i really should be writing the script to issue 4 of perhapanauts:second chances right now, but like every good procrastinator, i'm stalling. i'm on a bit of a roll in THIS part of writing; the talking to people, letter writing, emailing, blog blogging, correspondence kind of writing. i'll get to the more imaginative, fantastic, makin' crazy crap up right off the toppa your head kinda writing a little later.
actually, for most of this post, i plan on cutting and pasting one of my favorite (weird) stories off of paranormal at about dot com. i really don't know what the rules are about this, about borrowing content or whatever it's called, but i think that as long as i say where it came from--and not try to claim it as my own--everybody's cool.
anyway, i read this article about a year or so ago and it just continues to haunt me. i keep trying to figure out a cool way to incorporate it--this thing or occurance or whatever it is--into the perhapanauts, but i just haven't figured out a way to get it to all fall into place.
it's pretty self explanatory and it's actually in a couple parts; the story i'll bust up into 2 sections, and the comments. i'll post the replies/responses seperately.
see what you think.
THE CREATURE OF THE DUMP
Sometimes it's difficult to believe your own eyes. When people encounter a thing they cannot explain - something completely alien to their experience - they tend to doubt their own senses at first. The mind tries to relate what is seen to previous experiences, but when that thing is so totally bizarre, many people second-guess their experience. "I couldn't have seen that," they tell themselves. "It doesn't make sense."
In a recent poll of readers, I asked if they had ever seen a living creature they could not explain. Of more than 650 respondents, 47 percent said that they had. That's a lot of unexplained sightings.
Paula M. had one such sighting. But it wasn't of a Bigfoot, a sea serpent or even a Chupacabra. In many ways it was much stranger. And try as she might and after diligent research, she has yet to come up with an explanation for what she saw.
The encounter took place on a warm, otherwise ordinary day in the summer of 1999 just outside a small town in Oregon.__One of Paula's hobbies was prowling through old junk yards and dump sites for vintage old bottles and glass. On this particular day, she headed to an old off-road dump site that she had heard about but had never been to before. Paula parked her car on the side of the road and hiked a short distance to the dump.
The dump was typical of several she had been to: Piles of discarded household items and furniture, scattered mounds of rusting old appliances and metal. This recess was quiet and secluded. It was surrounded by trees and had patches of tall skimpy grass and weeds amid the trash. A small stream rested at very bottom of the recess with slow moving water one to two inches deep.__Then Paula noticed something peculiar - something she had never seen at any other dump site.
"As I was staking out the area," she said. "I happened across some tunnel-like holes in the ground. The holes were of a peculiar size, which made me wonder what kind of animal possibly could have dug them."
Paula noticed six or seven of the holes, each about two inches in diameter and partially camouflaged by the sparse growth of the recess. The holes could have been made by any number of burrowing creatures, Paula reasoned. She didn't worry about it.__Experienced in this hunt for junkyard treasures, Paula sifted around here and there for about 30 minutes until she found a spot that looked inviting on the slant of a hill, about three-fourths of the way down to the stream. Dropping to her knees, she took her hand trowel and began to dig. Paula especially valued the old bottles with embossed lettering, but such finds rarely made their appearance quickly or easily. She dug in the dirt for nearly an hour - so long that in this kneeling position her legs were beginning to go to "fall sleep."
Paula decided to take a break from her excavation and stretch her legs. She stood and walked around a bit. "While I was moving about at the bottom of the recess, I thought I saw, from the corner of my eye, a clump of dirt move. It was about the size of my fist."__She turned to look squarely in the direction of the movement, trying to detect it again. But nothing moved. "Nah," she thought, "it was nothing."_ _Paula was about to return to her dig when she saw it again. About 10 feet away from her, the clump of dirt moved, like it was pushed out of the ground from beneath, and rolled down the hill. Paula began to get a little nervous. Whatever had made those tunnel-like holes was apparently making another one. And she wasn't particularly keen on watching a rat, a snake or some other potentially dangerous animal come slithering out.
Then she saw it. Something living began to poke itself out of the ground!
Paula's first reaction to seeing this "thing" was saying, "Oh, my God! What are you?"
Paula was familiar with the outdoors and was reasonably sure of what animals she might encounter in a junkyard. But this thing she could not identify. She stepped cautiously closer to it, thinking that the vibration of her digging may have driven it from its burrow.__She stopped about four to five feet away from the creature. What she could see of it was poking out of the ground about five inches. "At this point, I wasn't sure what end of the animal I was looking at," Paula said. "It was about two inches in diameter, and the end of it was perfectly smooth and round - like a cue ball. It was light-brown in color, very much like the surrounding earth. It had a worm-like shape, but didn't taper down at the end as worms do, and was firmer around looking. It had no distinguishing or familiar features to indicate to me what it was."
Its size made it obvious that this was not a worm - at least not any kind of worm Paula had ever heard of. And she could not see its entire body, only what was poking out of the ground, so who knows what this thing really looked like.
Paula looked at the creature closely, trying in vain to find anything familiar about it. She could not detect any eyes, mouth, nose or ears. It had no fur, scales or worm-like ripples on its skin. What it did have was patches of peach-like fuzz - very fine and spaced apart like the hair on a young human's arm - covering what looked like soft, dusty skin about the texture of a person's. It was not wet, slimy or tough looking.
By now, Paula was completely perplexed. This was like nothing she had ever seen in person, at a zoo or on any nature program on television. And if this creature wasn't strange enough, it then gave Paula a remarkable surprise.
part 2 tomorrow...