Sasquatch Coffee


Dangerous To Your Health: Dressing Like Bigfoot

Posted by: Loren Coleman on December 18th, 2007


A word to the wise ain’t necessary – it’s the stupid ones that need the advice.~ Bill Cosby.

Needless to say, having written an entire book on the interaction between the media and copycat incidents, the following news item is the kind of thing I don’t like to see get sensationalized in the press or on the internet.


The difference between stupidity and genius is that genius has its limits.~ Albert Einstein.

I find no great pressure to rush such items to this blog, because they tend to celebrate stupidity, initially. A few days later, upon reflection, of course, they can serve as a lesson in what not to do, and well, shine a thoughtful light on stupidity, if placed in the proper context.


It is stupidity rather than courage to refuse to recognize danger when it is close upon you.~ Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.

bigfoot stupidity

A prank almost resulted in tragedy for several Wiregrass [Alabama] young persons.

Authorities say they exploited fears of area residents concerning reports of Bigfoot being spotted near the Coffee/Geneva County Line.

A teenager wore an outfit depicting the mythical Bigfoot creature. He then carried a fellow young person on each shoulder.

Alarmed residents called the sheriff’s department and several others armed with shotguns headed to where the prank was taking place.

The young people, ranging in age from 18-to-23, were given a warning.

However, sheriff’s officials say those involved in any copycat incidents will face reckless endangerment charges.“Bigfoot Prank Almost Results in Tragedy, WTVY News4, Dothan, Alabama, December 12, 2007.

Someone in law enforcement or the media could have, furthermore, just as easily pointed out that anyone involved in any copycat incidents might end up dead.

There is nothing wrong with a little reality thrown into the equation.

BTW, for those unaware of another bit of news tied to the timing of this event: Tom Biscardi was in this same area in Alabama attempting to get media attention for his Bigfoot affairs. Local media said the California Bigfooter and former Las Vegas promoter was in Wiregrass: “Biscardi believes there was a pod of Bigfoot heading further south for warmer conditions.”

Okay.

About Loren Coleman
Loren Coleman is one of the world’s leading cryptozoologists, some say “the” leading. Certainly, he is acknowledged as the current living American researcher and writer who has most popularized cryptozoology in the late 20th and early 21st centuries. Starting his fieldwork and investigations in 1960, after traveling and trekking extensively in pursuit of cryptozoological mysteries, Coleman began writing to share his experiences in 1969. An honorary member of Ivan T. Sanderson’s Society for the Investigation of the Unexplained in the 1970s, Coleman has been bestowed with similar honorary memberships of the North Idaho College Cryptozoology Club in 1983, and in subsequent years, that of the British Columbia Scientific Cryptozoology Club, CryptoSafari International, and other international organizations. He was also a Life Member and Benefactor of the International Society of Cryptozoology (now-defunct). Loren Coleman’s daily blog, as a member of the Cryptomundo Team, served as an ongoing avenue of communication for the ever-growing body of cryptozoo news from 2005 through 2013.


36 Responses to “Dangerous To Your Health: Dressing Like Bigfoot”

  1. Rappy responds:

    It was bound to happen sooner or later. I just hope no one is stupid enough to repeat their stunt after such a close call occurred.

  2. Alligator responds:

    Stupid is, as stupid does.Forrest Gump

    I recall an incident back around 1969 or 1970 where some kid put on werewolf makeup around Halloween and created a bit of a stir in his rural community. One night he got on the balcony of a second story porch and starred scratching at the window screen. The occupant of the house calmly drew a 38 revolver out of the desk drawer and put one through the window. However as soon as the kid saw the gun he jumped off the balcony but managed broke his leg in the process. Better than a 38 slug in the head though. Pranks of any type aren’t worth it – you never know how the “prankee” will take it.

  3. squatch-toba responds:

    If there was a measure for stupid, this guy would be a 10! I’m sure he thought it would be a harmless prank, but if he happened to get shot whose life is ruined? His & the guy doing the shooting! This is far from funny and this guy should have been charged with something. We had a similar jack— up here this past summer who spent his time looking into trailer windows at a campground with a hairy mask. Sooooo “funny”? I wish these people would think a bit before acting, before a tragic accident happens!

  4. graybear responds:

    Well, we almost had cryptozoology’s first Darwin Awards moment there, didn’t we? I know that I’ve quoted it before, but it’s worth repeating, especially about this, “Never underestimate the power of human stupidity,” Robert A. Heinlein.

  5. thehoch responds:

    And the next Darwin Award Winner is…..

  6. Ceroill responds:

    I saw this item in the newsfeeds. Sigh. So, is a group of bigfoot officially called a ‘pod’ now?

