Sunday, August 06, 2017

Insult & Unleavened Grace

Stephen King could have written this story.

Insult & Unleavened Grace

The Flatwoods Festival 2009
by Alfred Lehmberg

"It's ET, folks, and so far up your nose you feel alien knees scuffing your top lip!"

Almost upon my arrival in Flatwoods, West Virginia in September of 2009 for that year's Flatwoods Festival, I'd begun to wish I'd brought my guitar. It was that kind of place the reader would find—a place filled with the otherworldly energies of unmistakable artistry where that artistry can be a desire to grow, in all ways efficaciously and honorably, but with modern eyes fixed on some looming and inescapable, if transitive, future-reality we can all share. Such was my intuition regarding Flatwoods. It was a magic town... an emerald city with a stranger history.
Flatwoods: a splendid example of micro-town America even if in the shadow of that highly strange alluded to! Especially when in the shadow! I longed to communicate that musical reflection for this town.

Oh, I wouldn't have had the nerve to actually play in front of anyone, mind. An undisciplined if constant dabbler, I'm not worthy.

No, I'd sneak off somewhere and play for the curtain-like branches of the tall White Pine festooning the area like the textured walls of tall green temples, the temples themselves sporting blue-sky ceilings, rocky pulpits, and wood-wrought forest tabernacles. See, a result of the aforementioned Festival, this affected land where I'd found myself additionally crawled with quality musicians of every type and description so musically intimidating I wouldn't want anyone knowing I played at all, actually. I was a musical skateboard spinning rusty wheels while they resembled Stately Sedans and Thunder-Road cars burning high-test musical nitro!

Even apart from these exquisite local musicians—and one young Flatwoods woman in a chaste blue dress who sang sweetly in some special stillness that Sunday a welcomed tune so engaging, high, and otherworldly that it opened portals of ultraviolet light for hyperspace elves. I'd never heard the song before and not heard it since... 
It was a song of spacial enchantment; you could see as well as feel it in the air! Suffice to say: the thirst to make music, be a conduit for it, was compelling everywhere. Such was where I'd found myself after a GPS facilitated 14 contiguous hours on my I-Pod driving north northeast from Southeast Alabama.
I'd had company. Riane Eisler, Lorenzo Hagarty, Robert Anton Wilson, Timothy Leary, plus Terence McKenna of course—and among significant others—lectured their alternative philosophical harmonies in my undistracted ear and otherwise danced in my imagination like intellectual not-sugar-plum faeries.

Yeah... there are "reasons," good reader—none of them fair and balanced—why you either never heard of these people, or you've heard and been compelled to mistrust them. That's a crock, I submit. These are giants on the shoulders of which we should all be clambering to stand! I digress, of course, but suffice to say "my third eye was well squeegeed" by these giants for new and jaw-dropping—albeit sober born—experiences, woven out on the highways and by-ways on the road to West Virgina.

I was wide-open, then, for where I finally arrived—open minded that is—so much so there's decided risk my brain could fall out, even, but... I'll risk it, eh? That's right... it's my brain. Besides, I'll gladly risk going somewhere the closed-minded can't, won't, or shan't. To do less seems unintelligent, unprogressive, and unbrave. In all humility, experienced based, I know something about courage, the promise of the progressive, and at least the aspiration to intelligence...

Where was I? I was at the geographic center of one very heavily paranormal State of West Virginia. Specifically, I'm in the microcosm of unleavened grace that is the brave mini-municipality of Flatwoods, home of the "Flatwoods Monster." Unleavened grace? Yeah...

See, since September 12, 1952 and again, and over again, periodically, especially via a 2010 Discovery Channel "Documentary" train-wreck of esoteric ridiculousness and proportion, these good people have endured unjustified ridicule, errantly cast aspersion, and the falsest of false assignations regarding ...the most intellectually electrifying activity of this or any other time. I speak, of course, about one's assured confidence regarding the extant existence of the "other," reader! Those conjectured occupants of the flying-saucer-intimated UFO! Flatwoods is ground Zero!

How is this not the most exciting thing, ever, better or worse! All else is trumped. Surely, that'll run a "grace" out of its "yeast and baking powders," verily!
See, it's hard enough to smile after being betrayed by the "legitimate authorities." Who does one go to for redress, after that? Crooks and charlatans?

