Wednesday, July 30, 2014
Another video of the Toronto lights
Taken from a different perspective, here's a video of the Toronto lights.
Still screen shots:
Well, no wonder people were freaking out.
Labels: Toronto lights UFO July 2014
Tuesday, July 29, 2014
The media is abuzz about the Toronto UFOs that were seen on Saturday, July 26, 2014. Multiple witnesses observed and took videos and photos of a series of lights in the sky over downtown TO.
In the afternoon, at 4:18 pm, Sebastien Setien was on the balcony of his condo when he saw a triangular object in the sky. He took a photo of the object, which he noted was not moving at all, and he lost interest and went inside. Later that evening, at 8:40 pm, he went back outside and saw some odd lights, so he used to phone to capture a video.
Toronto police say they first received a call about lights over the city at about 7:00 pm. Police officers themselves saw the lights at about 10:00 pm, so this was certainly not a fleeting phenomenon. they confirmed to reporters that the lights were not from a "police drone."
At around 9:00 pm, Sarah Chun was in her Finch Street apartment when she saw 6 or 7 lights arranged in a diagonal line in the sky, seemingly "anchored" to the ground at one end. She grabbed her iPad and went outside to take a video of the odd sight. Outside, she saw another object that was high in the sky and very bright. She said the high light "sat there" for about 25 minutes and then moved off and disappeared. She posted two videos of the lights to YouTube and they both went viral.
First video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=80ZXXF8hwVw
Second video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AYWl-66SX74
Some media hits:
Several media reported a claim by a witness who said he had seen some kids setting up a kite with LEDs near the area where the UFOs were thought to have been.
My colleagues Sue Demeter St-Clair and Matthew James Didier of PSICAN are hot on the trail of these UFOs. Here is their web page on the incident, with updates and additional relevant links:
A nice graphic on Canadian UFOs, based on our Canadian UFO Survey (http://survey.canadianuforeport.com) was published by the Toronto Sun:
Our best guess so far is that the string of lights was possibly indeed a kite with LEDs, as drones wouldn't have been as stable as reported for such a long period of time.
The case is still under investigation.
Wednesday, July 23, 2014
Who ya gonna call?
Apparently, you should be calling Paracon. At least, if you are going to the Marlborough Hotel and want to know about its strange and paranormal history.
The stately Marlborough is turning 100 this year, and as part of its celebration, paranormal investigators have been allowed to explore its various hallways and rooms said to be haunted by ghostly denizens.
On June 20, 2014, the Winnipeg Paranormal Group held a special “ghost tour” for anyone brave enough to explore the hotel with them. The Group is hosting Winnipeg Paracon (paracon.ca) this coming September, bringing in many guest speakers from TV and other media to discuss hauntings far and wide. The two-day conference will feature séances, tours of haunted Winnipeg locations (including the Marlborough) and VIP dinners.
But last week, it was all about the Malrborough. Banquet Manager Grace Rents welcomed about a dozen hardy souls, including a crew from Energy 106FM, telling them about some of the things that she and other staff have seen or heard within the hotel.
There’s the Churchill Room on the main floor, where staff have had a feeling of being watched. On the third floor, renovations uncovered a sealed communal shower room, long in disuse. It’s said that one person who had a chance to look into the run-down tiled room saw the apparition of a man in a surgical gown inside, scaring the bejeebers out of him!
On the fifth floor, one macabre tale tells of the murder of a young woman named Edith Cook at the hands of a jealous suitor. She was found strangled to death in room 503, and her ghost is said to roam the hallways to this day.
At one time, the ninth floor was the exclusive penthouse apartment of an eccentric owner of the hotel, a spinster who lived by herself although she had been known to have the company of “gentlemen callers.” One of her favourite pastimes was to play a grand piano which was in a sitting room in her penthouse. Hotel staff often could hear the piano music throughout the building, echoing down the elevator shafts and along hallways. But after the woman died, piano music could still be heard…
And then there’s the Press Club, in the basement. It was once where the “old guard” of the media would gather for drinks after putting newspapers to bed. It was where the original “Beer and Skits” was held, much to the chagrin of many. But during its heyday, the basement was the location of special private dining and meeting rooms. And in 1923, no less a prominent figure than Arthur Conan Doyle himself participated in a séance in the Marlborough during a celebrated visit to Winnipeg, seeking to contact the dead.
