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THE Lowly Peon


Area Fifty-One Infinite Loop 
26 August 2011, 12:40am

Being in Houston, it's way too hot to run outside, so I've been running on a treadmill for the last several months. I hate it. But it does afford me some time to watch really crappy television.

For the last few weeks, my show of choice was Family Ties, a wholesome, simple plotted tv show that was surprisingly funny, even via closed captions. But lately I've been more into geeky shows, like Discovery or History Channel shows. But the one I watched today on the History Channel was absurd.

It was called Mystery Quest: Area 51 Cover-Up.

The whole show was finding different ways to "catch a glimpse" at Area 51, the top secret military base in the desert. They had guys climbing nearby mountains with a "high-def" camera (1500mm), surveillance companies setting up a few cameras for a solid three days, and interviews with people who actually worked there!!

The show made me realize two things:

  1. The commercials were well targeted to who I'd imagine would watch the show. The only commercials on the show were for travel companies like Orbitz (wanna fly to Area 51?), geeky gadget stuff (wanna spy on Area 51?), and insurance companies (oh my god they're coming to get us!).
  2. The whole Area 51 thing is a lot like Apple. Inside is a lot of well-kept secrets, and people who know about them respect them enough to not talk. And the people who don't know what's on the inside go off of any tiny shred of suggestive evidence and come to grand conclusions. (Huh? Someone saw a case from Japan and actually paid someone to make mockups based on what would fit inside?)

Toward the end of the show, the climax was an interview with a guy who worked there. The interviewer asked him directly: do you know of any top secret reverse engineered alien space craft in Area 51? His answer: well, not that I know of. [Pause] But I suppose it's possible. And then the show repeated over and over again that this guy said it's possible, and then paraphrased him using words like "very likely".

Absurd.

(Note: many of the quotes I may have used were paraphrased as well. I was running. Not like I have a pen nearby. Come on.)

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