Join 3,524 readers in helping fund MetaFilter (Hide)

36 posts tagged with urbanlegends. (View popular tags)
Displaying 1 through 36 of 36. Subscribe:

Related tags:
+ (6)
+ (5)
+ (4)
+ (4)


Users that often use this tag:
Effigy2000 (2)
acb (2)
mathowie (2)

Unsolved Mysteries for your browser

Sexy Keepers of Death is a blog which curates the paranormal and creepy whether it's fictional, debatable or real. Unsolved mysteries, antiquities, strange creatures, unbelievable events, historical hoaxes, urban legends, unnerving art and more!
posted by codacorolla on Aug 6, 2014 - 16 comments

Cool bananas

For decades, Iceland has been rumoured to be the largest producer of bananas in Europe. This factoid made the BBC quiz show Q.I. in 2006, and was cited as truth in a Christian Science Monitor article about geothermal energy in Iceland. Now the Reykjavík Grapevine digs deeper and reveals the provenance of this rumour and what truth there is in it (PDF; see page 6).
posted by acb on Nov 14, 2013 - 20 comments

Oh don't lean on me man, cause you can't afford the ticket

Chako Paul City is a women-only city in the north of Sweden, established in 1820 by a wealthy widow. It is "a place that is respectful of women's love, but with a rule that men cannot enter"; the few who have tried have found themselves beaten half to death by the formidable Amazonian sentries at its gates. It has a castle, and its main industry is forestry, with a sideline in lesbian tourism. Of the 25,000 women, from all over Europe, living in Chako Paul City, those wishing to seek male company are allowed to leave, but may only reenter after having bathed and undertaken several other measures to avoid negatively affecting the mental state of the other residents. [more inside]
posted by acb on Apr 24, 2013 - 76 comments

Now You Know Who to Blame for Ruining Your Halloween

Ronald Clark O'Bryan: The Man Who Ruined Halloween, the source of the urban legends about random Halloween poisonings and sadism
posted by jonp72 on Oct 26, 2012 - 71 comments

Ray St. Ray, the Singing Cab Driver

A cosmically selective process: you enter a white cab in Chicago. After the usual pleasantries, the driver asks you if you'd like to hear a song...
posted by Iridic on Mar 15, 2010 - 15 comments

"The dash don't be silent."

Laura Wattenberg on Ledasha, Legends, and Race [Part Two | Part Three] "Why does it matter? We tell funny stories all the time without believing them. (Does anybody really think that a priest, a rabbi and a chicken walked into a bar?) I believe it matters in the case of urban legend names because they're not merely humor...and they're not random. They exist in a complex social setting, and they serve a subtle and consequential purpose. They are proxies for talking about race."
posted by ocherdraco on Nov 1, 2009 - 109 comments

The Devil's Tramping Ground

The Devil's Tramping Ground is a barren circle in the forest in North Carolina. As a result of nothing having grown within the circle for at least the last hundred years, it has become the subject of some of that state's oldest legends. John Harden, a journalist, newspaper editor and author said of that place "... the story is that the Devil goes there to walk in circles as he thinks up new means of causing trouble for humanity. There sometimes during the dark of night, the Majesty of the Underworld of Evil silently tramps around that bare circle; thinking, plotting, and planning against good, and in behalf of wrong. So far as is known, no person has ever spent the night there to disprove this is what happens.". No person until you came along and played this neat interactive flash movie, that is.
posted by Effigy2000 on May 29, 2008 - 21 comments

Myth-busters have the odds against them

Persistence of Myths Could Alter Public Policy Approach. "The conventional response to myths and urban legends is to counter bad information with accurate information. But the new psychological studies (PDFs) show that denials and clarifications, for all their intuitive appeal, can paradoxically contribute to the resiliency of popular myths." [Via Firedoglake, more at MindHacks.]
posted by homunculus on Sep 5, 2007 - 53 comments

Euromyths

Euromyths from the English press in alphabetical order collected by the European Union's UK Press Room. Examples include: EU orders farmers to give toys to pigs, pets to be pressure cooked, circus performers must wear hard hats, no more Caerphilly Cheese in Caerphilly, butchers cannot give a dog a bone, EU says Brit yoghurt has to be called Fermented Milk Pudding & Brussels makes bright smiles illegal.
posted by Kattullus on Aug 25, 2007 - 64 comments

"The proprietor of the Journal was as good as his word..."

Frederick Remington was an American artist who in 1898 became a war correspondent and illustrator for the New York Morning Journal during the Spanish-American War. The Journal's editor in chief, William Randolph Hearst I was an American newspaper magnate whose paper had, circa 1895, fought to liberate Cuba from Spanish rule by writing sensational stories of Cuban virtue and Spanish atrocities in an attempt to influence US opinion. In 1898, Hearst sent Remington to Cuba to report on the war which Hearst was certain was about to begin. However when Remington arrived, he telegrammed Hearst saying "Everything is quiet. There is no trouble here. There will be no war. I wish to return." Hearst responded "Please remain. You furnish the pictures, and I'll furnish the war." Not long after, the war began. These telegrams are often cited as one of the most famous (if not the first) examples of yellow journalism (so much so it is mentioned in Citizen Kane) and is meant to speak to the powerful potential effects of the news media. But did The Remington-Hearst "telegrams"actually ever take place, or is this simply another urban legend?
posted by Effigy2000 on Jul 6, 2007 - 8 comments

Like Snopes, But For Comics.

