Saturday, August 16, 2008

Bigfoot press conference dissapointing, but don't stop believing.

Those of you who might have seen the Bigfoot press conference were probably disappointed like I was; nothing really confirmed as to whether the body is real or not. Well I’d rather not dwell on it and not give Biscardi and his associates any more thought or attention than they deserve until they give us something tangible. If this is in fact a hoax, then I don’t think these guys have even begun to pay for it.

All this buzz over a creature that may not even exist, or just flat out doesn’t if you’re the media. I swear their attitude has been one harsh comment after another, especially from that one guy at Fox News. I don’t remember his name, but he brushed this off saying “we’ve got real news.” Okay maybe it isn’t as pressing as some other stories, but if you knew anything Mr. Anchorman you’d know that legitimate scientific investigations and expeditions have been done to try and find Bigfoot, and that there is some very compelling evidence supporting the existence of a North American great ape. We’re talking recordings of unknown howls, hair, and footprints with dermal ridges (fingerprints). Accredited scientists have staked their reputation on the authenticity of this evidence. At least the Discovery Channel, hopefully out of respect for the true science behind Bigfoot and not a means to capitalize on the news for ratings, showed a program about the real investigations into Bigfoot the night following the press conference held on Friday August 15th. At least some real info about Bigfoot might have reached the skeptics.

So why do people believe in creatures that may or may not exist, often referred to as cryptids? Well in some cases, like Bigfoot, the evidence can be overwhelming or at the very least highly compelling in supporting a creature’s existence. For others it’s a matter of credible witness testimony combined with legend and folklore dating back hundreds to thousands of years. But if I had to sum it up in as few words as possible it’s this: reality sucks. Looking around at the state of the world you can’t help but hope for something to either make life a little more interesting or at least not so very cruel and soul crushing.

We all have dreams as children that are often crushed by reality and some of us try to get some of that hope and magic that we once had back through hobbies and other interests. Humans also have an innate desire to explore and discover things. It’s how North America came to be, and why we continue the push to explore space, and why life isn’t as hard as it was thousands of years ago. Because there’s no frontier anymore and no way to explore other planets yet, some people have to settle for exploring the world around us. Time and again people have found things that the rest of the world didn’t know existed, and discoveries continue to be made everyday: new species, new technologies, all bringing new possibilities. Often what some thought as merely myth and fantasy has been proven to be fact, look at dinosaurs, germs, and the various creatures discovered in the ocean. Not long ago the giant squid was a sea monster, a fairytale. Now the giant squid is fact. Who is to say that the possibility of other cryptids or cryptid-like creatures existing is nil?

That’s why hoaxes are such a pain in the butt; they distract people from the real evidence. Thus anybody who dares to follow the evidence, especially a scientist who puts serious time and effort into exploring such possibilities, is labeled by others as a crackpot on a foolish endeavor. But for every loon there is a genius and for every hoaxer a determined believer. So mock if you will Mr. Anchorman and scoff all you like Mr. Skeptic, because there is always the chance that you are wrong. When vindication comes it makes for a very hard dish to swallow on your part, and a very sweet dish for those who always believed based on more than just blind faith.

UPDATE- As you know, the body was a hoax. This doesn't change my initial feelings. This Bigfoot might have been fake, but I believe it's still out there.

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