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The Loveland Frogmen: Sadly, Not a Band

I’ve been writing these articles for several years, and yet it recently occurred to me that I have rarely mentioned the “reptilians”. If you’ve got better things to do than watch the History Channel (which seems to have swung from documentaries about Hitler all day long to documentaries about ghosts and space monsters all day long, with the exception of that one sweet show about a pawn shop), reptilians are sort of the captains sergeants of the space men. 7 feet tall, they live inside the core of the earth, coming out in their flying saucers to feed on fear and hatred. Also blood. They eat blood. They can also change shape at will, and masquerade as many of our world’s elected leaders, so that they can start more wars and thus obtain, I assume, more blood and fear. If you’ve made it this deep into the internet and not seen pictures supposedly proving that (especially) ex-president Bush and politicians (in general) are lizard men in human suits, congratulations.

Anyway, as far as UFO sightings go, the lizard men (note: I’m calling them lizard men to denigrate this ridiculous tale in the same way that people use “reptilloids” or “reptilians” to make it seem more scientific) pop up here and there. Usually, a person is abducted by the “grays”, and there will be a lizard man sort of in the background observing or giving orders. Some skeptical types point out that all this talk about lizard men from space controlling the world became much more common after 1983 when V, a show about lizard men from space controlling the world, debuted. But surely that’s just an honest coincidence.

I don’t really care about where the lizard men belong in the overall command structure of space monsters from beyond the moon that fly to earth to wreck our rectums. Lizard men do, however, slightly overlap with a subject about which I care quite a bit: monsters with unintentionally awesome names. The sort of names that would be good for a band. And thus I present to you: the Loveland Frogmen.

Loveland is a place in Ohio, famous home of the American plastics industry and a shitload of corn. It was May 1955, a more innocent time when we had not yet invented a plastic industry and used corn for eating off the cob, rather than somehow turning into cola and crappy gasoline. A traveling salesman was on the road in the dead of night when he spied three figures; he pulled over to watch them and realized that they were bipedal, 3 feet tall, covered in thick leathery skin, and had webbed hands and feet. Also: monster frog heads.

I assume that the traveling salesman worked for a company that manufactured and distributed enormous testicles, because he had the stainless steel undercarriage to sit and watch the monsters chat with each other for three minutes. He only left after one picked up a ‘wand’, held it over his head, and doused the area in sparks. Here is an artist’s rendering of the creature:

Haha! No, I’m kidding. That’s Rush Limbaugh, bloated frog-man of purely human origins. I promise I won’t fool you again:

Actually, that’s a purely fictitious monster called a Slaad from Dungeons and Dragons, artfully illustrated by an amateur on googleimages. Damn, you’re easy to fool. Anyway. Here you are, for real this time:

So, the years continued and hundreds, if not thousands of sightings were reported across the great state of Ohio, with scientists eventually tracking the creatures to their lairs and capturing several living specimens. No, actually, none of that happened. That’s what would have happened if the Loveland Frogmen were real creatures. They’re not. They don’t exist. The next sighting of the things didn’t occur until 1972, when a police officer came across what he thought was a wounded animal lying in the road. As he slowed down to investigate the creature got up, looked at him, and boogied on down the side of a hill into the river. It had the same description: 3-4 feet tall, with leathery skin and a frog head. The next day, investigators found some mysterious (when you read that, imagine me drawing the word out, saying mysterioooooooooooooooous and waggling my fingers at you) scratches on the guard rail.

So, surely, after this, waves upon waves of sightings were kicked off? Sort of. One more person saw the Loveland Frogman 2 weeks later. Which, I suppose, represents an infinity million percent increase in reported sightings, but whatever. Officer Mark Matthews was driving down the road when he spotted the same gall-darned creature. As the officer got out of his car, the thing stood up on its hind legs and revealed itself to be a horrible lizard man from beyond space and time. At this point, Officer Matthews distinguishes himself from other people involved in this story. When confronted with an unimaginable abomination from the depths of madness, he didn’t just freeze and stare at the thing while it ran away. He didn’t give the thing a chance to reach for a magic spark-shooting wand. He did what everyone who wants survive an alien encounter should do: he pulled out his gun and he brought the heat. After treating the monster to a lead salad, I imagine that he chomped down on the end of a cigar and said something like “it looks like your poly… is wogged!” as he narrowed his eyes.

If I may digress for a moment, I’ve said it before, and I will use this opportunity to say it again: if we want to stop the aliens from just showing up and messing around with us whenever they feel like it, we need to give them a full understanding of what it is that separates humans from animals: the capacity for pure, unreasonable, mindless violence. Yes, there are two colons in that sentence, but the point is, if you want to keep space monsters out of YOUR colon, when they get you aboard their spacecraft and let you move around, don’t ask to go on a tour of the ship. Let your fist go on a tour of their face. The meek will inherit the earth, but the violent will never take an unwilling tour of Uranus.

