In 1995, in Vancouver, I photographed Leonard George a many faceted gentleman who was a psychologist and, a lot of other things.
In those days editors sent me the manuscripts either by fax or by courier. In the manuscript I read that Mr. George had seen a flying saucer in his youth. I decided then that one of my photographs for the Georgia Straight, a Vancouver arts weekly, would include a flying saucer in some way. At the time (and especially now) there was a very active film industry in Vancouver. I went to William F. White and found a stamped out metal gobo (go between in film lingo) that featured a flying saucer.
Around 1958 when I was a 9th grader at St. Edward’s High School in Austin, Texas I was a real geek. I believed in flying saucers so I made (from a magazine article) a flying saucer spotter. It involved buying a good compass and putting two contacts on either side of North. These contacts were connected to a buzzer and battery. When you had the compass pointing North any object that would modify the magnetic field would shift the needle to touch one of the contacts and the buzzer would sound.
For the first couple of nights my device buzzed. My fellow classmates (it was a boarding school) objected to the noise. I was instructed to stop my experimenting.
I found out that the magnetic field was affected by tractor trailer rigs passing by nearby South Congress Avenue. There was heavy traffic in the evening.
I switched my interests to Wham-O blow guns.
Originally published at blog.alexwaterhousehayward.com.