On the night of the “ghostbusting” with the Paracon tour, the group’s leaders Sharon and “Fonz” Granger pulled out their armoury. They had proximity detectors, in case a spirit was to sneak up on us. (They were kind of theremins that responded to electrical fields with beeps and whoops.) There were cameras and video recorders with infrared imaging. And some neat random word generators that reacted to sounds and when you asked them questions. (The idea was that a ghost might want to manipulate them to “speak” through them to us.)
Grace first led us up upstairs to the third floor, where we looked inside the third-floor shower stall. The tiles are cracked and falling off the wall, there’s a hole in the ceiling where pipes have burst, and there’s a smell of mould. Nothing jumped out at us. However, one woman on the tour felt a sharp pain in her shoulder and then an overpowering sense of despair, “as if something terrible happened in the shower room!”
Oddly enough, when we were taken up to the fifth floor, where a murder was known to have taken place, no one felt anything out of the ordinary.
The big treat of the night was being allowed up to the ninth floor into the former penthouse. It’s been converted into a series of meeting rooms and small dinner halls now, but the view from its windows is spectacular. Members of the group wandered around in pairs or trios, taking photos, trying to “feel” something and just get a sense of what may or may not have been in the room. After a while, Grace sat us down and told us more stories, in particular some about the Garrick Theatre that had been incorporated into the hotel’s amenities some years ago. The Garrick’s four theatres were still used for some corporate events (and some late night dance parties or raves, apparently), although one theatre had been converted into the hotel’s pool (complete with a corkscrew waterslide!).
One story is that a bar manager in the theatre lobby had been closing for the night and distinctly heard the voice of a young, giggling girl running by―but there was no one to be seen, and the theatre was locked. Other staff had sworn they had seen a ghostly figure in the women’s washroom downstairs, but all the stalls were investigated and found to be empty. And in the men’s washroom, the motion-sensor-activated hand driers have started up when there was no one near them. (They never seemed to work for me even when I frantically waved my hand under them!)
Grace then led us into the darkened Garrick theatres. It was spooky, for sure, but nothing out of the ordinary was seen or heard by the group as we walked up and down the steep aisles and sat in the well-worn seats. Nevertheless, tape recorders were running the entire night in all the locations, so the Paracon group has some listening to do and will let us know if voices from the ether were trying to communicate.
Is the Marlborough haunted? Grace and other staff believe it is. But during the tour on June 20, none of us can say that ghosts were present.
Do you believe?
The group on the 5th floor, listening to Grace describe the murder scene.
On the 9th floor, as Grace Rents tells more stories from the Marlborough.
A ghostbustermeter, or something.
"Fonz" Granger in the Garrick Theatre.
"Fonz" and Sharon Granger.
The Energy 106 FM Street Crew listening to Grace describe the Marlborough hauntings.
Wednesday, July 02, 2014
Top 5 Strangest UFO Cases
To Celebrate World UFO Day, here’s a list of the Top 5 Strangest UFO Cases
Kelly-Hopkinsville Close Encounter
The leading UFO researcher of the early days of ufology called the Kelly-Hopkinsville case “preposterous” and offensive to “common sense.” Despite this, the case as a whole is difficult to refute, and many investigators consider it a solid example of a close encounter of the third kind.
At around 7:00 pm on Sunday, August 21, 1955, nearly a dozen members of an extended family began experiencing encounters with strange monkey-like creatures surrounding their farmhouse near Kelly, Kentucky. The creatures were about three-and-a-half feet tall, with large heads, bulbous glowing eyes, pointy ears, with clawed hands on the end of long arms. The family even shot at the creatures, who instead of being taken down, did backwards flips and righted themselves again and floated gently down to the ground and scampered off. Throughout the next hour, creatures seemed to scurry in the shadows around the house, dashing around trees and outbuildings. The family heard scraping noises on their roof, as if clawed feet were moving around up there. The creatures poked their heads in windows and darted around the house.
