Monday, August 31, 2009

TAPS Drops A Big Load

Ghost busting makes for strange bed- er... BOWLfellows.

SyFy's resident paranormal investigators, T.A.P.S., have written a book in conjunction with plumbing company Roto-Rooter that PLUMBS the depths of strange and sometimes funny experiences residents have had with their plumbing.

Titled "Chilling Tales From the Porcelain Seat," the book now available for 12.95 online and at many retail outlets.

So the next time you hear about taps in the bathroom, you will have to decide if they're talking about the Ghost Hunters' newest book or Senator Larry Craig.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

This Is Why I Love 'The Horrors of it All'

It's a great blog, full of classic pre-code horror comics. This is a superlative example of some of the thrilling stories these rags had to offer in decades past.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

I'll Be There Too

On October 2nd and 3rd in Honobia, Oklahoma, Mid-America Bigfoot Research Center and Texla Research will be hosting the 2009 Bigfoot Conference as a part of the Honobia Bigfoot Festival. Featured guest speakers will include reknown scientist and Bigfoot proponent Jeff Meldrum and... me.

I will be speaking on the process of writing those cryptid tales that were included in Strange State. If you can, stay for both days of the 2-day event. If you don't have the luxury of time, then I HIGHLY recommend you come on the 3rd. I am scheduled to speak at 12 noon. It should be a great time and I look forward to seeing you all there.

For more information on the festival and conference, click here. From what I understand, conference tickets are on sale now for $10. Admittance to the festival, which features arts & crafts booths, food vendors, etc..., is free.

UFO Spotted!

I've never claimed to see a UFO and somehow I doubt I ever will. But there are plenty people who have and they often give us vague snapshots of some fleeting amorphous object captured in the sky. Well, I asked myself, why can't I join in the fun, too? I took the following shot this morning. The mountains in the bottom of the image are a known UFO hotspot (as well as the birthplace of the Chupacabras legend).
And speaking of UFO's in Latin America... As I waited for the doctor this morning, I thumbed through the well-worn pages (a move that has surely exposed me to countless pathogens) of the December 2008 issue of Travel + Leisure magazine. A short column titled "Alien Excursions" caught my eye. It seems in Chile the Tourism Department is promoting a stretch of highway in the country's Maule region as "The UFO Route". It is here, in this mountainous terrain, that hundres of UFO's have been spotted since 1993. It is believed that the Enladrillado plateau makes for an ideal landing site.
If you're a fan of blogs like Inexplicata and UFO Iconoclasts (both of which you can link to in my list to the right), then you will know of the increasing reports of UFO's, unexplained lights, and cattle mutilations now coming out of countries like Chile, Argentine, etc...

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Family Spots UFO

The following account took place on May 22, 2009 and was submitted to MUFON some days later.

My wife and I had just finished washing the family van when my wife commented on two jets flying the opposite ways from each other. A couple of minutes went buy when she again commented on a low flying plane being followed by a ufo.. The ufo was spotted by the whole family when the two oldest ones had just arrived from making a trip to the grocery store. We first thought it was a balloon that someone had released; but realized it wasnt going straight up and realized it was going the same path of the plane. The object was heading west; it was rotating with blinking lights on the bottom. We stayed out there for five minutes till finally we couldnt see it anymore. The ojbject was going the same speed as an airplane.... I never believed in ufos till that day i witnessed one... jesse
NOTE: Image featured is solely for illustration purposes and in no way relates to the account related in this post.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Meh in the Moon

For all the talk this summer about the "Summer of Love", Woodstock, etc... I think it has escaped a great many of us that this is also the 40th anniversary of the Moon Landing. I mean, it happened 40 years ago last month, but I don't recall it receiving anywhere NEAR the same amount of attention that Woodstock has received over the past week or two. Weird.

Chupacabra 4 Sale, Like New!

Hurray, hurray, hurray! Step right up!!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

The Lights (excerpt)

The cold steel cuffs dug painfully into the bones of Todd’s wrists, as the officer shoved him bodily against the wet squad car. The dried blood on his T-shirt rehydrated in the drizzle that fell softly, leaving a swath of ruddy gore smeared across the hood of the cruiser.

