An NHNE Special Report
By NHNE SwiftWing Reporter Sherry Stultz


Chapter 4: Magical Formations & Broken Tape Recorders

Polly and Tim Carson's east field had a new formation: a massive snowflake. Vince and I stopped to take a look at the formation the day it appeared. A woman who was viewing the formation came to tell us all about the crop circle phenomena. Unaware that Vince had been in more crop circles than he could count, or that I had been in the country for six weeks researching them, she proceeded to explain to us that the formation below was quite genuine. According to her, it had magical properties like all crop circles. I smiled politely. Vince and I both thought John Lundberg, Will, and Rod were back to work after the Colin-PI scare. We drove down to the field, where we bumped into Paul Damon and Matt Williams of the TRUTHSEEKERS REVIEW.

Paul Damon took a look at the formation and came back with the report: "hoaxed." His nose was running and his eyes were watering, so I took his word for it. I had just got a handle on my allergy and didn't want to wade into the formation myself. That didn't stop hundreds of people from meditating inside the new formation or having a slumber party. I never slept in a crop formation and or stayed too long. And it wasn't because I couldn't handle the "energies." It was because I was concerned about the chemicals that were periodically sprayed on the crops to kill insects.

The snowflake formation was the first spectacular formation of the season, with the exception of some very nice star shapes, which the hoaxer grapevine attributed to Julian Richardson.

By this time, I had heard enough conspiracy theories in Wiltshire to contact the writers of the X-FILES for some UK material. I still don't know what I believe, but there are some fascinating interactions between the British government and the crop circle population. I heard stories of harassment, spies, and UFO coverups. The infamous Jim Schnabel, author "Round in Circles", was often portrayed as a figure in the conspiracy theories about the CIA and the Catholic Mafia. Paul Vigay told me he has been harassed by an unknown telephone source when he accessed some sensitive documents on the Internet. Other people have stories of strange encounters with so-called spies of the U.S. Government.

While I was in Wiltshire, I never saw anything like this happen, although I did see the effects on the human population who who believed that such stories were all true. It was about this time, an idea came to me, about the beauty of myths and how easy it is to be confused or misled by an ordinary event.

I went to the Crop Circle Celebration Weekend in Alton Barnes to interview Lucy Pringle. I met with Lucy and she was quite busy, but we found some time to talk. I pulled out the tape recorder and it wouldn't work. It was working fine the night before, but now it wouldn't! I fiddled with it. I changed the batteries for some fresh ones, and finally Lucy told me that sometimes her energies could disrupt electronic equipment. She suggested that I take the tape recorder outside the tent, and try again. I did, but still couldn't get it to work. So I did the interview by hand, which takes twice as long. We took several breaks for Lucy to sell her photos and during one such break Will Russell popped up beside me. I told him of my woes and what Lucy said about the energies and asked him to look at the tape recorder. He took it curiously, flipped it over and knocked off the pause button. I would have felt stupid, but Will was quite amused and forgiving about the whole thing. Lucy, meanwhile, was still busy selling photos. Will began to hint at which formations were his or the work of someone else. Lucy stared at him, but she never recognized him as an infamous hoaxer, or if she did, she never said a word to me about it. Instead, we sat down and finished the interview with the tape recorder working as effectively as the day I bought it.

I was a bit confused about her research, but a few items were noteworthy. One in particular was her documentation of women's menstrual cycles when they entered crop formations, even post-menopausal women. Many women who entered formations had "come on" soon after or within the formation and post-menopausal women had as well. I wondered about the chemicals used to spray on the crop, because some pesticides are biological controls that use hormone growth regulators to inhibit maturation of larvae.

I wrapped up the interview with Lucy with some questions about her personal relationships with her male counterparts. I had heard a lot of ugly comments about her by other researchers and I was curious about her perspective on the social interactions among the local research population.

After my interview with Lucy was finished, Will and I continued our conversation and Will told me which researchers he knew to have made crop circles. This was difficult to believe because some of the people he described were quite unlikely candidates. I still have my reservations about his assessment. I did, however, phone some of the people Will named. They denied his allegations and I was back to square one. I was, however, beginning to think it was highly probable that some individuals were creating crop circles for research purposes.

Go To:
Chapter 5: A Perfect Disguise and a Change of Heart


An NHNE Special Report
By NHNE SwiftWing Reporter Sherry Stultz