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  1. #1
    Good Enough
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    06.29.07 @ 03:57 PM
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    Lets see if we can get a thread going on urban legends. Post anything that you find fishy!!!

    btw..... www.snopes.com is a fantastic site! I'll post some cool stories that I have found at that site. Join in!!



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    From 3-13 to 10-6 and NFC South Champs.....go Saints!

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  2. #2
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    READ THIS BEFORE LOOKING AT THE PICTURE!
    You are the chief airplane washer at the company hangar and you:

    (1) Hook high pressure hose up to the soap suds machine.

    (2) Turn the machine "on".

    (3) Receive an important call and have to leave work to go home.

    (4) As you depart for home, you yell to Don, your assistant, "Don, turn it off."

    (5) Assistant Don thinks he hears, "Don't turn it off." He shrugs, and leaves the area right after you.

    (6) Refer to picture for the results.

    As with any occupation, make sure personnel have a clear understanding of what you are communicating!

    Actually happened! Now see the picture of the consequences


    From 3-13 to 10-6 and NFC South Champs.....go Saints!

    My Hurricane Katrina pics

  3. #3
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    An elderly female comes to the Emergency Department complaining: "I got the green vines in my virginny."
    The patient reports a two-week history of a vine growing from her vagina. On physical examination it is discovered that she does indeed have a vine growing out of her vagina, about six inches in length.

    A pelvic exam reveals a mass which is easily removed from the vaginal vault, vine still attached. Upon extraction, the patient reports that her uterus had been falling out and that she "put a potato in there to hold it up" and subsequently forgot about it.




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  4. #4
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    Claim: A couple rents a video camera and VCR and tapes themselves engaging in sex, then accidentally leaves the tape in the player when they return it to the video store. The tape is quickly circulated and duplicated until nearly everyone in town has a copy.

    Status: True.

    Origins: In late 1986 in the small farm town of Council Grove, Kansas (pop. 2300), Corky Woodward rented a camera and a videocassette player from the only rental store in town. Woodward, the sheriff of Morris County, then made an erotic 90-minute tape of himself and his wife Dannette, but inadvertently left the tape in the VCR when he returned it to the store. The next person to rent the player got the tape as well, and soon hundreds of copies were circulating throughout town.

    Despite the apparently true origins of this legend, versions with differing details started to spread across the country within a year or two of the original events:


    The community in which the tape was made and circulated was variously reported as different towns throughout the USA and Canada.

    The tape was often said to have been returned to the video store in the wrong box (rather than being left in a VCR).

    The legend mutated into versions involving an anchorwoman who accidentally returned a sexy videotape of herself to the store, a high school coach who mistakenly sent the school board a tape of himself having sex with members of the girls' volleyball team, and a teacher who unwittingly showed the class a self-made sex film after mixing it up with an educational movie.
    Sightings: In an episode of TV's Mad About You, a videotape of Paul and Jamie making whoopee is mistakenly returned to the local video rental store, but they recover the tape before anyone else views it. Also, a 1999 Volkswagen commercial featured a young couple who realized they'd just dropped off a similar video at the video store; when they realized their mistaken and returned, they were greeted by the sight of the store's customers transfixed at what was playing on the in-store monitor.

    [img]graemlins/thumb.gif[/img] [img]graemlins/thumb.gif[/img]
    "The very existence of flamethrowers proves that some time, somewhere, someone said to themselves, 'You know, I want to set those people over there on fire, but I'm just not close enough to get the job done.'"--George Carlin

  5. #5
    Little Dreamer
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    Claim: Porn star Marilyn Chambers was once pictured on the Ivory Snow box.

    Status: True.

    Origins: It seems everyone has heard the whisper that the cute little baby on the Ivory Snow box grew up to be porn star Marilyn Chambers. It's true Chambers does appear on the box, but not as the baby -- she was the young mother holding the infant.

    Chambers was born on 22 April 1954 in Westport, Connecticut. When soap manufacturer Ivory Snow was casting about for a fresh-faced young lady to appear on their product in the early 1970s, 17-year-old Chambers won the nod. The photograph of the loving young mother holding the bright-eyed adorable baby became synonymous with the much-touted purity of the product (99 44/100% pure, according to the company).

    The irony that everyone relishes is that only a couple of years later the girl on the Ivory Snow box turned her hand (and other assorted body parts) to the making of porn films. She became an instant hit with her appearance in the 1972 porn classic Behind the Green Door, a film premiered at the Cannes Film Festival to a standing ovation. Earlier in her fledgling career, she'd had a small part as Robert Klein's girlfriend in the 1970 film The Owl and the Pussycat and had also appeared in a 1971's Together. But from Behind the Green Door on, most of her onscreen work was in the adult film industry.

