Book Review:  Edison Versus Tesla

Mr. Not-Nice Guy

DATELINE:  Pro-Edison, Anti-Tesla

The co-author of this work is William Birnes whom you may remember as the older member of the UFO Hunters TV series a few years back.

Now he has put his name on a work that describes itself in subtitle as the “Battle” over their last invention. Whatever this book presents, the real Edison was not a nice person. You will not know that from this book.

How about a little truth in advertising? Or at least in titles?  There is no battle,  and it isn’t really Tesla’s last invention.  So, what have we got here?

The book is a hagiography to Edison, and sells Tesla a bit short, noting he feared having people aware of his paranormal and clairvoyant abilities. Edison privately believed that Tesla had found a radio frequency that transmitted ethereal voices.

Tesla undercut this by claiming he was receiving signals from Mars—or some inter-dimensional location.

Edison did not believe in spiritualism, rapping poltergeists or any of that stuff:  he did believe that electrons lived forever.

If Tesla could do it, Edison wanted to create a receiver for electrons and conscious energy. He wanted to measure unusual messages. He did believe that memory survived death—and that traumatic memory might be quite strong. The inventor wanted a device to increase the volume of sound waves.

Their vocabulary has been updated: Tesla likely knew of EVP (electronic voice phenomenon) and Edison was into quantum entanglements.

The book could have been a pamphlet, but does contain nuggets that are fascinating. Edison awoke on his death bed from a deep coma to tell people he saw an afterlife, and promptly died.

 

 

 

 

Proof is Out There, Way Out

DATELINE:  Faster than a speeding bullet…

A new history show is mercifully short, only thirty minutes in an age when an hour or more is standard.

The Proof is Out There has a host, a former journalist named Tony Harris, who introduces videos of strange phenomena—and throws it to the various science experts in fields of computers, meteorology, audio, and so forth. They are to determine if the video submitted, and often viral on the Internet, is fake stuff.

On the night we caught it, the show seemed to focus on ball lightning, mysterious orbs (only outdoors), and strange horn-like, prolonged sound recorded in someone’s backyard.

One scientist sees bird wings flapping as a big ball of light comes out of a cloud. It is going like a jet, and we see nothing remotely like wings. Of course, we were not hired as a consultant.

You will hear terms like glitch in the matrix, and the parallax effect. It may be more like the B.S. Effect.

Of course, we hear all the theories—from apocalyptic Biblical evidence to foo fighters or government technology.

The proof may be in the pudding, but it seems never to be in these videos. One is called “doctored,” but most are simply inexplicable. They seem better suited for William Shatner’s kookoo bird show, UnXplained.  So, you watch and you consider, but don’t expect proof. It ain’t here.

We suspect this series won’t be out there for long.

Ancient Aliens Take on Noah & the Great Flood

Ganymede: Boy-napped!

 DATELINE: They’re No Angels!

You can call this week Land of the Giants, Part 2. After looking at the Big Deal of Big Men around Campus, we turn now to a Biblical evidence of angels and cutting problems down to size.

Ancient Aliens love a tall tale. This week we continue to rattle off pie in the sky.

The theory is that Noah was a giant albino, genetically engineered to save mankind from a group of unpleasant giant aliens. And, for good measure, those angels were actually physical beings working as messengers.

So, we have Enoch and some of the first alien abduction stories. This includes Zeus boy-napping Ganymede with a giant eagle for more than prurient reasons. It was truly abduction with an abusive angle.

These are dangerous texts not meant for everyone’s eyes. So, the Hebrew and Christian Bibles were much smaller than the Book of Giants that predates Genesis. It seems those Big Boys weren’t playing nice, being cannibals of human flesh. Noah had to rid the world of these pests.

And, Noah had help: 200 Watchers, who were angels with clipped wings. They were using misunderstood technology to ferry around the world. The Great Flood is more likely to be indicated by geological evidence.

