CRAZY TALK: RE WATCHING A SHOW LIKE “THE X-FILES” AT A TIME LIKE THIS

From the mid-eighties to the mid-nineties, I was an avid Saturday morning cartoon fan. Starting with The Real Ghostbusters and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and going on to Fox Kids with Mighty Morphing Power Rangers, Batman: The Animated Series, Spider-Man and X-Men. As an instant X-Men fan, I saw a preview for a new series I at first thought was going to be a life action version due to the title, but The X-Files was something else entirely. Hot off the heels of David Lynch and Mark Frost’s Twin Peaks, it premiered on September 10th, 1993.

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The Series focused on FBI Agents Fox Mulder (David Duchovny), and Dana Scully (Gillian Anderson). Mulder was the believer hunting for UFO’s and the whereabouts of his Sister, Samantha, who was abducted by Aliens when they were kids. Scully was the skeptic who always looked for the reasonable explanation. They’d find friends in The Lone Gunmen (Dean Haglund as Langley, Tom Braidwood as Frohike and Bruce Harwood as J.F. Byers), a group of Conspiracy theorists who published a weekly paper, as well as FBI Assistant Director Walter Skinner (Mitch Pileggi), a Government Informant called Deepthroat (Jerry Hardin ), FBI Agents John Doggett (Robert Patrick) and Monica Reyes (Annabeth Gish) and the mysterious X (Steven Williams). They’d take on enemies like the sinister Cigarette Smoking Man (William B. Davis), who was behind the Alien Conspiracy and even assassinated President John F. Kennedy and Martin Luther King, Jr (in the show), Alex Krycek (Nicholas Lea), who never seemed to know whose side he was on, and the Syndicate, a group much like the Illuminati that was behind the Alien Conspiracy with the Cigarette Smoking Man. They’d face many “Monster Of The Week” villains, as well. The Show would go on for nine seasons.

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The first episode I saw was “Ice,” which aired on November 5th, 1993. I was instantly drawn to it, but due to it’s air time, I wasn’t able to watch regularly. Even My Mother and Stepfather lost interest over time until the first movie was released on June 19th, 1998. I kept up from time to time with the series and watched most of the last two seasons up until it’s final episode, “The Truth,” which aired on May 19th, 2002. They released a second movie, “I Want To Believe,” six years later on July 24th, 2008 followed by a limited series that consists of two seasons. Season Ten premiered on February 22nd, 2016. Season Eleven premiered on January 10th, 2018 and concluded on March 21st, 2018. And since then, nothing. Just rumors and denials of anything new in the world of The X-Files.

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And here we are now almost half way through 2020. There’s a strange pandemic going around and we are in a time of believers and deniers. As a Country, we’re divided now more than ever. And the rest of the World is going through it with us. So what better to do than stay home, as requested, and watch TV. And wouldn’t you know it, Hulu has every Episode of the X-Files and both Movies. I dived right in once again and couldn’t help but notice the comparisons that can be made between the show and real life. So here comes the crazy talk.

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The content of The X-Files reminds me a lot of things I’ve heard growing up in Tampa, Florida. Like the show, we have our own monsters and conspiracies.

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First, there’s the Warlock’s house. The man, Lewis Van Dercar, is said to have been a Warlock. His yard was filled with the strange sculptures that he himself made. I’ve driven by it many times over the years. Once, my Cousin and I saw what we thought was a statue get up and move but then we didn’t see where it went. Another time, my brother and I drove out with two girls to spook them. It was night out and we weren’t sure where it was in the dark and then all at once, we all stared right at it and the girls screamed. Afterwards, we stopped by a McDonald’s where my brother and I could swear that there were frogs ribbiting our names. I’ve looked into this place and it’s creator since then. His story is truly incredible.

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Here is an article written on  Van Dercar in 1987:

https://www.sun-sentinel.com/news/fl-xpm-1987-12-13-8702110211-story.html

And a Video:

I believe my deceased Stepfather knew Van Dercar and his family. If memory serves, I met his wife as a child. My Stepfather told me that when she had the same color hair as their dog. When she was there, the dog wasn’t and vice versa. I took my Wife out there most recently. I look forward to seeing it again.

