The Global Cross-Hair Enigma that looks like Hair Dryer Burns

LilWabbit

Senior Member
Really I just set out to investigate this slide, and associated commentary:

The implication is that A) it's something other than a hairdryer burn, and B) it's related to a UFO sighting 9 months later. The claim is Vallee's. We don't know what the witness here claims about the link. She did not think she burnt herself and suspected the mark was related to meditation.

I think the investigation in this thread is sufficient to show this is a hairdryer burn and probably an accidental one she does not remember.

I agree the investigation in this thread is more than sufficient to show it's a hairdryer burn. But it's insufficient to establish that it's "probably an accidental one she does not remember". Since she didn't think she burnt herself but rather attributed it to meditation (an extraordinary claim), while sending the picture to a known ufologist to investigate (a notorious author of extraordinary claims), to just believe it as "probable" she genuinely forgot seems a tad too trusting to me. It's just as possible she either lied to get attention or she's delusional about a great many things, including her lack of burn memories. All three hypotheses are possible (including of course the accidental-but-forgotten-burn hypothesis). Plus a combination of them (eg. an accidental burn but delusionally selective / lying about her memories of burning herself).

I went back and looked again, and there are some references to aliens, often joking.

If you're referring to this thread (https://www.ufologie-paranormal.org/t13539-etranges-traces-circulaires-cutanees), it doesn't matter imo how many of the posters explicitly refer to aliens. The whole thread is a ufology/paranormal thread. To upload a burn mark there carries the reasonable default assumption that the poster (1) seeks some kind of emotional payoff from people thinking it is possibly an alien marking or, alternatively, (2) is delusionally ready to believe it's one. As such, the likelihood goes up that the person's claim of not remembering the burn is also suspect or delusionally selective/psychotic.

The reports on this American thread (you also posted) seem like a number of genuinely gullible/delusional people plus one attention-seeker (the one posting a breast pic). But I admit I'm no psychology expert. But neither is anyone else posting on this thread.
 
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Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
I agree the investigation in this thread is more than sufficient to show it's a hairdryer burn. But it's insufficient to establish that it's "probably an accidental one she does not remember". Since she didn't think she burnt herself but rather attributed it to meditation (an extraordinary claim), while sending the picture to a known ufologist to investigate (a notorious author of extraordinary claims), to just believe it as "probable" she genuinely forgot seems a tad too trusting to me. It's just as possible she either lied to get attention or she's delusional about a great many things, including her lack of burn memories. All three hypotheses are possible (including of course the accidental-but-forgotten-burn hypothesis). Plus a combination of them (eg. an accidental burn but delusionally selective / lying about her memories of burning herself).
They are possible, but I don't know about equally possible. Of course, it's hard to put even a vague number on with any certainty. However, it just seems like such a light mark, and it seems so easy to make such a burn by accident, then forget it after a couple of days, that for me, it's the Occamic #1 explanation.
 

LilWabbit

Senior Member
They are possible, but I don't know about equally possible. Of course, it's hard to put even a vague number on with any certainty. However, it just seems like such a light mark, and it seems so easy to make such a burn by accident, then forget it after a couple of days, that for me, it's the Occamic #1 explanation.

But we're talking about someone who thinks the burn is related to meditation and that she didn't do it herself? Seems more like someone who doesn't want it to be just an accident (even if it was one) and hence it's not just a simple case of casual 'not remembering' an accident (even if it was one). It's more like an active interest and search for an extraordinary explanation and, by extension, not wanting to look back at the exact circumstances during which a hairdryer accident could have happened (if it was one).

Such a mindset 'actively forgets' stuff selectively when it doesn't confirm their extraordinary narrative. I've seen Evangelical Christian relatives of mine do that a lot when they've said God told them something will happen and it didn't. They seem to genuinely forget they made such a prediction because it's an uncomfortable fact. And one wishes one had a recorder to prove they in fact made the 'prophecy'.

Too early to apply Occam when the simplest theory doesn't account very well for all the facts of the case. Just some.
 
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LilWabbit

Senior Member
It seems this phenomenon is called motivated forgetting and was already proposed by Freud while it continues to be studied with some recent evidence pointing to it being a real thing:

Article:
When an unwanted memory intrudes on the mind, it is a natural human reaction to want to block it out. More than 100 years ago, Sigmund Freud suggested that humans have a defense mechanism that they can use to help manage and block traumatic experiences and unwanted memories.

