14 - Sideways in Time



You are driving along a deserted highway late at night when suddenly you see a flash of light in the sky ahead. The light draws nearer and a peculiar feeling overtakes you: a kind of tingling sensation. Your car radio, which is turned off, begins to emit a loud beeping like Morse code. Your headlights dim and then your engine sputters and stalls. You coast to the side of the road, overcome by a great wave of sheer terror.

Suddenly it is morning. You wake up in your own bed with absolutely no memory of having driven home, undressing, and retiring. When you try to recall the night before, it all seems hazy and unreal. Maybe it was all a dream, you tell yourself. But you feel exhausted, as if you had been on a drunken binge and your eyes are very sore. Within a few days you have forgotten the whole incident, if it was a real incident, but occasionally you wake up at night sweating profusely from a recurrent nightmare. You dream that you are in some kind of hospital operating room with strange figures gathered around your outstretched body.

Thousands of people have shared this kind of experience in recent years. It may have happened to your next-door neighbor even though he or she has never mentioned it to you ... or to anyone else. Such people are “silent contactees.“

Others traveling that same highway may have seen that same light and even reported it to the local police or newspapers. But the silent contactee remains uncertain of the reality of it all and keeps quiet.

For every publicly known contactee like Woodrow Derenberger there are thousands of silent ones. Some later manage to recall fragments of what happened and then their mind plays tricks and colors what they can remember with false details ... confabulations. The terror they felt becomes linked with awesome monsters and apparitions. The operating room becomes a chamber on a spacecraft.

Like all the other things discussed here, this is not a new phenomenon. Black magicians, witch doctors, arid shamans of other ages evolved explanations as fanciful as those of modern UFO buffs. They thought spirits kidnapped humans and somehow dismantled their bodies and reconstructed them, or even created an exact duplicate in some fashion. The changeling concept in religious and occult lore is a variation of this.


Small children are supposedly whisked away and substituted with bodies that look just like them but are really programmed in an entirely different way.

A person who consorted with the devil supposedly had a mark somewhere on his flesh as a souvenir of the experience. A modern UFO contactee develops these “devil’s marks,” sometimes in the form of a wart or boil, sometimes a rash or blotch that looks like a birthmark. In occult lore, pains in the stomach or solar plexus occur during the experience, just as UFO contactee Mrs. Barney Hill thought the spacemen were probing her stomach with a long needle.


Blood is drawn from the chin, neck, or the tips of the fingers and the affected areas remain sore for several days afterward. A number of contactees have had a reddish mark on the side of their neck, just below the ear, and recalled that an entity had touched them there causing them to pass out. A few contactees have claimed that the entities simply scraped their arms with some kind of instrument and apparently removed a few cells “for study.” Actually each cell of your body contains the elaborate memory system called the genetic code.


If someone wanted to construct a duplicate of you, and had the necessary technology, they would need only a cell or two from your body. Or a sample of your blood might do it.

It is, of course, really impossible to tell what is actually going on from these meager clues. The memory of the contactees is unreliable; the phenomenon deliberately sets up false trails and creates manifestations designed to support the beliefs of false frames of reference. By drawing blood conspicuously from  a few people who let their stories be known, they establish an explanation for the thousand of dead animals who have their blood drained during flap periods. We blame the devil, vampires, or space people.

Nothing in the paranormal world is as it seems.

Let us examine three different cases of UFO contact, each belonging to a different category, but all probably caused by the same cosmic mechanism.

The first is the story of Eugenio Siragusa, the Italian contactee who is the center of a growing cult.
(1) I have chosen him rather whimsically because we share the same birth date. He was born on March 25, 1919. I was born on March 25, 1930.


[1] C.E.J.F.C., 12, me des Bossons, 1213 ONEX, Geneva, Switzerland.


Here’s a summary of his story in his own words.

I was 33 years old ... and for the requirements of my job, I was up very early that morning. Having arrived at the “Martyrs Square,” I was waiting for the bus as usual when suddenly, I spotted in the sky, a kind of luminous object of a white mercurial color, which zigzagged very rapidly. This luminosity continued to intensify; it approached and I saw an object similar to a spinning top which stopped above me. I admit that I was petrified. What could this object be?


A wave of thoughts flowed into my mind when suddenly, a brilliant ray left the object and struck me, it pierced me completely, while an indescribable serenity flowed into me. Upon that all my fear left me and a moment later, the brilliant ray became thinner and disappeared, as if absorbed by the machine, just like the spot on a television set when it is turned off. As the ray disappeared, this object, which I later understood to be one of these “flying saucers,” began to move and left an arc in the sky before disappearing.