My Stepfather was always one for scares. From that time we hunted for Bigfoot to the weird seance where I asked if we could summon Abraham Lincoln, but he insisted on Jason. That’s slasher flick Jason. All fun and games until after it was over, I went to the bathroom and when I washed my hands, the water came out of the sink all dirty and rusty, looking like blood. But let me get back to that Bigfoot thing.

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I remember a story he told me where a friend came home and found his place trashed and then something big came through, picked him up, threw him and ran off. He even took us kids hunting for it once. I thought I saw something hiding behind a tree, but maybe not. There are still reports of this Sasquatch in Wesley Chapel, just outside of Tampa, where I lived for a time. Here’s something on it where a man claimed he saw one run across the road one night while he was hanging out with his friends.

https://www.bfro.net/GDB/show_report.asp?id=42293

Then there’s the Myakka Skunk Ape I’ve heard about over the years. A beast that has more of an orangutan type of body than Bigfoot’s gorilla shape and carries with it such a foul stench.

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It seems crazy. But what about that thing that bounced up and down under my Grandma’s trailer one night that made the whole place shake? Of course at that time, there was an escaped monkey from Busch Gardens that I have learned my Wife’s ex might have been a part of.  Here’s more on that and some other:

Exploring American Monsters: Florida

There’s the time my Stepfather and I saw strange lights in the sky. In the second Episode of The X-Files, “Deepthroat” that aired on September 17th, 1993, Mulder and Scully witnessed strange lights in the sky that moved in weird directions too fast to be planes. This was a slightly less exciting version of that where we saw multiple lights moving up and down and then they were gone. This was outside of Tampa and there were no lights like this in the area. It wasn’t a plane or helicopter. So what was it? This wasn’t the last time I witnessed strange lights in Florida.

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At this time, I want to share a personal story. Something that gives me the creeps.  The children section of Stephen King’s Novel, “IT,” is set in the fifties. The new movies however set the kid stuff in the eighties. Most notably 1988-1989. At this time as a small child, I had a reoccurring nightmare of a clown eating me. It was always a bit different. It would rip my guts out with it’s teeth. Sometimes my guts would be mechanical. A couple of times my Mom would be there and I’d interrupt their conversation which would become the reason it ate me. Finally during one of my run ins with this monster, I ran and escaped. I never had the nightmare again. Not long after, the Mini-Series version of IT aired and I couldn’t even look at the TV.

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I’d never heard of IT or seen any thing about it. I was about three or four and it is a really big book. So that’s weird. And just for fun, I’ll point out that the Cigarette Smoking Man actor William B. Davis appeared briefly in the Mini-Series with Seth Green, who was in the “Deepthroat” Episode.

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Now for a really wild and dark story. The Sulphur Springs Tower.

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It’s story is a mix and match of hearsay and there has been much debate. Some say it was built to replace a Lighthouse that was used to guide Pirates. Some say it’s just a water tower. There’s a story of a school field trip where a young girl was seen being dragged into the river by a strange creature and it through her into the air, and then pulled her under and drowned her. There’s been talking of people seeing the ghost of this girl and she disappears by the water. She isn’t the only ghost seen there. Many people claim to see ghosts wearing old fashioned clothing at the top of the tower. Some spirits are even said to leap with claims that they’re the ghosts of people who committed suicide this way. The ghosts of pirates might also be haunting the area looking for old buried treasure. Here’s more info:

Sulphur Springs Tower

and:

https://patch.com/florida/southtampa/do-you-believe-ghosts-historic-hillsborough-haunts

and:

https://www.theidentitytb.com/article/tampa-bay-haunted-places-damndest-town-hell

Most recently there’s the mystery of Zion Cemetery. It is said to have been the first African American only Cemetery in Tampa. It was founded in the year 1901 but it was strangely removed from City maps in 1925. After being discovered, bodies were believed to have been moved but it turned out that many bodies remain. Since then, homes had been built over the old, forgotten Cemetery. During investigations, it’s been reported that almost eight hundred death certificates list Zion Cemetery as their resting places. Here’s an article:

https://www.tampabay.com/news/hillsborough/2020/04/16/work-to-memorialize-zion-cemetery-continues-from-self-isolation/

At this time, there is work being done to build a fence and once they figure out who these people were, their names will be displayed in their honor. A fitting end? Maybe, maybe not. I myself recall two photos at Chamberlain High School, where I attended. One showed the High School in older times and there was a Cemetery right next to it. The second photo was newer and showed houses in place of the Cemetery. I knew someone who lived in one of these houses and I’d been told that they thought their house was haunted. Did they move the bodies or just the headstones?

