Monday, February 15, 2016

The Revenant of 5th Avenue

Dispatched by B F Koch
ITITY Unusual Events Reporter

New York, NY

As experts review the confusing, often contradictory statements of witnesses who still can’t believe what they saw, and attempt to stitch together the shadowy images of a hundred pieces of cell phone video, a strange and incredible narrative is beginning to emerge.

During the paralyzing blizzard of early February, a man is seen running from a building in midtown Manhattan. His right arm is raised, shielding his face. While some are shouting that his head is on fire, at least three blurry images show only an unruly tangle of unnaturally orange hair.

In several videos it appears as though he is being pursued by a large bird. Some bystanders are saying it’s a raven, yet others insist it’s a bald eagle. Although difficult to discern in the whiteout, in one enhanced frame it looks as if the man’s eyes have been plucked from their sockets.

Crossing 56th Street, he slips, is struck by a taxi, and then staggers south for two more blocks where he collapses on the icy sidewalk. Before anyone can assist him, a gang of hungry rats drag his broken body down the snow covered stairs into the 53rd street subway station.

His clothes now in shreds, he slowly crawls across the platform on his hands and knees then falls helplessly onto the tracks. Attempts to help him are halted when his stubby fingers deliberately reach for the third rail. A woman screams as a bright yellow arc briefly illuminates the hideous spectacle.

The smoldering corpse convulses; then falls still. A sickening hiss hangs in the dank air. After a few stomach-turning seconds, the tunnel is silent.

Astonished onlookers then suddenly gasp in horror as the gruesome figure struggles to stand. Gaining his balance, he takes a few faltering steps; then with each stride his pace becomes more confident until he finally disappears into the darkness.

Monday, February 8, 2016

Is Rare Species Worth Saving?

Reported by F. Russell Grumman
ITITY Science Correspondent

The Department of the Interior has opened a public comment period regarding its consideration of placing Dingbatus Palinensis on the endangered species list.  Discovered in 2006 by naturalists studying the habits of Alaskan grizzly bears, this variety of brown bat is characterized by its luxurious fur, large vacant eyes, and an incredibly shrill vocalization sounding like a high pitched "ubetcha, ubetcha". 

Initial observation proved difficult due to the creature’s habit of constantly flying off in the dark in no predictable direction; however researchers finally located its home in the belfry of the Wasilla town hall. After climbing the tower stairs, they found the door almost impossible to open as it had been nearly blocked by a prodigious quantity of solidified guano. This led them to hypothesize that the belfry was a roost for many more individuals than the nuclear family they found.

However, after two years of observation they concluded it was only the female they had originally observed, and to a lesser degree the other members of her brood, that produced a more guano per specimen that any other known species of bat. It is this characteristic that suggested Palinensis should be protected, as further research might identify a sufficient number of examples to have value as a source of natural fertilizer. 

Opponents argue that if there were more, they would have already been found. They further contend that this small group does not merit protection, but is merely an aberrational mutation that simply stinks up any place it appears. Moreover, they site evidence indicating that Palinensis’ droppings are responsible for a diminution of reasoning abilities in those exposed to it for any length of time

A decision is expected in late 2016 after all comments are collected and considered, according to a spokesperson for the panel considering the action. She added that if a threat to public mental health and physical safety can be demonstrated, it may eventually trump the uniqueness and entertainment value of the of the species.