Friday, March 27, 2009

Of aliens and cigarettes

Since discovering it via Twitter, Postreason has become one of my regular online reads. As I'm drawn to first-person stories of perceived encounters with nonhumans, I found this recollection especially notable. Students of "alien abduction" lore take note:

Another time when I was 17 I was working in a small convenience store, when a "woman" came in to buy cigarettes. At first I didn't pay any attention to her until I saw her hand (when she handed me the money) - it was not like a normal human hand. This startled me so I looked up and saw a very pale entity, wearing a thin black coat (like a rain coat) with collar turned up to cover her neck, a heavy long haired wig, and very large black glasses. This did not entirely hide her strange face: a very pointed chin, scant lip and nose. She did not speak. Took her cigarettes and left! I was kinda stunned. Oddly I cannot remember the details of her hand (though it was the first thing I noticed). Nor do I think she left in a car which was odd since most patrons drove up the store (it was somewhat isolated).

Do humanoid entities walk among us? I don't know. But I'm convinced (not without a certain reluctance) that something is happening, whether physically or at the edges of normal human perception.


RRRGroup said...


I woulda thought "she" might ask for Reese's Pieces.


Anonymous said...

Supposing for the moment that, if this was not just a very unusual looking woman, or someone with an aberrant physiological condition, who purchased a pack of cigs, and was a "humanoid," it's rather curious that they too could fall prey to nicotine addiction. This might imply a mammalian origin, pointing subtly toward the cryptoterrestrial hypothesis. Unless the cigs were for someone else, or another purpose. Which is unknowable.

Or unless the transaction was simply "stagecraft," and the point, if any, was to get a reaction to register (from the former sales clerk who wrote the account and made the drawings), perhaps to inject, via the retelling, an element of modern mythology into the evolving postmodern zeitgeist of possible "others." A penultimate question is whether we are the ones, on a sub rosa psychological basis, doing the sociological or cultural conditioning, to ourselves, for whatever reason, or are being conditioned by some external meta source. [I'm fascinated by the idea that it might also be selectively co-evolving or interactively elicited or causal.] But I have to remain an agnostic, not assuming either or any way, as the nature of the account could suggest either reason or be due to various other causes. Only the witness can provide additional data that might allow further investigation in order to better consider the evidence.

What's also passing strange is that the hand of the "humanoid" was what initially startled the former store clerk as somehow uncanny or strikingly odd, and yet she can't recall what it was about the hand's morphology or other physical characteristics that were apparently so surprisingly unusual. One would normally think that, if the details of the face, wig, collar of black raincoat, etc., were so clearly perceived and recalled, even over 35 years later, the "trigger event" of the hand shape would have also been remembered to some degree. This could be an aspect of initiatory "surprise" that might be related to what has been termed the "Oz factor" of both close encounter ufo and entity experiences. The setting and transactional details are relatively rare, however.

While an interesting account, its folkloric elements, discontinuities, and anecdotal nature limits its reliability and induces an element of plausible deniability, unfortunately, based on its liminal nature, but I also do not dismiss it, as objectivity and openness are empirically required, and an agnostic attitude, in view of insufficient information. Obviously something quite strange happened.

It would also seem there may have been some subtle overlay, or "masking" effect present, in regard to the hand for example, and as to whether that is an artifact of memory, perception, or something else affecting the percipient's sensory acumen or recall is, at this point, probably impossible to clarify or define, but it is intriguing, to say the least.

As such, I have asked some further questions in comments at Kartott's blog requesting supplementary details of this, and a couple other encounters she briefly describes there, and I hope she will respond in turn, in the spirit of advancing knowledge in this area of, hopefully, mutual interest.

As Mac said, "...I'm convinced (not without a certain reluctance) that something is happening, whether physically or at the edges of normal human perception" and would add or further elucidate my own position by saying that what these non-human kinds of encounters or experiences are, mean, or portend are still very much unknown, and how much of it is us, or "them," or something completely undefined as yet, is still something worthy of serious, scientific exploration and investigation to seek a better understanding of the nature of these phenomena, regardless of possible sources.

