Can you hear the bugles?

Internet phenomenon may mean the end of the world - or business as usual

Aranda Adams

If you’ve been hearing the unsettling sound of trumpets or bugles in the sky, or the Earth groaning freakishly when you’ve been outside, you’re not the first person to be flushed with a mix of curiosity and anxiety.

People all over the world have heard these strange noises, and lately YouTube has been flooded with videos capturing the creepy instrument-like sounds echoing across the city that will send shivers up your spine.

But don’t sweat my pets, as there may be a scientific explanation for it after all, so you don’t have to buy into the 2012 Mayan Apocalypse theory or build a bomb shelter in your backyard just yet.

I first heard about this bizarre bugle-in-the-sky phenomenon when my brother came home from a snowboarding trip at Springhill, where he witnessed the sounds firsthand.

Armed with his ever-present iPhone, he captured everything on video and although the sound quality is not particularly high, the scary noise is still discernable in the background.

He encouraged me to watch some higher quality videos on YouTube like the ones filmed in Conklin, Alta., which decidedly cemented my sick fascination with these occurrences.

A semi-translated clip from a Spanish news station said Twitter and Facebook exploded with comments when people in Costa Rica heard the groaning, and jumped to the conclusion that these were the sounds that indicated the Mayan’s prediction of apocalypse in 2012 was true.

If the Mayans did predict that bugle sounds would erupt across the sky in a warning to humanity that the end is nigh, that’s a genuinely weird coincidence for sure, since I don’t think bugles existed yet.

But I like science so I don’t buy into it.

I heard the North Pole may be shifting, and because I’m university educated, I extrapolated this thought.

So using a simple Google search with the parameters “north pole shift 2012,” I came across a pretty interesting, and kind of technical, diagram-laden article from NASA published 11 years ago. The article essentially sums up the fact that the most majestic star in our solar system, the Sun, is PMS-ing.

See, Mrs. Golden Sun has an 11-year cycle wherein it flips its magnetic poles.

That’s pretty amazing in and of itself, but there’s a double whammy here: we’re also in the midst of the biggest solar storm since 2005, and we just got bombarded by electromagnetic radiation.

Although I’m an English major and I got a C+ in dumb kids Biology, I strongly believe these things may be somewhat related.

I also learned some other pretty rad space junk from the NASA article.

Besides enlightening me on the Sun’s magnetic menstrual cycle, I also learned that the Earth’s magnetic poles can shift, too, and that this business happens anywhere between 5,000 to 50 million years apart.

That’s some legit Bill Nye the Science Guy shit right there.

But the NASA geeks went on to report in that very same article that the Earth is overdue for another magnetic pole shift, although no one could say when it would happen.

Maybe they should have consulted the Mayan math formulas.

If we were to have a friendly bet, I’d put my money on the possibility that Mother Earth’s magnetic pole shift is happening today, and that the freaky groaning noises we’re hearing echoing across the sky are her complaining of cramps.

Does anyone have a giant cosmic chocolate bar we can give her?

Erika Miller is a student at the University of Manitoba.

Published in Volume 66, Number 20 of The Uniter (February 22, 2012)

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