While more research is still necessary, scientists have started understanding how this may work. Neuroimaging studies have demonstrated which brain systems play a part in deliberate forgetting, and studies have shown that it is possible for people to deliberately block memories from their consciousness.
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
It seems this phenomenon is called motivated forgetting and was already proposed by Freud while it continues to be studied with some recent evidence pointing to it being a real thing:
Not wanting to get too much into semantics, but motivated forgetting is still forgetting. The exact mix of reasons for forgetting is going to be even more speculative than the ratio of forgetting vs. lying.

On a slightly different note, having "not lying" as a default position in assessing witnesses is very useful as it allows for conversation with them. Whereas "I think you are probably lying" tends to be a bit offputting.
 

deirdre

Senior Member.
The reports on this American thread (you also posted) seem like a number of genuinely gullible/delusional people plus one attention-seeker (the one posting a breast pic).
Theres only 2 people with hairdryer burns on that thread saying "i". the other 2 were submitted by other people.

You can judge people with your armchair psychology if wish. Noone is stopping you.

But i, at least, am going to use Mick's experiments and my knowledge of real life events to make a determination.
But we're talking about someone who thinks the burn is related to meditation and that she didn't do it herself? Seems more like someone who doesn't want it to be just an accident (even if it was one) and hence it's not just a simple case of casual 'not remembering' an accident (even if it was one). It's more like an active interest and search for an extraordinary explanation and, by extension, not wanting to look back at the exact circumstances during which a hairdryer accident could have happened (if it was one).
oh bunk.

she finds a weird design on her hip two or three days after the incident which she doesn't remember. it's weird. she doesnt have a necklace that design she might have slept on etc. she checked for maybe a weird 3d label in her pants, on her yoga mat etc. she cant find anything that matches it.

you're only thinking "hairdryer" because Mick told you its a hairdryer. Yogis do that all the time, so they say. Yogis can manifest things. I dont know if it's true but i certainly read that while younger, so my mind might go there too. If i literally could not come up with another explanation.

But whatever she decides maybe it is, has nothing to do with her not remembering her hairdryer ouched for for a second two, three, four days ago. her design isnt even that big so its a super minor ouch. she barely nicked herself with the dryer.
 

LilWabbit

Senior Member
Not wanting to get too much into semantics, but motivated forgetting is still forgetting.

But not the same as 'not remembering'. In motivated forgetting an active or inactive memory is being suppressed which could alternatively be retrieved with little effort if there was no bias.

My point being (and has been for quite some time on this thread) that psychologically these things are not semantics and we better steer clear from the psychology of it all if the main purpose is to debunk the 'alien markings'. Which I think you've done.

On a slightly different note, having "not lying" as a default position in assessing witnesses is very useful as it allows for conversation with them. Whereas "I think you are probably lying" tends to be a bit offputting.

Diplomatically a good default position, indeed. Not necessarily scientifically.
 

FatPhil

Senior Member.
It seems this phenomenon is called motivated forgetting and was already proposed by Freud while it continues to be studied with some recent evidence pointing to it being a real thing:

Article:
When an unwanted memory intrudes on the mind, it is a natural human reaction to want to block it out. More than 100 years ago, Sigmund Freud suggested that humans have a defense mechanism that they can use to help manage and block traumatic experiences and unwanted memories.

While more research is still necessary, scientists have started understanding how this may work. Neuroimaging studies have demonstrated which brain systems play a part in deliberate forgetting, and studies have shown that it is possible for people to deliberately block memories from their consciousness.
Selective amnesia might also be a possibility in some cases:
Localized amnesia involves being unable to recall a specific event or events or a specific period of time; these gaps in memory are usually related to trauma or stress. For example, patients may forget the months or years of being abused as a child or the days spent in intense combat. The amnesia may not manifest for hours, days, or longer after the traumatic period. Usually, the forgotten time period, which can range from minutes to decades, is clearly demarcated. Typically, patients experience one or more episodes of memory loss.

