Big-headed goomers good for entertainment

Published 9:17 am Thursday, June 2, 2016

I haven’t written much about big headed goomers from outer space lately. I like stories about the space goomers, either as friendly (E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial) or invaders (Independence Day).

As much as I like them space goomers in movies and books, alas, they’re just fictional. They don’t exist and neither do their modes of transportation – flying saucers.

Darn it.

We’re novices in the outer space travel game, but the distances and speeds just don’t add up.

Our furthest spacecraft, Voyager 1, has been speeding away at 17 miles per second for almost 40 years now. It just left the solar system about four years ago (although some scientists dispute that – depends on how you define the solar system).

Seventeen miles per second sounds really fast (bullets travel at much less than a quarter of a mile per second), but light travels 176,000 miles per second.

Einstein said nothing can travel faster than light and so far he’s batting 1,000 on his pronouncements and predictions.

The nearest star in Proxima Centauri is 4.3 light years away, which is the time it takes light to get here from there.

So even if space goomers can travel 1,000 times faster than Voyager 1, it would take more than a lifetime to make a one-way trip to Earth.

Even if them goomers are as strange as people say they are, they’re not going to waste their lives and the lives of their offspring, coming to Earth just to mess with human heads.

Reality is a bit of a downer for a guy like me raised on “Star Trek.” The Enterprise could use warp drive (FTL or faster than light travel) to visit two or three different star systems in a few minutes.

Nice fiction, but fiction nonetheless.

So logically, as Mr. Spock might say, big headed goomers from outer space are not zipping around in flying saucers.

But there are UFOs. There are plenty of unexplained lights in the sky – at least to viewers.

That doesn’t mean they’re unexplainable or space goomers zipping around in flying saucers.

That’s disappointing because I was also a huge fan of “The X-Files,” which generated a love for conspiracy theories. The more outlandish the theory, the better – as entertainment, not reality as many folks apparently believe these days.

Trump is stoking those beliefs to get more votes than Hillary Clinton even if they are laughably ridiculous. It worked against Ted Cruz. He dropped out after Trump said Trump’s daddy helped kill JFK. Now Trump’s trotting out 25-year-old conspiracy theories on the Clinton’s murderous rampages in the ‘80s and ‘90s.

I think he may have created a new one with Hillary siccing an utterly depraved Bill onto unsuspecting victims and then laughing hysterically as her diabolical plans succeeded in ruining the lives of innocents.

It’s interesting to see old Science Fiction tropes like conspiracy theories become part of the democratic process of electing a president of the United States of America.

We sure do like our entertainment. I’m glad to see it become more akin to Science Fiction than a Soap Opera or cheesy romance.

I think them big-headed space goomers are gonna blow up that shining city on a hill.

Keith Hoggard is a Staff Writer at Roanoke-Chowan Publications. Contact him at or 252-332-7206.