It Came from Space!!! Well, not so much.

It would almost appear that I’m writing for the Sci-Fi Channel all of a sudden with all of the ghosts and alien stuff as of late, but unfortunately, I saw something earlier on this week that set off my skeptic radar, which I’ve now dubbed the Skadar3.

It appears the news media has caught us a gol dern alien.  Well not so much.  According to Yahoo News

Peruvian anthropologist Renato Davila Riquelme has discovered the remains of anunidentified creature with a “triangle shaped” skull nearly as large as its 20-inch-tall body.

Has the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull –the setting for the underwhelming 2008 Indiana Jones vehicle–finally been discovered? Well, don’t be expecting a victory lap from Steven Spielberg or George Lucas anytime soon.

The remains are most likely those of a child, though one with an unusually shaped head and frame. But that hasn’t stopped local site RPPfrom interviewing several anonymous Spanish and Russian “scientists” claiming that the remains are actually those of an alien:

It has a non-human appearance because the head is triangular and big, almost the same size as the body. At first we believed it to be a child’s body until Spanish and Russian doctors came and confirmed that, yes, it’s an extraterrestrial being.

Of course, five anonymous scientific authorities citing proof of extraterrestrial life would probably be generating a little more attention if their research had passed some basic scrutiny. Even if the remains are almost certainly those of a person, they are certainly unusual.

Well, media churnalism at its best strikes again.  Even though some of the article reminds us to be a little skeptical, the rest is overrun with words like “alien” and “extraterrestrial.”  Well, I can assure you that while this may be unusual for today’s standards in western culture, it’s not alien in its origin.  Those of you who know me and read me know that I wouldn’t deny the existence of alien life forms for a second.  I’ve stated repeatedly how illogical it is to think this planet is the only one inhabited.  However, for one to think that, if there is alien life out there, it would look anything like us really doesn’t understand evolution very well.  But that’s not my only argument against this hysteria.  Here is the other:

What do you know?  Here’s a modern day Peruvian man (note they found the skull in Peru) with a skull looking exactly like that.  This practice is called cranial binding and has been practiced by tribes all around the world, from Peru to China.  It is done by applying consistent, low pressure to the cranium of a child while their skull is still forming and is malleable   This causes the skull to adapt to the required formation.  It is actually thought to be one of the world’s oldest forms of body modification.  Whomever these anonymous “scientists” are who are stating with certainty that we have an extraterrestrial on our hands, must have gotten their degrees from the University of Phoenix Online, or maybe BYU in Utah.

So, in conclusion, that’s all it is, folks.  It’s not alien, it’s just a Peruvian child with a traditional Peruvian body modification.


2 comments on “It Came from Space!!! Well, not so much.

  1. I’ve heard it argued that one can change the shape of the skull, but not the volume of the skull, using this method. Also, that it appears that this ancient peruvian child’s skull appears to have an increased skull volume.

    I have no doubt that this is a human child.

    But what do you say to the above argument? Is it false that the volume cannot be radically changed?

  2. Sorry it’s taken so long to get back to you on this. I’ve been out doing the whole book promotion thing. What a pain. That’s actually a pretty good question. Images can be deceiving, however, and I would actually like to see that question answered. Just a basic dip into a small body of water is the easiest way to measure something like this, so being that easy, you’d think they would have measured that. But I also think that the skull itself may have no other choice but to adapt its volume in order to support this particular shape. Yet at the same time, you would think they would have increased risk of brain hemorrhaging from something this, so I guess that would require further anthropological investigation as well.

    Upon further inspection of the original image, I would actually say the crack at the top of the skull indicates a much smaller bone volume than we would expect from a skull, especially at the top where it’s supposed to be at its thickest. Yet other aspects of the photo indicate a very dense skull. I can’t tell you how much I would love to have this skull right in front of me right now in order to properly answer your question.

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