Selective amnesia involves forgetting only some of the events during a certain period of time or only part of a traumatic event. Patients may have both localized and selective amnesia.
Content from External Source
-- https://www.msdmanuals.com/professi...s/dissociative-disorders/dissociative-amnesia
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
2022-08-12_00-00-03.jpg
This is just a validation of the verbal size report of "about 2cm diameter". The outside measurement indicated (orange line) of a French plug is 2cm. Use a variety of the scale-matched images from the video, this was transferred to the grill, and you see it against the skin mark. About 2cm seems a reasonable verbal report in size.
 
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jarlrmai

Senior Member
2022-08-12_00-00-03.jpg
This is just a validation of the verbal size report of "about 2cm diameter". The outside measurement indicated (orange line) of a fence plug is 2cm. Use a variety of the scale-matched images from the video, this was transferred to the grill, and you see it against the skin mark. About 2cm seems a reasonable verbal report in size.
Which video sorry?
 

jarlrmai

Senior Member
One thing you may want to bear in mind is that Silvercrest is a sort of generic manufacturer/name that Lidl uses for its electrics/electronics ie an in store brand.

eg here is a Lidl Silvercrest Kitchen Blender Set

https://www.lidl.co.uk/p/kitchen-must-haves/silvercrest-kitchen-blender-set/p53783

So there may have been a few different models of Lidl Silvercrest Hairdryers

Yours looks like a good match though and possibly they are all based somewhat on the same basic innards etc, but just something that might be raised.

 
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Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
So there may have been a few different models of Lidl Silvercrest Hairdryers

Yours looks like a good match though and possibly they are all based somewhat on the same basic innards etc, but just something that might be raised.
Good point, and there do seem to be a few variations on the grill. So it's not quite as clear-cut as it seemed.
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
Good point, and there do seem to be a few variations on the grill. So it's not quite as clear-cut as it seemed.
I say a few, but actually, seems more like two, and the majority are the crosshair pattern. I did find this though, with horizontal slats. Only one example.
2022-08-12_04-50-41.jpg
 

jarlrmai

Senior Member
Good point, and there do seem to be a few variations on the grill. So it's not quite as clear-cut as it seemed.
It's really only because of a lack of rigor in the data collection for the case, a photo of the hairdryer was needed, given the variation in models.
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
It's really only because of a lack of rigor in the data collection for the case, a photo of the hairdryer was needed, given the variation in models.
Yes, I think there's a couple of issue here:

1) The question is just "do you have a photo." They don't ask them to go and take a photo (the majority of people have a phone with a camera, so it's a simple request). They don't specify which end.
2) If people understand the issue and look at their hairdryer they will realize that they have now found the solution, so there's no reason to filling or submit the questionnaire. So it filters out those cases, leaving us with people who don't understand the hairdryer hypothesis or who just don't want to entertain it for some reason.
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
I'm going to write this up for Skeptical Inquirer. I've emailed Vallee, and hopefully will get some comment from him on the one case in question.
 

jarlrmai

Senior Member
Yes, I think there's a couple of issue here:

1) The question is just "do you have a photo." They don't ask them to go and take a photo (the majority of people have a phone with a camera, so it's a simple request). They don't specify which end.
2) If people understand the issue and look at their hairdryer they will realize that they have now found the solution, so there's no reason to filling or submit the questionnaire. So it filters out those cases, leaving us with people who don't understand the hairdryer hypothesis or who just don't want to entertain it for some reason.
Exactly, self selecting to those who only don't realise they burned themselves with a hairdryer and also then imagine it likely they were marked by aliens.
 

NorCal Dave

Senior Member.
I'm going to write this up for Skeptical Inquirer. I've emailed Vallee, and hopefully will get some comment from him on the one case in question.
Good thing I just upped my subscription. I'm looking forward to what Vallee has to say. Not trying to be disrespectful, but I just don't get the amount of deference and adulation he seems to get. He has a PhD and is much smarter than I am, but this case alone seems to have him grasping at any non-mundane explanation.

He shows up at a UFO talk with a picture of a mark on a woman's body. A mark that is exactly the same size and pattern that's found on a hairdryer she in fact owns. From this, he concludes the hairdryer had nothing to do with it and the mark is a representation of Atlantis?
 

