UFO Conjectures

Saturday, October 20, 2012

A Confab of UFO Geezers

Michael Swords gathered a few UFO "notables" to his Kalamazoo place -- note the disarray -- for a beer session about UFOs.

Professor Swords provided this link at UFO UpDates:


While Swords is an erudite writer of UFO material,, I'm always suspicious of one's scholarly acumen when they end quoted sentences thus ...."flying saucer". instead of correctly as...."flying saucer."

It's a minor thing but attention to detail(s) is important in everything, even the study of UFOs.

Anyway, take a gander at the photos of the men in attendance to see how they's aged (especially Jerry Clark) and you'll know why I use the epithet "geezers" for these guys.

The gathering seems, from Swords account of it, to have been less that fruitful.

But as Gilles Fernandez puts it -- that's ufology.



  • From Kalamazoo to Timbuktoo, that's ufology.

    By the way, has there ever been a UFO sighting or landing at Timbuktu?

    By Blogger cda, at Saturday, October 20, 2012  

  • AA theorists, Christopher, think Timbuktu was an extraterrestrial hotbed, so one has to expect that there were UFO sightings and landings galore.

    The Kalamazoo "meeting" must have discussed this, mustn't they?


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Saturday, October 20, 2012  

  • I was struck by this poignant portrait that aptly illustrates the ongoing epilog to the Ufology Era, which to my mind, is reminiscent of some swap, show and tell, and informative meetings I attend for collectors of antique toys. Arcane factoids, tales of the hunt for this part or that, the rare find. The scientists who waded into the murky waters of this foggy sociology are either dead or have moved on, while the imaginations of most went into over drive in cultural anthropomorphism, projection bias, even a sort of mass hysteria, a self hypnosis..while even the phenomenon itself moved on in form.
    I see John Keel with a sardonic faint smile spreading across this face as he looks on. The old axioms..Clutching defeat from the jaws of victory, we have met the enemy and they are us, handing the sword by the hilt to your adversaries..all ending in a small room tucked away in home in Kalamazoo, Michigan, the state of the swamp gas furor, now largely a rare and forgotten specimen fading away..into obscurity for some future generation to collect.

    By Blogger Bruce Duensing, at Saturday, October 20, 2012  

  • Actually, where the period is placed in a sentence is a matter of opinion. Just because you Americans place it inside the quotation marks for everything (which one could see as being just too lazy to apply the punctuation logically) doesn't mean that everyone else does, or that it's the right way. The traditional British method (you know, the guys who invented English) is to place it outside the period at the end of most sentences.

    See: http://grammar.ccc.commnet.edu/grammar/marks/quotation.htm#footnote

    Although there are many resources that cover this "issue." Or "issue". ;-)


    By Blogger Paul Kimball, at Saturday, October 20, 2012  

  • Thank you Dr. Kimball...

    The text was written in the states, about a meeting in a venue in the states, so I would think that Dr. Swords would adhere to the grammatical practices extant here.

    But that's just me.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Saturday, October 20, 2012  

  • You might, but given that Swords is an academic and academics - even in the United States - often use the more complex (i.e. logical) methodology, I suspect it has something to do with that.

    Having said all that, when I edit books I use the idiot-proof American version, partly because I'm lazy, and partly for purely commercial concerns. I'm just surprised to see you adopt it, Rich, as it really is grammar for the hoi polloi :-)


    By Blogger Paul Kimball, at Saturday, October 20, 2012  

  • The hoi polloi are my people, Paul.

    I pretend otherwise but I'm right in here with them, down and dirty.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Saturday, October 20, 2012  

  • Aha... so you would be Stalin to my Trotsky. Fair enough, although I think that it might all end in tears for one of us.

    Now, about that trip I'm planning to Mexico...


    By Blogger Paul Kimball, at Saturday, October 20, 2012  

  • Hahahaha.

    Try to stay away from hatchets while in Mexico, Pauly.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Saturday, October 20, 2012  

  • Great White North conundrum:

    Why is a blog for a Kalamazooan hosted in Canada, Kimball?

    By Blogger Kurt Peters, at Saturday, October 20, 2012  

  • I've found Mike Swords to be a gentleman and one of the few people 'in the field' without an axe to grind. He's stayed 'on topic' for years.

    In my opinion, his contribution to what we call ufology hasn't been fully recognised. This isn't simply in reference to his articles for MUFON or published papers, it's also in the way he's maintained civility.

    As an ambassador and proponent of ufology, it's hard to think of many equals.

    I like to think that both you and Mike have taken me in and entertained my comments. I appreciate and respect you both.

    When the 'geezers' have gone, what will be left of ufology?

    By Blogger Kandinsky, at Saturday, October 20, 2012  

  • When we geezers are gone, Kandinsky, ufology will have you, Paul Kimball, Nick Redfern, and a gaggle of other young UFO punks who will shower the UFO topic with new and innovative hypotheses and debate.


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Saturday, October 20, 2012  

  • I agree to what Kandinsky wrote about Michael Swords.

    And Bruce Duensing mentioned - " I see John Keel with a sardonic faint smile spreading across this face as he looks on. " .....I'd bet Keel would love to be there, alive. His last few years were miserable and lonely - a man in failing health who had no one, dying alone in a nursing home where he'd tell the visitors to his roomate that he use to write books about UFOs. Even what was left of his family didn't know he passed, until much later.

    ~ Susan

    By Blogger Brownie, at Monday, October 22, 2012  

  • I was impressed with what little regard the group had for the Hopkins-Jacobs style of alien abductions.

    Of course, the pure-hearted UFO buffs are not allowed to say so in public (as UFO Updates subscribers learned a couple years ago).

    I'm disappointed that Swords' reason for this silence boils down to being afraid of giving comfort to skeptics.

    That is not science.

    By Blogger Terry the Censor, at Monday, December 17, 2012  

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