Thursday, March 16, 2006

"The OZ Files" in Take 5 Magazine - Good Grief!

With my cringe factor working overtime I read "My life as an ALIEN HUNTER" in the Take 5 magazine (cover date March 22 2006, out March 15). Here was a piece entitled "The OZ Files" written in the "first person" (my "first person") it seemed. I must admit I was somewhat disappointed in my "first person narrative", but all is revealed in the fine print (printed in the vertical in the centre of the piece) which indicates it was "as told to Lisa Brookman." However it would be more accurately stated that the piece was at best a rough approximation of the phone interview I did with her recently, but her "note taking" let her and the story down a bit. Unfortunately, contrary to undertakings given, I was not given the opportunity to "fact check" the story. Despite the somewhat flowery emboidering of the account in Lisa's write-up of our interview - "I glanced into the indigo evening sky", "(I) marvelled each night at the strange array of lights setting the sky on fire" (I was there and I don't recollect seeing the sky on fire!), "I rushed over (to the Rosedale UFO landing case)" (Keith Basterfield and I investigated the September 30 1980 event in late December 1980), etc - it was the errors that crept in to her recollection of the details of the interview which troubled me, all of which would have been covered easily if the "fact check" had occurred.

For the uninitiated to the "facts" the piece reads well enough I guess but for the sake of accuracy I will list the errors that crept into the story, particularly for those like me, who prefer an accurate story, not just a "good story":
1. "From that night in September 1972, I was hooked on aliens." Well I explained in my interview I became interested in the UFO subject in the mid 1960s when my home town area around Grafton had a lot of UFO sightings, some witnessed by police.
2. "I studied chemistry and maths at university by day and, by night, I hunted UFOs." Well I certainly hunted UFOs during my university tenure, but certainly not every night. There was study (honest!), food, social life and sleeping that dominated my nights at university.
3. "In the '80s, the Airforce gave me their secret UFO files." Yeah, I wish! Well they did allow me access to their files, which I took up over a number of visits from 1982 to 1984.
4. The Rosedale case occurred in Victoria not NSW!
5. The UFO the caretaker saw did not "vanish in the blink of a eye."
6. There were not "thousands of cases where pilots and flight engineers had witnessed strange lights in the sky and dome-shaped craft", in the RAAF files I examined. There certainly were some, but not thousands! I believe Lisa must have confused this with my reference in the interview to Dr. Richard Haines data on thousands of pilot sightings which I had discussed with him during my stay with him back in 1984.
7. I did not hear about Peter Khoury in 1988, rather it was late in 1991.
8. The "alien" in Peter Khoury's 1988 experience put a needle like item into the top rear side of his head not his forehead.
9. His childhood episode occurred in 1971 not 1970.
10. In that episode the parents of the "missing" children were not on the roof at the same time as Peter Khoury had seen them "frozen."
11. I have not been told by "my detractors" that they "think I'm mad."

Apart from those minor problems and other flourishes, I guess the piece wasn't too bad.

As a followup, apparently some of the readership felt the piece was OK. I have already received some interesting reader sighting feedback, including a entity encounter near Mackay Qld and strange events around Port Noarlunga and Kimba, SA, such as close encounters featuring entities and UFO sightings.

"UFOs: Is the truth Out there" ABC Gold Coast Interview

While on the Gold Coast Queensland I did an interview for the local FM ABC radio station. A story based on the interview was placed on their web site:
The lecture I gave at the AUFORN meeting organised by Diane and Robert was well received despite the Gold Coast being lashed by near cyclonic weather - a wild night in more ways than one!
Thanks to Diane, Robert and the AUFORN Qld team for a great night and the interesting time in Queensland.

Photos: me shadowed by the ABC satellite dish (ABC Gold Coast);
me with Diane & Robert Frola in Queensland, March 2006 (copyright B. Chalker)