JMartJr

Senior Member
He has a PhD and is much smarter than I am, but this case alone seems to have him grasping at any non-mundane explanation.
A good example of how a lack of intelligence and education are not necessary for getting sucked into the rabbit hole. Something I know that I need to remind myself about from time to time.
 

deirdre

Senior Member.
the Seacrest looks like a pretty standard size dryer that you get in drug stores.
Silvercrest-Ionic-Hairdryer-7-nk2inmkhy7bw4nieu91hpi0yj9y6k5ho7ez5pow2dc.jpg
this is mine
s-l600.jpg

this is what my grill does on my hip (sorry about focus, hard to get that close while holding a ruler)
1660321137533.png
 

LilWabbit

Senior Member
So it filters out those cases, leaving us with people who don't understand the hairdryer hypothesis or who just don't want to entertain it for some reason.

And here lies the psychological crux of the matter as far as we can generalize anything about the psychological aspect without veering off into armchair expertise. Accidental or not, remembering the 'accident' or not, we can safely say most of the ones who seriously entertain the alien hypothesis don't want to seriously entertain the hairdryer hypothesis.

The latter hypothesis is not difficult to understand.
 

RotterdamEliza

New Member
Hairdryer seems to be the likely culprit. What I’d like to know, how many cases are the burns located on a part of the person’s body that they can’t reach? I suppose they’d have someone else do it. The placement of the “markings” seem quite random. You’d think (hope?) if an intelligent species was abducting people then marking them, they’d at least be organized enough to have some sort of system. Hm.
 

Ravi

Senior Member.
Hairdryer seems to be the likely culprit. What I’d like to know, how many cases are the burns located on a part of the person’s body that they can’t reach? I suppose they’d have someone else do it. The placement of the “markings” seem quite random. You’d think (hope?) if an intelligent species was abducting people then marking them, they’d at least be organized enough to have some sort of system. Hm.
Random sampling technique. ;)
 

Mendel

Senior Member.
Hairdryer seems to be the likely culprit. What I’d like to know, how many cases are the burns located on a part of the person’s body that they can’t reach? I suppose they’d have someone else do it. The placement of the “markings” seem quite random. You’d think (hope?) if an intelligent species was abducting people then marking them, they’d at least be organized enough to have some sort of system. Hm.
any farmer branding their cattle
• uses the same brand every time
• does not apply partial brands
• put the brand in the same place

Though modern-day animals are chipped, and sometimes even equipped with GPS.
Article:
chipsafer_product.jpg
 

FatPhil

Senior Member.
Though modern-day animals are chipped, and sometimes even equipped with GPS.
Article:
chipsafer_product.jpg

Decades back, someone in a Finnish photographic club lamented "there will never be any more photos of cows in any of our competitions" after ear-tagging became mandatory. A decade or so later, he was proved wrong when a close up of a cow, tag on full display, was one of the *prize winners* in that year's competition. Our reactions to and opinions of such things very much vary in time as culture changes and adapts.
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
6.5 hours later:
2022-08-05_22-06-58.jpg
Zero irritation or pain. This would not be noticed at all if under clothing or on a part of the body you don't much look at.

A slightly hotter and/or longer contact could easily result in something like a lot of the examples seem.
2022-08-20_16-23-07.jpg
15 days later. (Aug 5 to Aug 20). The mark is still there. So it's entirely possible that someone might not notice a mark, say on the back of an arm, for two weeks, maybe more.
 

DLoVe

New Member
Just joined specifically because I had heard Vallee's presentation on Youtube a while back and I wanted to point out something that hasn't been brought up about a skin mark case in California that he personally investigated. What made this case interesting to me is that when the mark showed up a second time he was able to bring her to a dermatological research department (he doesn't say where unfortunately) where they did a biopsy of the mark on the mark while it was very visible. According to Vallee:

"The dermatologists said they'd never seen anything like that before. That it wasn't on the skin, that it was under the skin; it was in the derma not in the epiderma. That it was, everything they could think of it wasn't. It wasn't a virus. It wasn't a bacteria. It wasn't a laser(burn). It wasn't a burn. It was not an allergy. It was not any of those things."

link to the above section of his talk:
Source: https://youtu.be/PeSe0BDtPMA?t=320


Let me add that I also appreciate the thorough investigating of various hypotheses that goes on here regarding the UFO subject. FWIW - I think there is a genuine unknown at the heart of the phenomena that has yet to be explained but I also know there's a whole lot of noise.

And regarding the rest of the case that Mick referenced, this is the image that the girl in the back of the car took with the driver's phone:
1661798009685.png

It looks like a six-armed drone to me but the people in the car claimed to have seen a very large gray disc.
 