    Though a young lady in a dirty business, Chambers proved early on she had a good head on her shoulders: she was smart enough to negotiate a contract that gave her 10% of the gross receipts for her films. (This was back in the pre-VCR days, of course, when watching a skin flick didn't mean renting one from the local video store and viewing it in the privacy of one's bedroom, but making a trip to the local sticky-floored pussycat theater.) Based on estimates of the box-office receipts for Green Door and The Resurrection of Eve, she earned more than $3 million in two years. Her life wasn't all skittles and beer, though -- she went through a few divorces and battled drug and alcohol addiction.

    It's interesting to note how this tidbit about Marilyn Chambers and the Ivory Snow box is processed by those who come across it. Invariably, those who remember Chambers being in the shot always cast her as the baby. It's that old "innocence transformed into evil" motif -- a pretty girl in a soap ad two years later going on to star in a porn film doesn't provide nearly the moral shock factor of an adorable little baby's growing up to follow that particular career path.

    (And to clear up another long-standing rumor, no, that baby on the Ivory Snow box isn't actress Brooke Shields. Brooke did appear in some Ivory Snow advertisements as an infant, but her picture was never used on the box.)


    [img]graemlins/thumb.gif[/img] [img]graemlins/thumb.gif[/img]
    "The very existence of flamethrowers proves that some time, somewhere, someone said to themselves, 'You know, I want to set those people over there on fire, but I'm just not close enough to get the job done.'"--George Carlin

  6. #6
    Little Dreamer
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    Legend: A group of friends waiting in the darkness to spring a surprise party on a woman catch her offering herself to her dog with peanut butter smeared on her private parts.

    Examples:

    [Collected on the Internet, 1994]
    One evening at [a] party, my wife and I were talking to another couple while we were waiting for the guest of honor to arrive. Eventually, the subject of surprise parties came up since we were at one. I could hardly believe my ears when the lady across the table said something like, "You'll never believe what happened at a surprise party my friend went to in Canada:"

    A man decided to throw a suprise party for his fiance. All the guests were hiding downstairs, where her bedroom was, when she came home. She didn't come downstairs immediately, but went straight to the bathroom and got into the shower, so they decided to wait until she got out to surprise her.

    After her shower, she came downstairs calling the dog. They turned on the lights and yelled, "Surprise." The man's fiance was standing there completely naked except for some peanut butter spread all over her nipples and crotch.

    The wedding was called off. She quit her job and disappeared -- nobody knows where she is. When the friend went back to Canada shortly afterwards, the house had a "For Sale" sign in front.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    [Collected on the Internet, 1994]

    I work with the son-in-law of the lady whose co-worker was at this party. This apparently happened locally.

    This guy's girlfriend is turning 30. He invites friends from both of their work[places] to a surprise birthday party. On the night of the party, the girl is not yet home; all the guests are hiding in the basement of her house. She comes in the front door and looks for her dog, which the boyfriend has downstairs to get the birthday girl to come downstairs. A few minutes of silence pass, then the girl is calling for the dog again. She starts down the basement steps still calling the dog and flips on the lights. She has no clothes on and her breasts and crotch are covered with peanut butter just for the dog. There she stands in front of family and friends.

    Her boyfriend has left her, she has not been back to work since. No word on her family.


    Variations:

    The woman featured in the legend is often identified as a "co-worker," but some versions describe her as a nurse or a bank clerk (who lives alone or with a female roommate), a soon-to-be-married woman, or a newlywed. Versions in which the woman is said to live alone sometimes mention her particular fondness for her pet dog(s). Teenage girls often show up as the focus of this legend, too, with their school chums or boyfriends finding out their dire secret via the surprise party route.

    Every now and then, a version starring a man in the central role will appear. These are highly unusual, though -- almost without exception, the central figure is a girl or woman.

    The surprisers usually hide in either the basement or the living room; in the latter case the woman's secret is most often discovered when the surprisers burst into the kitchen. (A few versions have her being discovered in or just outside her bedroom.)

    The woman calls her dog by name in some versions; the most frequently mentioned names are Lucky, Chief, Kippy, or Skippy. (The last of these names is a double pun, 'Skippy' being the brand name of both dog food and peanut butter in the USA.)

    The substance the woman smears on herself is nearly always peanut butter, although margarine, whipped cream, marmalade, pate, macaroni, pineapple, and dog food are also mentioned. (An Australian version stars a horse and lump sugar.) It is usually spread over the woman's genitalia, but some versions also include the breasts or nipples, or state that the woman is "covered from head to toe."

