Wednesday, August 25, 2010



The subject of space aliens has been in the news of late. This month, a scientist in the United States declared that proof of extraterrestrials could come within 25 years. Seth Shostak, senior astronomer at the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence Institute in Mountain View, California, said, “I actually think the chances that we’ll find ET are pretty good.” He told the young people in the audience at a SETI convention that there was a “really good chance you’re going to see this happen.”

I have several questions for Mr. Shostak. What is we find a creature that is nothing like ET? What if this extraterrestrial life is hostile to us? What if it is too weird for us to understand? What if its intelligence is so far above ours that we can’t relate to it or communicate with it at all? Then what?

Here’s another item I came across. There were reports of an unidentified flying object hovering over Cultus Lake in Chilliwack, British Columbia on the night of Tuesday, August 17th. A Vancouver radio station, The Fox 99.3, broke the story. During the following morning’s Open Phones segment on The Fox with host Jeff O’Neil, a man called to say that his girlfriend noticed some lights flooding the pitch-black sky over the lake. The radio show also received a text from 'Wally' in Chilliwack, saying he also saw the lights on that Tuesday night.

For human beings, the existence of intelligent life on other planet is both an intriguing and frightening proposition. When we think of extraterrestrial beings, we conjure up images of bald little green people with flying saucers or we visualize a friendly, benevolent creature such as ET. We tend to anthropomorphize space aliens. On television and in films, we portray them as quasi-human beings. They have mouths and eyes and they walk upright. In some Hollywood movies or in cartoons, they even speak English and ask us to take them to our leader. They understand us when we tell them to “phone home.”

Humans tend to portray extraterrestrials as either very menacing or very cute. Without a frame of reference, we have to use our imaginations. When something is beyond the scope of our comprehension, we tend to conceptualize it in human terms. Yet, if we are not alone in the universe, if there are beings on other planets, it seems doubtful to me that they would resemble us at all. They may be radically and entirely different from human beings in every shape and form. Their character and their external appearance may be beyond human comprehension and who knows how they would communicate with each other and with other species. I’m not sure I’d ever want to meet an extraterrestrial. Still, there is still a certain fascination about the idea.

NOTE : On the right side of this blog page, you will notice a poll asking your opinion on the existence of intelligent life on other planets. I invite you to express your opinion and let me know what you think. Just click on your mouse. I have to say I would vote “Maybe. It’s a possibility.”


The Blue Jays were clobbered by the New York Yankees at Yankee Stadium last night.  The score was 11-5.  Starting pitcher Mark Rzepczynski had a bad night.  He just didn't have it.

- Joanne