Tuesday, 1 September 2009

John Keel 1930-2009

I was deeply saddened to hear of the death of writer and UFOlogist John Keel recently. He is probably best known for his book The Mothman Prophecies, and for coining the term Men In Black. But his greatest contribution to science and culture was his rejection of the Extraterrestrial hypothesis of UFOs in his landmark books UFOs-Operation Trojan Horse, Our Haunted Planet, and Strange Creatures From Time and Space, which was the first of his books that I read.
I've been interested in UFOs and Fortean weirdness all my life, since my 8 year old mind was blown by the TV series Arthur C Clarke's Mysterious World. Throughout my teens and into my early twenties I read all kinds of crazy books about UFOs, and believed some even crazier things. (and met some even crazier people, but that's another story!)
But it was reading John's books, and his remarkable but simple hypothesis that changed all that. The correlation between UFOs and other weird phenomena throughout human history is so bleeding obvious when you really look at it. The only difference is the cultural filter that each phenomenon is viewed through. The world is a strange place, and there are countless things about it we don't know.
You don't get to say this about many people in your life, but John Keel changed the way I think about the world.


PS Mothman About The House wouldn't exist without him. "It doesn't exist now!" I hear you cry, but don't worry it's on it's way...

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