  7. myseryoak responds:

    Oh, sure, a pod! I’ve always thought that Bigfoot might be some sort of Dolphin!

  8. gavinfundyk responds:

    Maybe Bigfoot and the Loch Ness Monster are twins! I can see the headlines now: “Separated at birth. One always searching for the other.”

    Sorry, couldn’t help myself.

  9. DARHOP responds:

    Alligator responds:
    December 18th, 2007 at 10:38 am
    Stupid is, as stupid does.
    Forrest Gump

    Took the words right out of my mouth !

  10. Loren Coleman responds:

    There appears to be nothing special or creative about what was being worn. It seems to be a “Ghillie Suit.” (Look it up.)

  11. DWA responds:

    Alabama?

    They did this in ALABAMA!?!?!?!

    Those of us who have never even been there know how dumb that is.

    So what does it say about folks who LIVE there and do it?

  12. red_pill_junkie responds:

    Well, I for one I’m amazed that in all these years those guys of “Jackass” never dared to put this kind of prank to the practice.

    Then again, maybe even someone like Johny Knoxville is not THAT stupid :-)

  13. kittenz responds:

    A “pod of Bigfoot”. Headed South. My, my.

  14. DWA responds:

    This is why people don’t take crypto seriously. Bad terminology.

    It’s not a “pod” of “Bigfoot.”

    It’s a “passel” of “sasquatch.”

  15. cmgrace responds:

    I just love that quote from Bill Cosby. Why would bigfoot need to seek warmer weather? Doesn’t he like a white Christmas like everyone else?

  16. red_pill_junkie responds:

    Why would bigfoot need to seek warmer weather? Doesn’t he like a white Christmas like everyone else?

    Not if he’s a retired Bigfoot. When they get their pension they seek warmer places, and that’s when they become the skunk apes of Florida ;-)

  17. scosmo451 responds:

    Grandad always said a gaggle of Gigantopithecus used to winter in south Texas, but stopped because they didn’t want to have to learn Spanish…

  18. Mike Smith responds:

    Need to ask these young folks one simple question. What sound do you hear after a gun that is pointed at you make? See what the response is

  19. Double Naught Spy responds:

    ‘It’s a “passel” of “sasquatch.”’

    I like that. Thanks, DWA!

    I was alarmed some years ago when some group of experts (self-proclaimed or otherwise, I don’t recall) announced that Science needed a bigfoot body. I took it as a smug attempt to stop people from wearing furry suits, for fear of being shot, but I wondered just how the experts would feel when the first prankster got plugged by a trigger happy local. I thought it belied a particularly naive ignorance of trigger happy locals, too, as though the experts seldom ventured out of their safe orbits and into the woods. And, of course, the arrogance of declaring something we know so little about to be fair game is appalling.

  20. transgenic452 responds:

    “The young people, ranging in age from 18-to-23, were given a warning. However, sheriff’s officials say those involved in any copycat incidents will face reckless endangerment charge”
    OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO

    Personally, I think the people going out on a lethal “hunt” should have been the ones getting the warning, and any talk about “reckless endangerment” charges should be directed to them. The reckless and unthinking people with guns are the ones that presented the danger.

    I’m a strong gun-rights advocate and even I think an armed “hunt” (and that’s apparently what it was), based on the available data was stupid. If the guns were taken purely for general defensive purposes while in the forest, that’s one thing. Clearly, that was not the case in this situation.

    All the kids did was dress-up as an “animal”. Granted, not the smartest thing to do in a forest. However, it is wrong to think, and a bad precedent to set, that anyone that dresses up like an animal is therefore a legitimate target for a hunter who doesn’t have the brains and discipline to first confirm the target.

  21. shumway10973 responds:

    I think more than any other reason this is a bad idea is the whole fight or flight idea. You really don’t know if someone is going to run away screaming, keel over dead or shoot you. As a person who spent much of his earlier years enjoying scaring people, I know the average response, but every once in a while someone completely surprises the scarer by doing something no one ever thought of.

  22. Mnynames responds:

    A pod of Bigfoot? Ugh. Well, now we know why they so seldom talk back to us. Apparently somebody needs to speak whale at them, like Dory from “Finding Nemo.” I’d pay good money to see Biscardi do that, LOL…

  23. Ceroill responds:

    Mnynames: Maybe the calls that have been heard are BF’s version of sonar? Just kidding.

  24. Cryptonut responds:

    Natural selection in progress……..

