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OKLAHOMA CITY – Remember the bizarre “Balloon Boy” hoax back in the fall of 2009?

When it happened, Fox News’s Shepard Smith was giving us second-by-second updates on the boy allegedly in the balloon flying over the Colorado countryside, possibly heading toward the Denver International Airport. Gripping stuff!

But while there was a silver, UFO-shaped balloon, there was no boy inside. It turned out to be a hoax where the boy, Falcon Heene, was hiding in the attic and that the parents concocted the entire thing as some kooky publicity stunt. At the time, I wrote that it was all some sort of "psy-op." We also addressed it in our Dust Devil Dreams piece "From the bottom of the well." Anyway ... 

I thought of Balloon Boy a few weeks ago when my assistant Sarah brought in a sliver mylar balloon to the office in the shape of the number “8,” to celebrate Red Dirt Report’s eighth birthday.

The balloon looked just like an alleged UFO video taken in southern California back in March. The “UFO” looked like a silver number “8,” just like the balloon Sarah purchased.

So what, right? Well, I found it sync-worthy.

Balloons, it seems, have been coming up a lot lately, including in my dreams.

Just last night, upon entering my dream world, I found myself on the leafy campus of a small, Midwestern college, possibly in Iowa or Illinois. I was with a bunch of kids (now “adults,” it appeared) whom I knew back in sixth grade, circa 1985. There was that year again!

One of the kids in my class – I’ll call her “Cecilia” – had gripped a rope connected to a large balloon that looked like a weather balloon, you know, the sort that is always being mistaken for a UFO.

Cecilia didn’t seem worried as she lifted into the sky and we watched in wonder. But then I thought about the dangers and knew we had to save her. But how?

With us, by the way, were two members of the Rolling Stones – Keith Richards and Ron Wood.

Keith and Ron look up and say something about this ending up on Fox News, and I reply, “Everyone believes what they say on fucking Fox News.” Keith and Ron just laugh.

The Stones are known for balloons. Even ones some consider obscene. I think they even had a blimp at one point …

Anyway, I am growing increasingly concerned about my classmate, drifting amongst the clouds. I wonder if we can somehow get a small airplane to fly and “catch” Cecilia.

I wake up before I find out what happens. Drat!

After pondering about this dream for a bit, I remember a story I saw about a Canadian man who recently attached a bunch of balloons to a chair and flew for half-an-hour. I saw it on The Guardian website. The guy was trying to drum up business for his cleaning company. Apparently it worked. Business soared.

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About the Author

Andrew W. Griffin

Editor & Owner.

Andrew W. Griffin received his Bachelor of Science in Journalism from...

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About Red Dirt Report

Red Dirt Report was launched July 4, 2007 as an independent news website covering all manner of news, culture, entertainment and lifestyle stories that affect and interest Oklahoma readers and readers outside of our state. Our mission is to educate, promote civic engagement and discourse on public policy, government and politics. Our experienced journalists provided balanced in-depth coverage of news stories that affect Oklahomans. Our opinion/editorial stories come from a wide range of political view points. We carry out our mission by reporting, writing, and posting news and information. read more

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