The world is full of mysteries, and the human race loves nothing better than to find answers to them. Frequently, though, the answers aren't as popular as the mysteries themselves, and people will just continue right on believing, even when the evidence is right there, why don't you just look?! Just look, you bastard!
There have been numerous reports of cattle mutilation -- that is, unexplainably dead cows turning up with odd wounds that look to be surgically precise. Their bodies have been split open, and the soft organs inside have been removed. Their eyes, tongues, genitals and anuses may also have been removed. But the most unusual element of all, and the thing that really sets off the Crazy Alarms in people's heads, is that the bodies are always mysteriously drained of blood.
Although the phrase "missing genitals" would drain our blood, too.
Clearly, it's vampires. Or else aliens are doing it to study the cows. Maybe satanic cults are committing ritualistic sacrifices. No, wait: It's unseen monsters like El Chupacabra that are feasting on the livestock!
Well, something is happening, goddamn it.
In the 1970s, the ATF and even the FBI investigated the cattle-mutilation phenomenon. Their results? They found no evidence of anything other than natural causes and the occasional psychopath. No cult activity, no aliens, no monsters.
No missing sisters, no cigarette-smoking men, no hot redheads. Working in the FBI is surprisingly dull.
Natural causes that appear as surgical wounds? What about the removed organs? How is that possible? In most cases, scavengers such as foxes, buzzards and other critters that like beef au natural saunter by the decomposing corpse and have a bite or two -- thus the organ removal.
The surgical look comes later, when insects chew at the edges of the wounds. See, flies like soft foods, because flies don't have teeth. Same reason we go to Taco Bell: no standards and less work. And also much like Taco Bell, they prefer the softer parts of the animal: eyes, tongues, genitals, anuses and the rough edges of those aforementioned scavenger wounds. Also, if the animal's been lying around for long enough (or even short periods in the hot sun), it'll bloat and burst open, often with very clean, surgical-looking tears. And then come the maggots, which eat anything they can get their little teeth on.
They'll chew up whatever's left of those organs and drink the animal's blood, which typically pools to the bottom of the corpse, giving it that nice, cleanly drained look. Look, don't believe us (we certainly don't make a habit out of it), but what better way to demonstrate than a little field experiment? In 1979, an Arkansas sheriff named Herb Marshall got a bunch of complaints about cattle mutilation in his jurisdiction. So he got the idea to take a dead cow, plop it down in a field and film it for 48 hours in what was undoubtedly the worst two-day stakeout since Another 48 Hrs. After the elements and various creatures were done with it, the stakeout cow was indistinguishable from any other animal that had been "mutilated."
Or Nick Nolte's career.
9The Nazca Lines of Peru
The Nazca Lines of Peru were discovered in the 1930s, which, coincidentally enough, was right around the time people started flying planes high enough to see them. Much like the time we tried to confess our love to Cindy Lansmoore in 10-foot-high flaming letters on her lawn, ancient man, too, had a thing for crazy imagery that could only be seen from above. The Nazca Lines are large geoglyphs made of shallow lines dug into the earth, revealing the white ground beneath the red rocks that normally cover the area. Some are as large as 900 feet across, and the entire canvas area is about 190 square miles total, or slightly larger than the city of New Orleans.
Why, yes, that is a 100-foot-man waving at you.
So how did ancient, technologically deprived people build these things accurately, when we could spot them only after we successfully harnessed the power of flight? Some people believe they were either built by or were landing strips intended for visitors from another world. Author Jim Woodman thinks they might have been created by way of rudimentary hot air balloons that could give their passengers a larger view of the landscape. The pilot would direct the artists down below -- presumably by yelling really loudly (unless they also built rudimentary walkie-talkies).
"I SAID LEFT, YOU BASTARDS! LE- OH, VERY FUNNY -- I HOPE THAT'S A SECOND TAIL OR YOU'RE FIRED."
Woodman actually went out of his way to make a functioning balloon from the materials the Nazca people would have had, and while that's incredibly awesome, there's no evidence that the Nazca had even the vaguest concept of balloons.
Still, if they did, this would make an awesome ancient South American birthday party.
But there were wooden stakes in the ground that have been carbon-dated to the time of the Nazca, and some researchers speculate that the Nazca may have simply drawn long ropes between the stakes to create the Nazca Lines. Dr. Joe Nickell of the University of Kentucky decided to make some Nazca Lines of his very own, using only methods and equipment the Nazca would have had handy. So three men and an 11-year-old kid set out to make a giant bird in a landfill, and in only a few hours, they did just that.
No aliens -- just a bunch of sweaty dudes who dig birds.
Via Joe Nickell