There are times when I think Brother Cal over at Calvin's Canadian Cave Of Cool is single-handedly keeping the Internet going with the amount he posts on a daily basis. While his posts are always fascinating, the other day he ran one which really resonated with me: about Weekly World News.
It's not a newspaper you see on this side of The Pond very often. In truth I don't think I've seen a copy in the wild for over a decade (as I know I would have snapped it up if I had), but back in my early days as a cub reporter - and then sub-editor - for the Kent & Sussex Courier, in staid old Tunbridge Wells, it was my inspiration.
It's why I was always the one chasing up ghost stories and UFO reports, going to interview the people in the tin foil hats worried about messages being beamed into their heads from anonymous vans touring their estate. This was exactly the sort of news I was interested in and exactly what I thought a local paper should be publishing.
Forget the council's latest campaign to eliminate dog dirt from our pavements, I wanted to write about the bright lights someone saw moving erratically in the sky when they were coming home from the pub.
Did I believe these wild tales? Did it matter?
The world needs more newspapers like The Weekly World News (and fewer like The Daily Mail).
And the fact that these tales just happen to be wonderful inspiration for possible short stories or roleplaying game scenarios? Just a coincidence...