Top Ten Worst Bigfoot Stories of 2009
by Loren Coleman, International Cryptozoology Museum, The Field Guide to Bigfoot and Other Mystery Primates and Bigfoot! The True Story of Apes in America.
There is no reason to beat around the bush. After the awful fiasco of the Georgia Bigfoot hoax of 2008, various hoaxers, media folks, and others this year seemed to be on an unconscious quest to have float to the surface the second most faked Bigfoot story of the decade.
Here is the stuff that serious Bigfoot researchers had to suffer through during the last twelve months. This list is strictly limited to North American events, for Bigfoot, Sasquatch, and other locally-named hairy hominoid creatures. There is no way I can rank these; the listing is a march through the year, chronologically.
The twelve-year running saga of “Bugs” and the claim that the guy killed two Bigfoot in Texas and buried them, thankfully, was apparently brought to its end in January. Thanks to the blog The Regulator, the rather supposedly unbalanced soul behind “Bugs” was outed. Ed Hale of Wellington, Texas, the alleged racist owner of Plains Radio, was declared the mysterious “Bugs” and his story grew more unbelievable than ever.
Do you remember that $1,000,000 prize being offered by trailcam & binocular manufacturer Bushnell Corporation, in conjunction with Field & Stream magazine for photographic proof of Sasquatch’s existence? Many hoped it might turn into something worthwhile, but guessed it would devolve into a “fakery” contest. Well, it did. Above is the first prize winner, a guy jogging in a Bigfoot costume listening to an iPod.
Former Tom Biscardi employee Steve Kulls completed his extensive investigation of 2008’s Georgia Bigfoot hoax, and laid most of the blame at the feet of Biscardi. In his “The Official Report of Steve Kulls regarding the Georgia Bigfoot Body Hoax of 2008,” Kulls detailed his “investigation of the man whom propagated this hoax, C. Thomas Biscardi, and an exposè of his company; Searching for Bigfoot, Inc.”
Denver’s KOSI 101 tried to sneak a fake Bigfoot video from Monument, Colorado, onto the air on April 1st as real. It worked for about five seconds.
New Zealand Herald columnist known as “That Guy” ~ i.e. Leigh Hart, an alleged New Zealand comedian, revealed on May 10, 2009 that at the previous weekend’s Bigfoot conference held in Ohio, he deceived those there as to his true purposes. He was pretending to be a documentary filmmaker, but instead was gathering footage for a forthcoming “mockumentary” about Bigfooters. He issued an “apology,” of sorts, to the Bigfoot community.
Michael Jackson, the entertainer, died on June 25, 2009. Social scientist Joshua B. Buhs, author of Bigfoot: The Life and Times of a Legend wrote on June 27th of a “…connection – tenuous and racist – between Michael Jackson and the world of cryptozoology. Jackson’s nickname among the tabloids was Jacko (which conveniently rhymed with wacko). Jacko was also the name of the supposed young Sasquatch caught in 1884. Is there a link? I suspect so.”
Typical image comparisons found on the Internet between a character in The Planet of the Apes and Michael Jackson.
A woman driving on Unquowa Road about 10:30 p.m. Tuesday, June 30th, 2009, called police to report that she “almost hit Sasquatch,” which was standing in the middle of the road. She said it was 8 feet tall and very hairy, with a large body and “legs like tree trunks.” Police threw out a dragnet, and said they searched and found a 16-year-old male subject dressed in a gorilla-like costume. The teenager told officers he was standing at the intersection of Unquowa and Sturges roads, waving at passing cars while friends watched.
M. K. Davis (who had previously “retired” from the field), David Paulides, and others resurfaced with more claims of the “massacre theory” of Bigfoot having taken place in Bluff Creek, California, on or around October 20, 1967. But in this round, mistaking film clips from August 1967 for later footage and misidentifying individuals, the late Bob Titmus and the ailing John Green were now being pulled into the mess and were accused of a cover-up of the killing of Bigfoot. Green defended his name, and point-by-point, destroyed the silly claims.
Tom Biscardi, in October, was promoting “the toenail of unknown origin.” Seligman, Arizona, the birthplace of historic Route 66, allegedly was the site of Bigfoot sightings by Larry Jenkins, a Phoenix man recently. One of Biscardi’s crew said he was called in after the incident, and they apparently claimed the finding of a “fingernail where the Sasquatch had stubbed his toe on a rock,” according to KTVK-TV in Arizona. Commentaries wondered, why does anyone believe anything from Biscardi any longer?
The year ended with ABC News and other media online outlets falling all over themselves about a photo of what appeared to be a person walking through the rain in front of a trailcam near Bemidji, Minnesota. The “bogus Bigfoot” was taken at 7:20 pm, on October 24, 2009, on a rainy night, by a game trail camera in woods north of Remer, Minnesota, according to the hunters who set up the camera. They did not seem to be responsible for the prank or mistake that caused this one.
Thank goodness we get to start all over again in 2010.
© Loren Coleman/2009 ~ Permission is granted to summarize these top ten picks, and then to hyperlink to the list. Please, however, avoid the direct reproduction of the entire contents of the list. Thank you.
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