Sewer systems are a popular breeding ground for all kinds of urban legends. New York’s sewer gators, the black swine of London, the lizardman of Pennsylvania, the list goes on. Every country with indoor plumbing has a tale from a time in history when some creature or another got trapped in the sewers, living off of feces and whatever else they could find until they reached monstrous proportions and preyed upon those tasked with maintaining the sewer systems. These legends have always been treated as jokes, both before and after the problems were dealt with.
The thing about sewer stories, though, is that they are all relatively old. The alligators in New York were in the 1930’s, the pigs in the 1800’s, and the lizardman was last seen in the 80’s. After that sewer stories seemed to die down.
In 2009 three strange blobs were discovered in the sewer system underneath Raleigh, North Carolina. The city was using a snake camera to inspect the older pipes beneath the city when they stumbled upon the alarming sight. Most of the job was relatively dull, consisting of gross sewer water, the occasional roach, and stretches of dark, corroding pipes, but the workers were given pause when they came across something that they had not seen before.
Glistening wetly and quivering in the darkness was a ball of what could only be described as goop. The inspectors zoomed in on the blob, getting a very good look at it. The thing was comprised of what appeared to be tendrils, a thin membrane of some kind keeping them all in place as the thing throbbed and flinched away from the light. After inspecting the first one, the camera only had to go a few feet further down to come across two more, right across from each other.
The video went up on Youtube, going viral nearly overnight. There were two major factions when it came to discussing the video: those who thought it was fake and those who believed it to be real. The popularity of the video led to news coverage from various networks, prompting the mayor of Raleigh himself to confirm the video’s authenticity.
Not all of the publicity was good, however, as there were many concerns over whether or not the city’s water supply should be traveling through those pipes with the mystery glob residing within. This also prompted a response from the mayor, stating that the pipes would be sectioned off so that no more water would flow through. There has been no official mention of the thing since then, no plans to retrieve a sample or further investigate what the blobs might be.
Many scientists have weighed in on what they think it could be. One of the first things suggested was bryozoans, aquatic invertebrates that form thick colonies that look like a single cohesive unit. However, another scientist scornfully debunked this and stated that he thought it was a colony of tubifex worms, creatures that normally appear at the bottom and edges of polluted streams. He stated that in the absence of soil, they coiled around one another and formed a massive blob of shifting, pulsating worms.
Of course, this explanation did not satisfy everyone. Many believe that these blobs are akin to some of the other blobs discovered in UFO hotspots. Some even think that they may be alien egg sacks, something that the government would want forgotten. The odd creature was dubbed the North Carolina Sewer Monster, although there does not seem to be anything even vaguely monstrous about the thing. A more appropriate title is the Raleigh Sewer Blob.
There have been many reported instances of something called “star jelly”, a gelatinous substance that is said to fall from the sky during meteor showers. Star jelly has also been reported on the ground after UFO’s fly overhead, and there have been rumors of some ships being reduced to purple goop after crash landing, although the credibility of these stories is shady at best.
One of the most widely-recognized instances of star jelly was in 1994 in Oaksville, Washington. It fell from the sky during a rainstorm and collected on the ground. Many people fell ill after coming into contact with this jelly, a few having to be rushed to the hospital after experiencing seizures or extreme dizziness. There were even numerous reports of outdoor pets dying due to internal organ failure after the “goo rain”.
One of the intriguing things about this strange occurrence is that when a local doctor tested the material, he found human white blood cells in the mix, though most of the goop could still not be identified with the equipment the doctor had at his disposal. The substance was also passed along to a member of the Washington State Department of Ecology’s hazardous materials spill response unit, who stated that the goop contained primarily cells with no nuclei.
Although the gelatinous matter is largely speculated to be of extraterrestrial origin, there is another, much more sinister theory that the goo rain was part of a government experiment. The only evidence to support this, however, is that a sample went missing, and when the owner asked about he was told “do not ask”. The owner of that particular sample, Mike McDowell, theorized that the substance was a “matrix” that could cause illness and even death to those it came in contact with. A secret weapon, perhaps? A bio-weapon?
There is a lot of strange goop in the world, but it is frightening to think that the blob under Raleigh might somehow be linked to a substance that could cause death to those who come in contact with it. There is no telling if the two are truly the same thing, but with no word or effort put in by the government to investigate the thing, one has to wonder if they are up to something more.