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Crossings and predictions

Anomalist Books and University of Minnesota Press
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OKLAHOMA CITY – As the old Gordon Lightfoot song “The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald” notes, “the gales of November came early.” And those “gales” sank a massive ore boat in Lake Superior this very month 39 years ago, taking 29 souls with it, below the frigid, wind-whipped waves of the great lake. That November 1975 shipwreck took place just days after Arizona logger Travis Walton was allegedly abducted by aliens in a forest in the eastern part of the Grand Canyon State. 

I also think about the “psychic gales” that seem to be whipping across our collective unconscious, which is that part of the unconscious mind and, as Carl G. Jung explained in the last century, “is derived from ancestral memory and experience and is common to all humankind.”

And this being the all-too-strange month of November, it seems that the veil between our world, and the next, is ever-so-thin. Paranormal phenomena seems to be on the increase, that, along with a sense that something big is coming down the pike. 

UFOs are getting a lot of ink this month, primarily led by “mass sighting” events out of Ireland, where pilots in the sky and folks on the ground saw UFOs. In fact, UFO sightings seem to be on the upswing this decade, according to this report. The air traffic recordings of the pilots seeing the fast-moving "bright lights" reminded me of the pilots talking to the Indianapolis Air Traffic Control early in Close Encounters of the Third Kind when they see a UFO.

In my previous Dust Devil Dreams post “This means something,” I wrote about both syncs with Close Encounters of the Third Kind and the works of David Lynch, including Lynch’s intense interest in the Alan Greenberg script for Love In Vain, about the final years of Delta bluesman Robert Johnson, he of “deal-with-the-devil-at-the-crossroads” fame.

And within hours of publishing that post, I came across a reference to that particular scene in CETK where Roy Neary (Richard Dreyfuss) has his first UFO encounter at a railroad crossing, which matched my strange electrical/railroad/crossroads experience in Clarksdale, Mississippi last month.

It was in a new book from writer Eric Wargo, blogger at The Nightshirt, who has a brilliant and scholarly new book, Time Loops, that, in a latter chapter in the book, about the "Memetic Prophecies of Philip K. Dick," Wargo writes that Dick communicated with a fan named Claudia about a 1974 dream he had involving a fork-grooved "cake," a "Mrs. Fields" which may be a reference to famous abductee Betty Hill, and that the cookie company, Mrs. Fields, was not established until 1977. 

The thing Wargo notes about this dream is that the "cake," which "was all grooved, as if worked over by a fork  ..." was essentially a predictive reference to the scene in Close Encounters - three years in the future! - where Roy, after his railroad crossing "encounter" (which appears as if the UFO is downloading information into his mind), tries to mold a shape with mashed potatoes - and later - mud, into what would be a model for the Devils Tower monument in Wyoming. Roy uses a fork to create the grooves in the mud model, mirroring Devils Tower. 

This is remarkable! And noted in Time Loops the same day I write about that very film and the scene that leads Roy to ultimately make the Devils Tower mud model, and eventually leads him to the UFO and his date with destiny. 

Additionally, for me I have had multiple "cake"-related syncs and dreams over the past six months or so, beginning with an actual "cake in the rain" and syncs with the Jimmy Webb-penned, Richard Harris-sung hit "MacArthur Park," from exactly 50 years ago. 

The other, also syncing with Robert Johnson and the crossroads had to do with a story I saw that same day (Nov. 10) from Consequence of Sound that referenced a Nov. 2, 2018 article at Vulture, by writer Jeff Jackson, talking about stellar rock chronicles. Among them is, of course, Love In Vain. In the piece, Jackson writes: "This book has the dubious honor of having been into one of the most famous unproduced screenplays. It’s been acclaimed by Bob Dylan, Keith Richards, Stanley Crouch, and Greil Marcus; Martin Scorsese once planned to direct it; and David Lynch is currently raising funds to make it."

Of course, that got my attention, and I excitedly shared it on various social media platforms. However, I was informed, via the Lynchland, a David Lynch Facebook fan page, that this has been debunked. Yes, Lynch has expressed interest in making the Love In Vain film. However, nothing has come of it, not unlike the documentary Lynch has talked about making about Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, who brought Transcendental Meditation to the West in the 1960's, with Lynch becoming an avid practitioner beginning in 1973. 

In any event, the key to both references is the crossroads, which are, essentially "liminal zones." I noted this in my recent "Mystery train" post where I refernece Merrily Harpur's remarks in her 2006 book Mystery Big Cats, writing: "liminal zones that, “In the landscape they include streams, bridges, stiles, gates and churchyards – spots literally or symbolically at the point of transition over a boundary.” 

CLOSE CALL

A point of transition over a boundary is quite true. One of my closest brushes with death occured about 15 years ago when I was a newspaper reporter in rural Louisiana. It was late and I was coming from a town hall in some swampy town out in the parishes. I was driving down a parish road trying to get to the main highway (Highway 1, I believe, in Avoyelles Parish) and I crossed a railroad line in my used Camry, not even thinking about looking either way to see if a train was coming. In any event, I cross the tracks and glance in my rearview mirror as I come down the incline on the country road. I was shocked to see a train whizzing past on the very tracks I had crossed seconds earlier. 

I had cheated death, somehow. 

So, how had I not seen the train's head lamp? Why had I been so careless? Was I tired? I will say that this area of Louisiana has more than its fair share of highly strange phenomena. It's like going back in time when you are down there. Initially, as a writer, that was a big part of the appeal of taking a job down there. After a while it was just downright spooky, like the story of 1st Lt. Felix Moncla who was a native of Moureauville, Louisiana, in Avoyelles Parish.

He was the pilot of a F-89C Scorpion that was scrambled over Lake Superior in November 1953 (sync "gales of November") to investigate a UFO flying over the lake, coming from Canada. Moncla, and his co-pilot, 2nd Lt. Robert Wilson of Ponca City, Oklahoma, vanished when their jet - and the mysterious craft, a blip on radar - merged, and only one blip on the radar screen fled the scene. Moncla, Wilson and their jet were never found. This was not far from the area of Lake Superior where the Edmund Fitzgerald sank 22 years in the future.

As Gordon Lightfoot noted in his hypnotic 1976 hit "The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald": "The lake it is said, never gives up her dead, when the skies of November turn gloomy."

Back to Wargo's fascinating book. Talking about writers Philip K. Dick and Morgan Robertson (the latter author was the guy who unwittingly predicted the sinking of the Titanic, in his novel Futility, some 14 years before it happened - and something I mentioned in a 2012 Dust Devil Dreams piece here), he writes of dreams and synchronicities: "Other people's dreams, synchronicities, and visions, and so on never seem as compelling as they do to the experiencer, simply because meaning is always an individual, personal thing."

This general area was not far from the town of Mansura, Louisiana, where I was on the night of September 10, 2001, covering a contentious town hall meeting (I reference it in my March 2011 article "The Cheshire moon"). And when I pulled into the parking lot, the American flag was upside down, as if it distress. I made a mental note of it, went back to the office, wrote my story and went home and went to bed. Of course, when I woke up the following morning, the world had forever changed.

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Andrew W. Griffin

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

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