"It felt like something that was seismic or metaphysical"
July 13, 2015 5:40 AM   Subscribe

Swamp Gas? Meteor? Ice Methane? Buried Ordinance? You decide! Strange things afoot at a Narraganset beach this weekend, where a woman was thrown 5 feet in the air and 10 feet laterally by some type of explosion. The link goes to a google compilation of articles. A genuine New England summertime mystery! posted by joecacti (60 comments total) 12 users marked this as a favorite
 
Reading through several of the articles also gave me multiple warnings that I was using up one of my free reads for the month and should consider subscribing. Sorry Quinebaug Weekly, I'm just passing through.
posted by One Hand Slowclapping at 5:56 AM on July 13, 2015 [19 favorites]


While hiking Napatree Point, walking along what appeared to be flat beach with my sister, she simply dropped into a hole next to me and wound up soaked and sandy. The hole had been dug by kids for a sand castle but it was hidden by very shallow water and was nearly two feet deep. We grew up swimming and playing on North Carolina beaches and had never encountered such a thing before. So now, mystery blasts? Dang, I guess now it's safer in the water, sharks be damned.
posted by kinnakeet at 5:57 AM on July 13, 2015


Has anyone checked to see if the local artists and sensitives were wracked by nightmares about the same time?

Or is that a question we'd rather not see answered?
posted by jquinby at 5:59 AM on July 13, 2015 [36 favorites]


...something something Innsmouth.
posted by leotrotsky at 6:06 AM on July 13, 2015 [11 favorites]


My lengthy Internet weird story experience leads me to think that it was a dead whale, blowing itself up before the tabloids arrived.
posted by Joe in Australia at 6:06 AM on July 13, 2015 [5 favorites]


My thoughts:

1. A hidden store of coffee milk fermented and exploded

2. The quahogs have fucking had it

3. The hot air from legislative dissembling over 38 Studios and the Sports Institute had to go somewhere

4. British attack spurred on by a desire for revenge over the burning of the Gaspee

5. It's Rhode Island; who the fuck knows why anything happens? probably someone's brother-in-law was angling to make some money

Also, Salty Brine Beach? Brine Beach not good enough for you, Rhode Island?
posted by GenjiandProust at 6:17 AM on July 13, 2015 [45 favorites]


The cause of the reported blast remains under active investigation, but Rhode Island officials do not believe it to be a bomb or a terrorist attack.

Whew!
posted by chavenet at 6:19 AM on July 13, 2015 [1 favorite]


Kids flushing M80s down the toilet combined with lax wastewater treatment.
posted by three blind mice at 6:33 AM on July 13, 2015


Also, Salty Brine Beach? Brine Beach not good enough for you, Rhode Island?
posted by GenjiandProust at 9:17 AM on July 13


Isn't it named for a TV host?
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 6:33 AM on July 13, 2015 [1 favorite]


Also, Salty Brine Beach? Brine Beach not good enough for you, Rhode Island?

Remember, Rhode Island is wrong in three ways.

1) It is not a road.
2) It is not an island.
2) They can't even spell road correctly.
posted by eriko at 6:35 AM on July 13, 2015 [28 favorites]


My lengthy Internet weird story experience leads me to think that it was a dead whale, blowing itself up before the tabloids arrived.

Oh no. You know when a whale explodes. EVERYBODY downwind knows when that happens. That smell is unforgettable.
posted by eriko at 6:36 AM on July 13, 2015


To be fair, the original Rhode Island (which is now called Aquidneck Island) is an Island; the rest is really Providence Plantations.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 6:45 AM on July 13, 2015 [12 favorites]


Isn't it named for a TV host?

You are correct; I fail at RI trivia.

(I was just about to correct the "Rhode Island is not an island" canard, but I also fail at beating Bulgaroktonos to the buzzer, it seems.)
posted by GenjiandProust at 6:49 AM on July 13, 2015


the rest is really Providence Plantations.