The seven adult witnesses and later their children were interviewed by reporters several times over the next few days. Skeptics assumed that the witnesses had been drunk or hallucinating, leading the family to simply stop granting interviews after a short while. Another theory offered was that the family had seen monkeys escaped from a zoo, but the witnesses insisted they had been close enough to see if the creatures were ordinary animals.
Joe Simonton’s Pancakes
On April 18, 1961, just before lunch, farmer Joe Simonton heard an odd noise outside his home and ran outside just in time to see a silver, egg-shaped object land in his yard, hovering over the ground. A hatch opened and inside he could see three “men,” with dark complexions, “like Italians,” and dark hair. They wore a uniform consisting of a kind of turtleneck sweater and close-fitting headgear.
One of the “men” saw Simonton and held up a silvery jug with a handle and Simonton figured that he wanted it filled with water, so he went to a tap and filled it up. Simonton saw that one of the “men” was sitting at a flat counter, apparently “cooking” something on a “stovetop.” He pointed at the “grill” and one of the “men” passed Simonton three “pancakes” — small, flat cookielike things with numerous holes. They closed the hatch and the craft took off.
One of the “pancakes” was eventually given to the US Air Force for studying, another went to a civilian UFO group, and Simonton attempted to eat the other. He noted that it tasted like cardboard.
The USAF directed the Food and Drug Laboratory of the U.S. Department of Health, Education and Welfare to test it, and later reported the cake was “composed of hydrogenated fat, starch, buckwheat hulls, soy bean hulls and wheat bran... [and] the material was an ordinary pancake of terrestrial origin.”
The Tully Saucer Nests
Probably the best-known historical UFO case in Australia is that of the Tully saucer “nests.” A possible precursor to the famed “crop circles” of England in the 1980s and 1990s, the Tully incident occurred in a remote area in north Queensland on January 19, 1966.
Around 9:00 am on a clear and warm summer morning near Horseshoe Lagoon, banana farmer George Pedley was driving his tractor along an access road on the property of a neighbor when he was surprised to see a gray, football-shaped object, like two saucers glued rim to rim, rising from the ground about 75 to 100 feet up the road. It seemed to be about 25 feet in diameter and slightly less than 10 feet in thickness, and it appeared to be spinning.
When it had flown away, Pedley found a circular area that had been swept clean of reeds and the water there was rotating slowly, approximately of the same estimated dimensions as the object. The grass initially appeared green when newly fallen but turned brown quickly.
He went to tell the marsh’s owner, who noted that his dog had been in a frenzy and barking in the direction of the marsh that morning. Furthermore, he told Pedley that he had been having odd dreams about a UFO landing on his property. He went with Pedley to visit the area, taking photographs and even wading into the swamp and diving underneath the floating mat of reeds to discover their roots had all been cut away. RAAF records confirmed that there were no aircraft in the area at the time of the sighting.
There are Close Encounters — and then there is what happened to Antonio Villas-Boas in 1957. He had what could be described as the Closest Encounter. You see, he didn’t just see a UFO, he went in one. And he didn’t just get abducted, he was violated.
On October 15, 1957, Antonio was ploughing a field and noticed an odd, red-colored star in the sky. It was moving towards him and getting perceptibly bigger as it approached. The object eventually took up a position about 150 feet over his head, and seemed to be an egg-shaped object that cast a very bright pinkish light around his tractor. It dived from its position and landed only about 35 feet in front of his tractor.
Completely “freaked out,” he started the tractor and attempted to drive off, but its engine died. He then opened the door away tried to run away but was grabbed by three small creatures who lifted him in the air and carried him into the craft.