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Here’s a bit more on the dark side of Tampa, Florida:

https://www.floridatravellife.com/florida-urban-legends/

Utah has it’s own tales of Monsters, Bigfoots and UFO’s. Take a look:

https://www.ksl.com/article/46316425/6-utah-monsters-mythological-and-real

And now back to Earth. Just a little.

There was a time when people of high positions were being shot at on the regular. President John F. Kennedy was killed on November 22nd, 1963. Maybe it wasn’t a Cigarette Smoking Man who shot him, but there has been much debate on as to who did it. The obvious being Lee Harvey Oswald.

But many believe it was either the Government or the Mafia that had Kennedy killed and Oswald was just a patsy. The Mafia side says Night Club owner Jack Ruby was involved with the crime underworld and shot Oswald later for the Mafia. And the Government side saying Kennedy was killed because of his vision and beliefs. Either way, we know that Kennedy was killed, Oswald was blamed and Ruby shot Oswald on live TV.

There’s a great documentary out there, called Dark Legacy. It shows evidence collected over the years on the conspiracy behind Kennedy’s assassination. It places first President George Bush as the head of the group that plotted it. Nixon was there with him, as well. It goes into detail about how Bush said he was never a part of the CIA but clearly was with documents and photos. And from this I learned that his father was a Nazi banker here in America. The Bush’s were at the very least Nazi sympathizers. Then there’s Nixon. A part of the documentary shows how another lesser known guy who said he shot Kennedy was being held in a jail cell and when he made his phone call, an officer overheard him telling the person on the other end, who is said to be Nixon, to get him out of there or he’ll expose everyone involved just before being released. Woody Harrelson’s father is known to have been a hit man and there are claims that it was him.

The Documentary, Dark Legacy, is not all interviews and opinions. It’s just articles, documents and photos with a lone narrator. Here’s the whole thing (as long as it lasts on Youtube):

There’s also a second part that focuses on the Clinton, most notably Hillary, the Bush’s and John F. Kennedy, Jr. Before seeing this, I never heard about JFK Jr’s interest in going into Politics or that he could have been a big rival for Hillary Clinton. Here’s the whole thing (again, as long as it lasts on Youtube):

Then there’s the JFK documents that prove that things were not what they wanted us to think they were. Looking at this information, obviously the idea that Oswald didn’t at least act alone isn’t such a hard truth anymore.  And there’s hints that whoever killed Kennedy might have been involved with the death of Martin Luther King, Jr, as well. Here’s some information on that:

https://www.businessinsider.com/jfk-files-summary-documents-release-oswald-cia-fbi-csatro-assassination-plots-2017-10

https://www.archives.gov/research/jfk/release

https://www.archives.gov/press/press-releases/2017/nr17-68

https://www.archives.gov/press/press-releases/nr18-45

Of course, our current President went back on a promise to release the info and held some back, as you can see here:

https://www.history.com/news/final-jfk-files-assassination-documents-release

Or maybe this is all fake. Maybe Oswald did it. Maybe it was someone else. I know what I believe, but this isn’t necessarily about my opinion. Jump forward to the present.

We are in crazy times. Before Covid-19 or Corona, we were already at odds in America. People hold their opinions against one another and fight over it on Facebook. Race is still an issue in this modern age. And we’ve grown to love watching heroes fall. We praise talentless people who somehow manage to keep their reality shows on the air for over a decade and forget about how at one time we cared about what was above us in the stars beyond. Something I still care a lot about. We traveled, we dreamed and we got so far in such a short time and yet here we are now; comfortable and at ease in front of our electronics while people sit in dark offices deciding what’s best for us. Orwell, here we go.

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It’s as if all at once, everyone forgot how important Area-51 was not so long ago. What happened to the raids? I was, at the least, somewhat amused. What made us give that up? Or did someone break in and set us on the path we’re at now? Either way, it’s all but forgotten now.

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Then Epstein happened. I don’t think I need to go into all of that, especially in the same article as Kennedy. But whatever you believe, the whole thing set us on a new path of mistrust.