When I pulled myself together, I rapidly discovered more and more that something extraordinary had happened to me: a sort of re-dimension of my personality, my voice even changed to a gentle tone.

Ever since then an inner voice has begun to instruct me on geology and cosmology; it opened my mind to the mysteries of Creation and of my former lives. This re-dimension of my existence was possible thanks to continued ESP contacts which were established between certain Extraterrestrials and myself. This extrasensory perception was continually developing within me; it lasted 11 long years before I could actually, physically meet my extraterrestrial instructors. One day, at last I had my first meeting with them.


Here is briefly how these events unfolded:

One night, in 1962, I suddenly felt the need to go on the Etna (Sicilian volcano which overlooks Catalina). I got into my car and drove off. On my way I had the distinct sensation that instead of it being me, it was the car which was guided by a superior force. As I was winding up the mountain, I approached Mount Manfre at an altitude of 1370 meters.


After having stopped my car on the side of the road, I continued by foot along a path which led up to an extinct crater. I had gone up half way on this steep path when I suddenly saw on top of the hill, in the darkness, two silhouettes standing out in the moonlight with shining silver space suits.


They were tall, well built, with blond hair which fell over their shoulders. They wore brilliant armlets around their wrists and ankles which had the color of gold; they also wore a luminous belt around their waist, and  a strange metallic plate on their chests. When I saw them, my blood froze and I felt a cold sweat flow out of me. I had hoped for this moment for eleven years, but as the spot was isolated, the nocturnal obscurity and sudden meeting were not situations which would give me courage.


One of the Extraterrestrials then directed a green light towards me, which was projected by an object he had in his hand. Instantly a strange sensation calmed me and gave me an indescribable serenity; my heart which in the beginning seemed to explode in my chest, set itself to throb regularly. Looking at their two faces enlightened by the moon, I could admire their soft features and their austere and serene look.

Suddenly, one of them spoke to me in Italian: “We have been waiting for you,” he told me. “Record in your memory what we are going to tell you”; they gave me a message to send to the governors and the responsible of the earth. In this message there was the “reprimanding” warning to all those responsible, to stop the atomic explosions as well as to grant humanity the well-being of true progress, but with Justice, Freedom, Love and Fraternity.


Following this meeting, we had several conversations during other meetings; I was told that they are part of an Inter-Galactic Confederation, to which adhere the inhabitants of many planets. They are the tutors of human kind, including our planet. We should consider them as thus like big brothers who are concerned about the bad turning we have taken, making us risk to bring the use of the atomic bomb.


They come all this way to us to warn us in time of the danger we are heading into, because the Cosmic Counsel condemns the people of Earth for their inhuman behavior: the people to which the truth is hidden, are governed by lies; shameful crimes are considered acts of heroism; violence becomes a necessity; racial hatred appears as a normal thing to our civilization; religion has been deformed and brought to fanaticism....

Then one day, on a stern tone and with deep sadness in their voices, they told me:

“A highly evolved humanity sends to you astronauts and missionaries from a distance of several light years to enlighten you on the nature of your existence, but Instead of being thankful for their efforts, you ignore them and mock all the teachings they bring to you; know that an evolution which has failed is a planetarian catastrophe, and this will be the inevitable consequences of your acts.”

They then added:

“In a past life, everyone of you has worked towards the establishment of the civilization which exists today; you have all collaborated in participating in the development of humanity. Understand that you are preparing yourselves today! As tutors of your kind, we can do nothing else but condemn your acts; know this: you are rigorously supervised by a superior race who will never permit you to come to the disaster of a ‘nuclear war.’“

Mr. Siragusa was reprogrammed in the classic manner of all fanatics, and he has been used to disseminate propaganda couched in terms understandable and acceptable to us.


The messages include references to reincarnation, politics, and religion, but not within the loftier intellectual framework of some alien “superior culture.” Instead of telling us things we do not know, they tell us the things we want to hear and believe. Our own fear of nuclear annihilation was epidemic in the 1950s and early 1960s. So many of the UFO messages of the period were stern warnings about our misuse of atomic energy.


As our own paranoia subsided, so did these threats from outer space.

The most widely publicized UFO contact of October 1973 was also the least important. Two fishermen in Pascagoula, Mississippi, suffered a rather routine hallucination which hurled them onto national television and attracted the attention of UFO-philes, crackpots, and astronomers.