I read that - and keep reading it - as Providence Pantaloons.
posted by moonmilk at 6:50 AM on July 13, 2015 [4 favorites]


My dream is that this is the opening salvo in the war to keep the Paw Sox in Pawtucket. Protect McCoy Stadium, one of our nation's greatest treasures!
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 6:50 AM on July 13, 2015 [10 favorites]


I was just about to correct the "Rhode Island is not an island" canard, but I also fail at beating Bulgaroktonos to the buzzer, it seems.

He's not even FROM Rhode Island! He's just parroting the fascinating Rhode Island trivia shared periodically by his cosmopolitan and glamorous wife! He's from North Carolina; his grandfather wouldn't come to his wedding because he married a Yankee. The man would turn over in his grave knowing that Bulgaroktonos was being praised for his knowledge of Yankee trivia.
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 6:52 AM on July 13, 2015 [22 favorites]


See? THIS is what happens when you establish a colony that's NOT a theocracy.
posted by ZenMasterThis at 6:53 AM on July 13, 2015 [8 favorites]


I was thinking a can of spray sunscreen popped. But I am not a scientician.
posted by Lord_Pall at 6:53 AM on July 13, 2015 [2 favorites]


I have to keep up with my Rhode Island trivia or I can't get away with saying things like "It's Rhode Island, EVERYTHING is by the airport."
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 6:56 AM on July 13, 2015 [4 favorites]


Oh, you mean in Warwick (Wah-wick)?
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 6:58 AM on July 13, 2015 [1 favorite]


My dream is that this is the opening salvo in the war to keep the Paw Sox in Pawtucket.

I had considered that for my list, but the Pawsocks seem pretty dispirited right now. Perhaps it was a fringe, splinter group.

He's from North Carolina; his grandfather wouldn't come to his wedding because he married a Yankee.

That grandfather doesn't know his history; RI and NC have had close ties (mercantile and nuptial) since at least the early 18th C.
posted by GenjiandProust at 7:09 AM on July 13, 2015


That grandfather doesn't know his history; RI and NC have had close ties (mercantile and nuptial) since at least the early 18th C.

I don't think he cared about the history, I think he was just terrified of Yankees.

The day Bulgaroktonos was leaving for college his grandfather called, absolutely frantic, as they were packing the car, to warn him about Yankees with (and this is an exact quote) "their drinking and their pills and their weird sex games" so as a Rhode Islander who married his grandson I was basically the man's worst nightmare which is bonkers because I've never given Bulgaroktonos any pills.
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 7:15 AM on July 13, 2015 [14 favorites]


Burntisland in the Kingdom of Fife: it's not burnt, it's not an island, and Fife is not a kingdom.
posted by Devonian at 7:19 AM on July 13, 2015


My partner jumped to unexploded ordnance immediately. I was like, really? Inside the breakwater on baby beach? I think he just likes the idea of it. Saw the emergency vehicles racing there during our friends of the library book sale a little south of Narragansett. But that's just another day in sunny southern RI.
posted by Saddy Dumpington at 7:29 AM on July 13, 2015 [2 favorites]


That 'Gansett will get your in trouble every time...
posted by maryr at 7:29 AM on July 13, 2015 [2 favorites]


Also, what does something metaphysical feel like?
posted by maryr at 7:30 AM on July 13, 2015 [1 favorite]


Easier to describe than the feeling of something pataphysical, chiefly.
posted by ocherdraco at 7:42 AM on July 13, 2015 [3 favorites]


Isn't it named for a TV host?

Mostly radio. Also, if you pay close attention to the picture in the Providence Journal article in that list, you'll see that there is actually a ship named for one of his most famous phrases. Yes, it is the No School Foster-Glocester.
posted by The Great Big Mulp at 7:43 AM on July 13, 2015 [3 favorites]


Also, what does something metaphysical feel like?

