Earlier this week, a rather fascinating show was on one of those satellite TV channels that are frequented when I can't find an interesting ballgame or a rerun of "Criminal Minds" anywhere.
The program dealt with "UFOs over Illinois," and the time frame being discussed was January 2000. Most of the sightings the program documented were in the Metro East area in and around East St. Louis, Belleville and that general region.
First, it was a relief to learn none of the objects were seen over or around Quincy. Little Green Men are kind of cool -- but only at a distance.
Second, what if some alien spaceship actually would drop in on us some day? What would impress or puzzle our visitors from another planet the most?
Some obvious things would leave them scratching their rather oversized heads.
º The Quincy School Board: I would have to believe the extraterrestrials would be totally flummoxed by what they might see unfold at some of those board meetings. It's only a guess, but I'm thinking the school board back on Mars or Pluto probably conducts its business with much less drama.
º Maid Rites: Nowhere else in the universe can you find a Quincy maid rite. I know the little green guys would be taking some of those back home with them. Probably some of the peanut butter pie, too.
º Gengenbacher's Shaved Ice Shack: Those scrumptious summer treats from the little building on Broadway would come in handy for our alien buddies when they zip too close to the sun. Nothing like a cup of shaved ice covered with that blueberry juice to cool down E.T. when he gets too close to Old Sol.
ºGus Macker: If E.T. and his pals visited over the Memorial Day weekend, they could get a feeling of how important basketball is in West-Central Illinois. I'm not sure if the aliens could field a competitive team, except in one of the kids' divisions. Any artist renderings of aliens I have seen depict them as rather short. What would it be like to live in a colony of point guards?
º Underbrink's: I'm not sure if aliens drool or not, but we would certainly find out once they step in the door of Underbrink's and smell those freshly baked radio rolls and mini-angel food cupcakes.
º Indian Mounds Pool and Wavering Aquatic Center: I don't think there is water on a lot of the planets, so I'm sure our little visitors would go crazy on the water slide at Wavering. And can't you just see those little large-headed fellas with the big bug eyes doing cannonballs at Indian Mounds?
º Dennis Oliver and Jeff Dorsey: The aliens would want to take the two local radio personalities back with them. Where else in the galaxy could you listen to that kind of entertainment? D.O. and the Big Dog are a must for any road trip, especially one between Quincy and .. say, Uranus.
And most of all, our friends from another solar system might wonder why the price of gasoline is always cheaper on the other side of the river.