Flatwoods suffered, and continues to suffer an undeserved National disgrace good reader, the worst kind of betrayal: societal betrayal—social betrayal—while Flatwoods' unthinking loyalty remains expected by that authority or society? C'mon! Enough is too much! Spit in the eye won't be taken for eye-wash, forever! It never is! Talk to your awakening Trump supporter...

This malfeasant tragedy of authority's ass-covering "scapegoatery" which Flatwoods had to bear then—and that the reader discovers it continues to bear now—was to be the result of the Flatwoods townspeople and their very heavily documented interaction with the proposed occupant of perhaps only one of four witnessed UFOs above—and on—Flatwoods' old Bailey Fisher farm that fateful day!

I remind the reader that this very specific date of September 12th in 1952 was a period nearing the end of the biggest flap, ever, in US UFO history: the so-called Summer of Saucers!

These are events—and pay attention reader—damned close to having UFOs actually landing on the freaking White House lawn! Over-flying same, they were everywhere! They festooned the US skies, besides! This is, of course, forgetting the standing—and very well prosecuted—orders to Shoot Them Down! Yes! We exercised Extreme Prejudice on
sovereign ET, friends and neighbors! We shot UFOs down! Think we didn't? What were we thinking?

Flatwoods, one sees first, needs to make no apology for experiencing what everyone else in the world had been experiencing, paupers to Presidents, folks, all over our North America for decades! Centuries even!
Why, endemic across the US—and at those same hours and moments of that September 12th and chronicled by the subject Flatwoods affair—Air Force jets were chasing UFOs on all US coasts east, west, and south! Flatwoods is the penultimate CLIMAX of the "Summer Of Saucers." The final air battle in Humanity's undeclared secret air war with ET...
Wait! There was more to come. Every bit more a real credulity strainer than the last!

Too, it doesn't help that the time-tested if "out of fashion" extraterrestrial hypothesis seems realized... and so far up the observer's nose they feel alien knees scrubbing top lips! That's part of the problem... an ETH has lately become "un-hip," you see. Out of fashion. Fallen from favor. Uncool...

This tense and ongoing ufological ETH kafuffle at Flatwoods is understandable, if unacceptable still, as early on, folks: the "dis-info fix" was in. Such was so.

One noted researcher, Frank Feschino, discussed more in a moment, has discovered that on September 12th, Flatwoods was immediately crawling with no-nonsense intelligence types and two separate heavy squads totaling 60 combat equipped men! Some ten thousand astonished gawkers would arrive to poke around town in the next two weeks to rubberneck! ...Quite a reaction over stink-weed and a "barn owl," and not a welcome one I add. This was a "side-show" that was a "side-show" at all because it was provoked, by betraying and conflicted "authorities," to be a "side show" from the start!

The second of these aforementioned military heavy squads —subsequently deployed in a provoked reinforcement action obvious to this retired soldier—was detailed from a battalion-sized force of 180 soldiers already deployed, just hours before, to the west southwest of Flatwoods on still another UFO matter! This outlandishly huge—and so inexplicable—contingent of fighting men combed the West Virginia countryside around nearby Frametown for a crashed... ...something... never found! Unsettlingly, the story even includes a few documented Men In Black as the tale is told. ...Quite a reaction to "kids seeing a 'spook' on a mountain top around Halloween."

I encourage the reader that this is an over-the-top and credulity straining story as pointed out, already! Though, it's a little more seriously regarded, actually, when one is occasioned by the opportunity to sit and visit with the persons involved, become aware of official documents and first person accounts extant and available, and then, finally, to walk the 57 year old footsteps where these outré events took place.
In person and on tape these are persons unblinking and defiant that... they saw what they saw. They'll spit in your eye and charge for eyewash. Ask Frank Feschino, lately reviled, errantly, by an offended contingent in town as on the blame-line for the aforementioned and humiliating Discovery Channel "Documentary" fiasco... Feschino was, of course, blameless.

