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Was it space junk that trashed the roof?

A mysterious chunk of metal crashes into a warehouse in Plymouth, Massachusetts. The FAA discounts speculation that it came from a plane, while an astronomer offers an alternative theory.

There are several indications that the paranormal is upon us.

I am not specifically referring to any gray-haired politician or resident of New Jersey when I say this. It's just that too many odd things are happening for all to be regarded as usual.

Please imagine, for example, how the workers at Michael's Wholesale Furniture Distributors in Plymouth, Mass., must have felt yesterday when a 6-inch chunk of metal crashed through their roof.

The way CBS in Boston describes it, this piece of metal was around 6 inches long and weighed between 3 and 5 pounds.

What might it be? You might say to yourself that American Airlines has wafted into bankruptcy and that this must have been a falling piece of old fuselage.

Apparently not. The FAA is reportedly adamant that this substantial pre-Yuletide metal log is not from a plane.

Plymouth police Capt. John Rogers told CBS Boston: "We have no idea [what it is]. At this particular point, we can only speculate what that is from. We have no clue." It would have had to arrive with some significant force or velocity to get through the warehouse roof and cause damage, he said.

A wise astronomic mind interviewed by CBS Boston suggested that this was probably not space junk because nothing up there is made of solid metal. He wondered whether something had exploded nearby and that this was just a flying piece of the result.

I would not leap so readily to such a terrestrial conclusion.

It may well be that nothing man has sent into space was made of such metal. But we know so little of what goes on out there. It may well be that alien spacecraft-- being, perhaps, on a budget-- are, indeed, made of simple metal. Perhaps it enjoys a special coating that makes it durable.

It may well be that their own space machines are in need of serious maintenance, having hovered over us for years in a vain search to find intelligent life.

I urge the authorities in Massachusetts to dedicate considerable resources toward discovering just what this unidentified flying object might be.

This could well be the contact so many down here have been waiting for.