Dean Sanderson had set up a general meeting for all participants in the Ogopogo research project. He had reserved Theatre B of The University of British Columbia so as to accommodate what could potentially be a large turnout.
The dean stood at the podium of the large lecture facility and proceeded to bring the meeting to order. A significant number of people had indeed shown up for this meeting.
“I’d like to welcome all of you and thank all of you for attending our first formal organizational meeting. We have a daunting task ahead of us in organizing and planning for the implementation of an expedition to search for Ogopogo, our province’s legendary lake monster. As most of you are very likely aware the existence of Ogopogo has not been scientifically established either positively or negatively.
Supporting the argument for the reality of The Lake Demon, a name that was first given to the creature by our First Nations peoples, are an impressive number of reported and documented sightings of the marine animal. Most of these reported sightings have been by people of impeccable integrity, Yes, there have unfortunately been some hoaxes by disreputable persons over the years, but human nature being such as it is, these occurrences are to be expected. Still, we must not allow the tomfoolery of a few misguided individuals stand in the way of the gathering of relevant data by reputable scientific investigation. As he is much better versed in the nature of our subject than I am, I would like to call upon and introduce our renowned professor of marine biology, a respected member of the faculty of The University of British Columbia, Dr. Lionel Phelge.
A generous outpouring of applause greeted Dr. Phelge as he took his position at the podium. He opened his black briefcase and took out a thick folder which he proceeded to place upon the lectern. He next proceeded to turn on the lamp that was attached to the podium.
“I must apologize for my somewhat impaired vision. Last year I, unfortunately, required emergency surgery on my left eye as a result of a detached retina, As I did not get to the surgeon’s within the recommended window of time, he was unable to save much of the vision in my left eye, This being the case, I now require enhanced lighting and increased magnification when I am required to read or to refer to my notes. This is why I have the large round magnification deice around my neck. I will be using it whenever I have difficulty reading my own notes,” explained the professor.
“I think it’s a fair conclusion to draw that Ryan and Monique will be going on that crazy Ogopogo expedition along with the University of British Columbia students,” said Meg Richards preparing coffee for her brother John.
“Yes, I would think that would be a fairly safe guess,” answered John. Who knows they both may end up attending The University of British Columbia during the fall semester.”
“What makes you say that?” asked Meg.
“Well, it’s fairly obvious to me that they’re both in love with each other.”
“If you’re right this could lead to quite a complicated situation when September arrives.”
“Yeah, I don’t want to think about it. If they both do decide to stay here past the summer I’ll have to talk to Susan and see what kind of arrangements we’ll need to make,” said John.
“I could see that getting a little dicey,” Meg pointed out.
“Yeah, tell me about it,” said John with a sigh. I certainly wasn’t expecting this when my kids came over for the summer, or more correctly what I assumed was only going to be for the summer.”
“Well, life is full of little surprises isn’t it, John?” said Meg.
“Speaking of little surprises I phoned Dean Sanderson at UBC the other day, We got talking about Ryan and Monique going on the expedition and I told him that I had more than a small interest in searching for Ogopogo myself. I told him that I was a writer and was looking for an idea for a new novel. I asked him if I could join their group and help out wherever I was needed on the project,” said John.
“Somehow, I’m not as surprised as you may think, John Richards,” replied Meg.
“Well, at least you’re not telling us that the large marine predator is Ogopogo as I’m sure Kelowna Sun reporter, Bobby O’Connor is going to insinuate to his readers,” said Sheriff George Anderson with a sigh of relief.
“I’m sure that Dr.Phelge could provide a more educated opinion on whether or not the predator was Ogopogo,” said Dr. Mitchell.
“What? Are you saying that you believe in Ogopogo?” asked the Sheriff with a look of astonishment. “You’re pulling my leg now, aren’t you doc?”