Increasingly I suspect that some unknown aspects of underlying reality and the universe itself, and/or some resonant aspect of human consciousness, or perhaps some form of conscious but relatively rare "intelligence" within and of it, may be interacting on an extraordinarily subtle basis, but whether this is true or not, the question is of profound importance either way.

In a sense, by investigating such phenomena, they may provide a means to a better understanding of not just the more subtle aspects and interrelated nature of consciousness and reality, but also enhance our perceptual and intellectual acumen and evolutionary potential and in order to better relate to what is, in reality, rather than what we might suppose, and the ontological tools and technologies required to enhance doing so, and which could be a beneficial, self-leveraging process or feedback loop to increase our ability and capacity to know.

This is the challenge to science and epistomology that interests me most. Just what is going on, indeed. I don't want to believe; I want the truth, whatever it may be. It may be either unknowable, or incomprehensible, but at least by attempting to explore the incommensurable, you at least may find out if it is beyond reason. It’s at least worth trying, as the journey can be at least as rewarding as the potential destination, and just for the education, insight, and experience derived.

Anonymous said...

Well, if we ever establish reasonable communication with these beings, the cigarette corporations will have another potential market to peddle their poison!

Unless the creature was buying them for its captive pet human!

Mike Clelland! said...

Recently, on Whitley Stieber's wednesday chat room appearance, there was a LOT of talk about smoking aliens.

Whitley went on and on about how common it is...

Kartott said...

I was at that chat and posed the question that got everyone talking about it (I post on dreamland as "ktotten"). After relating this event in a post on the Paracast board last week (in answer to the "10 questions topic"), it got me to thinking about it again, so I brought it up to see if Whitely had ever heard of such a thing. To my surprise, he had! It still does not answer my lingering question about what this "woman" was - I have trouble pegging this as "alien" or "hybrid" or whatever. "Creature"? I have a real problem with how to talk about this. As for the other entities I'll post more on my blog at some point.

Justin said...

Re; smoking aliens...

I hate to say it, but I'm reminded of my favourite X-Files episode, "Jose Chung's From Outer Space". Not only does the episode in question recreate the high weirdness/low comedy feeling that many encounter flaps elicit, it also has two great examples of smoking aliens:

1) A miserable American UFO pilot in grey-disguise smokes away in his cell on Lord Kimbot's ship.

2) Scully reads from Jose Chung's book "From Outer Space", which has a Communion-esque cover of a grey alien with a smoking cigarette hanging from its lips.

I wonder if Mike C could tell us if Strieber gave any specific examples, outside of pop culture/media?

Actually this sounds like it could also be a job for Chris Knowles...

Mac said...

I'd been hip to the "smoking aliens" meme for a while. John Shirley has fun with the idea in his hilariously subversive UFO novel "Silicon Embrace."

Justin said...

@Mac: Thanks for the Shirley tip.

Where in UFO/abductee literature do cases of smoking aliens occur? This is the first I've heard of it outside of the above mentioned X-Files episode.

Mac said...


I'm actually unfamiliar with the "X-Files" episode you mention, as I never watched the show (aside from a few random episodes). The scent of cigarette smoke makes occasional appearances in the abduction literature, which perhaps isn't surprising given the preponderance of nasty odors that accompany many close encounters (the smell of sulfur being the most notable).

smokey gray said...

"Jose Chung is from outer space" is probably the single best episode, at least for my taste, the X-files ever did.

Here's an interesting synopsis, with pics:

Oh, and here's an alien smoking a blunt, as the kids say:

Kartott said...

I have posted my responses to the questions posed by Intense on my blog at

Interesting comments regarding the smell of cigarettes and other odors. I do not remember any scent during this particular encounter, however, this brought to mind other times when out of nowhere, I smelled either cigarettes or some other strong odor. Sometimes this would happen out in the middle of nowhere, driving on a highway or country road, or on a walk, where there was no possibility of any lingering smoke from people having just been in the area.

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