Apparently a lot like an explosion that blows you into some rocks.
posted by Naberius at 7:47 AM on July 13, 2015 [3 favorites]


Also, what does something metaphysical feel like?

Like a complex Neoplatonic chain of emanations from the One.

Or something.
posted by GenjiandProust at 7:49 AM on July 13, 2015 [1 favorite]


To be fair, the original Rhode Island (which is now called Aquidneck Island) is an Island; the rest is really Providence Plantations.

I stand corrected. It's wrong in three ways.

1) It's not a road.
2) It's not an island.
3) It's Aquidneck Island and Providence Plantations.

and they still can't spell road correctly!
posted by eriko at 8:01 AM on July 13, 2015


It is a road! Or rather, it HAS a road. I know. I drove it! I missed the on-ramp to I-95, and drove across the state to get to the other one. True story.
posted by Xyanthilous P. Harrierstick at 8:17 AM on July 13, 2015


Providence Pantaloons should totally be the name of the sports team. all of the teams!
posted by supermedusa at 8:18 AM on July 13, 2015 [2 favorites]


Providence Pantaloons should totally be the name of the sports team. all of the teams!

Every few years, there is a push to get the "Providence Plantations" part of the name dropped, because the connection to slavery, although the "plantations" in the name weren't those sorts of plantations. I am OK with the idea, however, although I would like to keep RI's status as both "the smallest state" and "the state with the longest name." My proposal that the name be changed to "The State of Rhode Island, One Corner of the Triangle Trade, Sorry" or "The State of Rhode Island, Home of John Brown, but Not the Abolitionist John Brown, the Slavery John Brown, Sorry" have not met with general support.
posted by GenjiandProust at 8:31 AM on July 13, 2015 [9 favorites]


Wait where do we get the drinking and the pills and the sex games again?
posted by The Whelk at 8:32 AM on July 13, 2015


Wait where do we get the drinking and the pills and the sex games again?

I mean my husband married a Yankee (per his grandfather's definition, not mine) and (because?) he got two out of three so you'll have to decide for yourself whether that's worth it.
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 8:40 AM on July 13, 2015


Can you be more specific, Mrs. Pterodactyl?

Yankee:

To a non-north American: American
To a southerner: northerner
To a non-New Englander: New Englander
To a New Englander (pretentious): a magazine
To a New Englander (non-pretentious): an evil, evil baseball team
posted by Melismata at 8:46 AM on July 13, 2015 [13 favorites]


I was basically the man's worst nightmare which is bonkers because I've never given Bulgaroktonos any pills.

Now I have this picture of poor Bulgaroktonos with the flu or something sitting on the couch under a thousand blankets all snotgurgle-ey and his-head-asplode and his limbs weigh eight tons each and you're not bringing him any pills.

Have you considered that you may be a replicant?
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 8:49 AM on July 13, 2015 [4 favorites]


There is a certain type that consideres anyone south of like, Bangor, to sh suspiciously southern.
posted by The Whelk at 8:50 AM on July 13, 2015 [1 favorite]


My mother mocks my thin Southern blood.

I live in Boston. We had like 10 feet of snow this winter.
posted by maryr at 8:56 AM on July 13, 2015 [2 favorites]


In fact, she made fun of it when I was up in Vermont this past weekend because they had the A/C on so high I needed a fleece blanket. It was 84F outside.
posted by maryr at 8:57 AM on July 13, 2015


Imagine moving back and forth between the northeast and Texas several times as a youngster. I have no idea what I am. Yankee? Texan? Southerner? New Jerseyan?
posted by item at 8:57 AM on July 13, 2015 [1 favorite]


Wait where do we get the drinking and the pills and the sex games again?

