tablet could date to 1611, when the well was probably filled in, or earlier.

Another recent discovery from the same well is a brass baby's toy that's a combination whistle and teething stick.

Straube, the Jamestown curator, said the teething-stick portion is made from coral. In the 17th century, coral was considered good for babies' gums and a magical substance that kept away evil. She said it may have belonged to one of the women who arrived with children in 1609.

Clues to the Slate's Owner

It's impossible to know yet who the slate's owner—or owners—may have been.

Straube said an image that looks like a palmetto tree, normally found from South Carolina to the Caribbean (map), suggests that the drawings may have been made during the voyage from England to Jamestown through the West Indies, once a common route to the New World.

Or, she said, the slate could have been used by a colonist who was among about 140 castaways from the Sea Venture shipwreck in 1609. They were stranded in Bermuda for ten months and arrived at Jamestown in the spring of 1610.

Drawings of three rampant lions, used in the English coat of arms during the 1603-25 reign of King James I, have also been discovered on the slate and could mean that the slate's owner was someone involved with government.

Archaeologist Kelso suggests the slate may have belonged to William Strachey, who served as secretary of the colony. He was among the shipwrecked colonists in Bermuda and arrived in Jamestown in 1610.

Straube, the curator, also said the tablet may have been used by someone living in Jamestown who died in the winter of 1609-10, known to colonists as the Starving Time, when the fort was under siege. Only about 60 of 200 people survived.

Near the slate archaeologists have found butchered bones and teeth from horses, as well as dog bones, that may date back to the infamous winter, when colonists resorted to eating their horses and dogs to survive.

It's also possible that the tablet was used by more than one person. "There seems to be a difference in the style of handwriting," Straube noted.

Layers of Writing and Images

The images on the tablet are difficult to see, because they are the same dark gray color as the slate and they overlap. The colonists would have written on the tablet with a small, rectangular pencil made of slate with a sharp point. This would have made a white mark—and fortunately for archaeologists today, it also left a scratch.

"You can wipe off the mark, but you can't completely erase the groove," Kelso, the archaeologist, said. "That's why we have layer upon layer of drawings. In a way it's archaeology. If one groove cuts across another groove, you could tell which one was the most recent."

He hopes eventually to sort out the sequence of the images with the help of NASA, where scientists at the Langley Research Center are using a high-precision, three-dimensional imaging system similar to a CT scanner to help isolate the layers and provide a detailed analysis of the tablet.

Is It John Smith's Well?

Determining whether this is in fact Smith's well will be key to understanding Jamestown's most difficult early years.

According to colonists' accounts, water in Smith's well became brackish within a year after it had been dug. Some experts think foul water, including some poisoned by salt water, may have been a major cause of death during the Starving Time, in addition to starvation and disease unrelated to the water, civil unrest, and battles with Indians.

Located near the James River, next to the first storehouse in the middle of the fort, the well was discovered last year, and archaeologists began excavating it earlier this year. They believe it was dug before a well dating to 1611, which is located farther away from the river.

Kelso said the colonists, having learned a difficult lesson from Smith's well, would have dug their second well as far from the river as possible, to try to avoid contamination by the brackish river water.

Archaeologists have dug down 5 feet (1.5 meters) so far, and the pit has narrowed into a more well-like, circular shape, which may reach 9 to 15 feet (2.7 to 4.5 meters) into the ground.

Kelso said they won't know for sure if it's Smith's well until they get to the bottom and date the objects there.

Finding the well, he said, "will give us a chance to really look at the health issue and figure out what spoiled the water." Some clues to the mysteries contained in the 400-year-old slate might emerge then too.

Video: UFO Over Chisinau, Moldova - 5/20/09

Report: This impressive UFO video was taken by 'Igor Kishnevitz' (not sure if this is his real name, Kishnev is another pronunciation of Chisinau and Kishnevitz would essentially mean 'from Chisinau') in the city of Chisinau, the capital of Moldova.

The video was taken in a district called Chekanov and some are claiming it might be a plastic bag that might have blown off the footpath. Some however are not buying this theory. Do plastic bags change colour behind clouds and reveal a disc-like shape?

Is this actually one of those surveillance discs I have been talking about with its cloaking technology partially faltering?

