Beware! They’re Out There!
A UFO fanatic’s dream comes true -- but at what cost?
Michael C. Schmikelson, heard the loud whooshing-humming-throbbing sound along with a flashing strobe light effect he saw out of the corner of his eye, just outside his kitchen window while he sat reading the latest issue of Aliens Are Out There!, sipping hot, hazelnut flavored Kreemtime-enhanced Columbian coffee, along with buttered cinnamon toast B his favorite breakfast. Then the weird phenomena ceased just as fast as it had started. Mike gawked out his window, seeing nothing, hearing nothing. However, he was thrilled with the excitement of the prospect to find out exactly what it was. He quickly stood up as he put the magazine down and haphazardly set the coffee mug on the edge of the table where it fell off and tumbled to the linoleum, crashing, ceramic shattering and coffee splashing hither and thither. But Mike didn’t notice or care. He darted out the backdoor, stumbling down the four rickety steps of the back porch and into his backyard, a field of lumpy dirt where grass should be, but he had no funds to seed it, or to purchase expensive fresh sod. Not only that, he had dug deep holes here and there to stick transplanted trees into, but again, not enough money for that either. Mike was a good starter, but a lousy finisher. That is, he finished nothing. He was a pathetic dreamer.
Mike looked all around and saw nothing. Then he ran to the back alley where he heard another sound, to the left, that of a grinding and whining garbage truck doing its rounds. He saw Fred the garbage man dumping the neighbor’s trashcan’s disgusting contents into its rear disposal compartment. Grizzled old Fred waved at Mike, and Mike lamely waved back.
Then he saw it. Over in the other neighbor’s alley driveway, the one to the right. A little metal saucer contraption. Just sitting there. No bigger than a plastic kiddy pool. Mike crouched down and hid behind his own galvanized trash can and saw a little hatch open up on top of the peculiar craft, and then a little grey man wriggled out of it! It looked dwarf-like except it had the traditional bulbous head and big bulging black eyes -- just like the ones in the pictures in his favorite magazine, UFO Today! Its face was light grey and its tight-fitting jump suit was also grey, but a tad darker. It looked around, then caught sight of Mike spying on him. It lurched back, then ran this way, ran that way, then ran like a scared rabbit somewhere into the neighbor’s backyard, which was an award-winning, luxurious yard Mike coveted ever since Willy Hatfield, a shotgun toting, backwoods varmint moved in here and upgraded the whole property with many gorgeous transplanted trees and a beautiful manicured lawn from front to back, and a high chain-link fence to boot! That was next on Mike=s list of unfinished projects to do, get his own fence, as soon as he learned to actually finish things.
So Mike jumped up and ran, in pursuit of the little grey alien, through the little unlocked gate, and into the lush backyard of his dreams, then he heard something behind him, a metallic crushing sound. He turned and saw the garbage truck backing up into the alley driveway and darn near run over the little UFO craft!
Mike pulled on his hair, “No-o-o-o-o-o!”
The truck stopped, a wedge of circular metal sticking up out from the large rear tire. Fred bailed out of the truck, ambled back and looked, scratching his head.
“Darn fool kids! Leaving their toys lying around again!”
“Toys?” Mike squawked. “This is no toy, Fred! This is real! The real thing!”
“What on earth are you incoherently babbling about, Mike?”
“No! Not on earth! Beyond Earth!” Mike pointed to the sky. “This is an actual UFO from, uh, out there! Probably Mars! Or, uh, maybe Pluto. Yeah! It’s much smaller, and the little critter that climbed out of it was pretty small. So, uh, I'm guessing he’s from Pluto.”
Fred laughed. “Mike, you read too much of that sci-fi garbage. And you know me; I know garbage! Ha! You’re always harassing me and the other neighbors about little green men and UFOs. Sheesh! What a load of garbage!”
“No. Not green. Little grey men.”
“Whatever,” Fred waved him off and headed back to the cab of the truck. ‘I got real work to do.”
“B-b-b-but this is real! This really happened! I saw the little alien! And this is his space craft!”
“Yeah, right. Better stop eating those special mushrooms, Mike.”
Fred jumped into his truck, and rolled forward now, off of the little saucer ship. Then hollered back, “Now, take that piece of scrap and toss it in back, Mike.”
“No way! I’m hanging onto this. Maybe fix it up for the poor little guy, so he can fly back to Pluto or wherever he came from.”
“Yeah, right.” Fred got out and grabbed a trash can and hefted its contents into the rear disposal compartment. Mike picked up the ruined saucer, and found it was very light, almost like light weight aluminum, but obviously manufactured from some kind of special space age alien metal perhaps. It looked very shiny and chrome-like, and he felt really awful about the mashed in side, where the big black tire tread marked it. He sighed in despair.