Still, the duplicitous "establishment" went to great lengths in '52 to cap this whole Flatwoods affair off. Persons were intimidated! Witnesses were ignored! Families were badgered by "authorities." These were the manipulative mechanisms used in 1947... and so, reminiscent of Roswell this writer is reminded. 
Later on, when a popular 1950s television magazine would, forever, characterize the monster as a red-faced cross-dressing Goth-nixie sporting grasping claw hands a sweet-sixteen skirt no less, if sans any poodle embroidery... the misdirecting die was lastingly cast; a recurring theme as it's turned out remembering the dreaded documentary already alluded to.
I digress briefly to point out that media continues to go out of its way to get the Flatwoods story very wrong, forgetting that Discovery Channel's mock-umentary of 2010 regarding same. History repeats like a perverse and toxic flatulence.
Consider, reader! Then must come again the disturbed and agitated legions to laugh and poke their fun at Flatwoods folk, eh? These legions aforementioned are mawkish gawkers scattered amidst non-adroit and unimaginative writers, tragically, writers who smirk and prosecute their misdirecting inanity to facilitate the "credulity bumper" of mal-cultivated and so very cack-witted tabloid followers. No love lost here for these toxic enabling facilitators. An innocent Flatwoods is dis-served.

Indeed, notice the casual ease with which "the authorities" dismiss hapless Flatwoods folk as provincial bumpkins prone to distort the prosaic into "aliens from beyond the stars." These must be "bumpkins" of some unusual imagination, reader! Though seriously, first person experiencer Freddie May, in a nail paring, has more integrity, class, and intelligence than those "bumpkin labelers" could have in their entire flaccid meat-ware! I digress again to say true.

This ill levied shame alluded to became so great by September 1953, actually, that the "green monster affair" was not talked about easily, if at all, ever after! Actuality became legend and legend, myth! Snoopers were discouraged.
Third generation kids living right in town didn't know a thing about it, at all! One wonders if history must repeat itself given the most recent cultural backhand wrongly delivered to Flatwoods' undeserving cheek by the History Channel, that 21st Century version of the slack-jawed media. That's a lot of effort over time to encourage people to forget something, eh? Why?

...Care to add some gravid insult to abundant injury? In the early nineties, Joe Nickell—lapsed English teacher and malfeasant CSICOP debunker spokes-puppy—would fatuously assert his facile "appropriation" that the people of Flatwoods could not tell a barn owl from a space alien, that they were sickened by a miasma of noxious gas from underlying coal deposits or seasonal plants (moonshine fumes?), and that they were, again, provincial bumpkins easily confused by a "well known" meteor event of September 12th... a meteor I remind the reader is not academically recorded, anywhere, only sucked from a reductionist's bum! No, the meteor was ever only an early offered supposition of the Air Force to explain irrepressible and annoying facts, and just like the Nickell further appropriated owl and gas suppositions... cack-fodder and bat-squeeze! Supposition is not fact.

Stop right here! See? If a "meteor," reader, it was a meteor lingering in the sky for 21 hours and change from the Eastern seaboard all the way into Flatwoods! If dogs and children are sickened, reader, by some "coal-gas produced miasma" or "pungent plant," it has not happened before, or since and not geologically or botanically relevant, anyway. If an owl, reader... but come on! That's just ludicrous. "Thunderbirds" and "Rocs" are more myth and produce far less documentation!

Moreover, these Flatwoods folk are with-it country people. They knew owls... barn, or those decidedly unlike Doctor "immaterial" Joe Nickell, that glabrous symbol avatar of all skeptical wisdom and intelligence... pause for squirtty giggles.

Verily, this disparaging mechanism of a Flatwoods Cover-up would continue unabated up through the mid nineties... apart from the small justice assessed to Docca Nickell when he was run out of the local Shoney's on a disgruntled rail, I gather with amusement, retching dirty metaphoric feathers and dripping hot rhetorical tar! Flatwoods won't suffer a disrespecting fool gladly; it won't matter how many immaterial doctorates he has.

Besides the good doctor's recounted embarrassment, a result of the well deserved if discursive treatment he received at the hands of insulted Flatwoods locales, it is also revealed that he is in Flatwoods, at all, to confront Frank Feschino—noted Flatwoods subject matter expert and author—whom Nickell assumed must live there.

Frank Feschino lives in Florida, reader. This must speak volumes regarding Docca Nickell's investigative acumen, otherwise, nes't ce pas? I mean, you can call Frank Feschino on the freakin' phone and find out where he lives!