NOTE: I also included this video from Moldova TV that was shot back in March 2009. It may be CGI...but there was some controversy concerning this incident within the Moldovan government. In fact, there was an early effort to have this video suppressed. That could translate into a lot of things...but still, it's an interesting circumstance...Lon

Video: Apparition in a Shopping Mall - Chile

The 2ft tall floating phantom figure appears in the bottom right of the screen after a male shopper exits a room to the top left. It makes its way across the busy concourse and seems to head for the same door the man has just passed through. The amazing 36-second tape was taken in a shopping mall in Chile, South America. It is alleged that the tiny grayish phenomenon is the ghost of a small local boy.


Are you interested in the paranormal, cryptozoology, UFOs and conspiracies? Go to Phantoms and Monsters Wiki and become a member of this unique network. Start a page on a subject or add your input to an existing page or thread. Phantoms and Monsters updates are posted daily at Twitter. Signup today!


Have you had a close encounter or witnessed something unusual?
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Anomalist Books - works on maverick science, unexplained mysteries, unorthodox theories, strange talents, and unexpected discoveries. Please check out their excellent and diverse catalog

Monday, June 08, 2009

Video: UFO Formations and Report - Phoenix, AZ

Interesting video report of UFO sightings in and around Phoenix, Arizona. The videographer has complied some very good daylight UFO evidence recently. He also has a website at Petroglyphs in the Sky.

Paranormal Team Reveals Theater's Cast Of Spirits

Paranormal investigators believe that they encountered a whole cast of spirits on their visit to a theatre near Wrexham.

Among the ghosts who took a bow, they say, at the Stiwt in Rhos, were those of a man who helped manage the historic building in the 1920s, a one-eyed cleaner and a young man who died when he fell from the fire escape.

A seven-strong team from North Wales-based Soul spent part of the night at the grade two listed former miners' institute.

The group, including two qualified mediums, was equipped with an array of hi-tech equipment, including infra-red cameras and 'K2' meters to detect signs of electrical energy.

Group spokesman Steven Pryce said: "We arrived at 8pm and even before our cameras began filming, our mediums, Eileen and Lizzy, picked up a man called Edwards.

He is connected to the theatre and has previously been seen there by staff.

"We know a Mr D. Edwards was involved with the construction and first management committee of the institute in 1926.

"We also detected the presence of a cleaner called Mary with one eye who used to work at the Stiwt and is thought to be related to the present technical manager.

"A man in a white cloak was also seen by our mediums, and tragically, they also sensed a young man in his mid-20s who committed suicide from the fire escape."

He added: "We had a number of staff members with us, including Tony Griffiths, the grandson of former Stiwt manager Bob Parry.

"A member of staff alerted us to what she said was a pair of feet in one of the stage wings.

"Another member of staff was touched on her arm, and grunts and groans were heard coming from the balcony area."

Mr Pryce said that at a seance session conducted later in the evening, a 6ft table around which people were sitting was physically shifted, taps and bangs were heard and mediums detected a presence in the upper balcony.

A glass on which people had their fingers then flew off the table and shattered on the floor, he recalled.

Mr Pryce said: "We then encountered a six-year-old boy called Bryn who had fallen from the upper balcony in the early 1960s.

"He was a very playful soul and at one point knocked the sweet I had offered him off the table.

"Later we heard a female voice say that she was Gwen Connors, and I am wondering if anyone has heard of her or knows her connection to the Stiwt." members are planning an 'encore' investigation at the theatre on June 13.

Canadian Ghost Hunters Disclose Scary Encounters

One team member lost an hour of his life, another fainted and Michael Ferri -- he's the tough guy -- ran out of the place screaming.

Looking like a chicken is one of the dangers they face, along with ghouls and ghosts, as members of the Windsor,Ontario-based ghost hunting team Spectral Solutions.

The team recently returned from a trip to the Waverly Hills Sanatorium in Kentucky, considered one of the most haunted places in North America. But their scariest moments have happened right at home in Essex County, including Ferri's brief but embarrassing lapse in bravery. The owners don't want the location revealed, but the team affectionately calls it the Derelict Chapel.

Ferri and fellow hunter Marla Zittlau were in the basement when the temperature dropped and he got goose bumps. That's always the first sign. Then Ferri heard a disembodied voice let out a big, ghostly sigh.

Time to go.

"I ran screaming out of the basement," said Ferri, 37, a former fighter with Border City Wrestling. "I grabbed Marla, pushed her out of the way and ran out screaming like a bitch."