  25. transgenic452 responds:

    I would think a more appropriate noun describing a group of Bigfoots would be a “band” of Bigfeet/Bigfoots. That’s what we call a group of probably similar land-inhabiting primates…gorillas. See http://www.infoplease.com/ipa/A0004725.html

  26. superd responds:

    Why wasn’t I informed of the “pod moving south”? Where does he get his information?

    And to protect the costume renter, Have them sign a waiver that the renter is not responsible for gunshot wounds and death.

  27. mystery_man responds:

    Squatch-toba- Forget a 10 for stupidity. As far as the stupid meter goes, this one goes to 11.

    I can’t understand why they wouldn’t drop the prank even after being given a warning. If I was out roaming about in a sasquatch outfit or ghillie suit, and some shotgun wielding people gave me the benefit of a verbal warning, my mask would be off and I’d be screaming “Don’t shoot!” in no time flat. Something for potential hoaxers to think about.

    “Pod” of sasquatch? I suppose it has a better ring to it than “Herd” of sasquatch, or “flock” of sasquatch. :) I like DWA’s “passel” of sasquatch.

  28. panzerschlep responds:

    transgenic452, It said in the article that the kids were faking a “kidnapping” by bigfoot. These guys weren’t just going out there to plug away at a creature. They probably thought they were rescuing somebody.

  29. grafikman responds:

    Ok, I want to make a comment or two about hunters, or the misconceptions about them.

    First off, I don’t hunt. I did once with a friend in high school 29 years ago and bagged a rabbit, and that’s pretty much it for this lifetime.

    But I seem to get the implication from many posts re: “trigger happy locals”, etc. that the prejudice can extend both ways. We, as sasquatch believers (acceptors?) have a constant battle to keep people from thinking we’re deluded wackos or liars. Let’s not display the same bigotry by painting hunters with the same brush. Whether you think hunting is “fair” to a prey animal or not, we’ve wiped out most predators across the continent over the past 2 centuries, and hunters fill that niche to keep prey species population down. (Yes, down. Deer, elk and other prey animal populations have never been healthier).

    Hunting is *heavily* regulated in America, and there’s almost no situation where a hunter can just go out in the woods with the highest caliber weapon he owns and start blasting away at critters. There are specific seasons for specific prey and if a wildlife official catches you going into or coming out of the woods with the wrong firearm they can slap *massive* fines on you and/or confiscate your weapon(s).

    The simple fact that there have *never* been any people shot despite the scoftics endless bleating that there have been countless hoaxes says something about the restraint of any hunters who ever had a sasquatch -real or hoaxed- in their sights.

    Not to say it could never happen, but *most* hunters are just as law abiding as you or me.

  30. DWA responds:

    To piggyback on grafikman:

    One skeptical refrain I hear frequently is “why hasn’t a hunter shot one?”

    First, at least one reports having done so, fatally. (He thought it was a moose; and if you’d read the report, you’d consider that a totally understandable thing to do. Much more so, in fact, than seeing bear and thinking sasquatch.)

    Second: from what I have read, more hunters seem to report sightings than just about any other categorizable group.

    And virtually without exception, they never think to pull the trigger. It’s frequently fear. But frequently, it’s not.

  31. transgenic452 responds:

    You can’t really believe that even a half-rational, 90% drunk person would actually believe a “Bigfoot” kidnapped someone, let alone 2 people being carried over the shoulder, do you? Then, not just one person did this but a pod of people acted together on this?What they did was right out of a really lame horror-movie script, chase and kill the monster that dares to sully our young children.

    IMO those guys were dangerous idiots carrying lethal instruments.

  32. transgenic452 responds:

    No need to protect hunters in general. Comments appear to mostly be directed towards those specific people, not “hunters” in general.And, a wildlife official cannot fine you or confiscate your weapon just because you have the “wrong” one, or if they try, it’s not going to stick.

    In the US a person not otherwise prevented from owning and carrying a weapon can carry any legal weapon where ever a weapon can be legally carried. For example, they can’t legitimately stop me from carrying a .45 pistol if it’s legal to do so in that location, regardless of any hunting restriction that’s going on. If it’s bow and arrow hunting season, I can still take a pistol or rifle or shotgun for defensive and survival purposes as long as it’s legal to do so in that geographic area. (e.g. it’s still legal in many states to own and wear a pistol in a national forest, but not legal to carry in most state and national parks)

  33. Double Naught Spy responds:

    I don’t hunt any more, but I’m still a pretty fair shot. To construe my comment about “trigger happy locals” as a broadside against hunters in general is ludicrous. Please stop putting words in my mouth.

    One reason I don’t hunt is that not every gun owner is an ethical, conscientious hunter. There are far too many halfwits out there who are armed to the teeth, and a large fraction of those are inclined to try to justify their armor by being a hero, given half a chance. Anyone who doesn’t know what I’m talking about here has not spent much time in the country.