This is the same reason that mankind would put down a robot uprising right quick. A robot would never sacrifice itself to make a political statement. It wouldn’t be logical. In some parts of the world, that’s a Tuesday morning. If aliens or robots or bigfeet or whatever are going to abduct me, they better put me down for the count right away, because as soon as I can move, I’m going to jump off that operating table and do a little probing myself. I’d advise everyone worried about being abducted by aliens to keep a heater (or a gat, or a stick, or a fo’ pound) with them at all times, except that… well, there’s a good chance that they’re lunatics who will end up killing their neighbors by shooting them through the paper thin walls of their shitty ground floor apartments the first time their toaster doesn’t make the bread brown enough. (It’s aliens!)

Anyway, the frog monster escaped. Officer Matthews had the right idea, but some combination of distance, darkness, and the thick layer of ice on the ground means the little bugger got away.

And so there we have it. Half of the internet thinks the Loveland Frogmen (no seriously, I call dibs on that as a band name) were Lizard Man space aliens who had alighted from their nearby spacecraft for some reason, and half believe that they are the reptile bigfoot, some perfectly natural creature that has stayed out of the way of mankind lo these many years. And yet… I feel as if there’s a third option? Some other possibility that is staring me right in the face, but I haven’t yet considered? Oh, that’s right. The whole thing’s a fairy tale. The Ohio version of the Flatwoods monster, or the alligator my parents told me lived in the pond behind the farm where I was born. It’s all a loaf of nonsense.

The existence of these creatures rests on three reports. You might be willing to take the word of a travelling salesman from 1955, but I’m a less accepting sort of person. It would be pedantic to mention that The Creature from the Black Lagoon came out roughly a year earlier, but what I will mention is that I’ve scoured the internet from the soles of its filthy feet to the top of its filthy head, and I’ve not been able to find any record of the salesman’s name, the company he worked for, who he made the report to, or really anything that would help to verify the story. I did, however, find an astonishing amount of pornography. Seriously? When did the internet start featuring naked ladies when you search for the phrase “frogman, salesman, 1955”? I say.

Furthermore, the two stories don’t match up. The salesman’s story is about three bipedal creatures standing around having a chat until one of them whips out his magic fairy stick and summons forth the power of a KISS concert. The policemen’s stories are of a single wounded animal sleeping in the road, running off as soon as they approach it. If I had to believe one of the two sets of stories, I’d go with the cops’, since there was a corroborating witness, but it still doesn’t make sense. Frogs hibernate. Both of the policemen mention that they are driving slowly because of a thick layer of ice on the ground in the frigid depths of the Ohio winter. Oh, that’s right. I forgot. They’re space frogs. They don’t need to behave logically. You win this round, internet.
I’m a reasonable person. I don’t think that humans have discovered every single form of life on the planet. Every week, science is pulling some amazing shit out of the bottom of the ocean or the Congo or something. But Ohio isn’t the Congo, and Loveland isn’t 30,000 fathoms beneath the surface of the ocean. Between its decidedly non-froglike behavior and the fact that we’ve probably found every 4 foot tall, 100 pound animal in Ohio, I’m going to call hogwash. Seriously, guys. It’s Ohio. Show’s over on new species there.

There’s another hole in the story of Officer Matthews: he later recanted. Apparently, 30 years later, someone contacted him and he claimed that he tried to shoot the creature not because it was a frog-man, but because it was a large reptile probably abandoned by his owner, and no one believed his fellow officer. Matthews stated he’d never said that it was a frog man, it never menaced him, it never stood on two legs, and the whole story about a space monster was just made up by bored folks who exaggerated and blew the story out of proportion. The internet is unanimous: Matthews was recanting his frogman story because he was tired of people not believing him. He was telling the truth the first time, and it’s just ridiculous to believe that other people would exaggerate a story into the status of local legend. I mean, that never happens, balloon boy.

The second article I read does an elegant job of summarizing what I think about the UFO enthusiasts. Every other article makes a big deal about how police officers are respectable people. I mean, if a burger-flipper, drug dealer, or lawyer saw a monster, the story would be silly. But policemen, judges, clergy, and politicians are respectable sorts who would never lie. Then, after Matthews says in an email that the whole story never happened and people blew it out of proportion, the article states: “Hmm... this officer's a little trigger happy indeed!! But then again police officers are only human and just as likely to do stupid, dangerous things as anyone else.”

Look, internet, you can’t have it both ways. When they see monsters, you consider lone witnesses to be completely and infallibly reliable (keep in mind this entire tale has a grand total of 3 witnesses over 55 years); when they disagree with what you think, all of a sudden they’re only human, and just as likely to do stupid, dangerous things as anyone else. At least I’m consistent in not believing anything anyone has to say.

There is no such thing as the Loveland Frogman.

Be seeing you.