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Aliens in Coveralls

The other day, my son, husband and I were driving in a rural area, on our way to our friends' farm. My husband Steve noticed something odd—he described it as two men standing next to a miniature helicopter in a field. Although seemingly strange in a not-so-affluent-or-eccentric area, there are many possible explanations.

Private helicopters are small. Perhaps it was a model. Maybe it was a sculpture, a misidentified vehicle, general misperception, whatever. I'm not proposing there's a real mystery or something paranormal.

However, this is not our first experience with an unusual side-of-the-road helicopter incident. Several years ago, the three of us encountered a crewless helicopter tethered to a guardrail on the side of a mountain near Lake Mead. We have joked that it is similar to the screen memories described by UFO abductees and witnesses. Joked, that is; in no way do I think there is anything paranormal or supernatural involved.

Playing on the screen memory idea, my response to Steve's assertion about the miniature helicopter and men standing near it was, "They didn't happen to be wearing coveralls, did they?" Anyone familiar with UFO narratives will get it—coveralls, along with other specific things such as aluminum, helicopters, hieroglyphs, soil samples, etc., are a common feature.

The nuts and bolts crowd may argue the significance of such commonalities is that they serve to support the notice of tangible,' real' experience, and of course, there's a lot in that argument. However, in a taking a close look at the particular common components in the narratives, it becomes clear they are loaded with symbolism and meaning.

Doing an internet search using the words 'coveralls' and 'UFO' yielded quite an array of results. In an article at the NICAP site that lists a sampling of UFO occupant sightings, there are thirteen separate reports of aliens wearing coveralls, both in famous and highly investigated cases, as well as more obscure ones.

The presence of coveralls begins with some of the earliest modern era alien descriptions such as in the Zamora case, and continues into the present, with a recent notable one attached to the so-called "Quetzalcoatl Headress" crop circle at Silbury Hill, earlier this month. A police officer describes seeing supernatural tall blonde figures wearing white coveralls inspecting the formation.

Why the particular term "coveralls," and not jumpsuits, jumpers, boilersuits, leotards, spacesuits, unitards—any of which would serve to describe (and may even be more exact in describing) the form fitting clothing of aliens? Ruminating on the word itself, an appropriate idea emerges.

For one thing, the notion of a "cover up," government conspirational style, is central to the UFO mythology. The appropriation of a very similar term to describe the physical appearance of aliens seems more than coincidental.

Looking at the history and usage of coveralls through an occult lens, even more meaning is apparent. Coveralls are associated with physical labor, transportation, protection, and danger. They are worn by prisoners, the militia, industrial workers, race car drivers, and the like.

In the UK, coveralls are referred to as boilersuits. An entry at Wikipedia explains the origin of that term:

Boilersuits are so called because they were first worn by men maintaining coal-fired boilers. To check for steam leaks or to clean accumulated soot from inside the firebox of a steam locomotive, someone had to climb inside, through the firehole…

The emergence of the coverall from the industrial culture of the Age of Steam , places it directly in association with the cultural and social upheaval and mania of the turn of the last century, known as fin de siècle phenomena. (Curiously, this was likewise the time of the first modern wave of UFOs and aliens—the Victorian mystery airships.)

Within the dynamics of fin de siècle panic were questions and fears about man vs. machine, nature vs. industry/technology, rich vs. poor, etc. Clearly too, the fears and panic were not unfounded; the light speed of invention, rapid development of technology, and all that came with it, beginning at that period to the current need no rehashing here.

Looking at main themes within UFO and alien narratives, things start to tie into these dynamics that began in the last fin de siècle, and continue into our current one. The golden era space brothers warned of global destruction unless change on a mass scale was made. Films and television of this same era (as well as contemporary) are based in alien takeovers and destruction.

Many UFO myths are steeped in notions such as awakening consciousness, hostilities and dastardly plans of different alien races toward humans, and changing /taking DNA--the ultimate, irreducible, bare bones of humanity.

That a garment such as coveralls, born of and representing enormous dynamics of change, threat, and identity be applied on the alien body seems no small wonder; these are the very things aliens offer.

Sources and further reading:

  • UFO Occupants by Richard Hall
  • Silbury Hill "Quetzlcoatl Headdress" and Mysterious Tall Blonds @ Earthfiles.com
  • Reading the City and Identity by Clare Clarke
  • Overalls @ Wikipedia.org
    Comic book images via ufopop.com

    Contact Richelle Hawks

    Visit Richelle's blog: Beamships Equal Love