Comic Book Urban Legends. Would you believe ... that a Marvel Comics editor became a Pet Shop Boy? that Wonder Woman's creator invented the real-life lie detector? that the first-ever Marvel / DC Comics crossover was The Wizard Of Oz? that the King of Rock & Roll found hairstyle inspiration in Captain Marvel, Jr? Three of these are true, one is false, but all of the behind-the-scenes tales compiled by Comics Should Be Good could prove blissfully detrimental to your afternoon productivity.
posted by grabbingsand on Sep 20, 2006 - 14 comments

The Viking horned helmet myth

Contrary to popular belief, Vikings did not wear horned helmets, if the Viking Answer Lady is to be believed. Apparently, the whole kerfuffle was instigated at least in part by these guys.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane on Jun 6, 2006 - 28 comments

at least it's not another ad

Occasionally the folks at Snopes get asked to debunk some very unusual potential urban legends; questions so ridiculous you can only marvel at the motivation behind the asker's particular situation. Fortunately, they have collected and published the best of these questions online. found via
posted by jonson on Jul 30, 2005 - 39 comments

The Amazing Sinking Library

Indiana University's main library is not sinking. Neither is the University of Waterloo campus library, but what about the University of Calgary's Mackimmie Library? If the University of Nottingham's Jubilee library is really sinking, readers better grab their snorkels. But guess what — The University of Nebraska at Omaha library is actually sinking, and the University of Las Vegas Lied Library came this close. This library sunk into an ancient burial site, and now it's haunted! Finally, is it art? Or does Melbourne, Australia have the greatest sinking library ever? See Snopes on one of the most persistent of urban legends — the amazing sinking library.
posted by taz on Mar 9, 2005 - 36 comments

Lord i'm standin' at the crossroad, babe, i believe i'm sinkin' down

Sex, death, drugs, sharks, TV, elephants and the devil himself. Nothing sums up the ridiculous circus of rock'n'roll better than the mythology that both nourishes and devours it, vividly illustrating the impossible feats of self destruction and degradation we would have our 'rock gods' vicariously act out on our behalf.
10 Greatest Rock and Roll Myths! | Rock's 10 Wildest Myths!! | Urban Legends of Rock and Roll!!!
posted by Quartermass on Feb 22, 2005 - 24 comments

sniggle: to fish for eels by thrusting a baited hook or needle into their hiding places

sniggle.net :: calls itself a 'Culture Jammer's Encyclopedia' -- its a fabulous compendium of forgeries, fakes, hoaxes, counterfeiting, spoofs, pseudoscience, and just plain weird stuff. Perfect fodder for killing time on a Friday afternoon.
posted by anastasiav on Apr 23, 2004 - 6 comments

That rabbit's got a vicious streak a mile wide!

The Bunny Man. Never mind the witch...here's the D.C. region's other scary legend (Washington Post).

Insist upon the original. Accept no substitutes. Read label carefully. Effectiveness not guaranteed.
posted by LinusMines on Oct 31, 2003 - 10 comments

Finally, a career path for Trekkies

Sometimes, the Americans with Disabilities Act makes us do funny things. Faced with mental patients who speak nothing but Klingon, an Oregon county department for human services scours the county/state/country/world/universe for Klingon-English interpreters.
posted by TheFarSeid on May 11, 2003 - 16 comments

April's Fools day, and the origins thereof.

Anybody know the origin of April Fool's day? We already have a post about the greatest hoaxes of all time, but doesn't anybody know WHY we hoax and trick? I won't tell you why here....but I find it funny, what with the current jingoism and all, that it comes from France...after you digest that first link, read more at urbanlegends.com.
posted by taumeson on Apr 1, 2003 - 8 comments

A sig that spread like wildfire

People who do stupid things with hazardous materials often die. If you've been hanging around the net for a while, chances are you've seen this in someone's sig. In fact, it's so frequently quoted that it makes finding Jim Davidson's original post in alt.folklore.urban just a bit difficult to find -- but it's worth looking for! It sits in the middle of an interesting debate about how poisonous plutonium is, spurred on by the rumor(?) that it's one of the "most toxic poison[s] known to man." Deadly poison, Los Alamos Scientists, levitating hemispheres of metal... all it really needs to round it out is true love.
posted by namespan on Mar 30, 2003 - 10 comments

Who is the real Posh?

Victoria Beckham aka Posh Spice is fighting a move by second division Peterborough United to register their nickname POSH as a trademark for it's club merchandise claiming that the nickname is recognised around the world as belonging to her.

