It’s not easy to talk about. Yes, I went to the local police, but they laughed at me. That leaves you, faithful reader, to hear my truth. I tell this story not as vindication, but as both a warning and a call to arms. We are not alone.
It started early this morning when I awoke in damp brown grass. We had our largest rain in months last night, over 1/100th of an inch, so the brown grass felt damp. It was dark so I didn’t know the time, but I felt frozen to the earth, my body was too heavy to move. When I tried and failed to open my eyes I sensed someone near me. I also realized I was shivering and naked.
I heard a voice inside my head saying, “We’re not going to harm you. Just cooperate by speaking the truth.”
I couldn’t tell if I was hearing the voice or imagining it. Yes, I was scared to death. My teeth were chattering.
Then the voice inside my head spoke again “You will be able to open your eyes now. Just relax. You are safe, for now.”
My eyes snapped open and I could see a set of bright teeth glowing in the moonlight. Again I heard this voice in my mind. “We need answers, truthful answers from you.”
I was able to speak and the only words I could say was, “Am I dreaming?”
The teeth didn’t move, but the voice spoke again. “We have been watching you, and your kind, for years. We are familiar with your kind. But there are things, like today, which cause us concern and we need you to answer our questions.”
I forced my head to turn a few inches towards the teeth. What I saw I will never forget. I will be haunted the rest of my days. A giant cat was sitting in the grass just a few feet away with his human-type teeth grinning at me.
I closed my eyes again, thinking I must be on drugs or drunk or dreaming. I knew I didn’t take any drugs, hadn’t been drinking, so it had to be a dream. The voice spoke again.
“You are not dreaming. I am from a friendly distant planet, still undiscovered by your people. We mean you no harm, but your actions worry some of our leaders. I have been sent here to gather information. We have discovered you to be a truthful human, one that seems rare. You are also kind to your pet cat. It is something we don’t approve of, but your animals have not evolved yet so we understand your dominance. We now need you to answer our questions and we will not harm you.”
This giant cat was speaking to me telepathically. His huge teeth never moved, they just grinned. His eyes were frightening, evil, and scary.
I could only say, “Okay, what do you want me to tell you.”
“We have watched your hemisphere revolving around your sun, your weather patterns, your food needs, your family structures, your instincts to war among your tribes. There are a few questions that trouble us. First, what is going on with the dressing up in scary outfits and your children demanding candy at every door?”
I was puzzled. “Do you mean Halloween? That’s today.”
The giant cat spoke in my head again. “Yes, whatever you call it. Why are you doing this? We find our cat species on your planet, even though un-evolved, are scared and distrusting of your actions. Why are you doing this activity?”
“I guess it started with ancient Celtic people, who I am evolved from.”
The voice sounded angry. “We know you are evolved from the ape species so do not tell me untruths. Our leaders find you very uncouth, like your ancestors. You leave your trash everywhere. You seldom wash yourselves, like we do numerous times a day. Please speak the truth.”
“No, I didn’t mean that far back. Our ancient relatives, long after the apes, had many superstitions. They were very scared of ghosts. So, the Celtic people would have a holiday to light bonfires and dress in funny costumes to ward off the roaming ghosts. We have mostly evolved now to having our children dress in the costumes every year, but there are still adults who do this ancient strange ritual.”
The giant cat leaned closer and shook his head. His deep-pitched voice sounded raspy. “What is the point of this now? Do you still fear ghosts?”
“No, no, we just feel the $2 billion in candy sales and the $350 million in costumes is good for our economy. The kids love it.”
The giant cat closed his eyes and shook his head. “I’m not sure our leaders will believe this, but we feel you are telling the truth. Next we need to know why you have some kind of fetish with our friend, the rabbit. It’s a puzzle to us why colored chicken’s eggs have anything to do with a bunny rabbit. Sometimes you humans do things which make no sense. Will you please explain this to us?”
I didn’t know if I knew the truth about that crazy ritual of Easter. I told him what I knew. “Many years ago there was a Saxxon goddess of Spring. She was called Eostre which we changed to Easter. All I know is Easter, the goddess, liked this bird so much she changed it into a rabbit. Then other ancient folks started boiling chicken eggs with flowers and it changed the color of the eggs. Later some religious people said the green colored eggs were symbolic of the new spring season, then red eggs meant blood and it went on and on.”
This time the giant cat came so close to me I could smell his sour breath. He said, “So why do you continue this silly ritual which obviously is an old pagan thing you don’t need anymore?”
I could only say, “I don’t know. I guess we love lying to our children. And of course the economy is helped by this secular pagan practice.”
I felt I needed to ask the giant cat something. “Sir I’m very sore in my back side.
By chance did you do an anal probe on me?”
The cat looked angry. “Why in the hell do we care what’s up your butt?”
“I’m sorry, but I heard many of my friends in Kentucky and some in Mississippi had that happen to them by foreign visitors. And I have a pain down there.”
The cat’s voices in my brain grew louder. “Maybe you shouldn’t be lying on a rock. What do you think we are?”
I moved a fraction and felt better.
He continued. “OK, none of your explanations are going to be believed back home. One more thing. What about these lies you tell your children year after year about this Santa Claus character. The flying reindeer, the free gifts, the better be nice, not naughty. We don’t understand this at all. Please explain it.”
I cringed. Nobody, especially my alien cat, would believe this story. But, I tried. “You see sir, there was a Greek bishop named Nicholas in the 4th century who didn’t want these three sisters to turn to prostitution to earn money. Nicholas gave them dowries so they could survive. Some people thought that was a nice thing to do. When he died the church made him a saint. Many different cultures came and stole his remains. He became a legend. Children were given gifts in his honor just like he gave the would-be whores. The legend of St. Nicholas became quite famous. He was made the patron saint of Amsterdam and Moscow. He became the patron saint of pawnbrokers, archers and sailors. He then became the patron saint of children. On his feast day, December 6, children would receive gifts. Martin Luther, who was still a Catholic, didn’t like this practice. Gifts for children were usually celebrated on December 24 and 25 when Christ was determined to be the reason to give gifts to kids. So they changed St. Nicholas to Santa Claus so he wouldn’t be confused with the December 25 celebration. It didn’t work. Santa was bigger than the other stuff. So they let Santa Clause compete on the same day as the Jesus celebration and it’s been that way ever since. Only one set of gifts to buy. And Santa Clause is still bigger.”
For the first time I heard the cat give an audible growl, not unlike the sound my cat makes which we call purring. I thought I must have made the giant cat happy with my explanations. I was wrong.
“Earthling, you have not evolved enough for us to consider co-inhabiting your planet.”
“I’m sorry, when I heard you purring, I thought you were content.”
“As I said, earthling, you have not evolved. When you hear one of my species make that sound it means, boy is this person stupid enough to do whatever I want. You may now continue your life as it has been. I really feel sorry for you.”
Somehow my eyes were forced shut again and it was a few minutes before I could move. I found a blanket hanging in a backyard, wrapped it around myself and walked home.
I have just returned from the police department who tested me for drugs. I feel insulted. Now that I’m back home I hear my cat purring and I swear he is smiling.