If you’re wondering why there was a Great Flood after the Great Pyramid, you have to look for solar flares that melted the ice caps and flooded the world. This burnt layer is 50 feet deep all around the world, proving the theory, say the alien theorists.

Enoch took off with his alien buds, but announced he’d return eventually.

 

 

 

Monkey See, Monkey Do Another Monolith

Twin Mono Peaks

DATELINE: Next Stop, Romania

 More shenanigans have resulted in a second Monolith discovery, this time in the historic mountains of Romania, not far from the castle of Vlad the Impaler, we suspect.

We hate to cross pollinate A Space Odyssey with Dracula, but satire knows no boundaries.

The hacked version is not as aesthetic as the original, but it is still a hollow tin cup of mystery. This one is smudged with lettering in some foreign tongue spoken in Alpha Centauri.

We now see how easy it is to double your mono.

And, the Monolith (black only in its heart) is placed on lands protected by government fiat. Yes, we have another illegal parker, nosy or not. Romanian meter-maids are on their way with tow-truck in hand.

Our monolithic LSD trip now brings us to face Romania’s Mount Ceahlau, which locals call the Holy Mountain. 

So, what are we to make of monkey business that now includes international placement of Zarathrustrian proportions.

Are these things dropping from the sky, or simply being downloaded by UFOs? Beam us up and your Monolith too.

Art for art’s sake is now causing more monkey business than we can joke about.

Keir Dullea has still not tweeted his impressions of the biggest event of his life, waking up with a Monolith in his bedroom.

Stanley Kubrick may be laughing somewhere in the Universe, having taken the route of celestrial light with him. Or, perhaps, we are talking that signpost up ahead reading, “Twilight Zone.”

Kubrick Monolith Inspires Monkeys Everywhere!

DATELINE:  Ape Uses Bonehead?

With the news that the late Stanley Kubrick has sent a monolith to Utah, we have had flashbacks about the meaning for humankind.

In Kubrick’s movie, this led to rediscoveries on the Moon and on an orb going around Jupiter.

The heavy footed plodding of officials have muffed all chance of finding footprints or other characteristics of a forensic nature. We have some reports that the metal object is made with screws: no word on whether they are Phillips head.

It is interesting that the item is in a remote and difficult to reach place, presumably dropped there by chopper or UFO. We would have been much more impressed if the item had been found at the White House Rose Garden, or even in Joe Biden’s basement.

There is no word if this indicates we will have a cure for coronavirus soon, or whether it means the Dow will hit 30,000 for the first time.

We feel that it supersedes having Xmas decorations needed during a national crisis. The government should send everyone in the United States, who is eligible, a postcard photo of the monolith. It will replace stimulus checks.

The strange object is illegal, of course, but the meter maids have yet to stick a parking ticket on the shiny silver object.

We think someone has usurped the season’s findings at Oak Island. This monolith was supposed to be found by Gary Drayton’s metal detector next to Captain Kidd’s treasure.

The real impact of the monolith has been dulled because we do not hear the Gregorian chants emanating from its radio dial.

 

Oak Island Returns for S 8

Boys in Quarantine

DATELINE: Two Young Stars Out for Covid-19

 History Channel gave the new season 8  start of Curse of Oak Island one of their 2-hour special starts. That may be due to the fact that the principals were all trapped back in the USA, unable to reach Oak Island and the return of the hunt.

Yes, Covid-19 may have put a damper on the Lagina brothers and their participation in their own show. It became the “Remote Control” episode. Interestingly enough, none of the major stars (Marty, Alex, Rick, Jack Begley, or Craig Tester) could find their way out of Michigan. 

 Yet, the rest of the team assembled, most of them already on the Island and ready to work.  What does that tell us? Oh, yes, Gary Drayton too was not on the island, probably back home in Florida. But thanks to Zoom, the gang was all there for a teleconference.

Tom Nolan, who lives on the Island, admitted that cases were still somewhat rampant in Nova Scotia. And Blankenship was nowhere to be seen, after years of offering little to the show.