The eight-member team has been hunting ghosts for about a year. They had no background in it, but shared an interest in things that go bump in the night.

They did some research and bought expensive gadgets such as electro-magnetic field detectors and infrared cameras. Then they started spending spare time in the spooky places that most people avoid.

They've had paranormal experiences in people's homes, historic buildings in the county and inside the Kildare House. They know a lot of people think their findings are bogus.

"They just haven't experienced anything like that," said Tony Bagnarol, 24, another team member.

They do it for those who do believe. If there's something strange in your neighbourhood, these are the guys to call. They even investigate for free.

"Most of us really want to see something," said Blake St. John, 35. "And help people. I can't imagine what it's like to not feel safe in your own home. We want to help people to be able to live with it or help whatever it is move on."

But sometimes it's just for fun, like their trip to Waverly Hills.

The former tuberculosis hospital, opened in 1910, has been featured in several TV shows, including the Scariest Places On Earth. Several thousand people died there.

"Very miserable, horrible deaths," said St. John. "There has been nothing but suffering in this building."

There is no end to the scary stories that come out of the place. One of the most enduring myths is about Room 502, where a nurse committed suicide after getting pregnant. She still haunts the place. St. John heard screams there. Pregnant women apparently suffer severe headaches on the floor.

There have been reports of sudden temperature plummets, light orbs and disembodied voices. The most commonly reported spooks are shadow people, or human-shaped apparitions with no physical detail. The team was warned about one of those, a shadowy entity with no sense of humour called Big Black.

"They told us if you see it coming, just go the other way," said St. John. "Don't stop, don't say anything. Just go. This thing is violent. It will push you. It will hurt you."

They think they saw it. It blocked out the moonlight streaming through a hallway of windows as it rushed toward them. Several of the team members felt like they were grabbed or pulled by unseen forces.

All that fright has them itching for the next investigation. They're getting really giddy about the summer.

"It's cemetery season again," said Blake.

"If you've got nothing to do, just hang out in the cemetery, bring your gear."

They have their best luck in the Amherstburg area. A cemetery there has been good to them.

"I saw my first full-blown apparition there," he said. "The flashlight illuminated it. It was smoky and I went 'holy (expletive)' and it was gone. It was billowing, it was like hair. It was enough to obscure my view of the group and scare the bejesus out of me for a few seconds."

The Derelict Chapel, built in the 1800s, is out that way as well. Everyone has stories about that place.

"I lost an hour of time in the place," said St. John.

"I was completely conscious. I was with the group. They all saw. I don't know what happened. I have no memory of it. I was mumbling incoherently."

St. John only knows what he did because he watched the video after.

"You can see him just get drained and collapse against a wall," said Bagnarol.

The temperature dropped 17C in seconds. Team member Joline Gadal's knees buckled and she passed out. The team went home early that night.

Researchers Uncover Incan Human Sacrifices

Researchers at an archeological site in northern Peru have made an unusually large discovery of nearly three dozen people sacrificed some 600 years ago by the Incan civilization.

The bodies, some of which show signs of having been cut along their necks and collarbones, were otherwise found in good condition, said Carlos Webster, who is leading excavations at the Chotuna-Chornancap camp.

The sprawling 235-acre (95-hectare) archeological site is 12 miles outside the coastal city of Chiclayo, near the ancient tomb of Sipan, which was one of the great finds of the last century. The sacrifices were made just decades before Spanish explorers arrived in what is now Peru.

Although archeologists regularly find evidence of human sacrifice from Incan and pre-Incan cultures, it is rare to find the remains of 33 people in one place, researchers said.

Scientists say human sacrifice was common within the Incan culture, which flourished immediately before the arrival of the Spanish in what is now parts of Peru, Chile and Ecuador between 1400 and the mid-1500s.

"Most of the remains belong to young women, around 15 years of age. One of them appears to have been pregnant because in her abdomen, the collarbone of a fetus, probably around 4 months, was found," Webster said of the latest find, made over the past year and a half.

"The majority (of the bodies) are in good condition -- skin tissues and hair have been preserved. They were found in a dry area more than 7 feet underground," he said.

Incan civilization is best known for its capital city, Machu Picchu, the ruins of which are Peru's top tourist destination and considered one of the new seven wonders of the world.


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