The case has been so widely discussed that I will just summarize it very briefly here.

“It is my opinion that he told the truth when he stated that he believes he saw a spaceship, that he was taken into the spaceship, and that he saw three creatures,” Scott Glasgow, a New Orleans polygraph (lie detector) specialist declared after examining Charles Hickson in October 1973.

Dr. J. Allen Hynek, an astronomer, also interviewed Hickson and his friend Calvin Parker.

“There is no question in my mind that these men have had a terrifying experience,” Hynek stated. “Under no circumstances should they be ridiculed. Let’s protect these men.“

Hickson, forty-two, and Parker, eighteen, would need all the protection they could get.

The two men had been fishing from a pier on the Pascagoula River when at 8 P.M. on October 11, 1973, they heard a loud pulsing, humming sound. Then they saw a brilliant flickering blue light moving over the water toward them.

Both men became paralyzed.

“I felt immobilized,” Hickson said later. “I couldn’t move. But I know I was scared to death.“

As the light drew closer it took on an egg-shaped appearance. Young Parker lost consciousness, fainting dead away, so the two-witness sighting now became a one-witness event. Hickson said two five-foot-tall beings came out of the object. They were grayish with wrinkled skin, no necks, pointed ears, and crablike claws. They picked up the two men (“It was like just floating in the air”) and carried them into the object where “a big eye,” somewhere between the size of a large softball and a basketball, moved over their bodies, apparently studying them. Then they were deposited back on the river pier to the exact spot where they had been picked up.

When the light withdrew, the two men came to their senses and ran in terror to the local sheriff’s office. Following their experience, Hickson and Parker suffered blinding headaches.

“At first, those dreams I had was awful,” Charlie Hickson told NBC News reporter Ralph Blum, “and the headaches was so bad—like a pressure on my skull.“

The day after the incident a small wound opened up on Hickson’s arm and bled profusely for a few hours. Then it closed just as mysteriously as it had come.

The pier from which the men were fishing was under surveillance by a TV system at a naval installation across the river. The men monitoring the system saw nothing unusual that night. They were also in full view of a nearby drawbridge, and the toll-booths for a neighboring highway. The men manning those positions did not see anything unusual on the river. They saw no lights; additional proof that the episode was hallucinatory.

Ralph Blum learned another interesting fact when he asked Hickson why he was not carrying a watch.

“Never could. People said I had electricity,” Hickson explained.


“To give you an example, before I went into service, I tried two or three wrist watches. But they wouldn’t keep time on me. They’d either lose time, or gain time. Or they’d just stop. ... I never did find one that would keep correct time. I even tried Elgins, these railroad pocket watches? And they don’t keep correct time. So I don’t tote a watch.“

Obviously Mr. Hickson’s physical makeup includes some unknown but not unheard of force which interferes with watches. He could be surrounded by that special energy field or aura which attracts UFO-type phenomena. Calvin Parker was just unfortunate enough to be present when the phenomenon zeroed in on Hickson. Since the light was not operating on his alpha wave frequency, Parker wasn’t entranced ... he was knocked unconscious. Hickson entered a hypnoticlike trance and hallucinated.

Besides all the press attention, crank phone calls, and attending nonsense, Calvin Parker suffered a nervous breakdown. Yet, despite the uproar in Pascagoula, the men were never properly investigated by qualified persons ... aside from the air force. A hydraulic engineer from Berkeley visited them, hypnotized them, and when they began to relive their terrible fear he cut the session short. Afterward he soberly informed reporters that he was certain the men had been examined by “robots from outer space.“

The air force investigation was another story. Deputy Tom Huntley accompanied the two men to the Keesler Air Force Base.

“When we got there it was something amazing,” Huntley told Ralph Blum afterward.


“We were in an unmarked car but the guards were expecting us and Waved us through the moment I said who we was. I looked back through my rear-view mirror, and damn if two cars full of air police hadn’t fallen in behind us. They had more air police stationed at each crossing all along the road. We pulled up in this concrete area behind a building The police had halted all traffic. Doctors were waiting, and man, they looked like space creatures—all wrapped in white and masked and gloved. They went over Charlie and Calvin from head to toe. They ran a radioactive check. They swabbed between the boys’ fingers, along the tops of their shoes, even under the heels. Then they put each swab into a little bottle and labeled each bottle.“

It was clear the air force doctors knew what they were doing and had probably done it many times before. After the examination was completed, Huntley, Hickson, and Parker were escorted to another building.

