Pascual Romero public
[search 0]

Download the App!

show episodes
 
Loading …
show series
 
Ben looks into a TikTok-fueled panic about sex trafficking abductions in Target stores, then we move to our main topics, the Mark of the Beast and the Number of the Beast, aka 666. From ambiguous or even invisible marks on accused witches hundreds of years ago to ambiguous or even invisible ways our technology "marks" our commerce, the Satanic fear…
 
First we chat about Lil Nas X's "satanic shoes" and some litigation against a Las Vegas alkaline water company. Then geologist, author, and all-around critical thinker Sharon Hill joins us to talk bottomless holes and the monsters that dwell in them! She brings all sorts of spooky geology, from boreholes to quicksand to the idea of a hollow earth.…
 
We begin with a supposedly cursed guitar that was purchased by a somewhat infamous Vegas resident. Then folklorist and self-proclaimed "lover of all things weird" Prof. Jeannie Banks Thomas joins us to talk about how knowledge of folklore can help average people just like you and me. Her "SLAP" test for questionable online content might save you a …
 
This episode we talk all manner of things mer . . . mermen, mermaids, merb'ys, and many more. People love conjuring up creatures that are half human in some way (especially half sexy human), and merfolk top the list. Whether they are helpful, innocent creatures or deceptive, bloodthirsty temptresses, mermaids have been cast in many tall tales. From…
 
Ben, Celestia, and Pascual help define what makes a crank a crank, and we look into the history of this concept. Then we bring a couple of examples we think illustrate textbook cranks and why they aren't just laughable, they can do some real harm. From selling spiritual self-help books and snake oil to trying to legislate a wrong value for Pi, cran…
 
We are joined by folklorist and author David Clarke, who traces the legend of the Crying Boy curse, a curious story surrounding prints of several paintings that featured big-eyed crying children. These popular prints were blamed for fires in the UK during the 1980s, and tales sprung up of orphaned street urchins with mysterious powers to start fire…
 
After some thoughts on the inauguration and future of our science agencies and news landscape, we talk to Bigfoot investigator Steve Kulls, of SquatchDetective.com. Ben met Steve years ago and recognized that, in a field rife with hoaxes and a low bar for evidence, he was a great example of proper investigation techniques. Steve shares with us his …
 
We recorded a special opener to discuss the late-breaking, Capitol-invading events of the past 36 hours and the role misinformation played in getting thousands of people to this point. Then for our main topic, we go through a brief history of antivax sentiment in the US and the dual nature of Covid vaccine hesitancy.…
 
First, Celestia recounts a couple of spooky incidents she's experienced during the pandemic. Then we look at a handful of music-related urban legends, folklore, and peculiarities. Ben brings some surprising information about the Pied Piper of Hamelin, which turns out to have threads of history woven into its folklore tapestry. Pascual and Ben discu…
 
First, we run down the "mysterious monoliths" found so far, and get a special call out to Louie Raffloer, the blacksmith who created a much more true-to-Kubrick monolith back in 2001. For our main segment, we are joined by Dr. Leo Igwe, who tells of the latest witchcraft accusations and attacks he and his organization have fought against in Africa.…
 
Ben, Celestia, and Pascual discuss the otherworldly monolith that's popped up in a remote part of Utah, and Ben shares another in his series of "used book mysteries," this one perfectly timed for the election. For our main segment, we have a lengthy discussion with newly minted CFI fellow (and just plain jolly good fellow) Kenny Biddle. Ben and Ken…
 
After some chatting about the recent election and alleged voter fraud, we dive into the Ghost Army, a tactical unit of hoaxers in WW2 that saved thousands of lives by pulling off elaborate frauds complete with sound, improvisational theater, props, and set design. Joining us is Col. Francis Park, Ph.D., a military historian who has a few stories ab…
 
Ben and Celestia go through a timeline of the different ways people have tried (or pretended) to chat with dead people and get meaningful information back. Join us as we go from rap-tap-tapping to mysterious music to written words, then books, then actual recordings of a ghost's voice! Or so the theory goes. Spiritualism was of course a major devel…
 
In this episode Pascual takes the helm and brings us some audio goodies to puzzle over. Several lawsuits have resulted over pop songs that are too similar to each other, and while some are cut and dry, others tread into that weird, philosophical territory of "what is originality, anyway?" Are we all a necessary, determinate product of our creative …
 
Ben brings in two guests, Scott Mardis and Darren Naish, to discuss two different instances of alleged "baby" versions of lake monsters and sea serpents. These cryptozoological cuties have made waves a few times in the history of monster lore. Whether it's pipefish in pails, pickled puppies, or plesiosaur progeny, there's some strange things afoot …
 
After some chatting about current and upcoming events, we dive into a mysterious entity in a women's toilet in Bangladesh. Ben brings his love of ghosts and mass hysterias to the party, as we examine all the cultural and folkloric factors that play into why female factory workers are experiencing ghostly (or djinny?) encounters in the loo.…
 
