Footnote: It’s obvious, I suppose, that I am no expert on these matters, despite appearances. And I know that nothing ever happens on Bigfoot-themed reality shows, and not just because there is no such thing as Bigfoot. (Though, this is not an insignificant consideration.) I know that nothing happens on Bigfoot-themed reality shows because if it ever did, if one of those doughy, flannel-shirt-wearing man-children ever stumbled into the lair of a bona fide Bigfoot family, with his infrared camera and short pants, it would be front-page, hair-on-fire news. (Which is why we are out of the sidebar here.)
I never considered, not for a minute, was that the nothing that happens on these shows did not even rise to the level of nothing. The shows’ producers are goosing the whole thing so that ordinary nocturnal encounters with, to cite two examples, a horse or an overenthusiastic location-crashing fan of the show are transformed with editing and voice-overs into near-misses with strange beings.
Anyway, the point is, on Friday, the outdoorsy types featured in the Animal Planet show “Finding Bigfoot” told a skeptic/blogger that “we’re getting screwed. You people have no idea…” via Southern Fried Science.
It’s like he’s talking to me. I really had no idea.
Another thing I never properly considered was the gumption of some cryptozoology skeptics to see a thing through. One blogger identified an image of a purported Bigfoot’s eyeball as that of a closeup of a saw whet owl. Never mind how a video of an eyeball got taken seriously by Bigfoot enthusiasts in the first place — seriously, never mind. The eyeball-video people were shopping audio of strange shrieks earlier this year.
This eyeball business was first-rate detective work, if probably the most boring Thursday night ever spent by anyone. As is typical at times like these, the debunking revealed a timeless truth about hoaxes: Reality is relentless. The turning point was when our blogger/sleuth noticed peculiarly avian features in the images. “Of course, I’m no bird expert, but I think I know a beak when I see one.” (Of course, you do!) via Ghost Theory.
And finally, in October, Yellowstone National Park is going to host a two-day workshop on wilderness tracking. Topics will include “cryptozoology and the public” and “defining and locating rare species,” among other helpful gems. Participants will have to bring their own wooden footprint molds and ghillie suits. via idahostatejournal.com.