 A new face cropped up: archaeologist Dave MacInnes, 4G grandson of the young man who found the original Money Pit in 1798. Nice choice.

Inexplicable actions continued this season to start: nothing much changes on the show. The diver Mike Huntley suddenly is replaced by a big rig team to go looking for shiny gold objects in the C-1 tunnel where for years cameras spotted golden flashes.

 However, the new group featured butterflingers. The diver dropped the gold coin he dug out of the wall and it fell into the dark dregs. No one swore, or said any discouraging word. But, please.  That dive team did not return.

And their diver did not locate any of the gold seen on camera. It seemed almost inexcusable to drop the gold piece.

 

Finally, the Laginas were given permission to go to Canada under the proviso of a two-week quarantine.  Again, they were unnecessary for any success.

REAL VAMPIRES?

Unfortunate Victim Exhumed

DATELINE: Monsterquest Tries Too Hard

The Gold Standard of monster investigations is, of course, the series Monsterquest. So, when they chose to coincide Halloween with an examination of vampires, we were ready to dig in.

As the show is always attempting to find a fresh angle, the episode does not mention Dracula for almost fifteen minutes.

They do tell us about a strange burial or re-burial in one of the leading spots of vampires in America: New England. That surprised us, but to learn that the bones of a suspected vampire are now kept in government archives was even more interesting.

 

A couple of aficionados of the vampire lore want to see what was going on in Willington, CT, 200 years ago that led to a spate of vampire reports. They also note that Bram Stoker too had a clipping of vampire story out of the New England archives to help him with writing his Dracula tale.

Since it will take longer than the show can wait, we never find out if the bodies they suspect will be exhumed or if family will allow this. Another dead end.

Monsterquest contends that vampires are a love-hate fascination with immortality.

 

A great deal of effort is put into finding “unmarked graves” that could harbor people who died of consumption (TB) and were thought to be vampiric. There may be many reasons why family members are buried without markers, but the theory here is vampirism.

 

While claiming to attempt to prove vampires exist, the show examines several murderers who believed their vampire character allowed them to live outside law. There is almost a kind of sympathy for these creatures, according to witnesses.

 

There is also an emphasis on “psychic vampires” who simply take electro-magnetic energy from others to gain strength.

 

What we have here is another example of a bad episode more than any serious insight. Monsterquest keeps its track record of having every other episode be a doozy.

 

 

 

 

 

Dangerous Primates: Monsterous!

DATELINE: Not Man.

BigChimp

When we saw the title, our thought; the most dangerous primates are members of the Monsterquest  investigation team.

You might think the most dangerous primate on Earth is humans, but actually there are many chimpanzees here in captivity as pets. Their insane tantrums are well-documented, andMonsterquestexamines the problem of these dangerous creatures who can grow to the size of an adult male.

They can be quite unpleasant and unruly, ripping people apart ruthlessly in a fit of anger. Monsterquest  gruesomely documents this in the latest episode.

Horrific photos, seen by us for the first time, of a victim in Connecticut showed the poor woman who survived with a face transplant, no hands, and blind, from the attack.

Half the states in the US allow chimpanzees as pets. And, Florida, of course, has had over 70 sightings of wild roving chimps in the swamps. Speculation centers on released or escaped primates. Once again, Florida is the place where nature is allowed to run wild and old folks are in constant danger. Not crocs, chimps. Dr. Hogan Sherrow seems knowledgeable enough, but he’s left back in the swamps.

One chimp escaped in California, and his owners were frantic to find him as they had raised him since he was a baby: speculation was that he could not survive in the wilds because he was 42 years old.

There is not much evidence during the Monsterquest investigation, though they find just about every other wild animal in Florida. Abruptly, they switch to the Pacific and Vancouver Island where there are reports of extremely large primates. They sound exactly like Bigfoot.

Clever enough,Monsterquest experts describe the Bigfoot and never uses the word for the remainder of the show, but we felt more than a little miffed that this has evolved, yet again, into another Bigfoot episode.

