Friday, January 15, 2010

San Diego Weekly Paper Covers Bigfoot

The first issue of the San Diego Reader came out on October 4, 1972. It was a 12-page weekly black-and-white tabloid with an initial printing of 20,000 copies. Since 1972 the Reader has grown to nearly 200 pages and 160,000 papers are distributed each week.

This week they have a cover story about Bigfoot and controversy ensues.

The cover story begins with a hiking adventure in which author, James Snyder, finds a foot shaped imprint in a rock. Its starts as a delightful tale of a hiker in the initial stages of Bigfoot wonder until two things happen. First, Snyder is dismissive of Dr. Jeff Meldrum's opinion. Second, Snyder claims Michael Esordi unfulfilled revenue promises for the casting of the imprint.

You are welcome to read the whole thing here, its a story with 3862 words spanning nine pages. We have the 300 word version below followed by an excerpt from Michael Esordi's response.

An unexpected shape caught my eye. “What the heck,” I murmured. “That looks like a huge footprint.” Closer, I ogled a five-toed imprint embedded into the rock. “Hey, Rich, I just found Bigfoot!” I shouted over my shoulder. Rich made his way toward me. I squatted down to examine the impression and noticed dermal folds under the biggest toe. The toes were flexed to the side in unison, the way mine would be if I stepped at the same angle as this foot once had. “Oh, yeah, I see it,” said Rich. “It’s probably a natural rock formation. Sure looks real, though.” There was an unspoken rule of hiking courtesy between us: You show interest in what I find, and I’ll do the same.

Soon, curiosity about the footprint had eroded my ability to think of anything else. A general contractor, I got off work early one day and decided to put the issue to rest. I stuffed my backpack with a five-gallon bucket that contained a gallon jug of water, a third of a bag of 20-minute (hot mud) drywall compound, a jar of Vaseline, a paintbrush, a trowel, and some cardboard and tape. Then I made for the trailhead.

I sent photos of the print to a Bigfoot website run by a local expert, Michael Esordi. He posted them on his site, and within days, the Bigfoot people started chiming in with opinions. Dr. Jeff Meldrum, an Idaho State University expert on Bigfoot prints, said, “It can’t be. I see a quartz vein in the rock.” However, the supposed “quartz vein” was a white mineral-water stain from a seasonal flow of water. So much for the “expert.”

I took the plaster cast to Michael Esordi, the Sasquatch expert in Point Loma, who runs the Bigfoot website. He made a latex mold of the cast, so he could make and sell copies on his site. I was to receive profits, but he suddenly moved to Rhode Island, and I never saw a dime, yet he kept the Ramona Bigfoot cast in his merchandise offerings for a while.

Michael Esordi, in the comments section of the page, describes his contact with Snyder in detail and at one point responds directly to Snyder never seeing a dime.

... On the occasions I met with Mr. Snyder he conveyed two things to me. One was that he wanted to determine what had made the footprint and the other was to see what kind of monetary compensation could be made from his find. After some discussion, I obtained Mr. Snyder’s permission to make a cast from his original and to offer it for sale on the website. I personally covered all costs of production and manufacture on the item and did place it into commerce on my website. However, there was minimal interest in the item and no profits were ever made on it. Given this fact, I discontinued sale of the item ...

Our take-away from this story? If this imprint is in granite, then we need to rethink how heavy we think Bigfoot is!

** UPDATE **
Our generous friends at alerted us to the original story they uploaded back in May of 2002. You should give them a visit here. Below is a photo of the actual imprint, that was included with the original 2002 article.

Another picture provided by Bobbie Short of Thanks again Bobbie!

The link to the San Diego Article is here.
You can learn about Jeff Meldrum here.
You can learn about Michael Esordi here.
You can visit Esordi's site The Bigfoot Museum here.
The Original 2002 article can be read at

1 comment:

  1. You would think someone would put in a link to a copy of a picture of the "print" which did not show it obscured by some boneheads booted foot!


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