Tuesday, July 2, 2013

WEIRD OR WHAT? Ancient Mysteries

SyFy - Original Air Date: 5/28/13

Is there a star child? Did dinosaurs live with humans? Did Ancient Egyptians have airplanes?  Let's see what the show says...

A strange 900-year-old skeleton found in Mexico is believed by some to be a human-alien hybrid, or outright alien - based on its weird appearance.  This has been suggested by UFO "experts" who've seen the skull.  But neurologist Steven Novella believes it is merely a deformed human with hydrocephalus.  Other scientists suggest that cradle-boarding may have changed the shape of the child's skull.  The owner of the skull claims to have a 2003 DNA test showing the father of the "starchild" was not human.  A 2011 test makes him believe that neither of the child's parents are human.  Apparently, there has been no peer review of this "evidence."

An ancient Peruvian stone seems to show an long-extinct fish.  Digging up more stones, the doctor who owns the stone believes that many show scenes of creatures long dead -- including dinosaurs, which might even be alive today.  Acheologist Ken Feder believes that the Peruvian stones show all the signs of a classic archaeological hoax -- created when it became clear there was a market for them.  The show gets an art student to re-create the stones using simple techniques.  Is it easier to believe that known archaeology must be completely overturned, or that some folks wanted to make a fast buck?  One author thinks the stones are indeed, old, but not first-hand experience.  Instead, he believes the Peruvians got information about the dinos from a more knowledgeable civilization: Atlantis.  Ri-i-ight.

In Sakara, Egypt, archaeologists turn up something that looks like a model of a bird -- though some think it resembles an airplane.  Did the Egyptians have planes?  It's a theory that appeals to people who believe the ancient astronauts hoax.  But Egyptologist Katya Goebs scoffs, noting bird symbolism was very important in Egypt, and bird objects in tombs were common -- perhaps it was a toy for a child's tomb.  The suggestion of launching gliders from the tops of pyramids seems, at best, absurd.  But one "expert" claims that the ancients had _all_ the technology we have, including flight, balloons, and electricity -- despite the fact that _no_ ancient reporters have ever mentioned any of this.  A model builder on the show builds a model of the bird, and even with a suggested tail, the plane still doesn't fly.  The model builder suggests the object may have been a wind vane (weather vane).  And that seems to work better.

Again, the show doesn't make any conclusions, but, to me, at least, the science seems much more compelling than the speculation.

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