Lynn, Lynn, city of sin. You never come out the way you came in.
posted by davros42 at 9:02 AM on July 13, 2015 [4 favorites]


Light dawns on Mahblehead.
posted by Chrysostom at 9:13 AM on July 13, 2015 [1 favorite]


So that was where they were keeping all the air from those deflated Patriots footballs. The truth eventually emerges, as they say.
posted by ChuckRamone at 9:21 AM on July 13, 2015 [3 favorites]


Providence is in fact named for Roger William's favorite pair of pantaloons. It's a little-known fact that he was wearing them on the day he fled Salem, and from that day forward he donned his lucky pants during times of crisis and important occasions like the birth of his daughter, also named Providence.
posted by ardgedee at 9:47 AM on July 13, 2015 [1 favorite]


But seriously, read up on Williams. Guy was crazy like a fox and would be deserving of an HBO miniseries if it wasn't for the lack of rampant sex. Check this shit out:
[Williams' book] became the first dictionary of any Indian tongue in the English language, and fed the great curiosity of English people about the Native Americans. Printed by John Milton's publisher, the book became an instant best-seller, and gave Williams a large and favorable reputation.

Although Puritans held power in London, through the offices of Sir Henry Vane, Williams obtained a charter, despite strenuous opposition from Massachusetts' agents. His first published book, A Key Into the Language of America (1643) proved crucial to his charter success, albeit indirectly.

Having secured his precious charter for "Providence Plantations" from Parliament, in July 1644, Williams then published his most famous book, The Bloody Tenent of Persecution for Cause of Conscience. This produced a great uproar; Parliament responded in August by ordering the public hangman to burn all copies. By then, however, Williams was already on his way home to Providence Plantations.
posted by ardgedee at 10:02 AM on July 13, 2015 [3 favorites]


Mass Insanity.
posted by Thorzdad at 10:08 AM on July 13, 2015


Oh Rense.com, never change.
posted by Splunge at 10:10 AM on July 13, 2015




Imagine moving back and forth between the northeast and Texas several times as a youngster. I have no idea what I am. Yankee? Texan? Southerner? New Jerseyan?

blurkerspouse and I went back and forth between Florida and NY growing up. When deciding on a name for this situation, we were unable to choose between "New Floridian" or "Flew Yorker."

Of course, now we're in Texas, so we're just confused.
posted by blurker at 10:26 AM on July 13, 2015


ocherdraco: "Easier to describe than the feeling of something pataphysical, chiefly."

Doesn't that feel like being hit with a silver hammer?
posted by Splunge at 10:30 AM on July 13, 2015 [2 favorites]


Nueve Flexans, who you gonna call?
posted by Oyéah at 11:05 AM on July 13, 2015


Am I the only one wondering what she ate for lunch?


(Fart jokes! They are always funny!)
posted by sarcasticah at 11:31 AM on July 13, 2015


The fact that we got a funny, well-read Lovecraft reference three comments in - that's what keeps me coming back to Metafilter.
posted by ryanshepard at 12:15 PM on July 13, 2015 [1 favorite]


I realized I never have met anyone from Rhode Island. I question whether it exists, or maybe it's contained wholly inside one of those pavilions in Asbury Park, or maybe Kristen Hersh made it up. Anyway, this is a strange thread.
posted by RobotVoodooPower at 8:54 PM on July 13, 2015


Pfffft, it's just a promotional stunt for that Lovecraft convention in Providence in a few weeks.
posted by wenestvedt at 9:24 PM on July 13, 2015 [2 favorites]


Correlating all the contents, that's us lot here!
posted by Artw at 9:36 PM on July 13, 2015 [1 favorite]


I lived in Rhode Island for four years and never met anyone from Rhode Island.

I am going to investigate. Please don't expect me back.
posted by Yoko Ono's Advice Column at 10:19 AM on July 14, 2015 [3 favorites]


Follow up. Looks like hydrogen formed by the corrosion of an old copper conduit caused the event. Note that this does not invalidate the theory of quahog activity....
posted by GenjiandProust at 5:52 AM on July 27, 2015 [4 favorites]


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