Talking pooch warns of giant water scorpions-For Tabloid Writing Contest—
| Will Giant Water-Scorpions Take over the Earth? Amazing pooch warns of future Jurassic calamity.
It is a well-known fact by biologists who deal with prehistoric life that, 330 million years ago, some of the earliest tetrapods--four-limbed creatures with backbones, a group that includes humans--have confronted giant water scorpions as they scurried along the shores of Scotland, then a tropical island.
The footprints were made by a species of Hibbertopterus, a family of water scorpions that were among the largest arthropods. A footprint estimated by the modern day British scientist Sir Richard Cardiff is 5.2 feet (1.6 meters) long and 3.2 feet (1 meter) wide. Another track is 20 feet (6 meters) long and about 3 feet (1 meter) wide. The track also features a groove in its middle left by the water scorpion's dragging tail, indicating slow, jerky movements.
When Mr. Raoul Burnbaum phoned our editor-in-chief, Mr. Dale Darth, however, Mr. Burnbaum had no inkling of the above carefully documented tracks; neither had he heard of the prehistoric existence of the Hibbertopterus. He simply told us an incredible story of his dog Berty speaking in English each Christmas night and urging him to warn the scientific community of giant water scorpions in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, now alive and well, and reproducing at a rapid rate.
When Mr. Darth sent me to check out Mr.Burnbaum’s story, I first paid a visit to Mr. Burnbaum’s residence and made Berty’s acquaintance. Berty is a common, rather ungainly pooch with a reddish-brown coat that resembles leather, but he has a smart gaze and sharp teeth as the bite marks on my left leg prove.
According to Berty’s owner, on Christmas 2003 at midnight, when Berty wished him a merry Christmas in English, Raoul Burnbaum immediately recalled the breeder of the dog Marya Zorina’s words when he had paid her $532.00 for Bertie less than a year ago.
“Be careful with this dog. He is a Hungarian Vizsla with pedigree. Every Christmas at midnight, he’ll talk to you.” Maria Zorina had said.
“You don’t say,” Mr. Burnbaum had laughed, thinking this was a joke.
“I’m not kidding you,” Marya Zorina had answered. “These dogs are legendary all over Europe. Sometimes they may even predict misfortunes.”
The next time Berty talked, on Christmas of 2004, the dog had told Raoul Burnbaum about the giant water scorpions. Not knowing what else to do, Mr. Burnbaum called us a few months ago, after his boss’s insistence at Dairy Queen’s head office where Mr. Burnbaum is employed.
After visiting with Mr. Burnbaum and Berty, I traveled with our cameraman Andrew Klicke to Puerto Vallarta in Jalisco, Mexico, close to the two highest volcanic peaks of that country. Sure enough, the place was a hotbed of bizarre activity with tracks etched on the mountainsides and the playa; although, we chalked off some of the tracks to the motions of a few frisky tourists.
When we tried to interview the Puerto Vallartans, the people hushed and looked away. One woman, covering her face with her shawl, said the people would not talk about the “curse” of the waters, but a fisherman, José Santiago, told us that, while pulling his boat to the shore, a black creature almost his own size, resembling a scorpion attacked him. Using his machete, Mr. Santiago kept the creature at bay. Mr. Santiago also informed us that these creatures sometimes wobbled under the tall corn and sunflower stalks to hunt small pets and roosters.
Armed with our findings, we have informed the Pennsylvania State University biology department's prehistoric studies. The department head office e-mailed us--The Writing.com Inquirer—that, surely, an investigation had to be in order, and promised us an update after their immediate scientific expedition; since winter was about to crouch over Pennsylvania, many scientists from the university were eager to travel to Puerto Vallarta to check out this new threat to the human race.
Mr. Burnbaum said about Berty’s 2005 Christmas message...
More to follow on page 18...