You hae the usual reports of smell, hostility to campers, and the odd footprint. Yup, this is Bigfoot territory. A promising episode turns out to be old hat.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Monster Quest Returns

DATELINE: Favorite Back After Hiatus

“Serpentine Creatures,”  is the new special from the old classic series Monsterquest  that concluded its four-year run a few seasons ago. You can’t keep a good monster down, unless he is hiding under water.

Since Loch Ness has been done to death and debunk, the show moves on to other copycat sea creatures that have become landlocked in lakes since the dawn of prehistory.

We always liked the old series that took a serious attempt to uncover the stories behind some outlandish reports. And, now it has returned for a limited time on History Channel. Catch it for a mesmerizing few shows.

To investigate newer phenomena, the show does a ping-pong between the two coasts of Canada, ignorning Nessie and Champie entirely. We are given relatively new information about Ogopogo in British Columbia and Cressie in Newfoundland.

The theory espoused by more reputable scientists, not those who call themselves crypto-scientists, is that these are giant eels about twenty or thirty feet in length—and still ferocious.

Ogopogo is highly active with a half-dozen sightings every year still—and the show’s producers think their best chance to catch something is here. At least one expert wants to extract a tissue sample for DNA. Good luck, there.

Perhaps the best expert is author Arlene Gaal who has written three books on the subject and sounds down-to-earth and reputable.

The Monsterquest teams seem highly inept. They know what they are supposed to do, but helicopters do not arrive when called—and divers mysteriously go silent in the deep. Perhaps it is part of fake suspense for the audience, but the real result is sheer contempt for the half-baked efforts.

Oh, nothing is found—but they promise to return because you know there is a creature hiding there in the underwater caves and sinkholes. And, yes, we will likely return to watch again.

 

 

 

 

 

 

UFOs: The Secret History

DATELINE: (well, not so secret)

Be Still, My Earth.

Though it is billed as having new information, it really has only a new and amusing perspective.  The film is irreverent in many ways, through use of movie clips and the laconic narration of its clever director.

We are happy to report that, unlike many cheapskate directors who save money by doing their own voice-overs, this director is actually a fairly good voice and speaks with intelligence and drama. David Cherniak directs with aplomb. He also led the film for the recent look at Bob Lazar in late middle age, revisited. Don’t hold it against him.

UFOs: The Secret History  is indeed a history, but with few secrets. It does have a plethora of marvelous clips from classic sci-fi films as part of its narrative.

His hilarious insights that are new include the notorious “pelican” theory that Kenneth Arnold in 1947 actually saw pelicans flying in formation at 1700 mph and called them saucers.

Yes, a scientist tells us this with a straight face.

When it comes to more serious matters, director David Cherniak still chooses photos that are unusual, not ones you’d see on Ancient Aliens. He does give us a a fresh take on Orson Welles, Roswell, Project Grudge, and the usual litany of UFO incidents that brought us to a wholesale government coverup.

He also plays on the notion that seeing UFOs was psychological, part of the J. Allen Hynek approach, which was code for saying the viewer of such events had a psychological problem. Even Hynek was turned into a buffoon over “swamp gas.” Well, yes, being called a nutcase is distressing.

One turning point is hardly secret: abductions of Betty and Barney Hill of New Hampshire, the template for lost time and sexual abuse by space creatures.  There is no secret about the Travis Walton case, but it grabbed worldwide attention, as did the appearance of elderly Jesse Marcel who was at the Roswell crash in 1947, blowing the whistle.

If there is a secret here, that may be the hybridization plan of aliens to take over the Earth in subtle fashion by genetics. Oh, that secret…

 

 

 

 

 

UnXplained at Center of Earth

DATELINE: Under the Earth

 Brain Waves/underground acoustics?

Put Jules Verne’s Journey aside, UnXplained  is taking Shatner to the center of the Earth. In the series volatile up and down quality, this episode is a gem.