The term POSH is widely believed to have originated in the time of the British Raj when P&O passenger ship tickets were marked POSH -Port Out Starboard Home - port (left-hand side) berths were mostly in the shade when travelling out (easterly) and the starboard ones when coming back. So the best and most expensive berths were POSH. Unfortunately P&O say they have never issued such tickets and none have ever been found even though many tickets do exist from the time.

But this page from the US Navy METOC site claims it originated in Boston as a label for the luggage of wealthy passengers travelling from the US to Europe to indicate which side of the ship to place the luggage to protect it from the sun.

Should you be allowed to register a word in common usage as a trademark? If posh goes what word is next.
posted by stunned on Nov 13, 2002 - 32 comments

Not so quick on the uptake, eh Ann?

Not so quick on the uptake, eh Ann? Looks like Ann Landers may have been taken in by an urban legend. So those of you hoping that this fad spreads to your neighborhood, you may want to cancel that X10 order now.
posted by vaca on May 17, 2002 - 10 comments

Just who is Dean Stark?

Just who is Dean Stark? A legend of usenet? Some kind of monster? Or perhaps the victim of a huge conspiracy? The answer may shock you...
posted by Settle on Mar 13, 2002 - 25 comments

Just a follow-up

Just a follow-up on this MeFi thread, because the link has been making its rounds around the Internet. It's a hoax, folks. Sorry.
posted by PWA_BadBoy on Jan 30, 2002 - 17 comments

The day after Thanksgiving is the biggest shopping day of the year in America. False. This and many other popular xmas legends debunked at snopes (also notable: Rudolph the red-nosed reindeer created by the Montgomery Ward store chain).
posted by mathowie on Nov 26, 2001 - 11 comments

Terrorists Target malls on 10/31 hoax

Terrorists Target malls on 10/31 hoax
I have received seven e-mails today about the 'mall attack' and I have had enough. I am sorry, but now is not the time to blindly forward on anything about terrorism without checking the facts. Even a simple Google search will prove most hoaxes false.

The only thing we have to fear is 'forward this to all your friends.'
The FBI has something to say about this also.
posted by DragonBoy on Oct 12, 2001 - 20 comments


Fact or Fiction?

Fact or Fiction? It looks fake to me but my friend swears it is real. Any ideas?
posted by Niahmas on Oct 8, 2001 - 40 comments

Let's end this newly formed urban legend now.

Let's end this newly formed urban legend now. The 'penis' in the Ora Potency Fruit Punch was just a fungus. At least quality control can keep body parts out.
posted by skallas on Oct 6, 2001 - 9 comments

The Darwin Award wining story

The Darwin Award wining story straight from the horse's mouth. Sorry Darwin. Looks like you posted another urban legend. Thanks for playing tho.
posted by jcterminal on Oct 4, 2001 - 10 comments

Doggie-bag use is up

Doggie-bag use is up - Must be an economic downturn (via Fark). Want to know what the Fed is up to before everyone else? Have a look at the Greenspan briefcase theory. Takeout orders in Washington DC are up? Must be a war!

Anyone know of other 'indicators' like these? No, Groundhog Day doesn't count.
posted by jwells on Aug 28, 2001 - 10 comments


Teenage myths about contraception

Teenage myths about contraception "Coke douches work and you can use crisp bags as condoms" and "Putting a watch around your penis before sex means the radioactivity of the dial kills off sperm."
Many more....
posted by nonharmful on Jul 17, 2001 - 31 comments

Urban Legend, I choose you!

Urban Legend, I choose you! Pokemon is being banned in several Muslim countries because of rumour that it is anti-religious. What's your favorite urban legend that resulted in widespread societal changes? (You need not limit yourself to religious edicts . . . an sort of change made by people in power because of an urban legend will be fine.) Why do you think that urban legends have this power? What does this say about human cognition?
posted by iceberg273 on Apr 24, 2001 - 46 comments

The story of the hippy babysitter is an old one i've been hearing since i was a kid. turns out, if it was real she might only have gottenfive years.
posted by Niccola Six on Dec 14, 2000 - 14 comments

One way to throw an election...

One way to throw an election... that would be funny, if I didn't believe that some people out there would take it seriously.
posted by silusGROK on Nov 1, 2000 - 7 comments

Watch an urban legend work its magic!

Watch an urban legend work its magic! First, read the post at the top of the page, then SCROLL DOWN AND READ THE COMMENTS.
posted by grumblebee on Sep 29, 2000 - 18 comments

More Magnolia-esque links. There were several well-known urban legends mentioned in the movie; the stories about the 3 men hanged, the scuba diver found dead in a wildfire, and the old suicide jumper shot while falling. There was also some stuff about raining frogs, and the only things I could find about it were: this newsgroup message, this other ng message, and an entry at the urbanlegends.com site.
posted by mathowie on Jan 9, 2000 - 0 comments

Page: 1