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deirdre

Senior Member.
According to Vallee:

"The dermatologists said they'd never seen anything like that before. That it wasn't on the skin, that it was under the skin; it was in the derma not in the epiderma. That it was, everything they could think of it wasn't. It wasn't a virus. It wasn't a bacteria. It wasn't a laser(burn). It wasn't a burn. It was not an allergy. It was not any of those things."

so..like a tattoo. that would be an interesting case. if you find a case study with some photos you can start a new thread on it.
 

Mauro

Senior Member
Burn thresholds for touchable surfaces.

The following figures are taken from IEC Guide 117:2010. IEC is the International Electrotechnical Commission: it's an international body which issues regulatory standards. The burn thresholds are then used in product standards to define the requirements for the maximum temperature of touchable surfaces.


burnthr1.png



burnthr1a.pngburnthr1b.pngburnthr2.pngburnthr3.png
 

LilWabbit

Senior Member
Mick's experiment of a 0,4-second skin contact with hot metal (a thermal couple) at 75 °C on the forearm (thin fat layer) is pretty much consistent with figure J.1 shared by @Mauro in the above.

However, hairdryer grills are mostly plastic which would increase the burn threshold. According to figure J.5, it takes about 5 seconds of skin contact with plastics of the same temperature (75 °C) to be comfortably within the burn threshold and 10+ seconds for a burn. Also, most of the images of crosshair burns on the first page of this thread featured burns on areas of skin with thicker fat layers than the forearm.

These factors decrease the likelihood the burns were mostly accidents.
 

Scaramanga

Member
Unfortunately, it does look like there are at least some cases of deliberate self-harm. It's very important to be compassionate here. It's also likely to be an unpalatable explanation for much of the UFO community, as they place a lot of weight on trusting "experiencers." There will very likely be howls of outrage at the suggestion that some people have deliberately burned themselves with a hairdryer and then lied about it or suppressed the memory.

But that is very much what it looks like, at least in some cases. And Munchausen's is a real thing.
Article:
Munchausen syndrome (factitious disorder imposed on self) is when someone tries to get attention and sympathy by falsifying, inducing, and/or exaggerating an illness. They lie about symptoms, sabotage medical tests (like putting blood in their urine), or harm themselves to get the symptoms. Diagnosing and treating Munchausen syndrome is difficult because of the person’s dishonesty.

If you have Munchausen syndrome, you may undergo painful or risky medical tests and operations in order to get the sympathy and special attention given to people who are truly ill. You may secretly injure yourself to cause signs of illness. ... Some people will cut or burn themselves...


Since it's very unlikely that any of these cases could be investigated, the abductee-friendly community will generally prefer to believe that the marks are the result of contact with non-humans – possibly either disguised to look like a hairdryer burn, or an actual hairdryer burn as the result of the abduction. There's very little that can be done to address such a hypothesis, as it seems reasonable to them.

That said, I think that the partial burn that Vallee showed seems superficial enough to be accidental and possible not even noticed at the time – depending on what was going on at the time. The image below shows an accidental burn on the left, and the mysterious burn on the right.

What I find disappointing is how readily UFO investigators not only look for the least plausible explanation ( markings from aliens ) but encourage 'experiencers' to believe it all as well. It never ceases to amaze me how stuff that is perfectly explicable with a little common sense is so regularly turned into hyperdimensional alien or paranormal mystery that both the 'researchers' and experiencers feed off in a symbiotic loop.
 

deirdre

Senior Member.
What I find disappointing is how readily UFO investigators not only look for the least plausible explanation ( markings from aliens ) but encourage 'experiencers' to believe it all as well. It never ceases to amaze me how stuff that is perfectly explicable with a little common sense is so regularly turned into hyperdimensional alien or paranormal mystery that both the 'researchers' and experiencers feed off in a symbiotic loop.
Some psychiatrists believe it is better for mental health if they "believe" their patients. I do agree with this to a certain limited extent, it's like a "safe space" kind of thing.* Less chance of self harm if you have a support group who believe you.
Mostly this applies to people who believe they were abducted etc, but i guess if burn people are adamant they did not burn themselves it would kinda apply here too.

* not that i, personally, have much faith at all in psychiatry.
 
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