Inside, Antonio was forcibly undressed and then was given a sponge bath with a thick, clear odorless liquid. He was then put into a room with metal walls with thin tubes from which was being emitted puffs of smoke or colored gas. His discomfort increased and he became very nauseous, eventually vomiting in a corner of the room. A door opened suddenly, and a female creature looking “not quite human” entered the room and immediately made it clear what she wanted. Before long, the alien seduction was over. The male creatures came back into the room, gave him his clothes, he dressed quickly and then was led outside into the field. The craft took off and Antonio was left to reflect on his cosmic quickie.
Dr. Olavo Fontes of Rio de Janeiro had examined Villas-Boas and was puzzled by his story and physiological effects. He was convinced that Antonio had not simply made up the story because he had been reluctant to even come forward with the details. Furthermore, if it had been simply a sexual fantasy, surely he could have done better, as Antonio said that the female alien didn’t even have lips for kissing!
Villas-Boas kept to himself for many years, refusing all interviews. However, in 1978, he agreed to be interviewed on Brazilian TV, primarily to set the record straight about the many different versions and embellishments of his story over the intervening years. He was a learned man, having become a practising lawyer in Brasilia, and was married with several children. He had not discussed his experience in any detail, even with them. Until his death, he maintained that his experience had been real and that he had not been making any of it up. He did not profit from his story and he did not seek any fame or celebrity status, which he certainly could have received had he tried.
The Manhattan Abductions
In contrast to Antonio Villas-Boas, who refused interviews and went to great lengths to remain out of the limelight, the case of Linda Napolitano is one of notoriety and public attention. And rightly so, for many of the claims surrounding the case are fantastic and allegedly involve prominent individuals.
In May 1989, she began corresponding with abduction researcher Budd Hopkins about some odd experiences she had that seemed to be related to aliens. But six months later, on November 30, she called Hopkins in great distress because of a very traumatic dreamlike memory she had of a bizarre encounter with “them” during the previous night. She said she remembered waking up at about 3:15 am and finding small alien creatures around her bed. Before she knew it, she was somehow floating outside her downtown Manhattan apartment in her nightgown, many stories above the ground, beneath a bright bluish-white light.
In February 1991, Budd Hopkins received a letter from someone describing himself as a police officer, who wrote of an amazing experience he and his partner had in November 1989. He wrote that very early one morning, they had been a patrol car underneath FDR Bridge when they suddenly noticed a bluish light near a tall apartment building in front of them. They were even more surprised to see the figure of a woman floating in the air underneath the light, accompanied by three odd-looking creatures who were also suspended in midair. They entered the light, which had now been resolved to that of an oval object, and it then flew off behind the Brooklyn Bridge where the astonished officers watched it descend and enter the water, disappearing from sight.
This observation greatly unnerved the men. In fact, after their experience, they had been very troubled with guilt because they had been unable to do anything to prevent the woman from being abducted. A few weeks later, Napolitano contacted Hopkins with the news that the two men had shown up at her door. They had said they were not actually policemen but “detectives” named “Richard” and “Dan.” The story changed even more: Richard and Dan were not police or security guards, but bodyguards whose job it was to protect and escort “an important political figure.” This third man also saw the object and Linda’s aerial abduction, even though Richard and Dan had made him lay down in the back seat of the vehicle, out of harm’s way. Speculation was that this third person was Javier Perez de Cuellar, former Secretary General of the United Nations.
Linda and members of her family had several meetings with Richard or Dan throughout the next several months, with more letters and some audiotapes coming to light. At no time did Hopkins himself ever meet Richard or Dan, leading some researchers to suggest that the entire thing was an elaborate hoax perpetrated by Napolitano herself.
Complicating the issue were events such as Linda’s claim of an abduction in broad daylight on a street corner by none other than Richard and Dan themselves. Dan accused her of being “one of them” — an alien hybrid half-human, having “alien blood” coursing through her veins. Her captors even examined her feet to see if she had toes (as they knew aliens do not).
