*Photos supplied by Diane Stocking*
This next interview was a request. I had heard the name of this next interviewee, but really did not know much about her.
What a good way for us all to get to know her.
So, I fired off an email to Diane Stocking and asked her if she would be willing to answer questions for this blog, and she agreed.
There are many researchers out there who seldom, if ever log onto the various message boards or websites - in fact I have only seen Diane Stockings name associated with one message board, so I was very happy when she agreed to do this interview.
So, everyone sit back and read about Diane Stocking.
Women in Bigfoot Research - Diane Stocking
Question: Please tell the readers about yourself.Diane Stocking:
I was born and raised in Cutler Ridge, FL (South Miami), which was part of the Black Swamp back in the 50's when construction of homes began.
My degree is in Forestry, I now live in east Central Florida, I am a single mom, and have 3 great boys (George, Boomer, and Curtis).Question: How long have you been active in the field of Bigfoot research?Diane Stocking:
I have been researching Bigfoot for 30 years.Question: What has been your primary focus, in this field of study? Please explain.Diane Stocking:
When I was young, I was simply fascinated by the unknown, and mystery quality of the phenomenon. I would scour libraries and book stores for anything about Bigfoot. Back then, anything archived was on microfilm, and very time consuming to look for. The first 2 books I bought were from Peter Byrne, and B. Ann Slate. I subscribed to Peter's newsletter back in the late 70's. I absorbed anything I could get my hands on about Bigfoot. As the years went by, I had the need to know "what" they were. That lead me into studying animal behavior, habitat, and anything Fossey/Goodall.
As always, I want Bigfoot cataloged and described for it's own protection. The scientific study of any mammal is beneficial not only to that specific species, but to the entire environment. Recently, I have been looking into the possibility that Bigfoot is not an ape. I am of the opinion that Bigfoot is of the genus homo. Study of footprints, track-ways, and the P/G Film is showing me that Bigfoot has many physiological traits that can be associated with the genus homo.Follow up question: Can you please elaborate on this. What about the footprints and trackways makes you think this animal could be in the genus homo?Diane Stocking:
The obvious is an indication. Bigfoot walks on 2 feet, these feet have 5 digits on each. The size of their feet is impressive, but just indicates that their body mass is greater than ours. Foot structure and size has to support the body weight. Shut fire--my middle son wears a size 16 and has a 51 inch chest. All I have to do is look at him to remember the correlation. Thanks to the extensive research of Meldrum, Fahrenbach, and Chilcutt, we can see dermals and foot structure. Track ways of Bigfoot demonstrate a foot placement that is more characteristic of homo than, say, a chimp or Australopithecus. Chimps walk with a "wabble", their foot placement would have the distinctive angled print. This tells us that the pelvis does not have the same articulation as homo. This is all very simplified, and my suggestion is for those interested to read up on the basics (if nothing else) of this subject. There is an abundance of information out there.Follow up question: What physiological traits are similar to that of the genus homo?Diane Stocking:
Humans see a Bigfoot and freak out. Why? It's the physical appearance that affects our psycological response. Witnesses are looking at something that so closely resembles them, it's un-nerving. The are 2 major responses that witnesses experience, fear and nurture. The fear aspect is understandable. The nurturing response comes into play because the witness is looking at something, again, so close to them physically, that they feel the need to help or be-friend it.
My favorite example of traits would, of course, be Patty. Just look at her!! She's awesome!! Patty shows us musculature, and skeletal physiology so close to homo it's, for lack of a better word, pro-conclusive. Two things stand out to me when I watch the film. The first and most obvious, she has breasts. Female apes don't have beasts, humans do. The second would be,as she is walking away, and turns away from the camera, she moves her head independently from her shoulders. I know that the long standing opinion is that she turns away in a different manner, but after watching the film ( especially, M.K. Davis' montage) repeatedly, one can see her turn her upper body away first, and then she whips her head back INDEPENDENTLY.
To me, this indicates a skeletal structure more in form with homo than an ape. The way the spine attaches to the skull in a gorilla is different than a human. In humans, the spine attaches to the center of the skull. This enables us to turn our head in a different manner than a gorilla.
Question: Are you active in any Organized Groups, or are you Independent? Or Both?
Diane Stocking: With exception to about 5 years, I have always been an independent researcher. The one experience I had being a member of an organization was very frustrating and upsetting. I will never subject myself to that again. I correspond, and work heavily with other independents. I'm not a "people-person", so I pretty much go my own way.
Question: What do you think about the growing numbers of women becoming active in this field?
Diane Stocking: It's great to see more women in this field. Regardless of what some people think, men and women are different. I think women bring in a different perspective to the research.
Question: Have you had to deal with any resistance to your being in this field of research, due to your gender?
Diane Stocking: Actually, most of the resistance I have received over the years are from witnesses. Overall, most of the researchers I have dealt with don't notice gender.
Question: Can you give any advice to women who are considering entering this research, but are hesitant.
Diane Stocking: This kind of research is certainly not for everyone. If you are hesitant about the kind of resistance you might encounter--don't even worry about that. Just be honest, hard working, and very skeptical. Read, study, and discuss. Don't be afraid to admit you're wrong, this is an ever-changing study. And, remember, most everything discussed about Bigfoot is supposition.
Question: How did you become involved in the search for this undocumented North American Primate?
Diane Stocking: Growing up in South Miami with the 'glades out your backdoor made involvement easy.
Question: Have you had a sighting? If so please explain.
Diane Stocking: No, I have never seen Bigfoot.
Question: Does not having a sighting ever discourage you? If so, why? If not, Why?
Diane Stocking: No, I'm never discouraged about the research. You don't need to see the Bee, to know that it gotcha. Same principle---I know Bigfoot is around, I don't need to see it to continue my study.
Question: Do you ever get into the field?
Diane Stocking: Yes, as often as possible.
Question: Do you take witness statements?
Diane Stocking: Yes, I do.
Question: Most researchers have one Report that "Stands Out" in their minds, is there a report that still "stands out" for you?
Diane Stocking: Nothing beats the P/G Film for me. In my opinion, it is the most compelling evidence to date.
Follow up question: What is it, about the P/G Film that stand out in your mind?
The time frame.
This film was shot during the 60's.
The technology just wasn't there to produce something of this magnitude. Constant study has shown that the "man-in-a-suit" theory could not have produced anything close to the result we have in this film. It just doesn't hold water.
Question: What do you think is the most important question to ask a witness?
Diane Stocking: More to the point, it is the questions you don't ask that is important. Too many times, witnesses tell a researcher what they think the researcher wants to hear. Don't ask leading questions. Let the witness talk. Encourage expression of thoughts and emotions. Witnesses can remember more detail this way.
It's no different than when we hear an old song on the radio, it always brings back memories.
Question: What you would like people to know about you.
Diane Stocking: I'm nothing special. I would be considered a grunt. I'd much rather be out in the woods than writing up data.
Question: Do you have any advice for a new researcher?
Diane Stocking: Be critical in your research. Ask questions. Don't take someone's word for it, check it out for yourself. Most of the time, the simplest explanation is the truth.
I would like to thank Diane for allowing this interview - and I hope to have more conversations with her in the future. :)