Distantly, Todd’s rational mind knew it was the blood that had done him in. If it weren’t for the blood, he would now be helping the police search for the others. Now he was their prime suspect. If only he hadn’t felt the compulsion to hold onto Stephanie as she bled, he might…

Well, there was little use dwelling on what could have been. He’d have to face a harsh reality now: his entire group was missing or dead, and the cops wanted to blame him.

Each pulse of the blinding emergency lights sent a riot of pain through his aching head. His stomach turned on end. How did it end up this way?

Todd wished he could just go back. Back to before it all began. It seemed somehow possible, as if he could will it into being. The reality of the moment strangely felt far more surreal, dream-like. After all, only a few hours before he had been laughing with them all, telling stupid jokes and singing badly to some 80’s classics blaring from the radio. And then came the lights...

Six Hours Earlier

Flickering on the horizon, two glowing orbs appeared suddenly within the dark envelope of night. Todd Casey squinted with concern, his lips tightening into a thin line that cut across his clenched features.

“Here comes another!” he shouted to the group.

Todd gripped the wheel tightly, as the orbs grew brighter, illuminating the rain on the windshield like a scattering of diamonds.

Within seconds, the orbs had grown to flood the interior of Todd’s van with a blinding light. An unearthly roar erupted in his ears as the group was swallowed in a force that buffeted their cumbersome vehicle precariously on the wet highway.

“Damn truckers!”

“Gawd!” Steph Wilson clucked from the passenger seat next to Todd. “Don’t they know it’s raining? That’s, like, dangerous or whatever.”

“Fuckin’ idiots,” Dave Fawcett shouted from somewhere in the dark recesses of the large Ford Econoline.

“Language, guys,” Todd warned, his eyes like two searching beacons in the rearview mirror.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Tired of T-Shirts?

UK5 Paranormal
Originally uploaded by uk5paranormal
It's so easy these days to fall into the regimented routine of the t-shirt-clad paranormal investigation team, but taking a cue from this quintet might yield some snazzier results. Or get you confused for the New Mainstreet Singers...

Friday, August 14, 2009

Um.... Yeah, right.

This video was purportedly shot in the 1950's and said to capture an apparition. In truth, it is the most patently risible thing I have seen in the YouTube ghost hoax arena in a long time. For one, if that was filmed in the 1950's, I'm J. Edgar Hoover's panties incarnate. No, I'm quite certain that's modern video that has been run through processing software to render sepia tones and "film scratches".

I mean, come on! Try harder than that. First off, why would film (even home movie film) in the 1950's be in sepia? That's just ignorant. I don't even need to get into frame speed (it is an awfully fluid video to watch)or any analysis of the film grain, etc... It has clearly been modified by the kind of cheap software that comes preinstalled on a $250 Dell computer.

And as for the ghost? It's our old friend pareidolia rearing his ugly head once more. What we are supposed to see as an apparition is clearly a cluster of leaves and branches wherein the negative space forms vaguely a humanoid shape.

As a visual example of how the fluidity of motion can be affected by film speed, and to illustrate just what type of 8 and 16 mm home movies were being produced in the mid-1950's, check out these examples and compare them to the "ghost" video. You will also note the blue-red color shift in a lot of 1950's Kodak films; it's almost a signature of the era. So, too, is the extreme contrast and saturation. This "look" shows up in both Kodak motion and still film of the period.

Keep Your Hoax Set High

A recent post over at Buck's Ghosts and Hauntings had me rooting around my hard drive for the various "hoaxed" images I had created over the years. While the intent was never to dupe anyone into believing they were real (they were mostly for illustrative purposes), the nonetheless have that potential - or so I would hope.

I think it is a good exercise for anyone who would attempt to debunk or defend purported images of supernatural phenomena to try their own hand at fashioning such images. In the process, you learn a great deal about what can be done, what looks most "real", and what gives an image away as a hoax. While you might be tempted to think that you need to plop down hundreds of dollars on a high-end image processing software such as Adobe Photoshop, the truth is that many of these effects can be done with more basic and far cheaper software. And, as is the case with the second image down, you need little more than serendipity.
NOTE: Click the image to see a larger version.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Bigfoot, Coyote, or Hoax? Audio Recording Has Researchers Wondering.

This latest audio recording of purported Bigfoot vocalizations comes from the San Juan Mountains of Colorado. I think it sounds a little too clear and close to the source of the recording, as if it were a staged performance. It also sounds very much like a dog at times, especially in the "throatier" sounds of the lower register. Take a listen for yourself HERE, and read what Blogsquatcher thinks.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Check Out My Author Spot On Facebook

Get updates on appearances, works in progress, and personal insights. You can also check out the photo gallery for images from the books and even some that didn't make it to press.