“It was something,” Huntley said. “Armed air police at each door and all along the route! Four of ‘em in the conference room! And the brass—colonels, majors—the whole base command must have been there. And a heap of doctors.“

The men were closely interrogated for several minutes. Some of the questions asked were identical to the questions I asked in my own interviews. Questions about diet (some contactees seem to favor a high starch diet), marks or punctures, on their bodies, family history, etc.

The intriguing part of this is the extensive security measures taken. It sounds as if the whole base had been put on alert for the occasion, and the two contactees were so closely guarded during their visit that it seems as if the air force expected them to blow up the base. To me, this Keesler Air Force Base investigation “was far more interesting than the UFO contact itself.

Perhaps someone in the air force had read my 1967-68 articles in Flying Saucer Review advising investigators to “find out what they had for breakfast”

Woodrow Derenberger regarded the ufonauts as “time travelers.” He noted some interesting distortions of time during his jaunts to the far-off galaxy of Ganymede (actually Ganymede is the name of one of Jupiter’s moons).


When he went off on a trip with Indrid Cold, a trip that seemed to take hours or days, he always found on his return that only a few hours of earth time had passed. He rejected the notion that he may have hallucinated his interstellar voyages, so time-traveling was the only answer acceptable to him.

In many of the cases outlined here I have pointed out the entities’ obsession with time. Their behavior as described by various witnesses further suggests their problems in adjusting to our time frame. For example, their rapid-fire unintelligible “language” noted by witnesses all over the world as sounding like “a speeded up phonograph record” could be caused by their failure to adjust to our time cycle when they enter, our space-time-continuum. They are talking at a faster rate because their time is different from ours.


When they manage to adjust, they have to forcibly slow themselves down, articulating their words slowly, in a singsong manner. For high-speed radio transmissions we record signals at a normal speed, then broadcast the tape at a very high speed. The receiver records it at the same high speed and then slows the tape down again to play it back. Our entities are like those radio receivers, playing back the message at slow speeds until they hit upon a speed we can interpret.

The entities also foul up in other ways. They arrive in clothes that are out of style, or not yet in style. Their vehicles are out of date. If they use slang, they might come up with archaic terms like “twenty-three Skidoo” or “hubba hubba.” The poor bastards not only fail to understand who or what they are, but also where they are or what time period they’re in. Some of these mistakes seem intentional and have some allegorical purpose. But others seem to be just... mistakes.

This brings us to one of the most puzzling contact stories in my files.

At 1:15 A.M. on the morning of Sunday, December 10, 1967, a young college student from Adelphi, Maryland, was driving home alone outside of Washington, D.C. As he was crossing the then-partially completed cutoff on Interstate 70, leading from Route 40 to Route 29, he saw a large object on the road directly ahead. At first he thought it was a tractor-trailer jackknifed across the road. Then he realized it was a bone-white reflective object shaped like an egg and standing on four legs.


As he pulled to a stop a few feet from the object he could make out two figures standing next to the thing. Their appearance terrified him.

One of the men walked to his car with a broad grin on his face. He was about five feet ten, wore light blue coveralls, thick-soled boots or shoes, and he had a ruddy or suntanned complexion with large eyes “like thyroid eyes.”


The grin remained fixed on his face throughout the episode.

“Do not be afraid of me,” he said several times in an audible voice.

His name, he said, was Vadig. He spoke with Tom, the witness, for several minutes, asking ordinary questions about where he was from, where he was going, what he did, etc.

Finally he said pointedly,

“I’ll see you in time,” and walked back to the object.

A small door opened and a metal ladder folded down. A hand reached out and helped Vadig aboard, then the thing rose silently into the air and disappeared. Tom told his three roommates about the encounter, but they didn’t take him seriously so he didn’t mention it to anyone else.

Tom was working his way through school by serving as a waiter part-time in a chain of restaurants in the D.C. area He had not mentioned this to Vadig. But one Sunday night in early February 1968, Vadig entered the restaurant where he was working and sat at one of his tables.


Vadig was now wearing a conventional suit with a black outer coat.

“Do you remember me?” Vadig asked.

“I sure do.” Tom answered, very surprised. They exchanged a few words and Tom brought him a cup of coffee.

“My presence here would be detrimental to the family trade,” Vadig said at one point with a chuckle.

He asked Tom if he would be willing to meet with him the following Sunday. Tom agreed and Vadig left the restaurant.

“I’ll see you in time,” he promised.

