November 1, 2002
YET I WAIT:Bigfoot's indelible imprint (Marco R. della Cava, 10/31/2002, USA TODAY)
There are times in life when we must summon every shred of courage to stand tall and unflinching in the face of fear. This is not one of them. It is 2 a.m., and outside a flimsy tent lit by a full moon something stirs in this primeval forest.
Crack! goes the twig. "Deer, right?" asks a visitor, who is about to tick away the nerve-wracking night one snap, crackle and pop at a time until dawn breaks with a harrowing howl.
"Nah," replies local Matthew Johnson, sliding a hand onto his .44 Magnum. "That wasn't a twig; it was a thick branch. Whatever's out there is bigger. Much bigger."
Bigger as in Yeti and Sasquatch.
Bigger as in Bigfoot.
That's right, the hairy, smelly lunk is still with us. Pick any name you want - Asian, Native American or tabloid - he hasn't changed from the 10-foot-tall, half-ton, mannish ape whose star turn in a 1967 home movie launched thousands of sightings.
Make no mistake. Bigfoot and his kin remain part of a freaky family of Charlie's Angels-era fads (think poltergeists and UFOs), and the scientific community at large remains amused. But the faithful hope Bigfoot may yet make a monkey out of non-believers. For decades now, a small but loyal legion of Bigfoot hunters has spent countless weekends prowling forests in nearly every state, piling up evidence such as alleged footprints and hair samples that now has a handful of animal experts willing to at least entertain the possibility of his existence.
And they all get to vote on Tuesday. Posted by Orrin Judd at November 1, 2002 9:30 PM