Who would fake their own abduction? It turns out, plenty of people. Whether it's the "runaway bride," who says the stress of wedding planning made her snap, or the McDonald's worker who claimed a maniacal clown kept her from getting to work, hoaxed kidnapping cases end up taking time away from legitimate crimes as well as creating fodder for news a…
 
First, Ben, Pascual, and Celestia discuss the recurring social media uproar about why something isn't being covered by the media, as well as the recent public concern over disappearing mailboxes. Then for our main segment, Ben celebrates the 25th anniversary of his favorite cryptid beastie, the chupacabra, and we examine it's past, present, and fut…
 
Susan Gerbic, of Guerilla Skepticism on Wikipedia, joins Celestia and Ben to bring us up to date on her recent psychic research and writings, as well as her team's ongoing efforts in shoring up the information on various Wikipedia pages in response to pandemic misinformation. Ben shares his thoughts on one of the last public theatrical events he at…
 
This is a bonus episode (free to all, as I'm not clicking the box that says "charge patrons for this creation"), wedged between episodes 126 and 127, in which we chat about recent rumors floating around the interwebs--often intersecting with Covid-19 fears and the ever-present existential threat of "stranger danger," where people see nefarious ring…
 
With statues being front and center in the news earlier this month, we decided to take a few tours of the stranger side of statues. From graveyard statues that take strolls when you're not looking to spooky statues that allegedly can't be photographed. Myths involving statues coming to life, or live people being turned to stone, is a rich vein of f…
 
Heard about the college parties where kids are intentionally trying to infect themselves with Covid--even betting money on who can catch it first? We sure have, and there will likely be many more tales popping up as the pandemic continues. And it provides an intersection of folklore, moral panic, media literacy, and helpful versus harmful "public a…
 
After some discussion on a few current events that resulted in quick debunkings, Ben, Pascual, and Celestia take a close look at what could be real-time formation of a social panic. Antifa has all the hallmarks of a propped-up paper tiger used by some as a political tool, and by others as a social boogeyman. We look at the coverage, the rumors, the…
 
We are joined today by filmmaker and encyclopedia of weird film knowledge Erik Kristopher Myers. The notion of a "snuff film" is a strange convergence of conspiracy thinking, urban legend, moral panic, and actual film trivia, and we tour the genre--or, rather, things that have been assumed part of this elusive genre--from the Manson family to Faces…
 
We chat a bit about various news, including the passing of physicist Peter Brancazio, who explored popular sports illusions, and Ben's recent outreach project attempting to get answers from the "Plandemic" filmmaker. Then our main segment covers a veritable salad of plant-based folklore. From very old tales to modern misconceptions, we touch on the…
 
First, Ben and Celestia briefly discuss the roller coaster that was the rise and fall of "Plandemic," then we talk murder hornets with Heidi McMaster, an invasive species coordinator out of Washington. Our main guest is Noah Nez, a Native American critical thinker who blogs as the Native Skeptic. Noah helps us peel back misconceptions about the nob…
 
First, Ben, Celestia, and Pascual discuss a few pandemic-related things that set off some skeptical alarms over social media this past week. Then we are joined by Southern California-based comedian and film editor Emery Emery to talk about his soon-to-be-released project with Brian Dunning. With the help of many science communicators and experts (B…
 
You know, Ben came up with the pun for this title and we are just so darned proud of him for coming over to the pun side of life. We chat about various Covid-related topics and then dive into a few examples of bad or misleading polls. First we go over a couple that don't really set off alarm bells, like whether beards are sexy or what determines pe…
 
For anyone who has been craving an episode with far less research, facts, or formality, this is the episode for you! Ben, Pascual, and Celestia, reflect on their various circumstances during the coronavirus national emergency, and then we talk about this, our third year in podcasting. We dish on past guests and future guests we have in the works, a…
 
This installment finishes our discussion on three missing persons cases that Ben, Celestia, and Kenny followed in real time and tracked with psychic detective predictions on how the cases would play out. Part 2 features Ben's examination of the Harley Dilly case, a teenager who went missing in December of 2019. The same content warning applies: we …
 
After some discussion on the recent pandemic declaration and unprecedented social distancing most of us now face, special guest Kenny Biddle joins Ben and Celestia (remotely!) to look at some current missing person cases as they unfold in real time, and how psychics have "helped" (or interfered) in the progress of each case. This turned into a rath…
 
The Bermuda Triangle is a perennial favorite for seekers of the strange; Ben still gets calls regularly from students eager to ask him questions about this purported watery grave in the Caribbean. We look into the history of this mysterious place and a few factors that influenced its popularity. What does the Bermuda Triangle have to do with a coll…
 
Ben and Celestia discuss one of the most memorable fakes in Bigfoot history. What began as a carnival side-show exhibit ended up the center of multiple origin stories, a tale about a reclusive California millionaire, and a possible homicide that attracted the attention of J. Edgar Hoover's FBI. We learn about the showman with a block of ice who str…
 