Frank Feschino? Frank Feschino writes books working out a strong evidentiary trail or audit path for an undeclared and covered-up war with Extraterrestrials—pause to let that sink in—where hundreds of high performance planes and many of their brave pilots are perhaps lost in this hair-raising conflict with piloted UFOs! Read that again.

So conveys Stanton Friedman, who admitted further that the data found regarding the Flatwoods Affair eclipses that data found on Roswell, and he, among others, have been diligently researching Roswell for 30 years! Such is, also, so.

Digressing necessarily regarding those intrepid pilots and aircrew who sacrificed all, reader: these were brave men posthumously insulted to this day! Ask the families of lieutenants John Jones and John DelCurto, pilots and craft involved in the 1952 Shoot Them Down affairs and never seen again—just a few among many. Their exemplary reputations—and the reputations of others—are tarnished for incompetent boobs flying mechanically unsound planes until they ran into each other like stooges... or more simply run out of gas... to futilely crash... ignobly! Memories of brave men smart, good, and true, languish in this deleterious smear! It's an outrage!

These were largely men, after all, who saw action in World War II and Korea. These were men of vast experience, or at minimum, men satisfying rigorous flight checks determining the minimum competency required to even be allowed to operate a million dollar, state of the art jet aircraft in 1950, at all!
Finally, these are men KNOWING as they spin up their screaming engines in sweaty and agonized alert on dark tarmacs... that they are under orders to fly out into the teeth of a terrifying new unknown... sally forth regardless into "lurid duels of death," with UFOs! These "lurid duels" are revealed by 1952 Blue Book Chief Captain Edward Ruppelt and are not a fantasy.

What stupendous bravery, reader!

One of these pilots, the reader might come to understand, salvos 24 or more Mighty Mouse rockets at a UFO, point blank, perhaps, in this undeclared war! These "mice" are 70mm unguided if transonic darts, pilgrim, fence-post sized heavy-metal shafts capable of delivering six and a half pounds of point-detonating high explosive in a furious concussion approaching twice the speed of sound! Mayhap at the UFO... the UFO later forced to land at the Flatwoods Fisher farm!

Too, regarding the presumed "impervious armor of UFOs," consider there may be occasion it won't matter at all what kind of armor you sport when hit that hard and that fast or that often with obliterating concussions. It's got to complicate your general physics, at best! At worst, maybe its "Alien Blackhawk Down"—ground zero at Flatwoods!

Non-presupposing witnesses run up the hill on the Flatwoods Fisher Farm expecting to see a crashed plane or a meteor crater and are not really expecting "God knows what." They encounter "God knows what"! "God knows what" is thrust upon them! How is this their fault?

Their government dares to shoot UFOs down, reader—without notification or informed consent of the population it serves—and without regard to where spent shells and rocket casings might fall, astonishingly, forgetting for a moment where the intended target of those munitions might land! There were incidents of such...

Action has consequence. One consequence might find its damaged and parts-dripping way to Flatwoods.

Flatwoods? Flatwoods is as it was: a town of genuine, hardworking, and clever country people. They "saw what they saw" and they "know what they know." These are not mere fools fit to be the subject of catcalls and ridicule from literate organizational lack-wits fronting for a diseased status quo! These are the proud sons and daughters of the only State in the union to be physically shredded—torn in twain reader—by the American Civil War! WV was on the right side of that war, too.
 These are a town of tested souls who have endured every hardship, surmounted every obstacle, and overcome every insult—insult to their intelligence, insult to their reputation, and insult to their recollection. Why should those insults continue to be endured? They are without merit, fidelity, or substance.
No, these are a town of personable persons braver than many, more faithful than most, and assay more non-cloying community and out-of-your-business responsibility in a resident's nail paring, remembering Freddie May above, reader, than any other community this writer's teleported to with the mechanisms GPS, IPOD, and motor car! Such was, indeed, so.

Why, I'd rather live there, it seems, than the south of France! Such is the music made and metal tested in the geographic center of the grand State of West Virginia. Such is the brave micro-municipality of Flatwoods, the best and most underrated of small town paranormal America.

Flatwoods? Eminently salute-able, this writer salutes you.

Read on.