Reprint of An Article Published
in the Spring 2005 Bean Home Newsletter
"Upon the Golden Anniversary
of the 1955 Martian Visit to Centerboro, NY"
(A splendid synthesis
of nearly everything I know about the little critters)
It is my pleasure to have another
article published in such a prestigious journal, although it is not strictly to
stoke my ego that I have committed myself to this vital public service. I offer
the following information about the Martians to clear up certain misconceptions
about their race, their nature, their behaviors, and their intentions. Unfortunately,
a comprehensive report on the matter of the Martian visitation to Centerboro requires
more space than can be reasonably allowed in this issue of the Bean Home Newsletter.
Therefore, I have cut from my website and pasted here (in somewhat altered form)
what I consider some of the more noteworthy facts about the visit and the Martians
themselves. For a fuller account, you ought visit my website, Mr. Eha's Place.
As the closest thing to a still-breathing, eyewitness chronicler of the strange
incidents that occurred in Centerboro and the surrounding area in 1955, I have
assembled a substantial number of images and reams of text there regarding the
Martians. Scattered throughout my site you will find, among many other things:
- How to get in touch with
Martians using an ordinary product found in any kitchen
- An English-Martian colloquial
phrase list, a small sample of which may be found at the end of this article
- The true explanation of
the famous "face" (and other artifacts) on Mars
- My informed opinion on
the close resemblance between Kurt Wiese's depiction of the Martian physiology
- Information about Martian
names, vocalizations, behavior, and handwriting
- Synopses and reviews of
some unpublished Freddy manuscripts featuring Martians including Freddy Goes
to Mars, Freddy and the Badminton Team from Mars, Freddy and the
Croquet Team from Mars, and Freddy and the ?
- Many images relating
to the Centerboro Martians including that of a now-missing specimen of a fossilized
proto-Martian found in New York State which had been kept under lock and key in
a famous museum, a clutch of varnished Martian eggs, a completely operational
Martian ray gun, the only known copy of the official score card from the Saturday,
May 28, 1955, interplanetary ballgame between Mars and Tushville, a plaque commissioned
by the Martians commemorating that event, the Tushville baseball team, etc., etc.
- Local artist Gladys Pippin's
splendid rendition of the Martians' saucer parked in Sibney Memorial Plaza in
- The free download of Mr.
Eha's Interplanetary Hard Drive Cleaner which is conditionally guaranteed
to rid your computer of noxious Martian viruses
- The role the Martians played
in the Centerboro Miss Flying Saucer Contest
- and much, much more!
the Centerboro Martians
"Martians Visit Centerboro!"
Now that is a headline never glimpsed outside the area covered by the Centerboro
Sentinel, and yet the Martians certainly did visit the Oteseraga County
seat 50 years ago! (All known copies of that edition and all subsequent editions
mentioning the Martians are nowhere to be found, not even at the big Tushville
flea market!) I drew the above sketch of a typical adult Martian back in 1955,
just before the little buggers took off and most Centerboro residents experienced
an immediate mass amnesia about them. I don't know why I remember all the Martian
business as well as I do. Perhaps I'm wired up in some different way, and whatever
happened to the rest of the town and countryside didn't affect me. Anyhow, the
details in the sketch are pretty accurately rendered, though I'm obviously no
artist. I'm just here to tell the Truth, not to create great (or even passable)
- Note the insect-like form--but
this intelligent creature did not evolve on Earth! (See discussion below.) If
you're wondering about gender differentiation among the Martians and related matters,
that information can be found on my site. However, I can say here that in public
they all looked and acted pretty much the same to me. Note also that the true
Martians were much more physically robust than depicted by Mr. Wiese.
- Martians possess segmented
bodies, kind of egg-shaped, but not in three parts like an ordinary Earth insect.
Their thoraxes and abdomens are fused and enclosed in a tough, lusterless exoskeleton.
They have six appendages, but unlike anything seen on Earth. Not clear in my sketch
is the fact that each of the upper four appendages ends in ten flexible digits
arranged in two opposing groups of five. I might say that Martians are very "handy"!
- Martians sport three eyes,
all of which move independently. Is this typical of any advanced earth creature
that you know? Absolutely not! Perhaps the fauna of the Burgess shales might have
evolved such adaptations eventually, but they never survived to evolve into even
higher life forms here on Earth, did they?
- Observe the inscrutable
expression of the typical Martian--almost (but not always) a sure sign of superior
intelligence! (The main exception to this rule of thumb is the poorly socialized
human species, which rarely exhibits a degree of useful intelligence above that
of the Papio sphinx, yet is frequently inscrutable!) With regard to coloration,
the Martians that visited Centerboro were very dark in color, almost black, but
not quite. Maybe "tarnished silver" would describe their color best--that
of the adults, that is. Infant and juvenile Martians are "burnt sienna."
