"Flying Saucers are Real!" is an awesome book about UFO culture and history

Originally published at: "Flying Saucers are Real!" is an awesome book about UFO culture and history | Boing Boing

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compressed

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When I lived in nyc, I had occasion to see Jack’s collection. It was pretty awesome, and the ufo stuff was only a fraction of it. A lot of weirdness packed into one Manhattan apartment.

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Obligatory: and everyone should read Jack’s other work too! It’s criminally underappreciated. The Ambient series was well ahead of its time, and disturbingly prescient.

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I don’t recall if it was on NOVA, or some doco, but one show years back focused on the UFO culture. One scene featured a large gathering of UFO (read: alien spacecraft) enthusiasts congregated near Area 51, there to see what they believed to be ‘captured’ flying saucers, whatever… flown only in the evening so to evade observation by civilians. When the inevitable aircraft – with navigation lights on – showed up (it’s an a/c test facility, for Pete’s fucking sake), the adult crowd behaved like small children at a fireworks display – many whees! and ooohs! and ahs! and inane giggling. Apparently, a few in the crowd were there out of curiosity (possibly dragged along); as best as I can recall, said one visibly irritated individual: “Anything they see flying, has to be a UFO!”

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I think this is related, a good video on how Japanese UFOs in video games look and act different from their US counter parts.

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I was nuts about UFOs when I was a kid… My dad took me to the “first international Congress of ufologists” at a hotel in New York City in 1967 when I was in 7th grade. Roy Thinnes from the TV show The Invaders was a featured guest.
Lots of weirdos along with somewhat serious types. I picked up loads of fanzines and magazines put out by different groups (APRON etc) and people, which I still have in the closet somewhere.
My third grade obsession with “Mars Attacks” cards might have started this.
I broke our big picture window in the living room when I frisbeed a garbage can lid to take a photo of my own UFO.
I bought a bumper sticker at that New York convention that later ended up on The bumper of my first car, a 1965 Ford falcon. It said “flying saucers are real space people are friendly” which by that time when I was 17 was utilized ironically.
It did gather a lot of strange looks at red lights.

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Oh yeah I almost forgot I had a portion of a letter printed in Scholastic magazine (I think that was the name?) in 7th grade, when they ask for comments on an article on flying saucers.
My quote was something like no matter how many sightings and reports are fake, if only one of them is real that is all that matters.
I was so proud of that!

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Jack Womack is hands down my favorite speculative writer.

Everyone should read at least Elvissey and Random Acts of Senseless Violence, you will never forget them.

A mule, laser beams, and a UFO.

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