“How awful. We get an actual visitation from outer space, and a stupid dump truck backs over the visitor’s ship. His kind will probably be discouraged from coming here again.” Mike looked around. “I gotta find the little fellow and talk to him, tell him it was an accident. It won’t happen again.”
Mike took the caved in saucer and placed it gently in his own wasteland dirt patch. Then he hurried back into the neighbor’s backyard through the little gate, yes, that floral paradise of greenery, looking for the little grey alien. Then Willy Hatfield, the wild and woolly neighbor, came out the backdoor with a shotgun, aiming it at Mike. “Git yer dadblamed hide off ma land, ya sorry shape fer a mule!”
“Hey, a little grey alien just ran through your yard B as grand as it is, uh, I admire it highly -- anyway, he, uh, he ran this away--”
“Git off ma turf, ya brainless ninny!” Willy Hatfield fired a shot, Mike jerked as a bullet whizzed by his ear.
“Git off now, ya miserable sack o’ rotten bones!” Willy fired again, missing the other ear.
So Mike got -- really fast like.
He ran back to the alley, and Fred had gone on to the next house. Mike looked back into the heavenly haven of beautiful sycamores and elms and cedars and the lush lawn he drooled over. It had a large ceramic birdbath with cute little birds tweeting and splashing gleefully. What a waist, for a Kentucky hilljack like Willy Hatfield -- who won the lottery several months back and bought this property -- to own such a paradise like this! Then to shoot at him for admiring it all! Mike worked very hard at his grueling office job, virtually strapped to the computer, entering data all day long, filing this crap and that crap, getting a really sore rear over all that sitting action. And this lazy straw chewing country hick comes along and spoils the neighborhood with expensive lush beauty he didn’t deserve! There had to be a law against it!
There would be a genuine feud sooner or later, what with the usual reputation of these hillbilly types. Some real McCoy or other would move into the neighborhood and the two mountain-grown families would have it out, shotguns a-blazing all over the streets and alleys and over the rooftops and everywhere. Mike had to move out before that happened. Just as well that he didn’t waste money on grass and trees -- or a chain link fence to boot.
Mike diligently dashed back to his own dismal property, back to his own patch of dirt where lay the little demolished UFO. It looked almost like a toy indeed -- but he knew it wasn’t. A real live little alien had jumped out of it and run away. He wished he had a camcorder to capture that rare moment. He wished he’d seen it land too! Wouldn’t that make some fabulous footage!
He knelt down and examined the metal disk. He discovered that the top half unfastened from the bottom half, perhaps the damage loosened some rivets or whatever held it together -- maybe super space glue for all he knew, for there were no rivets to be seen anywhere. He lifted the top up and held it open as he peered in. He saw a little reclining chair in the middle where the little grey fellow had sat, but I there were no controls. And no engine either! This was pretty far fetched! How on earth did this ship fly? Rather, how in space?
Alright, not being of Earth, this mysterious vessel didn’t fly or soar or zip around via any technology known to Earthlings. Nothing at all conventional or typical propelled this flying saucer. These otherworldly creatures were far superior intellectually to humankind. Then he brightened. He knew what it was! Yes! These advanced beings obviously used thought-power! They needed no machines, or anything remotely similar to human technology! Perhaps mundane technology was barbaric in aliens’ eyes. These highly advanced beings obviously traveled in their engineless ships by the sheer power of their very thinking! Mental technology! That had to be it! What wondrous things humans could learn from these clever little visitors! If they just gave the Neanderthal-brained cave-dwellers a tinker’s chance in hell to evolve a little more in order to be able to understand the advanced ways of these superior-minded aliens, we could learn a thing or three, maybe even borrow their amazing technology, or mental abilities or whatever they possessed, and improve a few things on Earth. Like cheaper and better ways to acquire trees and grass -- and a fence too.
Yes, Mike thought, this could be a brave new world with the help of the friendly alien visitors, if we just gave them a chance, instead of waging war on them, like so many Earth vs. UFOs movies insanely projected. He felt awfully sad about that. Perhaps they already knew mankind’s twisted agenda, picking up our demented plans from our television broadcasts that emanated across countless light years of vast space, receiving shows of our warlike behavior in such movies like War of the Words or Independence Day, and even Mars Attacks! and the like, where we’re at war with the aliens, but we win and they lose. Granted, they’re great movies -- just not for the aliens.
Mike had better do something to stop the momentum of our destructive ways before the aliens are scared off like so many hippity-hopping rabbits, or before they decide to blow our planet to smithereens so we don’t infect other advanced planets out there. They had advanced technology to share with us and Mike better set things straight before someone got a bright idea and blow an unsuspecting alien away, like some ornery Hatfield or McCoy -- or even run over his craft with a garbage truck.
Mike had to find that pee-wee alien fast!