This show looked at the phenomenon of underground habitations, both natural—and man-made. The first stop in Turkey uncovers a labyrinth of rooms, a city actually, that could house 20,000 people. Conservative estimates suggest it is 1000 years old, but some say it is closer to 12,000 years. Who built this before the Pyramids, and why?

If you think we don’t have the technology today to accomplish this, you haven’t heard about the multi-layers of Area 51 or the cavernous living areas of Cheyenne Mountain, both military zones.

The experts (physicists from Ancient Aliens  like Drs. Travis Taylor and Mike Dennin) will tell you about a secret high-speed rail-subway system running clear across the United States.

If there is a nuclear winter, or a new ice age, the elite will be saved. The rest of us may not fare so well.

The show also visited a necropolis, an acoustic marvel in Malta where voices are enhanced, or seeming come out of the crypts of the dead. It almost sounds like Gregorian chanting from the netherworld. Actual recordings are played on this episode.

Shatner does mention Jules Verne toward the end, and his mid-19thcentury novel that may not be as fictional as some claimed. He even had a crystal world under the Earth, which has recently been discovered as real.

These giant crystals are hundreds of feet long from centuries of growth, and weigh tons. Humans cannot spend more than 15 minutes in their habitat because of heat and high humidity. You will be cooked alive.

The crystals are containers for microbes from outer space, not earthly, and they have been in suspended animation for 50,000 years inside the crystals. Uh-oh.

Subterranean worlds may be part of the “hollow Earth” syndrome, which has been dismissed by experts both as a fact here on our planet—and even the Moon.

This UnXplained  was truly worth the title.

 

 

 

Claire Denis: High Life Tumbles

DATELINE: Pattinson Finds His Spacesuit! 

 Rocket Man, Not !

The latest film by auteur and brilliant director Claire Denis is not her best, but it is original, bizarre, and will find admirers among the critical set. High Life sets a tone and standard for sci-fi that seems sci-unfit.

However, High Life is more original than your sci-fi audience may want. This is not on the level of Kubrick tackling the topic. It is anti-science fiction: philosophical and idiosyncratic. Forward is going backward from Earth.

 

If Robert Pattinson has selected it, you know you are in for something different. He knows how to pick unusual movies.

The narrative storyline is something about a father raising his infant daughter alone on a spaceship hurtling toward a black hole.

You know you are in arthouse territory when the title of the film flashes 18minutes into the story. We slowly discern the rest of the crew is dead—and therein is the tale of sexual tension with malcontents on a ship going nowhere at nine-tenths the speed of light.

Somewhere around half-way into the movie, we find the kink foundation and disturbing fact that these are actually delinquent prisoners unethically sent out as guinea pigs with no hope of return.

Their fate is not exactly happy, and their problematic lives merely make the inevitable tragedy. In the meantime, Pattinson is a curio, ageless and aging as his daughter grows up. Their goal of a black hole is referred to as an alligator eye, but it is the bullseye of bull. This dark, dour film has convinced some it is a masterpiece.

For others, it is simply so far out there that it defies comprehension. Critical reaction is all over the landscape and under the sun.

Tom Brady: Oh, Say, Can You See?

 DATELINE:  Charitable De-pants of Brady

 Splitsville for Tom? Pulling an Elvis?

Tom Brady’s golf game has brought a split decision. It was a new low for the Super Bowl man without a pocket.

The big televised charity golf tournament with Peyton Manning, Phil Mickelson and Tiger Woods, came apart at the seams during the match.

It seems Tom Brady bent over and found himself flying by the seat of his pants. How could a man so thin break the laws of physics? Or maybe he just broke the wind speed for a tee-off swing.

We haven’t seen such roughage to a wardrobe since Janet Jackson pulled her prank. Yes, Tom, we see you for all your worth. He needed his copper-infused pajama pants to play the rest of the game.