Monday, August 10, 2009

Mehster Quest Chews On Furniture, Claws At Door For New Beasties.

Over the weekend, I caught snippets of Monster Quest episodes I had missed. Well, chosen to miss. I'm saddened that such a young show has already run out of true MONSTERS (in all caps, it must be in all caps), and have resorted to, week after week, bringing us sewer rats, jelly fish, and stray dogs. The latter episode didn't even bait us with hollow promises of giant or otherwise mutated iterations of domestic canines. It was an episode about stray dogs. I felt the urge to check the channel. After all, I might have been on Animal Planet accidentally. Instead, I clicked the channel change button instead. They completely lost me with the altogether boring episode about something you'd see on the 6 o'clock news.

It makes me wonder what completely insipid episode will be coming up next. Squirrels?
"People all around the world have been spotting... SQUIRRELS. These ferocious beasts are prowling our forests, our parks, and even our own back yards. Some, like this woman, have reported squirrels as big as kittens and investigators are wondering if there aren't some out there as big as small cats..."
I can't believe they've already run out of bizarre, near-mythical creatures to profile. I mean, they did a Chupacabras episode once in Puerto Rico didn't even look into the Comecogollos or Jipia legends, which could have made for separate episode or at least a fuller Chupa one.

I can only say that if they insist on turning Monster Quest into Wild Kingdom, I'm not even going to bother to watch even the mini-marathons.


Geologist and author Scott Wolter has done work on the Kensington Rune Stone and others in North America. Most scholars agree the Kensington is a fake and they harbor many suspicions about others, including the Heavener stone. Wolter, however, doesn't follow suit. He asserts that the Kensington inscriptions were made by Norse explorers sailing from Gotland, an island in the Baltic Sea, off Sweden's southeast coast. He believes a band of Knights Templar, fleeing persecution, established a monastic order on the small island nation.

This invariably forces a Holy Grail connection. And Wolter supplies it. An unusual 'Hooked X' symbol found on the Kensington stone, as well as several found in Maine, and even Rosslyn Chapel (a famed spot in Grail lore) is one of the runes used, he believes, in spelling out GRAL, or Grail. Furthermore, Wolter believes the enigmatic Newport Tower in Rhode Island was perhaps built by the Knights Templar. This is because when one looks through a particular notched keystone, his gaze is fixed precisely in the direction of the location where the Kensington Rune Stone was found - all the way out in Minnesota.

Check out more HERE concerning the upcoming History Channel documentary.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

SciFi - er... SyFy Ads Turn The Tables On The 'Monsters'

I never saw these make print anywhere, which is a shame because it is a clever, funny ad campaign. Check the rest out here.

Thursday, August 6, 2009


While I don't doubt that some common sense advice on the very real consequences of paranormal investigations is prudent, I'm of a mind to think that the folks behind the DANGERS OF THE PARANORMAL [echoes out] might be over-selling it all just a bit.

While most of us will agree that respecting private property, watching your step, and not going alone to remote gang-infested locales is prudent, we don't all agree that each of us is a hapless target of demon diseases, paranormal pugilism, or other such afflictions. However, I will agree that beyond the more mundane caveats, it is important to broach a more oft-ignored side of paranormal investigations. I'm talking about those individuals, prone to fantasy, who might get too wrapped up in their work.

It's important for anyone - regardless of their avocation - to keep some balance in life between work, socializing, family, and hobbies. Becoming too obsessed with any one thing isn't healthy. To this end, I think the DOT Project has opened a valuable dialog.

Now, as for that demon calling to me from the other side of my $20 Parker Bros. Oujia board? I'll let him know it's dinner time and to try back later.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009


Those irreverant gals of all things ghoulish, The Ghost Divas, will be rockin' the mic tonight with Project Runway's Johnathon Kayne in tonight's Ghost Divas LIVE Big Gay Show! He will, I am told, be "dishing about fashion and the paranormal community!"

If you've not yet had a chance to give these ladies a listen, you're in for a treat. This isn't your typical paranormal podcast. They're neither for children nor the faint of heart; this is no-holds-barred-paratalk.