I ask you, does this creature
look like one of those phony aliens on television shows? I don't think so! Does
it look like those bogus aliens in the Alien or Predator movies?
No, it doesn't! Those poorly imagined life forms are too humanoid to be remotely
feasible. An intelligent being evolving on Mars would not look very much like
us at all; i.e., sporting two eyes, nostrils, ears, arms, legs, etc., on a bilaterally
symmetrical frame. (Yes, the Martians who landed in Centerboro are bilaterally
symmetric, but that's entirely coincidental.) Furthermore, I believe that any
similarities between the Martians and earthly creatures--such as the relative
placement of eyes, nasal passages, eating and excreting orifices, appendages,
etc.--are simply examples of convergent evolution on a cosmic scale which supposes
that at some time or other conditions on Mars were similar to conditions on Earth.
I also leave open the possibility based on that missing museum specimen I referred
to above that Two Clicks and his kind might share an arthropod ancestor with Earth
insects. Perhaps Mars was once part of Earth and was knocked off by a vagrant
asteroid or comet, say during the Carboniferous Age or even earlier. The lucky
creatures surviving such an impact would then continue evolving in an exotic and
alien environment, preserving some similarities with their earthly cousins, but
mutating and adapting to conditions on their spanking new planet.
Now, ask yourself, would it
be even possible for a normal, rational Earthling such as myself to dream up such
"outlandish" creatures and claim quite seriously that they once strolled
the streets of Centerboro and roamed the hills and valleys of Oteseraga County?
I have spent countless hours and sleepless nights pondering this very question,
and I must categorically answer, NO! The Martians as depicted in my sketch are
the authentic Martians. I could not have made them up! Why they came here to Earth
I will answer next.
Why the Martians Came to
WHY would creatures intelligent
enough to build flying saucers come to this backward planet and, in particular,
to podunk Centerboro, NY, of all places? Why not land in a major world capital,
for instance? Would not a landing in Washington or Ottawa have been more spectacular?
Would not the world have fallen to its knees in abject terror and surrender?
Answer: The Martians
were just on vacation, and they had no interest in our dinky, parochial affairs.
Other than minor league baseball, traveling circuses, and a certain leguminous
annual herb found exclusively on Earth, they viewed the rest of our sorry world
as entirely boring. I mean, aren't most things on this planet pretty boring, even
to us? Fast foods--really exciting and fun, right? Ninety-nine point nine
percent of television programming--now there's real intellectual stimulation
for you! How about your average dinner table conversation? Your average classroom?
Your average marriage? What most people do for a so-called living? See what I
mean? And government, politics, planetary conquest, the enslavement of the human
species--all as utterly boring to the Martians as they would be to any creature
of genuine intelligence. Why did they land in Centerboro then? Very simple! That's
where Boomschmidt's circus summered, and there used to be great small town baseball
there, and peanuts were sold at both the circus and the games--an ideal
vacation spot for Martians!
WHY did the Martians not immediately
incinerate the world with their advanced weaponry, which was revealed to a few
residents of Centerboro, including me? We are the greatest potential threat to
peace, reason, and sanity in the solar system! And yet they let us live!
Answer: During their
random sampling of human specimens from Centerboro, we were found not to be reservoirs
of intra-solar system contagious diseases, at least none that affect Martian physiology,
so we were spared-for now. Recent telepathic emanations from Mars strongly suggest,
however, that the Martians are becoming increasingly weary of the preposterous
antics of our species. Although they care about conquering the Earth about as
much as we care about conquering the empire of the termites, I have reason to
believe that they may soon "fumigate" our planet. I discuss this possibility
in a tad more detail a bit later.
WHY did these members of a
technologically advanced species not reveal to us, their gracious and willing
hosts in Centerboro, the secrets of the cure for cancer, the free inexhaustible
energy source, and so forth?
Answer: Because they
were just average, middle-class Martian tourists who didn't know any more about
cancer cures and miracle energy sources than you or I know about how to perform
an appendectomy or how a diesel engine works--that's why. Even their tour leader
Two-Clicks could not be described as a whiz kid by Martian standards.
WHY have so few people outside
of Centerboro ever heard of the exact circumstances of the visit of these strange
creatures until I revealed the Truth on my website?
Answer: In addition
to blanketing the Centerboro region with some kind of amnesia-producing substance
which eliminated recollection of their visit in all but a few, they also assumed
control of the mind of Mr. Walter R. Brooks, a seasonal resident of Centerboro
and author best known for his creation of Mr. Ed, and they induced him to add
two "Martian" volumes to his inconsequential Freddy the Pig series of
books which served further to mask their visit as faintly amusing juvenile fiction.
Mr. Brooks specialized in animal stories, and all of his animal characters were
composites based loosely on real Centerboro people with whom Brooks was acquainted.