After work the next Sunday, a waitress drove Tom home and dropped him off. As she pulled away, a big black car with its lights out glided from the shadows and halted at the curb. Mr. Vadig called out to Tom. Another man was in the car. Tom later recalled only that he wore a gray coat, had black hair, and never spoke.


Tom got into the car.

“It was a very old Buick,” he reported. “But it was very well kept. It looked brand-new. It even smelled brand-new.“

They drove for about thirty minutes to a remote spot on a back road in Maryland. When Tom got out of the car he was astonished to see the egg-shaped object waiting for them. He was put into a circular room containing nothing but a couple of bucket seats and a gray TV screen. Vadig and his companion disappeared into another part of the ship.

After a few minutes the TV screen came alive, the object shuddered, and Tom watched the image of the earth receding to a tiny speck on the screen. Three or four hours passed. He was still dressed in his waiter’s uniform and did not have a watch. But it seemed like hours before another planet appeared on the screen, grew larger, and then the craft landed with a thump.

The young waiter found himself in a place not too unlike the earth. He and Vadig got into a wheelless vehicle that traveled along a kind of trough.

“This is Lanulos,” Vadig announced with pride in his voice.

He repeated the name several times so it would stick in Tom’s memory.

Their vehicle traveled through a large city with low, flat buildings and signs written in some kind of Oriental-looking characters. The people, male and female, were all nude.

“There were some real lookers there, too,” Tom commented.

After the tour, they returned to the egg-shaped craft and took off again. Tom sat alone in the same circular room watching the television screen for hours. Finally they arrived back on earth at the same place from which they had left.


Tom, Vadig, and the silent man returned to the old Buick and drove for about thirty minutes until they reached his apartment house.

“I’ll see you in time,” Vadig declared, then the car drove off.

Tom ran into his apartment, determined to wake up his roommates and tell them of his adventure. He found they were sitting up, waiting for him. But what amazed him most was the clock on the wall. The waitress had dropped him off around midnight. Now it was only 1:30 A.M. The whole trip, including the thirty-minute rides to and from the UFO, had taken less than two hours!

His excitement and bewilderment were real and his roommates took him seriously this time.

A month later, Woodrow Derenberger visited Washington and appeared on a number of talk shows. Tom was sleeping when one of his roommates burst into his bedroom exclaiming,

“Tom, there’s a guy on the radio talking about Lanulos!“

All four were flabbergasted to hear Woody describe experiences very similar to Tom’s. They called the radio station and spoke to him after the program.

By sheer coincidence, I was in Washington at the time and agreed to go with Woody when he interviewed the young man. But I sternly warned Derenberger and his wife not to ask any leading questions. Naturally, I suspected the whole thing was some kind of put-on. Either Tom and Woody were in cahoots, or Tom, who was a psychology major, was working on a paper about the gullible UFO buffs, I thought.

It quickly became apparent that Tom and his roommates were quite sincere. They were too involved in their studies to read UFO literature and, in any case, some of the details in Tom’s story could not be found in any of the superficial UFO lore. I finally had to conclude Tom was on the level. He was not looking for publicity and I decided I would not write up his story.

However, Woody told others about him (I think even Woody was surprised by such direct confirmation of his own experiences) and some Washington UFO enthusiasts convinced Tom he should reveal his adventure to the world. Two years later he lectured before a UFO club and appeared on Long John’s radio program in New York. Since he had chosen to come out publicly, I finally devoted a paragraph to him in one of my books.


After the book was published, Tom wrote me an angry letter.

Ever since those appearances ... I have been pestered and plagued by a horde of kooks. They call, write, stop to visit, etc. They drove me crazy. Some of my very close friends began to advise me of the dangers to my reputation that these types of individuals were posing. I decided to tell them all once and for all that I desired no more public contact. ... Although the experiences I had were completely true, I sometimes wish I had never revealed them to anyone. The only reason I made them known was because I thought I could help to verify and help uncover some of the mystery that shrouds the UFO phenomenon. ... I should have kept my mouth shut like I had planned to when you first interviewed me.

Tom married a beautiful girl and she didn’t learn of his weird meetings with Vadig until months after the ceremony. Like so many others before him, myself included, he learned that the only thing more bizarre than the phenomenon itself is the unruly mob of true believers, cranks, and irresponsible self-styled investigators who pursue the subject; moths attracted to the flame.


They tormented Charles Hickson and Calvin Parker in 1973, just as they had arrived by the carload in Point Pleasant in 1967.

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