    The woman is usually described as having disappeared after the embarrassing incident, by quitting her job, calling off her wedding, selling her house, or moving out of town.
    Origins: This story is clearly an updating of the much older "Surprise Party" legends in which sexual misbehavior is inadvertently revealed during the course of a well-intended surprise. Since the sexual "sins" of earlier versions (premarital intercourse and adultery) have lost most of their shock value in the last few decades, they have been replaced by the more salacious "perversions" of bestiality and homosexuality in this modern form of this legend. Where older versions of the legend presented married women who were rebuked for overstepping the bounds of propriety and expressing their sexual desires, this one makes the desires of the modern, unmarried woman seem almost pathetic. The liberated single woman is unable to either control her sexual urges or find a suitable partner, and therefore must turn to her dog for satisfaction. Also implicit in the legend is the suggestion that the woman is a lesbian (hence the detail of her having a female roommate); the legend condemns this orientation by implying that women who reject men as sexual partners are merely "men-haters" who will accept anyone -- or anything -- else in their place

    In June 1994, the legend about the peanut butter dog suddenly popped up both on the Internet and in the print media, seemingly out of nowhere. Almost all the early versions reported as having occurred in Canada (particularly Ottawa), or being told by persons living in Canada. (Versions set in Ottawa usually describe the woman as a government employee, so perhaps resentment of civil servants was one element of this form.)

    Its origins are older though. One of our readers heard it in Burbank, California in 1981. It was also in Lethbridge, Alberta, in 1987, Michigan in 1986, and Texas in the early 1980s. A non-dog 1984 version from Australia features a horse and lump sugar, with the action taking place down in the paddock.

    Another reader recalls the legend being related in the late 1980s as a persistent rumor attached to a girl attending her high school in Cornwall, Ontario (a town only a short drive from Ottawa). In honor of these whispers, the girl was nicknamed "Skippy". Around the same time, stories about a high school boy in Philadelphia caught with peanut butter on his penis awaiting the dog were all the rage.

    Possibly the most unusual sighting comes from a woman who attended microbiology classes at the University of Chicago in 1980-81. Her teacher reported as a true story that a woman in South America had been infected with rabies from her own dog in the course of an encounter involving pineapple. The anecdote was supposed to demonstrate that actual bite wounds are not necessary for the saliva to be infectious.

    An item of interest is an article which appeared in The Guardian a few months after this legend splashed onto the Internet in 1994. It was an interview with "Mr. Apology," a man in New York who ran a confessional service that people could call anonymously and confess to whatever was on their minds. (The admissions were recorded on voice mail, and callers could listen to confessions left by others as well as leave their own.) Mr. Apology claimed that one of his recent additions -- the Apology Pet Corner -- had "received some unprintable admissions, involving dogs, cats, and a jar of smooth peanut butter."

    This legend resurfaced in a reworked form in early 1999, this time attributed to a contestant on a Spanish "Candid Camera" type TV program:


    The following is a true story, as seen by millions of viewers on a Spanish T.V. Channel:
    The parents of a teenage girl decided to put their daughter's name forward for a surprise game show. She idolised teen-age pop star Ricky Martin, and they arranged for TV cameras to be placed throughout the house. The house was then left empty with Ricky Martin hidden in the wardrobe in the girl's bedroom - all set to give the daughter a wonderful surprise.

    However, upon returning home from school and finding the house empty, the daughter made her way down to the kitchen where she opened the fridge and removed a tin of pate - at this stage the live TV audience is wondering, "What the hell is going on?"

    She then went back upstairs to her bedroom where she proceeded to remove all her clothes and spread pate all over her triangle of womanhood (at this stage Ricky Martin is still hidden inside the wardrobe, and half of Spain is seeing a young girl stark naked on the bed with pate all over her crotch).

    As if the parents were not shocked enough by this, the daughter then calls the family dog, who obediently trots up the stairs and settles down to his favourite meal of "pate on a bed of seaweed". At this stage the order is given to cut the broadcast, leaving a very embarassed set of parents in front of a live studio audience!! Consequently, sales of tinned pate have rocketed.




    The Ricky Martin story was, of course, a crock.
    "The very existence of flamethrowers proves that some time, somewhere, someone said to themselves, 'You know, I want to set those people over there on fire, but I'm just not close enough to get the job done.'"--George Carlin

  7. #7
    Little Dreamer
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    Claim: A pleasure-seeking male makes a a trip to the emergency room to have a gerbil removed from his rectum.

    Status: False.