“No, I’m a medical professional and a trained scientist. I’ve learned not to discount any possibility until it has been conclusively ruled out. My father used to spend a lot of time on Lake Okanogan and he claims to have seen Ogopogo upon two occasions,” answered Marsha in an undoubtedly serious tone of voice
“Oh great. Just wait until Bobby O’Connor asks you for an interview and you tell him that,” said George shaking his head and looking down at the floor.
“I would simply tell Mr. O’Connor what I have told you. If he asks if Ogopogo could be the unknown predator in this case, I would tell the reporter that anything is possible, but that it would be unlikely in this case. We, presently, don’t have enough evidence to go on,” Marsha clarified.
“I can guarantee that O’Connor will ask you if you believe in Ogopogo,” said the sheriff.
“Once again, I would be very professional and careful in what I would say to him. I wouldn’t want to help him sensationalize his newspaper reporting. On the other hand, I don’t have any idea what Dr. Phelge is going to say to him. It is very likely that Mr. O’Connor will want to interview the professor,” answered Marsha.
“Oh, I think that ‘s a given,” interjected Deputy Bill Rollins. “The media’s first stop is usually Dr. Phelge’s office when something controversial happens.”
“And I’m sure that Phelge will tell O’Connor that an Ogopogo encounter is a distinct possibility. The professor is quite biased in his interpretations of paranormal phenomena. The only thing that we can be happy about is that he is considered to be a weird bird by his colleagues,” said Geoorge.
“A bit eccentric for sure, but he is still a darling of the media and the public in general,” said Bill.
“Let’s face it,” said the Sheriff. “There is something within human beings that is attracted by magic, the mysterious and the extra ordinary. They want to believe that there is something out there in the world that has not yet been discovered,”
“I didn’t know that you were so philosophical, Boss. Oh, there are so many things that you still don’t know about me Bill,” replied George Anderson with a chuckle.
“Well, the human carcass is definitely that of the old woman, Ida Rhodes. According to the veterinarian’s report the decomposing body of the dog that washed ashore was most likely the pet that belonged to the deceased woman,” answered Dr. Marsha Mitchell.
“What will you officially declare as the cause of death?” asked Sheriff George Anderson.
“in my professional opinion, my most likely conclusion is that the elderly woman and her dog were the victims of a fatal attack by a very large marine predator. My assessment is based on the bite marks on the remaining flesh of the two victims. I have measured the length of the bite marks and they appear to indicate a very large mouth with sharp jagged teeth. They most closely resemble the type of distinct markings that would be left on a piece of fabric cut with sewing shears. They suggest that the attacking animal had at least two rows of very sharp jagged teeth,” answered the medical examiner.
“What species of large marine predator are we talking about?” asked Deputy Bill Rollins wanting a more definitive answer from the doctor.
“At this time I cannot hazard a guess as to what kind of marine animal that the predator might be. An expert in marine biology might be of more help in making a more precise determination,” answered Marsha. “My personal recommendation would be that you consult Dr. Lionel Phelge, the marine biology professor at The University of British Columbia.”
“Isn’t that the professor who believes in the possible existence of ufos, aliens, Bigfoot and the like?” asked Bill Rollins
“Dr. Lionel Phelge does have a well-known interest in cryptozoology? Answered Dr. Mitchell.
“What kind of zoology?” asked the Sheriff.
“Cryptozoology, the study of unknown and undiscovered species,” was Dr. Mitchell’s answer.
The medical examiner, Dr. Marsha Mitchell, arrived on the scene where the two bodies had drifted ashore. She was an attractive tall brunette woman twenty-eight years of age. Marsha had only been the local medical examiner for two years but she was already very professional in her approach to her job and was not easily distracted by unpleasant sights or odors, She took a very clinical approach as she started to assess the situation in front of her. Dr.Mitchell approached the two fragmented bodies in front of her and began her examination. There was very little flesh left on both the human and the animal carcasses before her. She had her two assistants take photos of the bodies at the spot where they had washed ashore. She then directed them to get the bodies ready for transport to her laboratory.