We made time to record a special bonus episode this month! Due to the late-breaking nature of the Wuhan/novel coronavirus (now officially named COVID-19), Ben has gathered the latest misinfo and disinfo in order to break it down in terms of recurring folklore, distrust of foreigners, and the psychology of why people grasp for simple memes over comp…
 
There is a rich field of literary hoaxes to pull from, and for this episode we pulled a few favorites. Ben brings a selection of "misery memoirs," stories of a victim triumphing over incredible hardships (which, in these examples, are fictional hardships or fictional victims). She Said Yes and Go Ask Alice are two prominent examples of teenage mart…
 
This week, Ben recounts his recent investigation into the Mothman, a creature first spotted in the 1960s in rural West Virginia. Ben takes us on a tour of the area and discusses his trip there to help research the creature for a German television show. Like many cryptids, Mothman has gone through several incarnations and taken a few turns on its mo…
 
This is a long one, and be advised that this episode contains some grisly details. Ben and Celestia go on a sometimes quirky, sometimes bone-shivering tour of heads (or lack thereof). We have headless or multi-headed creatures in folklore, conjoined twinning, Miracle Mike the headless chicken, experiments on heads fresh from the guillotine, the Fro…
 
This week Ben and Celestia are joined by Erik Kristopher Myers to discuss a short history of a particular sort of easter egg: the dreaded "hidden subversive element" stuck into a kids' show or game, either by a perverse animator or a much more sinister coalition bent on corrupting the youth of America. Disney has made a cottage industry of hiding a…
 
We are joined by Kenny Biddle, our east coast paranormal investigator and skeptic, to discuss the darker side of ghost hunting. Not a demonic dark side, but rather real-world consequences. Things like trespassing dangers, costs to historical sites and organizations, loss of life and limb, and even the mangling of personal histories and reputations.…
 
Fresh from a convention of caricature artists and with heads full of pareidolia, Ben and Celestia discuss a few topics of the day and then dig into crystal skulls. Can we trust what Dan Ayrkroyd tells us on his fancy vodka bottle? Are there really thirteen of these ancient and powerful relics? What is the Skull of Doom, and does it have strange pro…
 
Human rights advocate Dr. Leo Igwe joins us to discuss the dangers posed by so-called "witch hunters" in his home nation of Nigeria and other parts of Africa today. He discusses the entrenched nature of magical beliefs in the region, as well as the complicated power structure that props up those who call out fellow citizens as witches. Religions br…
 
The Satanic Panic is a veritable cornucopia of skeptical angles, and for this episode we limit ourselves to a look back at the cultural feel of the 80s and early 90s and some seminal court cases that brought metal musicians to court to defend their craft and educate jurors on audio pareidolia. Along the way we reminisce about Dungeons & Dragons, Ge…
 
Just in time for Halloween, when scary clowns abound, Ben takes us on a tour of the modern clown panic phenomenon . . . from bands of phantom clowns in white vans showing up in the 1980s to the "Great Clown Panic of 2016" that went worldwide, to more recent fears about effects of homicidal clowns in our media. Clown panics touch on quite a few curr…
 
First, we look into an outrage-inspiring headline about a woman arrested for being topless at her own home. Then we dive into animal carcasses and reasons why suspicious dead animals have unnerved us throughout history. Hailed by Biblical prophecies and superstitions as a portent of doom, or seen as proof of malevolent mischief by--take your pick--…
 
We begin with a longer-than-usual opening segment (because gosh darn it, a lot happened). Ben recounts his latest TV appearance and chupacabra follow-up. The AlienStock / Storm Area 51 thing happened, or tried to happen. And two movies open this week that are unsettling audiences due to clown content--one of the films contains Ben! Lastly, we take …
 
We open with Dr. Hans House, who schools us on infectious diseases, especially some little-known facets of ebola, measles and the flu. He shares some knowledge on public health efforts and how we can all do our part to reduce disease vectors and save lives. Then we chat with Kenny Biddle about his recent investigations into diploma mills and parano…
 
It's our 100th episode! We begin with a discussion of "Alienstock," the planned alien-themed music festival being imposed upon Rachel, NV, in the coming weeks. Then for our main topic we look at numerology and the mystical-seeming quality of numbers from a few different angles involving Pythagoras, power chords, and ocean waves, as well as the arbi…
 
This episode is a deep dive into some popular movies of the past few decades and their associated curses . . . some that are due to genuinely tragic or strangely coincidental circumstances, others that have been a bit cultivated by those wishing to market the movie or just tell a good yarn years after its release. Filmmaker and friend of the show E…
 
This started off as a little bonus mini-episode (in between episodes 98 and 99) where we have a little roundtable about some frustrating patterns of thought we have spotted on social media and other types of public discourse; some have actual fallacy names, some don't necessarily have a label. Lo and behold, once we got chatting it turned into a re…
 
Loading …

Quick Reference Guide

Copyright 2021 | Sitemap | Privacy Policy | Terms of Service
Google login Twitter login Classic login