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Those who have read the UFO classic Passport to Magonia, by Jacques Vallee, will be familiar with the odd case of Joe Simonton, a chicken farmer who claims to have met aliens and been given, of all things, pancakes by them (It is also, if memory serves me, mentioned in Robert Anton Wilson’s Cosmic Trigger):

The time was approximately 11:00 A.M. on April 18, 1961, when Joe Simonton was attracted outside by a peculiar noise similar to “knobby tires on a wet pavement.” Stepping into his yard, he faced a silvery saucer-shaped object “brighter than chrome,” which appeared to be hovering close to the ground without actually touching it. The object was about twelve feet high and thirty feet in diameter. A hatch opened about five feet from the ground, and Simonton saw three men inside the machine. One of them was dressed in a black two-piece suit. The occupants were about five feet in height. Smooth shaven, they appeared to “resemble Italians.” They had dark hair and skin and wore outfits with turtleneck tops and knit helmets.

One of the men held up a jug apparently made of the same material as the saucer. His motions to Joe Simonton seemed to indicate that he needed water. Simonton took the jug, went inside the house, and filled it. As he returned, he saw that one of the men inside the saucer was “frying food on a flameless grill of some sort.” The interior of the ship was black, “the color of wrought iron.” Simonton, who could see several instrument panels, heard a slow whining sound, similar to the hum of a generator. When he made a motion indicating he was interested in the food that was being prepared, one of the men, who was also dressed in black but with a narrow red trim along the trousers, handed him three cookies, about three inches in diameter and perforated with small holes.

The whole affair had lasted about five minutes. Finally, the man closest to the witness attached a kind of belt to a hook in his clothing and closed the hatch in such a way that Simonton could scarcely detect its outline. Then the object rose about twenty feet from the ground before taking off straight south, causing a blast of air that bowed some nearby pine trees.

…When two deputies sent by Sheriff Schroeder, who had known Simonton for fourteen years, arrived on the scene, they could not find any corroborative evidence. The sheriff affirmed that the witness obviously believed the truth of what he was saying and talked very sensibly about the incident.

I was surprised to find recently that YouTube has a video of Joe Simonton being interviewed about his encounter, and showing off one of the ‘pancakes’ he was given. For those interested, here it is:

Loved the matter-of-fact way he discussed the taste of the pancakes: “They were hot and greasy…if that was their food, God help them, because I took a bite of one of them and it tasted like a piece of cardboard. If that’s what they lived on, no wonder they were small”.

(Full disclosure: Passport to Magonia is currently published by us here at The Daily Grail)