    Again, this is not a criticism of people who live in the country. Just the dangerous ones. And yes, there are far too many gun toting morons in the cities, too, but they are not likely to have an opportunity to shoot at someone in a furry suit.

  34. red_pill_junkie responds:

    He thought it was a moose; and if you’d read the report, you’d consider that a totally understandable thing to do. Much more so, in fact, than seeing bear and thinking sasquatch

    …or seeing lawyer and thinking quayle!

    Yeah I know, old news, but I couldn’t resist it ;-)

  35. CryptoHaus_Press responds:

    i might as well confess: the story Loren posted had me laughing out loud because over 35 years ago, the same thing happened to several friends of mine and me.

    it’s not easy to post this, as i know all the preceeding comments are justifiable and accurate. it IS an incredibly dumb thing to do in ANY hunting community to don a suit, scare the breeches off folks, etc.

    but…

    we WERE 9 years old and we lived in mississippi and were hugely influenced by Bigfoot movies such as THE LEGEND OF BOGGY CREEK and whatnot. and since my mom’s old fur coat DID look a lot like, well, you know… and there WAS that awesome gorilla mask I’d ordered out of FAMOUS MONSTERS OF FILMLAND by Don Post Studios… and those handy woods right outside our tract homes…

    well, suffice to say, it didn’t take us Gang o’ Fools (ages 9 and 10) long to have a buddy don the suit and arrange to have an innocent “bystander” to sight the roving beast. i was even there with my Super 8mm camera, ready to show Mr. Patterson up! ;)

    it COMPLETELY BACKFIRED, and i offer this anecdote as a warning to anyone of you reading this and thinking i am making fun of being cautious about this, etc. i am in essence agreeing and citing my own embarrassing stupidity as further proof (as if you needed it!) of how idiotic this is to do.

    bottom line: one kid who was tagging along with our gang wasn’t “in on the gag” became hysterical! he started shouting, screaming. in minutes, two cop cars swarmed the place my friend who was dressed as Bigfoot was “roaming” as the cryptid.

    okay, keep in mind: this WAS in a small town but it was also in city limits! basically it was a quarter acre of undeveloped woods behind a suburban community. still, the cops arrived with weapons drawn. SHOTGUNS, pistols… whew!

    i’ll never forget the look on the responding officer’s face when he confronted the hysterical kid, trying to calm the boy and asking what was wrong.

    when told by the crying lad, the incredulous officer’s jaws dropped and he sputtered: “B-B-BIGFOOT???!!!!” {:O

    my buddy came out of the woods with his hands raised, screaming, “Officer, please, I… it’s only a joke… I’m in costume!” i still laugh when i think of that — can you imagine a REAL cryptid uttering, “I’m not real, Officer! Honest!” ;)

    talk about humiliating. we were all Talk of the Town for a week and boy, did we take a (deserved) ribbing. but i still see my buddy coming out of those woods with his hands raised, proclaiming his innocence (at least as being authentically Sasquatch!), and that poor, rattled officer going white-knuckled on his pistol as he exclaimed “B-b-bigfoot!”

    to any kiddies reading this: learn from my eternal embarrassment and shame. do NOT emulate nor copycat Bigfoot however much you believe you can “get away with it.” we learned the hard way how close and eager at least some law enforcement officials are to shooting first and asking questions later.

    man, that was embarrassing to cite as it was to live through as a kid. HOPEFULLY though it will dissuade any pranksters. even a fool’s life can be worth saving, after all. ;)

  36. DWA responds:

    OK, CryptoHaus_Press’s post brought me back.

    Way to come clean there, bro!

    But I also noted, again, from grafikman: “The simple fact that there have *never* been any people shot despite the scoftics endless bleating that there have been countless hoaxes says something about the restraint of any hunters who ever had a sasquatch -real or hoaxed- in their sights.”

    And most hunters know that, whatever it is, if there isn’t a season on it, that’s in progress now, for your particular weapon, IT’S ILLEGAL to shoot it. The hunting regs are exceptions to the general prohibition against shooting animals.

    and from transgenic: “However, it is wrong to think, and a bad precedent to set, that anyone that dresses up like an animal is therefore a legitimate target for a hunter who doesn’t have the brains and discipline to first confirm the target.”

    This is what makes the rare exceptions to the safety record of hunters all the more inexplicable (and that there are gun-rights people out there like transgenic all the more reassuring). HOW can you shoot it if you don’t even know where you’re placing the shot, which requires confirming the target?



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