When I was little, there was nothing more fulfilling than watching the night sky with the moon smiling down at me (nowadays it grimaces but that’s another story altogether). That feeling of my heart about to burst was indescribable as I sat there hoping to catch a glimpse of that bright ray of light cruising through blue velvet, its passengers jet-setting to distant galaxies. I would have done anything for a miniscule sign that aliens existed. My parents were worried, hoping that I wouldn’t start a cult as I later wrote stories, read books and became an X-File fanatic, trying to convert all my friends. Unfortunately, I’ve grown up now and Agent Molder’s 90’s hairstyle and theories along with Scully and her exasperating whistle have become rather disappointing.
No matter what culture or background, people from all over the world have claimed to have seen visitors from outer space. Between 1950 and 1970, many stories started circulating in Malaysia about tiny 3 inch aliens that landed in school compounds dressed in high tech suits and wielding ray guns. (Check out abovetopsecret.com) I find it interesting that they only appeared around schools, as there are theories that they search out high levels of energy and knowledge is a form of energy. Why they go around squishing American corn is beyond me though.
As a writer, I like to believe in strange things but I also like to pick at them with my mental chopsticks. I scrutinize the paranormal and try to find things that are wrong with photos or videos that I see on the web. Nowadays, with photoshop and friends, there isn’t really any way for normal readers to verify the authentic nature of anything. We just have to want to believe it or not. It’s like the time the rumour that Big Foot had been spotted in the jungles of Malaysia started going around and everyone was criticizing the Malaysian “tendency to exaggerate”. I could have joined the masses and made fun of those people who mistook an Orangutan with bad teeth for a Yeti but I was just too busy laughing at the idea of the Malaysian remake of Harry and the Hendersons.
So what is it that fuels our need to believe in alien life form? Crop circles, Area 51, theories about the Mayans and our creators and our own willingness to invest billions in space exploration are but a few examples of crazy. Millions of movies have been made about our space cousins, some depicting their greatness and others reflecting our own wickedness. (Avatar the Movie was a typical depiction of cowboys and Native Americans, the British and their previous exploits all over the world etc….I shall stop before someone decides to ban me but you get the picture.)
“This is an extermination”—War of the Worlds.
Most people think it’s madness, others find that it would be rather selfish of us to think that we’re the only ones residing in infinity and the rest, well visit a Sci-fi convention and you’ll know what I mean. Personally, I would like to believe that there are other worlds out there, with people living their lives just like us, with the same problems we have (like deciding which outfit goes better with tentacles) and the same feelings.
However, I don’t think it would be a good idea for them to meet us, even though I’ve been wishing it my whole life. If there were other life forms out there, how would we get along with them if we can’t even get along with each other? War and famine are skulking through the Blue Planet and all we can do is sit around and read about it. I would really love to see the day when people decide to spend the millions being used for Astrobiology on finding ways to feed our own people. It breaks my heart to think that there are hungry children around the world while the big guys are shooting their space shuttles into the vast darkness to find yet another thing that they can destroy. If aliens do find us, with their superior intellect, they might think us extremely lacking. I really don’t want to be the one that has to sit them down and explain the necessity of reality shows and botox.