The Martians are real though! I can't fairly charge Mr. Brooks with conspiring
with Martians to create the impression that they are simply the product of human
imagination or that their visit was simply the story line of a couple of kiddy
books. Owing to the Martians' ability to cloud the minds of men, Mr. Brooks was
not in control of his cerebral faculties at the time and therefore cannot be held
accountable. The Martians left few tangible traces of their visit. They were pretty
careful about that. For example, just try to find a copy of the Sentinel
mentioning Martians. Would you believe anyone who said, "Hey, I saw some
Martians at a Centerboro ballgame in 1955" without solid evidence? Of course
you wouldn't! All phone calls, letters, postcards, telegraph messages sent out
of Centerboro mentioning Martians were simple dismissed by their recipients as
the products of temporary insanity or a crackpot mentality. For some reason, I
escaped the amnesia the Martians covered the Centerboro area with before taking
off. The few others with intact memories have chosen to keep their mouths shut
about the Martians and their affairs, but I, for reasons quite unknown to me,
have been the only one to persist in the pursuit of the Truth! The evidence I
present on my site is ample and conclusive. Nonetheless, I have no doubt that
it will continue to be ridiculed--but when the Martians decide to rid the rafters
of the human species, don't say I didn't give the Earth ample warning!
English-Martian Phrase List
On my site there is a short
English-Martian phrase list that will have to suffice until my more extensive
booklet is re-issued. (I wonder if Overlook Press would consider it a worthwhile
project?) Anyway, here's a sample from my "English-Martian Colloquial Phrase
List (Rendered Phonetically and With Literal Translations)" that may come
in handy for you someday. Please note that Martians consider it a mandatory act
of politeness on your part to try to use their verbal language before using telepathy,
so make the effort should you ever have to address one of them. In this respect
they are much like the French. Render your delivery as flat and robot-like as
you can. Also, make sure you include the indicated body language in your communications,
as gestures figure importantly in their language.
Warning! Do not attempt
to speak with a molting Martian under any circumstances!!! It will be hypersensitive
to sound, and you may suffer some superficial, yet extremely painful bite wounds
since Martians tend to revert quickly and without warning to their prehistoric
warlike behaviors when annoyed. As Miss Alice Peppercorn found out after having
screeched at a molting Martian and prodded it with her umbrella, the wounds itch
unbearably for weeks while healing and the scars are permanent.
Hello. (Greetings. Good
skirrr graack-k ch-kih shiiik clak
Translation: (Not) [(This self) (bite)]. (Mandibles closed).
(With your right hand, make an "OK" sign next to your mouth.)
skirrr graack-k ch-kih greek-tsk wirk
Translation: (Not) [(This self) (bite) (of other self) (backside)].
(Pinch the web between the thumb and index finger of your left hand with the thumb
and index finger of your right.)
Please excuse me. I did
not mean to give offense.
skirrr greek-k skack graack-tsk chu'gik graack-k whirrr-chick tssicks
Translation: (Not) [(Other self) (split) (of this self) (carapace)] (This
self) (retracts) (antennae).
(Use your left hand to give a karate chop to the back of your right hand.)
Please do not vaporize me.
I have a family.
skirrr chwak piz graak-tsk piktta graack-k karbt
Translation: (Not) [(atomize) (this self)]. (Many hatchlings) (this self)
(Face your left palm out and alternately tap it rapidly several times with the
index and middle fingers of your right hand.)
Note: Martians have
next to zero sense of the notion of "family," but since any individual
Martian may have studied human kinship groups from our commercial or public television
broadcasts or through direct observation, begging for your life based on an appeal
to family obligations or feelings is at least worth a shot.
I leave you with some questions
to ponder. Will the creatures portrayed as benign cereal-eaters by Mr. Brooks
return to Earth anytime soon? If so, will their next visit be of a social nature,
or will they arrive in force with their "brooms" to undertake a meticulous
housecleaning of their neighboring planet? Since I have had numerous experiences
with the Martian race, I have been asked many times by my readers if I have any
idea whether or not the Martians are going to invade Earth and annihilate us,
and if so, when? I have stated that the Martians have regarded the human species
as a reliable source of amusement for some time now, but I have reason to believe
that our antics have, of late, become tiresome to their viewing audience. In the
telepathic emanations I receive from Mars, I have recently picked up the distinct
impression that the "reality show" we are now producing on a global
level has become a gigantic bore for the Martians, and they are about ready to
"switch the channel." This is not a good thing, for their version of
switching the channel will result in the wholesale eradication of our wretched
species. There are no preparations you can make to save yourselves (unless, of
course, you were the winner of the last Mr. Eha's Place jackpot), so carpe
diem, my friends, and pray that the Martian version of the Nielsen ratings
for our show improves, for if it does not, we're goners...well, at least you
are goners, for by then Mrs. Underdunk and I, Axon Spardoze (see my site), and
the big jackpot winner will have already been whisked away to a brand new fabulous
life on Mars by my old friend Two Clicks.