Tuesday, July 22, 2008

I saw a(n) UFO!

Author: K.A.Cassimally

It all happened at the beach, few months ago. My uncles, my dad and myself were in a conversation, which quite amazingly resulted in talking about Mars. Being the family's astronomy expert, I pointed to the red dot in the sky. My uncles looked up and laughed afterwards.

"Just because we're nuts in astronomy, doesn't mean we are idiots!"

Well they were idiots in this particular case. Mars was truly there; up in the night sky. The second time I tilted my head 75o backwards however, I saw a faint spot of light moving from right to left. I realised that the object must be some gigameters away and yet it was moving extremely fast. Within 15 seconds, it had passed out of sight! I thought that I was the only one who saw the white little dot sprinting but no! Dad had seen it too and this was proof (to me) that I was not 'night' dreaming (unless he was too).

I could've written major article about that sighting: UFO sighting in Mauritius. I could've phoned or emailed or faxed (or any other communication tool you know-ed) the CIA, NASA and SETI. But I didn't. Although I believe in extraterrestrial life, I find it tough to have faith in 'flying saucers'.

Nevertheless, I connected to the internet (my bill usually approach the $37 mark per month) and searched for UFO on Google.mu. I came up with different results namely an article entitled 'The UFO Phenomenon'. It is in this article that I learnt what exactly was a UFO besides being an acronym for Unidentified Flying Object. But how do we know that what we have just seen is a UFO?

'An Unidentified Flying Object is anything seen in air or briefly on the ground that looks like an unfamiliar object and still cannot be identified after the report has been studied by scientifically qualified persons.'

Searching for the UFO's definition was the first step in checking whether that white dot I saw was really a UFO. The second step was to actually examine the components of the definition and ask myself the following questions:

·A UFO is anything seen in air or briefly on the ground that looks like an unfamiliar object…

Was that thing I saw familiar? No, so till there that white little dot is a UFO!

·…and still cannot be identified after the report has been studied by scientifically qualified persons

Well I didn't phone anybody qualified in science because… I knew that that thing I saw up in the sky must've been a satellite from the quasi-start. No UFO then.

But is it really important to prove whether UFOs exist or not? I don't think so. Of course if a true UFO is discovered, this would mean that intelligent life does exist elsewhere but do you really think we will accept that fact? Or will the military decide to bombard the 'flying saucer'?

Well it's fortunate that I didn't phone the CIA, NASA or SETI . Because I would have received some severe cranial injuries due to the broomstick assaults!

About the author: K.A.Cassimally is the editor in chief of Astronomy Journal and Astronomy Journal Ezine. He is also the co-founder of the RCPL Astronomy Club. K.A.Cassimally is best known for his article 'Harry Potter and the Moons of Jupiter'. He is also Senior Columnist at BackWash.com where he writes 'Not Scientific Science'. http://www.backwash.com/content.php?id=358

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