Fanfare for the Common Man
I love sky watching.†
Iíve seen space stations, satellites, comets and meteor showers, and have seen all five visible planets with the naked eye Ö six, if you count looking down at my feet and beholding good old mother earth.†
I can pick out constellations other than the Big Dipper.
But Iíve never seen a UFO. I want to, though. Badly.†
So when Milton Finch told me about the strange lights heís been seeing at night from the front yard of his St. Stephen home, I jumped at the chance.†
UFO watching requires a little bit of caution, re: what happens if youíre right? What happens if you really do encounter an alien and itís not ET wanting to phone home?
Iíd be running. I wouldnít wait around to see whatís inside. I already know whatís inside and whatever it is wonít end well for me.
This is what I donít understand about the movie Independence Day. The movie lost all sense of realism for me when a massive ship the size of a small city hovers over downtown Manhattan, and people gather on the roof of a skyscraper to welcome the spaceship to earth.†
Hereís the deal. If this bunch were friendly wouldnít they have said so by now?
Besides, those spaceships are found under two of my favorite phobia categories Ė fear of large things and fear of things that might blow you up. Iíd be running as soon as those things popped out of the clouds.
So as Iím sitting in Milton Finchís front yard scanning the night skies for signs of alien spacecraft, I already have one foot pointing in the direction of my car. I make no bones about my intentions should something unidentified show up. Iím out of here and I have no qualms about leaving the rest of you behind. Even Stefan, our intrepid young investigative reporter, would be on his own.†
Iíll leave you behind in a heartbeat, I said.†
We saw a lot of lights that night, a couple of them out of the ordinary, but sadly no little green men. Still, what strange things I did see didnít come from the sky.
The first day Milton brought us to his home to view a video of the UFOs heíd seen recently, the power was out. He was surprised by this as heíd seen a power company van out front earlier working on the power lines.†
Eerily coincidental, and I donít believe in coincidences. It must be ďThemĒ and theyíre putting the squelch on us. Somebody doesnít want me to watch this video.†
Second, the Finches have a dog that looks just like Frank from Men in Black, another eerie coincidence. I say that if the dog starts talking Iím out of here.†
They all laugh. I wasnít kidding.†
Third, as weíre sitting there watching the northern skies, I hear a crisp, distinctive cracking and look to see a massive tree branch falling out of the top of the nearby oak tree. The limb at its base is as big around as my thigh.†
It hits the ground with an ominous thump about six inches from Stefanís head.†
An Unidentified Falling Object for sure.†
And last, as weíre on our way home, a massive bat smacks my windshield, its little rat face about the size of a golf ball. It glares at me threateningly.†
Not good, I thought. The aliens have enlisted the aid of the Undead.†
I figure if I survive this Iím going after Bigfoot next.†