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The universe is a big place.
It is vast beyond our imagination – at least if your imagination is somewhat less active than that wheelchair guy – and it is ever expanding, creating new space for new planets and solar systems and galaxies and strip malls, a kind of cosmic sprawl.
It would be solipsistic of us to believe that we are the only beings in the universe who have built great cities, tamed and then destroyed our environment and domesticated the dog to the point where we exist as a support system for canines. (If aliens ever visit, they will immediately try to talk to our dogs to learn about our culture. The dogs are clearly in charge. I mean, we follow them around and pick up their poop.)
There has to be intelligent life out there somewhere because, as Monty Python once opined, “there’s bugger all down here on Earth.”
These are notions to ponder as we delve into the news, kind of, of a close encounter of some kind that may have occurred somewhere around here.
It happened April 11 at about 10 p.m.
According to a report received by the Mutual UFO Network, called MUFON, for short, the person who witnessed it was inside watching TV when the person, who was not identified, saw two bright lights in the distance.
At first, the witness believed it was a new cell tower, but it wasn’t. The witness reported to MUFON that the lights did not move for a while, and after a few moments, a smaller light detached from the larger one and hovered below it.
The witness then reported that the larger of two objects, described as a large craft, moved toward the witness and passed, low, over the witness’s house. “It was diamond shaped and had a rectangular light underneath it,” the witness was quoted as saying. “In that rectangle was a red light, then a white light, and then a green light. The lights were not flashing. The UFO was humongous and made a humming noise.”
It hovered and then both things began to move, the witness reported. “When it took off, the small thing that came out of it went straight up,” the report continued. “When the light came out of the right corner or what would have been the right corner (the only thing I could see at that point were the two huge lights) it seemed that the small thing came off that light. Almost like it was poured out of that light.”
The witness reported, “Anyway, it scared me a lot, and I have looked for a hovering jet picture on the net, but did not see any that looked like it. And why would a hovering jet be spitting out a small craft like that? Before it took off, it had stayed unmoving for at least 10 minutes, maybe longer, before I noticed it. In relationship to its size, it was huge. I watch planes in the distance from my backyard and the little thing that came out of the big UFO would have been the size a commercial airplane like I see all the time going toward Harrisburg airport. So the big UFO was really, really big.”
So, aliens? Little green men? Are they the kind of docile, kind aliens of “Close Encounters of the Third Kind”? Or are they huge tentacled insects bent on world domination and killing off the human race as in “Independence Day”? Or are they the really tall mutes who want to eat us, as featured on “The Twilight Zone”?
Or are these craft part of a fleet of intergalactic airliners that took a wrong turn around Albuquerque?
Well, Bill Weber might know.
Bill Weber is MUFON’s chief investigator for Pennsylvania and Delaware, and as such, the report from York was funneled to him. Weber declined to release either the name of the witness or the location of the sighting, saying the organization maintains confidentiality with those who report things like this. The closest city was York was all he would say about it.
He said he has assigned an investigator and will await the results of whatever he comes up with.
Typically, he said, the investigators interview the witness, search the area for corroborating witnesses, review any photographs or video, stuff like that. In some cases, they file Freedom of Information Act requests with the Federal Aviation Administration for radar data and analyze that.
In many cases, he said, there is an explanation for whatever witnesses think they saw. It could be a terrestrial aircraft – as opposed to an extraterrestrial aircraft – or it could be birds or bats, or it could be something else entirely, maybe a drone or something. Some reports are hoaxes and MUFON’s investigators can easily debunk them, he said.
Weber estimates that between 80 and 85 percent of the cases the organization investigates conclude with a logical explanation. “It’s only about 15 percent that we tend to classify as unknown,” he said. That doesn’t mean it’s an alien craft, only that “we can’t figure out what it is.”
Among those reports investigators apparently figured out was another from Pennsylvania, reported in 1997 and published on MUFON’s website.
It reads: “It was like a spinning top but the bottom was not pointed, lots of multicolored lights, lots of see-through window at top. At least 15 or 20 aliens unlike the standard look, they were half human and half standard look, full bodies, beautiful looking creatures all moving about and communicating whatever. All had the same colored outfits and all the lights constantly moving. All windows seem to be moving or turning separately from the bottom. The bottom then had a long yellow light dropping to the ground and a small stepside Ford or Chevy pickup lowered slowly to the ground and disappeared over the hill ahead and then the UFO disappeared. I followed to find it and could not find it, but at the bottom of the hill daylight stunned me and it was 6:30 a.m. I don’t know where the night went.”
Aliens in a pickup truck? Were these some kind of interstellar migrant workers? Are we going to have to build a bigger wall? And what’s “standard look”?
Well, we may never know.
Reach Mike Argento at 717-771-2046 or at email@example.com.