After about a ten minute ride to her office Marsha first contacted the dental specialist, Dr. Robert Raines who would attempt to locate matching dental records for the human victim. He started by contacting Ida Rhodes’ dentist for his records for his patient. Ida’s dental records were quickly couriered over to Dr. Mitchell’s office. After a thorough comparison of the dental records with the teeth on the decomposing body of Ida Rhodes Dr. Raines concluded that there was a positive match. Dr. Mitchell was now free to start her autopsy with the knowledge that her deceased patient was indeed Ida Rhodes.
A veterinary expert was able to determine from his examination of the dog’s skeletal remains that the breed’s identifying characteristics were consistent with the dog that the old lady had owned.
After about an hour and a half’s time had elapsed, Sheriff George Anderson and Deputy Bill Rollins arrived at Dr. Mitchell’s medical laboratory.
As the Sheriff approached Marsha Mitchell he found it necessary to cover his nose with a handkerchief in order to make the decomposition of Ida Rhode’s body less offensive to him.
“Hello, Dr. Mitchell. What have you determined so far?” George asked.
A Review of The Royal Rumble 2014
The WWE may have turned a corner. The wrestling shows that I have been watching recently have greatly improved in their entertainment value.
Take Sunday night’s PPV, The Royal Rumble 2914 for example. With one exception the matches were not boring. The night got off to a flying start with a classic tussle between Bray Wyatt and Daniel Bryan. Bryan has clearly emerged as a fan favorite. This is very interesting as Daniel Bryan is neither a large nor a very attractive man but the fans love him. My suspicion is that it is the desire to root for the underdog.
Bray Wyatt and his family are just downright creepy. Their entrance video and music is a stroke of genius. The demented hillbilly angle has worked quite successfully in the movie horror genre and it’s also working in the world of professional wrestling.
Brock Lesnar’s merciless chair attack on Big Show just verified that the Giant can only be beat by surprise attacks and outside interference,
The Shield is now as good as done as a unified team. They are no longer on the same page, Roman Reigns is destined to realize the weaknesses of his two fellow partners and will soon be ready to leave The Shield.
What’s with Kane eliminating C.M. Punk in the Royal Rumble match? Kane was eliminated much earlier and came back to dispose of punk. This isn’t legal.
The only disappointing match of the night was the one for the WWE championship. The match between Randy Orton and John Cena was boring and predictable.
“I thought you said that Ogopogo was a mythological legend,” said Max.
“Of course the creature is imaginary, but people insist on preserving their myths. It provides a little magic to their otherwise boring, ordinary lives,” asserted William Everett.
“Now listen to this. O’Connor states that the University of British Columbia’s marine biology department is rumoured to be planning an expedition to search for Ogopogo. This kind of publicity can easily ‘go viral’ in this age of social media, Kelowna, if not all of British Columbia, will become a laughing stock in Canada and potentially around the world,” added Everett emphatically.
Max got out of his chair to refresh his coffee. “Look on the bright side William. Can you imagine the economic boost this is going to give the tourism industry in Kelowna, and for that matter all of British Columbia.”
“I know this circus is going to bring in a lot of revenue, but because of that my superiors are going to ask me to give this nonsense my full support,”, said Max tossing his copy of the Kelowna Sun to the far right hand corner of his oversize desk.”
“You can bet your retirement savings on that,” agreed Max making his way back to his desk.
“Well, I’ll tell you what. They’re not going to get an ounce of my support or approval. Within weeks we’ll have every crackpot and lunatic with a boat hunting for Ogopogo,” said William loudly stamping his foot for emphasis.
“They could injure or even kill the creature and cause a lot of boating accidents and drownings,” said William Everett continuing his rant.
“Now that’s the second time that you’ve referred to Ogopogo as a real living animal,” laughed Max.
“I don’t believe that Ogopogo’s an actual prehistoric lake monster, like some species of marine dinosaur, but it could be something living, like a giant eel for instance,” said the Head of Fisheries.