He ran along side his badly painted house and up front where his front yard was another pile of dirt. He looked up and down the street, seeing no little grey alien anywhere. Then he saw it pop out of a neighbor’s hedgerow and run down the sidewalk. Mike ran after him.
“Hey! Stop! Wait a minute! I’ll take you to our leader!” he hollered. Then, after remembering that the current president had started a war on some Middle Eastern country, he had second thoughts. “Uh, better yet, I’ll introduce you to our mayor. Or maybe my boss, at least. He’s a leader of sorts.”
But the little grey alien ran on little fast legs, then ducked into someone’s front yard where a big ugly slobbering bulldog barked its fool head off. It was chained, fortunately, and the alien had somehow snuck by. But Mike had no intention of intruding in this person’s yard, after Willy Hatfield darn near shot his ears off. He shuffled along down the sidewalk, back to his own pathetic house, which was peeling badly of old paint. Willy Hatfield’s house had brand new baby blue aluminum siding. Mike laughed. His own house, with its ghastly bare wood showing through peeled paint, with dirt front and back yards, and no trees, and no fence, looked more like the yard of a crazy hillbilly. That fabulous property should have been his all along. What a waist! The grim irony stunk like the contents of Fred’s garbage truck.
Mike frowned in despair as he ambled along the side of his ugly house and to his own embarrassing back yard, where the little flying saucer lay in the dirt. He looked at it again. What a waste it would be that humans should miss out on such superior alien technology. What wonderful alien ways would zing by right over their collective heads.
Oh well. Mankind didn’t deserve it yet anyway, Mike figured. Not in a thousand years. By then, these or other aliens would blow the despicable Earth right out of existence -- unless we beat them to it, we the self-annihilating species that any smart alien would stay away from. Visiting a race of creatures on the road to self-destruction was not any good alien’s idea of a picnic or even a country excursion. So why was this particular alien here? A survey mission? Was he out scouting around to verify whether or not we were as dangerous as the TV broadcasts that beamed out into deep space portrayed us to be? If they had any advanced sense at all, they would realize all that bunk was just fictionalized tomfoolery, not even real depictions of our native insanity. Or was it? Hmmm. Perhaps the very idea that we would even think up such horrible ideas was bad enough and warranted such visitors to have a closer look. If they dared. If for anything to just satiate their bizarre alien curiosity.
Mike knew that our exploring cultural anthropologists were stupid if they simply walked into a cannibal’s tribal dwelling and expect to instantly civilize the savages in spite of the risk of capture and then being served as the night’s dinner. The same principle held with aliens, Mike figured. Any advanced alien with a big brain in his big bulbous head (or whatever they had up there) was intelligent enough to flat out stay away from Earth. So this little grey critter was treading on dangerous ground. Mike had to help him before some stupid human, like Willy Hatfield, shot at him, like the savage hilljack he truly was, even though he now owned the most expensive, beautified property on the whole block.
Mike inspected the little craft further, looking for anything. Then he saw along the curved rim of the bottom side some tiny symbols. They looked familiar. He bent closer and squinted, realizing it was a series of digits -- like a serial number! It read #BS458583729!
What on Earth?!! How could this be? Since when did intelligent aliens from some other distant world utilize a number system used only on Earth? He set the metal contraption down and stood up, scratching his head in total puzzlement. Then he had an idea. He would call a friend of his, Charlie Gordon, who was an expert in UFOs and aliens and such strange phenomena. Well, if a hobby qualified as an expert field.
Mike ran up the porch steps and back into his house, looking for his phone list. Where the heck was it? It should be right next to the phone. Oh, there it is, under the phonebook. Figures.
Who could be calling at a time like this? Those cutthroat Telemarketers?
He picked up the receiver and blurted, “Not interested!”
“Hey, it’s Charlie.”
“Oh, sorry. I thought--”
Mike froze, mouth hanging open, as he glanced at his calendar right above the phone. Yes. Sure enough. It was April 1st.
* * *
At noon time, Mike C. Schmikelson sat at his kitchen table, with the blinds closed over the window, as he slurped chicken and noodle soup and ate a grilled cheese sandwich, his favorite lunch, while reading this month’s issue of UFO News and Alien Report.
What a clever prank! And he felt like a gullible, pathetic idiot. Charlie got him really good. But where'd he get that dwarf in the alien costume anyway?
The doorbell rang. Now what? Jehovah’s Witnesses? He’d tell them where to go.
He got up and walked to the front door and opened it.
It was six months away from Halloween. Three silver-suited, pig-faced creatures stood there, with six beady black eyes glaring at him, and huge drooling mouths and large pointy teeth.
One of them spoke in a guttural, gravelly voice, “Take us to your feeder!”
Original Copyright 2007 by R. R. Stark
Current Copyright 2011