I brace myself as I open my email: Another note from someone who listened to my Bigfoot podcast, Wild Thing, and felt compelled to write me. Most of the time, it’s a nice fan letter. Every so often, it’s an outpouring of disappointment or an angry diatribe. And then there are letters like this one: “I know they exist — beyond a doubt, I have been physically touched on the shoulder by one on a mini-expedition in northeast Washington state — doing vortex photography and swapping stories with the sheriff’s department of the local county. They are good folk, the Sasquatch people — they are so much more than a Wild Thing in the woods.”

I’m relieved it’s not hate mail — lambasting me for daring to question Bigfoot, or daring to explore Bigfoot, or just daring to have an opinion — but the letter leaves me cringing, embarrassed, asking why, exactly, I got myself into this. I spent the last two years researching and reporting a podcast on America’s greatest myth, mainly in an effort to understand why a relative of mine, a well-respected professor of anthropology, became obsessed with Bigfoot, putting his reputation on the line in his search for the creature.

To read more, click here.