Issue 16
Volume 4 Number 4
November 1999

In This Issue

 • Contents
 • Cover Illustration
 • Editorial
 • Announcing <plokta.con>
 • Have You been Abducted By Aliens?
 • Marching Up and Down Again
 • Losing a Hugo in Five Easy Lessons
 • Lokta Plokta
 • With the Vacuum on, No-one can hear you Scream

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[Plokta Online]

Have You been Abducted By Aliens?

Plokta has uncovered disturbing new evidence regarding increased levels of alien infiltration into human society. It's already well known that the alien greys operate out of three secret bases in New Mexico, provided on long-term leases from the US Air Force, but we now believe that they are greatly exceeding their federally mandated quotas for midnight abductions. Our most recent survey indicates that 40% of the population of the US has been abducted and implanted with a device giving the greys complete control over their thoughts and actions. Indeed, in some influential and powerful groups such as journalists, politicians and fanzine editors, the rate is close to 100%.

This of course gives rise to a nagging doubt in most people's minds:

How can I tell if I have already been abducted and am now a mindless puppet of the sinister alien conspiracy?

In order to set your mind at rest, or at least give you a sounder basis for your paranoid delusions, we've compiled this simple test which you can administer in the privacy of your own home.

  1. Does your dog:
    1. Fetch your slippers when you get home in the evening
    2. Whine and run away whenever it sees you coming
    3. Bark uncontrollably when it sees you, until it mysteriously explodes
    4. Enjoy floating around in zero gravity listening to the screams of your helpless victims

  2. Imagine a long, vicious-looking probe with several hooks and barbs on the business end. Your reaction is:
    1. To wonder how many trout you could catch with one of those
    2. It sounds perfect for sticking up a cow's bottom
    3. To clench your buttocks uncontrollably
    4. It sounds perfect for sticking up someone's bottom

  3. Wrap three yards of heavy-duty turkey foil round your head. Do you:
    1. Feel ridiculous
    2. Feel sexy
    3. Collapse unconscious
    4. Enjoy the piquant flavour of the aluminium oxide as your tongues' enzymes digest it

  4. Your skin is:
    1. A bit too spotty
    2. Covered in mysterious lesions
    3. Loose and wrinkled like a suit of clothes that's too large for you
    4. Delightfully moist, grey and clammy

  5. In the middle of the night, you often find yourself:
    1. Asleep in bed
    2. Digging in a cemetery
    3. Skulking round the offices of a top secret Government project
    4. Waiting for cars on a deserted country road

  6. What is your favourite computer game?
    1. Pacman
    2. Leather Goddesses of Phobos
    3. Pokémon
    4. Space Invaders

Your score:

Mostly As -- You are a perfectly normal human being. What are you doing reading Plokta?
Mostly Bs -- You don't seem to be involved with the greys, but we're not sure we'd trust you near our children/ livestock/Bacofoil.
Mostly Cs -- You are definitely an abduction victim, and you had better keep wearing the turkey foil from question 3 indefinitely.
Mostly Ds -- You are an alien grey. Plokta's really a very unimportant fanzine, you know. You want that Langford chap who keeps winning all the Hugos.

Illo of Dave Langford and aliens

--Mike Scott

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His Master's Voice

A long way we travelled, terrible privations we did endure. To the far ends of the world, to the land they call Downunder. By the banks of a great river, we found him, where nightly great gouts of flame seared the sky.

We implored his wisdom. We worshipped at the feet of the master. We sought the secret of Hugo success. He said nothing, but smiled, enigmatically.

Didn't we see him somewhere a bit nearer home the other week?

Photo of Dave Langford and Hugos
Glasshopper, what is the sound of two lockets clapping?

Bhang Bhang Duc

While driving down the M40 to Reading, for a weekend of hard work in the Plokta mines, Mike and I spotted a cluster of UFOs hovering in the evening light. Just as Dr P was calling in Mulder and Sculley, we realised it was a balloon festival. It isn't every day you see a giant pink Ordnance Survey map drifting across the tranquil Oxfordshire countryside.

One of the balloons had us foxed. It seemed to consist of two yellow balls on top of each other with a stick appearing top and bottom. Not something you see every day, even in Oxfordshire. "It's a yellow duck carrying a car exhaust," I declared. Mulder, Sculley and Dr Plokta were skeptical.

But as we got closer I realised I had manifested my new trivial superpower: the ability to spot forty-foot exhaust wielding poultry while driving down the motorway at ninety miles an hour.

-- Sue Mason