If we recall clearly, Elvis used to regularly split his pants in his final concert tour. Some believe it was sewn into the act.

Tom needed a diversion, and a pair of Sponge Bob’s pants fit the bill, harry, and tom. Underneath it all, there came a subpar moment in sports history. This seemed to parallel Spygate, Deflategate, and the general run of fake news.

Now this has nothing on Trump on Memorial Day, swaying in the breeze like the American flag. Supporters wanted to support the unsteady President who played golf the day before and showed his handicap: standing still.

In front of the Unknown Soldier during a ceremony, Trump looked like a man who had a few too-many swigs of Clorox before the game. He needed his club to act as a walker. We expect to see Trump split voters and pants, but never Tom Brady, his ardent supporter friend.

We gasped to see what color Tom’s undies might be: at least he wore undies, unlike some NFL players on Sunday games day.

Tom’s world tour of torn pants and broken promises will continue in Tompa Bay where the sea breeze will send a cooling cool to the Elvis stunt.

More Walking, Less Skin on Skinwalker Ranch.

DATELINE: Dragonfly in the Ointment!

What’s underneath the Secret of Skinwalker Ranch? If you recall the scene from the original Thing, the explorers in the Arctic form a human ring around something under the ice: it turns out to be oval, like a saucer.

This week with GPR, the radar indicates something is about 20 feet under the ground near a hotspot at the ranch. When Travis Taylor connects the dots, it turns out to be saucer shaped. And two stories tall.

Of course, you have to take Taylor with a grain of salt and a damaged brain cell or two. He is at the abandoned homestead and is told not to pick up a heavy cover to a well. He never listens. Immediately he is hit with the equivalent of 20,000 X-rays. He felt a tad unwell, as you might expect.

One of the security guards leaders nicknamed Dragonfly, who is a pip, states he has no opinion because he lacks a PhD. Well, there you have in a nutshell the anti-intellectual and anti-scientific attitude of viewers, according to History Channel demographics. There is a dragonfly in the ointment.

What have we got here? A series that offends science and lies about truth. Robert Clotworthy’s sonorous tones tell us that the federal government studied the place for 10 years and learned nothing. Earlier we heard that former owner Robert Bigelow had all kinds of information, but refused to release it.

Taylor is clearly furious with the billionaire boss and his dragonfly that he had to defend the idea of drilling to find out what he was hired to study. We may never have seen such flaring anger in Dr. Taylor in any of his previous TV appearances.

Someone is withholding truth. You may want to pursue this series for a few more episodes, but it is now called History’s “new hit” in ads. What that means for the future only space aliens can tell.

 

 

 

Westworld’s Version/Vision of Hell

DATELINE: Robby the Robot Need Not Apply!

 Ed Harris Looks for a Cut Throat.

Number Four of Westworld III  is a lulu. Perhaps the highpoint of the night is a fight between Evan Rachel Wood and muscleman Luke Hemsworth. It seems in our new age, a good fight among equals includes some give and take between the sexes as a little later Thandie Newton enjoys a good roust.

As for the series, in its mercurial way, remains cryptic beyond even its usual standards. In the fourth episode, we finally see the ravaged leftovers of Ed Harris, or William, who had been obsessed with Dolores from the start. Whether he is done for, or will come back, only four episodes left will tell.

Now, he is being played by other parties, haunted by the ghost of his dead daughter (or is she another robotic version sent to drive him all the way to the mental hospital?)

It seems a little early for everyone to receive his come-uppance, and whatever secrets Dolores is harboring, using all who enter her realm, there are several spearhead opponents—Maeve, Bernard, and possibly William. You can never count anyone out in this show where apparent death to robots means you’ll be back next week.

We are now so far afield from the original setting that it is hard to know where this vapid, wealthy future shall lead. We are not sure the series has anywhere else to go as we rush head-long into a robot apocalypse.

Jonathan Nolan has surprised us before, but he may well have overreached his play with this season of his intellectual treatise on the meaning of life and AI.