On another occasion, Linda was abducted and taken by Dan to a remote oceanfront location on Long Island where he forced her to put on a nightgown similar to the one she had worn on the night of the alien abduction. He also attempted to have sexual relations with her, twisting her arm and overpowering her, then forcing her head under water when she resisted.
Hopkins eventually received a letter from the mysterious political figure who was the “third man.” In his letter, the protagonist advised that the aliens were directly involved in Earth’s political process and that they were striving to achieve world peace in cooperation with terrestrial agents. He also warned that any attempt to contact him directly would seriously threaten the proceedings.
Debate has raged within the ufology community regarding this case. The credibility of Napolitano has been attacked, as has the objectivity of Hopkins. It has been suggested that he was the victim of an elaborate hoax perpetrated by a number of people in cahoots with one another. It has even been suggested that the case bears an uncanny resemblance to the plot of a science fiction novel, Nighteyes, published by Garfield Reeves-Stevens in April 1989, only months before Linda first contacted Hopkins.
Monday, April 21, 2014
A never-investigated CE2 from 1967
In going through all the various documents and material from the National Archives, I found this interesting CE2 case that seems to have never been investigated. It also seems to have never seen print.
So to remedy that, here's the CE2 physiological effects case from October 25, 1967, from Nova Scotia.
The full case report reads:
25 October 1967 3:15 pm AST
Mr. XXXXXXX, Brookfield, Colchester Co., NS
Also seen by two other witnesses
In a letter to the Canadian Forces, he writes: “On October 25, 1967, 3:15 pm AST, while going from Truro to Moncton on the “Cabot Train,” my job being the rear brakeman or flagman, I had the experience of seeing at close range a UFO. It was at the side of the track and at treetop level. When I first looked up at it I thought of something falling from the sky, as there was green vapour coming billowing from the top of it (which was the exhaust end when in flight). It gave off a terrific radiation, as I tried to look at it I covered my face with my hands and peered through my hands with one eye and then the other. It seemed as I looked away from it that I could not believe my eyes and it was difficult to visualize what I had seen. It followed along beside and at the rear of our train from just ¼ mile part Wentworth or nearly to Westchester and then followed the top of the mountain range toward the west. As it drifted away from our train it tipped to a 45 degree angle, the rear top end to the left and later rolled on ¼ turn so the flat sides were up and down. Shortly, a jet from a higher altitude came in sight, diving, at the same angle the demon was positioned, and directly towards the exhaust end of the UFO. The UFO then levelled out and a thin short exhaust was seen from behind it until it took on the shape of a cigar and it just looked like a cloud, with the jet plane pursuing it. The jet caught up with it as far as I could see when they went out of sight (we are not at Nappan) toward the west at to the left of the Sun, time 3:50 PM AST. Two men on the train witnessed the “thing.” A sleeping car conductor and an inspector from Montreal, I have their names. One week after, the hair on the back of my hands disappeared and my hands seemed to wither up some, they felt funny. My eyes got sore and seemed swelled hard. Two weeks later I thought I was taking pneumonia. My chest or ribs in front got sore. My throat got sore and still is. My forehead got greasy and later seemed to dry up. Now my eyes are sore and I had to get my glasses changed but they are still sore. I reported this to the RCMP and thought the Air Force would contact me and I’d get some help but have heard nothing. I tried to talk to my doctor and have asked him for penicillin but he refused. I guess he thinks I’m nuts. Can you tell me anything about the thing: what kind of radiation, atomic, electro-magnetic, solar or what? What medication? I would like to talk to the crew on the plane that chased it sometime. Any help you can give I will greatly appreciate.”
The duration of the sighting is noted as 40 minutes.
The report on file noted: “No exercises were held by our base in that area at the time specified. A letter has been sent to Mr. XXXXXX acknowledging receipt of his letter and the forwarding of the information.”
