Tuesday, October 17, 2017

31 Days of Halloween - Day 17

The Van Meter Visitor by Chad Lewis, Noah Voss, and Kevin Lee Nelson

On The Road Publications. 2013

Over a couple of nights in 1903, the small town of Van Meter, Iowa, found itself disturbed by the presence of an eight-foot tall bird-like creature, with bat-like wings, four-legs, and a bright light which shined from a horn-like protrusion on the top of its beak. It caused no harm, but was shot at repeatedly to no avail before vanishing (along with a second, smaller creature) into the town's mines.

The entirety of this strange experience was initially related in a single, short, newspaper article that was published at the end of the events listed above. No follow up was ever recorded, so there's no way to know if that was the end of the story. The authors of this book deserve credit for taking what could've been a single paragraph, or foot note, in a more expansive book on weird phenomena, or cryptozoological beings, and making a full book out of it.

They did what research could be done over a hundred years after the related events, and for the most part, provided sound analysis. The part for me that I have issues with in books such as this one, is when they start getting into areas such as "ultraterrestrial" explanations, conjecturing that strange creatures, such as the one being investigated, could possibly be visitors from another dimension. It's hard enough to try and identify a mysterious creature using behavioral and biological bases, but when you are taking a creature not proven to be real and using theories about parallel universes which are not proven to be real, to account for them, you're building a case lacking any solid foundation. Especially so, when you've already gone to great lengths to relate your careful, sound investigative techniques and analysis.

Don't get me wrong, parallel universes and the collective consciousness are fascinating to me, but risk erasing constructed credibility because they seem like entirely speculative conjecture, and probably sound a bit crackpot to the lay reader.

A very interesting read, though.

1 comment:

Caffeinated Joe said...

Lots of "reality supernatural" shows exist on this "did this maybe-kind of happen" premise. They are good for background entertainment, but not much else.