Rachel Nevada

A sign in Rachel, Nevada, just outside Area 51. PICTURE: Dustin Belt/Unsplash

It turned out to be much ado about nothing. In the end, a call for UFO enthusiasts to converge on the secret US military installation known as Area 51 in the Nevada desert - and believed by some to house alien artefacts - resulted less than 100 people turning up to the facility and not the thousands some had anticipated. Reports of the numbers who turned out in response to the social media campaign to "storm" Area 51 suggested somehwere between 40 to 75 people did so on 20th September (the date chosen for the action which started off as a tongue in check Facebook post but went viral from there). There was apparently only one arrest - for public urination. The US military, meanwhile, reportedly apologised for a tweet which appeared on the feed of its PR arm - the Defence Visual Information Distribution Service or DVIDS - before the event. Featuring a picture of a stealth bomber and military personnel, it suggested the bomber was the last thing anyone who attempted to storm the facility would see. The unit later apologised, saying the tweet in "NO WAY" supported the stance of the Department of Defense.

A long-lost 13th century painting of Christ, which normally hangs in the kitchen of an elderly French woman, is on its way to auction. Experts have confirmed the work, part of a polyptych (a series of scenes painted on panels) and known as the Mocking of Christ, was painted by 13th century Florentine artist Cenni di Pepo, known as Cimabue. It was discovered after the Compiegne woman decided to have the painting valued. It is suggested the work, which only stands 25 centimetres tall, could fetch up to €6 million when auctioned on 27th October.

A utility company in the Russian city of Samara has taken to placing giant black and yellow pyramids, dubbed "Pyramids of Shame", outside the homes of those who haven't paid their bills. The pyramids, which are reportedly adorned with messages claiming "a debtor lives here" and which broadcast a recording stating how much is owned, apparently weigh more than a tonne. The audio messages, which have apparently irked locals, are turned off at night but the state-owned Rossiya 1 TV has said there are plans to light up the pyramids during hours of darkness. The company has apparently said it's only placing the pyramids near homes "that look like the owners can afford to pay up".