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Follow that with Kobe Bryant and the others who were killed on that helicopter and the crusade of Corey Feldman who, when he tried to release his documentary about Hollywood pedophiles over the Internet, was shut down. Now all blame went to Feldman because people felt scammed. All he wanted was to have a final say for himself and his dead friend, Corey Haim, but was faced with a new problem. Was his documentary blocked by higher powers? At least he was able to reveal names, though no one seems to care so much now.

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So here we are now. Self quarantined and isolated. Sure we can see each other out at the grocery stores, but the people in charge have clearly stated that we need to stay away from each other. Ordering food, teaching School children and going on Zoom to speak to family over the Internet are the new normals. I won’t pay another six bucks to have no commercials on Hulu, but sitting through them isn’t easy. It’s Oprah and Apple, Amazon and so on telling me that things are all just peachy. At least now we’re certain people are benefiting from it. Apple doesn’t make commercials to spread positive messages, they do it to make sales. Movies released early online isn’t half as fun as going and seeing them on the big screen. Why does this feel like this is what some people believe the future should be? And who’s really in charge here?

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Who’s cleaning up the trash? And who’s going to talk about the truth?

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Have we forgotten it’s Election year here in America? Is it a coincidence that when all this started, we were receiving information in the mail on how important it is that we do the new census? So far, we have seen two phases of panic. The first was the toilet paper craze. How interesting that the prices for it have gone up in the last year leading up to it. Now it’s the electronics. Nintendo Switch was in full stock just a couple of weeks ago and then they were gone. Walmart sells the hand held Switch Lite for $200, but now to get one online, Walmart lists it as over $250. They literally jacked up the prices online. It’s almost impossible to get one at this point.

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Something people have seemed to have forgotten is that before this started, there were trade issues with China. See here:

https://www.bbc.com/news/business-45899310

Since this thing started, blame has been pointed to China. We live in a time where people find any reason to be racist or prejudice and it goes unpunished, except for celebrities. A celebrity’s career can be ruined, but the average Norm can get away with it. There’s no excuse for hate no matter how bad things get. I was reading an article written by Hunter S. Thompson that can be found in his book, “The Great Shark Hunt,” where he talks of Nixon’s impeachment. In it, he mentions how Nixon would likely blame the Chinese for having nuclear missiles. There seems to be an ongoing theme of Presidential Impeachments and finding blame in China. And damn, doesn’t Skinner from The X-Files look like Thompson in a certain light?

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And it’s hard to miss that celebrities are being used as somewhat spokespeople for the disease. I’ve seen little about the everyday people who are dying and only seem to get Facebook notices of what celebrities have it or have died from it.200316-corona-celebs-tease_j1t7up

Or maybe I’m just being silly. Maybe this really is just crazy talk. I’m not even a political person. I just see things and can’t help connect the dots. Maybe we’re all just doing that. People have found a way to argue this over Facebook. Conspiracy theorists continue to be seen as just plain crazy. But why is it crazy? With everything I’ve mentioned here, why is the thought that a group of people can get together and plot something like this so crazy? I personally don’t know if Corona is real or fake; I’ve seen little evidence myself. But why should I doubt it? Either way, it is still apparent that there are people out there who may be profiting off of it. The annoying commercials might just prove it. I’m not a religious man. I’ve never read the bible. But wasn’t it an Apple that supposedly damned us?

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And just because someone is in charge, does it mean they’re right?

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For me one of the hardest parts of all of this has been the fact that the new Ghostbusters movie has been pushed back until March of next year. So maybe in all of these dark thoughts, I just wanted to see a damn movie I’ve been waiting over thirty years for since I saw Ghostbusters 2 in theaters twice.

But for now, I’ll keep watching The X-Files even though it might sound to you like it’s fried my brain. Assassinations, 9/11 theories, ghosts, monsters, secret organizations and other phenomena might be such difficult pills to swallow, but is it any easier to believe in any other horrors we read or see about in the news? Alien abductions have become a much rarer thing in this new millennium, but maybe it’s because we stopped looking up.

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I want to believe so badly in something bigger and greater than all of us, but if it’s not what you believe, why must I be your enemy? Why must we fight at even the toughest of these times? If we’re truly together in this as they say in the commercials, why can’t we listen to one another? Maybe tomorrow.

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