I could tell.
The specifics of brittekland’s UFO sighting not withstanding, it would seem very odd for an alien species to create a ship for taking a several light-year journey, and then end that journey by flying that ship into the Earth’s atmosphere. The conditions and requirements for atmospheric flight and deep space travel are so different that any sane alien species is going to have small atmospheric craft for near-Earth use which they store on board their interstellar craft in transit.
The chances that space-faring aliens would design and use a single craft that is capable of both interstellar travel and atmospheric flight is pretty small.
Ah, the collective…
My favorite explanation, from a sci-fi short story: They were designed to look that way by aliens who are stealthily observing us, because they were sure that no one would believe in giant flying dinnerware.
Yes, but we’d only see the atmospheric recon craft. The interstellar main ship is still up in orbit.
Don’t take this the wrong way but if people believed everything somebody posted on the internet, there’d be a lot more wrong belief in the world.
Here’s the thing.
We know, from our study of biology, that the human brain, even in a completely healthy individual, can occasionally manufacture sensory inputs or memories that don’t actually exist. This is well documented.
On the other hand, there is zero hard evidence for the presence of extra-terrestrial visitors on Earth. There are a number of reports of unexplained atmospheric phenomena, but just because we don’t know what something is, it doesn’t automatically follow that it must have been space aliens.
It’s also rather difficult for a layman to correctly identify what UFO sighting are, indeed, unexplainable. I’m reminded of a sighting in (IIRC) New Mexico of a series of lights flying in a V shape, that was widely described as being impossible to be of Earthly origin. Except that a few weeks later, a bunch of retired air force guys with private pilot licenses came forward and confessed that they’d done it as a joke, by flying their planes in close formation with most of their running lights deactivated - and they were willing and able to reproduce this trick.
Lastly, from our study of physics, it appears to be completely and totally impossible to travel faster than the speed of light. It’s certainly possible that we’re wrong about this, but the more we learn about physics, the more everything seems to confirm that basic fact: the speed of light is the fastest anything can go. What this means is, if an alien vessel did arrive on our planet, it would be after a voyage of hundred and hundreds, if not thousands and thousands, of years. Which makes it extremely unlikely that they’d come all this way just to hide out in some clouds. You don’t travel that far, for that long, for a quick visit.
Now, that said, its an awfully big universe, and we only understand a tiny little piece of it, so it’s entirely possible that some day, someone’s going to find something that blows one or more of the above suppositions out of the water. But until that happens, the rational reaction to what you saw is to assume a momentary hallucination, or a very convincing optical illusion, both of which are reasonably common, and not something that entirely overthrows our understanding of the basic laws of the universe.
Of course you don’t. They have been here since the beginning, controlling everything. Earth is their experiment. If we make too many wrong moves, they will terminate us. With the invention of reality television and the Snuggie, humanity has two big strikes against it.
Before I posted this thread, believe me I’ve gone through a lot trying to tell the story… even my best friend laughed at me and never did take me seriously. In fact I can’t, seriously NO ONE, talk to anyone seriously about this because they all look at me with this grin on their face. I’d tell anyone who actually see aliens or alien spacecrafts to forget about telling anyone. They can pretty much expose themselves without being on the front page unless they appeared and parked above a big city in their mother ship.
I came into posting this thread full well it would be tongue-in-cheek self-deprecation exercise to a point this being SDMB and all. I was just disappointed that it got stuck at me seeing UFO and didn’t get started about the spacecraft design discussion. I thought someone just might start entertaining the spacecraft design at face value and have a discussion.
On the other hand, we have this, so it all balances out.
Wow! The UFO’s are neutralizing the cell phones!
Exactly. So speculating on how the aliens interstellar drive works based on the shape of their atmospheric recon craft is pointless. We have no idea what the ship that actually does the interstellar transit looks like.
“It looks like- a Winnebago with wings!”
I think most UFOs are reported as saucer-shaped because most people do not realize how bad their eyesight is. They don’t get regular eye exams until some issue causes them to go.
So unusual things that are seen in the sky resolve into oval blobs. The same is true for the cigar shaped craft often reported. They just can’t see the wings on the jet plane and it becomes an shiny cigar shaped craft.
That and the planet Venus. Aliens will arrive on Earth eventually, once the planet Venus quits hovering and lands.
I’ve seen an aeroplane* at just the right angle for the wings to reflect the sky so perfectly they disappear. Almost edge on, and unpainted, so very reflective.
I once saw the same thing with the fuselage, so the plane looked like it was made of glass.
I can believe that people are confused by sightings like that. What I don’t understand is why they prefer the weird and unlikely explanations instead of something logical.
*Or “airplane.” Pick whichever you prefer.
What about the chances that they’re also vulnerable to water?
According to the book Mysterious Skin, it’s because they’ve repressed being molested as a child by their baseball coach.
Look, I’m going say this for the last time, this piece of cloud was not big enough for a whole airliner; hold a cotton candy against a clear blue sky with nothing around, way high up, then you see this saucer shaped “thing”, almost as big as the cotton candy, come out in slow spinning like motion in very deliberate precisely controlled like move but you can see that it’s not part of a larger body because that cotton candy is only so big and there is no room for anything else; the size, height, girth of this saucer thing is so that, say, if it was fuselage of an airliner it had to be a very big airliner - there simply wasn’t room for any of that. It essentially stayed with this hardly moving piece of cloud. I’d like to see an airliner do that without stalling and dropping out of the sky. A Harrier? No, the fuselage would have to be way bigger and then the same issue - where is the rest of the plane.
The thing came out of the cloud enough that I know it’s a saucer shaped body and it wasn’t a tip or part of something. My friends work in aircraft industry and we, or least they, sit around spot planes in the sky and discuss about them all the time and I know what types of planes look like etc in the sky at that altitude. Also I’m not saying it’s a alien spacecraft. I don’t know what this thing was. It’s was a UFO that I have no explanation for. Then I saw pictures of the exact same UFOs shot in mid air with no clouds around, in Mexico and Japan around the same time I saw this thing. Maybe they were considered hoax; but I know I saw the same saucers too! But hey, welcome, Dopers! Make sure to have fun, really. But seriously, I’d like to actually hear someone come up with more plausible possibilities though. So far it’s just ‘oh, must’ve been something else, it had to be’.
Hey, if you approach it the right way, more Dopers than you’d expect will admit to witnessing some kind of unexplained, possibly paranormal phenomenon including UFOs. But if you come in with a chip on your shoulder about any topic, be it “the sky is blue!” people are going to take that as a challenge.