Good Puzzle

Just as the by-now traditional pre-Christmas rash of Irish UFO predictions had apparently given way to a New Year lull, our blatherbubble has been punctured by a painful article in *The Boston Herald* (of all places).
This newspaper gave column inches to Blather’s favourite UFO proponent, Eamon Ansbro, in a suitably skin-crawling article by one Jim Dee. After wading through the cringeworthy opening paragraph, which rattles on about the ‘Emerald Isle’, ‘Land of a Thousand Welcomes’, and ‘legendary hospitality’, we’re told that Ireland is now welcoming tourists from outer space.

This is, of course, according to Ansbro – cited as a ‘self-taught UFO expert’, prompting the question – how many UFO ‘experts’ are not self-taught? We could proceed from here, wondering how one becomes expert in objects deemed as unidentified, but…
Anyhow – Ansbro’s latest prediction for the appearance of UFOs is for Dublin at 0500 hrs on January 30th, followed by sightings in Boyle, ‘Co. Rosscommon’ (sic) in February, which he says is “a UFO hotspot’. Blather cannot say whether or not Roscommon is a UFO hotspot, but we would presume to assume that it may be a ‘ufologist hotspot’, with UFO proponents clamouring to the area, like flies to a surgically performed cattle mutilation.
This ufological obsession may be due to the claims of a ‘UFO crash’ in the area, a rumour that has been circulating for some time, and has been dealt with by Blather in earlier issues.
*Forty Shades of Shite*
Dee, amidst puerile remarks about leprechauns, Irish hospitality and ‘Forty Shades of Green’, tells us that while Ansbro can’t quite explain why Ireland is so popular among these alleged extra-terrestrial tourists, he does mention Ireland’s political neutrality and ‘druidic past’ as possible motives.
‘”Ireland isn’t going to send up some fleet of F-16s and blast UFOs out – which has been done, apparently, by the Americans” in the 1950s’, continues the article. Blather could pedantically point out that Ireland has no F-16s, and neither had the USA in the 50s… but what Ansbro probably assumes is that the Irish Defence forces wouldn’t be too perturbed about extraterrestrials wandering into the island’s airspace. Blather would suggest that in the unlikely case of the Irish government becoming aware of such an *identified* extraterrestrial incursion, they may well realise that ‘resistance is futile’. Any *unidentified* incursion would surely raise a few eyebrows, and would thus be challenged in some shape or form.

*Vortexial Energy Points*

Ansbro, however, has apparently identified “an automated surveillance” by a large “camouflaged” craft at an altitude of 80,000-90,000ft (24400-27400m), which “periodically ejects UFOs to orbit and scan the Earth below”, using Ireland’s megalithic sites as “vortexial energy points” – which translated, seems to mean navigation beacons.
Ansbro’s Program for Extraterrestrial Research (PEIR) claim that 80 per cent of worldwide alien tourists pass over megalithic sites. Such seems to be the case in PEIR’s claims about Ireland, leading us to ponder on whether Mr. Ansbro has been funding his research by writing screenplays for Gene Roddenberry’s *Earth: Final Conflict* (episode #113 featured much ado about Irish megalithic sites and aliens).

‘Good puzzle would be cross Dublin without passing a pub.’ – Leopold Bloom, in *Ulysses* by James Joyce
‘Good puzzle would be cross Ireland without passing a megalithic site.’ – Dave (daev) Walsh, in *Good Puzzle*, Blather Vol. 2.35, Jan 22nd 1998

*Seven Sisters*
But back to all this talk of January 30th – a quick check with Astronomy Ireland revealed no significant astronomical events for that night – nothing comparable to the December Geminids anyway. However, on January 12th, David Gullick made this comment on the UFO Updates Mailing List:
‘In Dublin on Jan 30th, at 5:00am Daylight saving time The Pleiades [a.k.a. *The Seven Sisters*] are just above the horizon. At 5:01am Electra is just at the horizon at precisely 43.1 deg north of west. At 5:07 The Pleiades are below the horizon.’
Interestingly, the prediction has been made for five o’clock in the morning – how many people are going to be awake at that time to witness such a wondrous event? Of those who *are* awake, and scanning the skies for intergalactic tourists, how many will be barely awake, or sleep deprived? If this Blatherumskite is conscious at that low time of the morning, he may well feel one or the other…
[Thanks to Tim Brigham (Devil’s Advocate), Kelly McGillis, David Moore (Astronomy Ireland), David Gullick and for also Iain Bryson, who we forgot to thank for last week’s Furry Cat story]
– and for those who are curious as to the meaning of ‘Blatherumskite, see here.
*Expert says Ireland is newest hotspot for alien spaceships*
Boston Herald, Monday, January 11, 1999 (dead link)
*Blather Archives: Passports For Aliens?*
*Blather Archives: On the Boyle*
Chapter 4, *Calypso* in *Ulysses* by James Joyce (busted link)

*Ireland Newest Hotspot For Alien Spaceships?*
– David Gullick UFO UpDates Mailing List
Astronomy Ireland
The Pleiades… according to the ancient Greeks
The Pleiades Open Cluster

The disembodied collective editorial voice of the only really nice website in Ireland.