Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Felix Baumgartner Makes History!

Sunday morning, October 14th, 2012, on the anniversary when Chuck Yeager broke the sound barrier, Felix Baumgartner jumped from space making a perfect landing in the New Mexico desert near Roswell. He broke the sound barrier and several other records. John Hawkins, a Townhall commentator, wrote, "Red Bull has managed to put together a more effective manned space program than NASA." It might be a little unfair to nail NASA like that when NASA is run or manipulated by people who sometimes place politics above having a viable space program. With enough government interference any organization can cease to achieve much of anything, but NASA soldiers on where it is allowed, doing some amazing feats with the money they're permitted. But it's a new era. Private companies and individuals haven't given up on our space travel dreams!

Atmosphere on the Moon

Characters in the Over the Edge series talk about landing on moons or uninhabitable planets for clandestine meetings. There's also discussion about mining in these places. Besides being super cold and totally inhospitable, what would it be like to land on our moon? Here's an interesting article about the atmosphere of our moon which makes for some lovely visual effects.

Atmosphere on the Moon

Moon Dust Fountains

Monday, October 15, 2012

UFO's of Summer

One balmy night, during the summer of 2012, I decided to go outside and look at the stars. I often do this and like Pecos Bill, who felt that if he could see smoke from his neighbor's chimney the neighborhood was getting too crowded, I feel hemmed in by the flashing irrigation pivots that surround our house--two of which are located on our own farm. Some nights I feel like I'm on a dance floor with strobe lights blinking everywhere I look!

Light pollution has ruined the landscape!

It's probably due to vandalism, but a local business across the field from us has installed super-bright lights to glare on their equipment throughout the night. Then, there are the proliferation of yard lights all over the county! Lights, lights, lights everywhere you look interfering with the real spectacle of every night sky: stars!

I'd like to be on the County Commission long enough to make a law that all yard lights must be shielded so that the light points downward and that all center pivots must be light-less. These days pivots can receive an upgrade with an internet or cell phone link to the farmer's computer and/or phone to warn him his pivots have stopped putting out water. As if I ever really will run for the County Commission. It's just one of those idle dreams I have now and then, like owning a laser gun and shooting out all the lights and not getting caught.

While I was outside grumbling about light pollution and attempting to admire the stars I saw two UFO's.

The first UFO came from the south heading north. At first I thought it was a huge meteor. It looked like a brilliant, yellow-orange fireball, but it did not have a tail. I ran inside long enough to yell at my husband and my two youngest sons to come out and look. My husband joined me and we watched the thing gradually dip closer to the ground. I was ready to suggest we pile into our vehicle and drive to its likely crash site, when the thing arced upward into the clouds that obscured the sky in the north and was gone. We were discussing what we'd seen when we realized a second UFO approached from the south. It seemed a little closer and as if its trajectory was curving upward slightly. It seemed to slow, made a gentle turn to the east, then accelerated and was gone.

Here are the facts: With nothing up in the air beside the UFO's to compare sizes, we have no idea how large they were or how far away. (When Felix Baumgartner's balloon drifted over the New Mexico landscape a few days ago and we saw it from our church's parking lot, it looked large and perhaps not so very distant. But, his balloon was over 300 feet tall and already over 20,000 feet in the air by the time we saw it! And, it was then that I realized that when you see something in the air, unless you are very familiar with the object, you simply have no idea how large or small it really is.) Both UFO's resembled egg-shaped, burning somethings, like lava balls. I say egg-shaped because it gives an immediate picture of what we saw, but the UFO's were symmetrical, both sides like the fat end of the egg. They didn't have smoke trails or tails like comets or meteors. They were fast. And neither of the UFO's made a sound. They came from roughly the same direction as military helicopters sometimes take, but one went almost straight north, and the other one turned east which military helicopters around here don't do. Military helicopters come from the southwest and head northeast. Or, they come from the northeast and head southeast, like the time when our first Black president headed down to the oil fields near Malaga for a photo op.

Do we human beings have any really fast, silent, brilliant yellow-orange, squashed spherical ships? No? I didn't think so either. MUFON, the Mutual UFO Network, has posted reports of many sightings of similar yellow-orange, squashed spherical UFO's. And The Examiner has a photo. I'm posting the links below. I tried to get a photo, but the image I captured doesn't reveal anything. I've seen other UFO's here and there in New Mexico. Several years ago I saw a huge, white, cigar shaped UFO which I think was actually a silage bag caught in the wind. A silage bag is ten feet in diameter and this object was probably about 60 feet long. But I wonder, was it a silage bag? It seemed fatter than the ten feet in diameter measurement I know to be true of silage bags. It was flying along in the wind like a bullet, except hollow and full of air. Or solid and cigar shaped! I wish I had video! My brother and I used to see UFO's once in awhile when we were kids living near Clovis, New Mexico, about ten miles northeast of Cannon Air Force Base. Those might be explained as experimental aircraft. The one I remember the best looked like three lights in a triangular formation, two red lights on the bottom and a yellow one on top. It came up behind us as we walked toward the barn and skimmed about fifteen feet off the ground, roaring and booming. Gone in a flash. As normal kids growing up in the seventies we spend a lot of time outside. We knew what birds based out of Cannon, we'd seen them all, but nothing like those lights. I can explain away the other UFO's I've seen, but I can't explain the two UFO's I saw this summer!

I met a woman at a writer's conference who told a story about the time she went with her husband to have dinner at the neighbors' house. They finished their meal and went outside to enjoy their cocktails when a saucer shaped UFO stopped right over their house! She described her house as nestled in forest, on the other side of a tree filled gulley at the top of the rise. The UFO shown a light down on the house, dipped lower, then zipped away. Out of sight in a flash. The couple hurried home to find their children shaken and their dogs upset and their appliances malfunctioning. This lady writes historical romances set in the American west. She seemed very mild, even boring, but maybe she was feeling a little neglected. I don't know. It's the wildest UFO story I've heard except for my own.

MUFON website
Do aliens exist? I don't know. This I can say: There is a lot more we don't know about the universe than we do know. And any scientist who thinks he's got anything, even the smallest micro-organism all figured out is fooling himself!

Orange Sphere UFO's

Photo of Orange Sphere UFO