There is no indication that this case was ever followed up. One would think that even out of curiosity, someone at the military base or within the RCMP would have contacted him to see how he was doing. It's doubtful this was a hoax, because he reported it to two different official agencies. If he was mistaken (and the other two witnesses were as well), it's not clear what this might have been. Far too long for a bolide. A military vehicle?
Thursday, April 10, 2014
Earthquakes, UFOs, and all that stuff
Some new research has been published in a scientific journal about the relationship between UFOs and earthquakes. Ostensibly, however, the research is about luminous objects called earthquake lights are observed at or around the time of significant seismic events. The paper is available at:
This is significantly different in scope from the Tectonic Strain Theory of UFOs, proposed many years ago by Michael Persinger, a Canadaian neuroscientist who believes that most UFO reports can be explained as energy releases from tiny seismic events deep underground. (He's also the guy who says UFO abduction experiences can be explained by electromagnetic effects on the temporal lobe in the brain.)
Anyway, I had originally thought this made some sense, until I began studying the data and the evidence to support the theory, in detail. In short, I found it lacking. I prepared a long treatise on why this was so, in my opinion. It's available online at:
Supporters of the TST didn't take kindly to my criticisms, so a bit of a heated exchange erupted in scientific journals regarding whether UFOs really could be explained as energy from seismicity. (This was actually quite significant: to debate a theory of UFOs in a recognized scientific journal!)
Curiously, I was the only critic of the theory among all of ufology. Practically everyone else seemed to think it made perfect sense, apparently.
The TST theory continued to chug along, and I continued to voice concerns, until it seemed to have reached its peak... or nadir. Proponents claimed that UFO investigators were at risk of dying of cancer because the energy released by the seismic events - which are what were reported by witnesses as UFOs - would cause the cancerous cells to multiply in people frequenting UFO hotspots. And those, of course, would be UFO investigators.
A medical researcher found this as absurd as I did, and we published a note about this in a major medical journal.
So, are UFO sightings and earthquakes related?
You be the judge.
Ann Druffel's recommendations about working with UFO abductees
Noted ufologist Ann Druffel published an article all the way back in 1987, making recommendations on how to deal with UFO abductees.
At the time, alien abduction research was still in its infancy, so her suggestions and her classification of UFO abductees (and contactees) is interesting reading for those wishing to "support" people who are now known as "UFO experiencers."
In short, she found that only two of the six classifications of UFO abductees would benefit from support groups, and that ufologists working with most abductees would have a lot of difficulty. She also spoke out very strongly on having clinical professionals such as psychologists and medical doctors (including psychiatrists) help evaluate and treat abductees for their "emotional damage" caused by either the trauma of their experiences themselves or by the consequences of their coming forward with their stories. In many cases, Druffel noted, abductees/contactees have histories of neuroses, relationship issues, social problems and poor work histories.
And yet, here we are, more than 25 years later, and abductee "support groups" are continuing to chug along, often without adequate medical support for people with emotional trauma.
Thanks anyway, Ann.
Recent comments about UFOs and the state of ufology
A talk I gave at Dream Big, the day before Neil deGrasse Tyson gave his presentation. I spoke about the state of Canadian ufology, and in particular, what people in Canada really are seeing and reporting.
And the review of the talk:
And as well, I was a guest on the Paracast recently:
And the ensuing discussion:
Thursday, April 03, 2014
Bill Clinton and UFOs
It didn't take long for the Conspiracy Theorists and Disclosure Proponents (CT&DPs) to jump on the recent comments by Bill Clinton in response to questions from Jimmy Kimmel about UFOs.
First salient point: He's not saying anything he hasn't said before.
Second point: He said there were no aliens at Roswell. So, since CT&DPs insist politicians (even retired ones) lie about everything, there really must have been aliens there. (Corollary: Paul Hellyer, darling of CT&DPs, says aliens are definitely here, so being a retired politician too, he must be lying. And therefore aliens do not exist.)
Third point: Clinton stated a belief held by most astronomers and the public that aliens probably exist elsewhere in the universe. Which is nothing that you can't read about in any pop science publication.
In other words, there's no news here, people.