BALLOON BOY IN GARAGE THE WHOLE TIME
OK, what's the over/under on what the Heene family should pay for the massive search effort for their kid? Turns out Falcon was hiding in a box in the family's garage while helicopters and first responders were all over hell and gone looking for him. More questions at the end of the post.
Back to our first question, which we asked as the Heene family UFO was still flying over Colorado: was there really a boy inside?...
CNN seems to be reporting it both ways: the Heene family says yes, their 6-year-old flew away in the family's home-made UFO. But CNN's balloon expert says the thing isn't behaving like a helium balloon with any payload at all -- in other words, no one's on board.
That suggests the unhappy thought that the boy fell out sometime earlier. But no reports of that yet.
Meanwhile, the nation stays glued to the television...
"Looks like he's losing some altitude," says the roving reporter at WFMZ as he tracks the flight. The six-year-old allegedly was helping his dad build what looks like a fake UFO near Fort Collins, Colorado when the balloon, about 20 feet by 5 feet and covered with tin foil, got loose and took the kid with it.
The FAA and choppers are on the case, but there's not much they can do except follow.
The Larimer County Sheriff's Department said the craft could have risen as high as 10,000 feet, which wouldn't have been good for the kid: at 10,000 feet air pressure is 10 pounds per square inch (versus 14.7 at sea level) and low in oxygen, and temperature would be about 25 degrees. (Mt. Everest is 29,035 feet high.)
But MSNBC (where you can watch this live) says it's losing altitude rapidly. The balloon is said to be moving at about 15 and 25 mph, and has travelled all the way to the Kansas-Oklahoma border hundreds of miles away.
And some reporters are more overtly suggesting now that there is no kid in the balloon.
Touchdown! The balloon is on the ground. Now let's see what's inside...
Apparently there's nothing inside. The authorities are tearing it up and it would appear to be empty.
Let us get this straight, Rick Sanchez. Although you know that the jackass who constructed this ill-conceived UFO Hoax machine, Richard Heene, is well known in the Denver area as a weather chaser and amateur Mr. Science, and despite the fact that his irresponsible ballon-making may have cost a son's life and has at least led the nation on a wild-goose chase, you're protecting his identity....why, exactly?
Here's the dad's alleged MySpace page:
He says he'd like to meet "Real Aliens from outer space and conduct a full interview with them" and in movies prefers "Anything with a good story. That's right... a good story."
Update 6: Let's now reminisce on the heroic flight:
Some discussion persists as to where the kid might have tumbled out of some now-detached basket. Falcon Heene's brother was allegedly the one who reported the boy aboard; let's see if he cracks under investigators' pressure. Reporters are reduced to congratulating the local police. "It's been a roller-coaster of emotions," said one anchor. Yeah, we're still coming down off the high.
Update 7: We'll be damned, that commenter was right: the family was recently seen on ABC's Wife Swap. Maybe they missed the limelight.
Yes, not only was this a Wife Swap family, but check out this video of the Heene boys rapping about "pussification."
Meanwhile, various ABC and other sites with Heene family are quickly being wiped. Watch this while you still can!
So now everyone is saying this balloon was too small, and provided too little lift, to ever lift a six-year-old boy.
OK, fine. So here's our question: why didn't Richard Heene, the builder, tell that to authorities FROM THE OUTSET.
Oh, wait, that's right. We've already learned that Heene is a publicity hound. Coincidence?
Here's the opening scroll to the Pussification video:
Pussification: The modern day teachings of human beings living a superficial lifestyle of consumerism, obesity, and over protectiveness for themselves and their children (put them in a corner for "Time Out") in an effort [to] gain as many supporters as possible to believe that they are better than everyone else around them. The females are typically referred to as "Soccer moms" while the males are referred to as "Pussies".
We sure hope Falcon Heene is OK. But the more we learn about dear old Dad's wacky weather theories, his plying CNN with videos about Martian features, to building a flying saucer in the backyard, the less patience we have for this entire episode.
Not too surprising at this point: ABC reports that people who knew Richard Heene says he put his kids in harm's way too much.
CNN NOW SAYING Falcon is home, safe. Can't wait to hear where he's been.
The kid was hiding in a box in the attic of the family garage.
Get the ICYMI: Today's Top Stories Newsletter Our daily newsletter delivers quick clicks to keep you in the know
Catch up on the day's news and stay informed with our daily digest of the most popular news, music, food and arts stories in New York, delivered to your inbox.