    Example: [Gibbs and Ross, 1996]


    The following is a true account:
    A 26-year-old male arrives at the ER complaining of rectal bleeding. He is too embarrassed to provide an accurate history but provides the examing doctor a clue: "There might be something stuck in my rear end." Examination reveals a non-tender abdomen, but a rectal exam shows blood coming from his anus. A speculum exam reveals bloody stool and a dead gerbil. Apparently, through the cardboard tubing from a paper towel roll, the rodent had been forced into his rectum. Once the animal was in, the tube was pulled out.

    The idea is that as the gerbil suffocates, it scratches and claws at the lining of the rectum, providing an intense sensation to the patient. The rodent should then have been defecated, but the swelling and bleeding had caused the retention of the animal. The patient required pain medication and antibiotics after the animal was removed, but was then allowed to go home.


    Origins: Contrary to widespread public belief, "gerbil-stuffing" is unknown as an actual sexual practice, nor has a verified medical case of a gerbil (or other rodent) having been extracted from a patient's rectum ever been reported. (Despite the assiduousness with which doctors record unusual items removed from patients' rectums in order to write them up as illustrative cases , a medical journal article involving a gerbil removal has yet to surface.) The notion of gerbilling (not necessarily restricted to homosexuals -- the insertion of items into the rectum for purposes of autoeroticism is practiced by heterosexuals as well) appears to be pure invention, a tale fabricated to demonstrate the depravity with which "faggots" allegedly pursue sexual pleasure.

    Like similar legends such as The Promiscuous Rock Star, this tale has been applied to various public figures who are known or believed to be homosexual, and it has stuck with one in particular: Richard Gere. Although the legend homed in on various targets when it first appeared (including a Philadelphia newscaster), it has clung tenaciously to Mr. Gere's name since at least the mid-1980s. Rumors that he had an emergency "gerbilectomy" at Cedars-Sinai Hospital in California have spread far and wide, and countless doctors and nurses claim to have participated in, been on hand during, or heard from a reliable colleague about, the procedure. (Cedars-Sinai is apparently the best-staffed hospital in the world, since several hundred different doctors and nurses were reportedly on duty at the time Mr. Gere was allegedly brought in for treatment.) The rumor's spread was aided by an anonymous prankster who, not long after the film Pretty Woman led to a tremendous increase in Gere's popularity, flooded fax machines in Hollywood with a phony "press release" purportedly issued by the Association for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, claiming that Gere had "abused" a gerbil. But, as a reporter from The National Enquirer found when he attempted to track down the gerbil story, there were no facts to be had.

    Versions of the following gerbilling fiction date back at least to 1993 when a faked United Press International item appeared on the Internet, one that named Vito Bustone and Kiki Rodriguez of Lake City, Florida, as the accident victims. (The gerbil's name was withheld by request of the family.) Other versions have been falsely attributed to the Los Angeles Times with the events said to have taken place in Salt Lake City, Utah. Rest assured that neither news outlet ever published a news article about these fictitious events:


    "In retrospect, lighting the match was my big mistake. But I was only trying to retrieve the gerbil," Eric Tomaszewski told bemused doctors in the Severe Burns Unit of Salt Lake City Hospital. Tomaszewski, and his homosexual partner Andrew "Kiki" Farnum, had been admitted for emergency treatment after a felching session had gone seriously wrong.
    "I pushed a cardboard tube up his rectum and slipped Raggot, our gerbil, in," he explained. "As usual, Kiki shouted out 'Armageddon,' my cue that he'd had enough. I tried to retrieve Raggot but he wouldn't come out again, so I peered into the tube and struck a match, thinking the light might attract him."

    At a hushed press conference, a hospital spokesman described what happened next. "The match ignited a pocket of intestinal gas and a flame shot out the tube, igniting Mr. Tomaszewski's hair and severely burning his face. It also set fire to the gerbil's fur and whiskers which in turn ignited a larger pocket of gas further up the intestine, propelling the rodent out like a cannonball."

    Tomaszewski suffered second degree burns and a broken nose from the impact of the gerbil, while Farnum suffered first and second degree burns to his anus and lower intestinal tract.
    "The very existence of flamethrowers proves that some time, somewhere, someone said to themselves, 'You know, I want to set those people over there on fire, but I'm just not close enough to get the job done.'"--George Carlin

  8. #8
    Little Dreamer
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    Claim: Venomous snakes lurk in the ball pits of fast food restaurants.

    Status: False.

    Example: [Collected on the Internet, 1998]

    About a week or so ago, a mother took her eager 3 year old son to Burger King for lunch. After they ate their lunch the mother said that the son could go and play on the playground for awhile since he ate all his lunch.
    She watched as the boy played in the tunnels, slide and in the ball-pit. The boy played for about 10 minutes when he started to whimper slightly.

    The mother asked the boy what had happened and he mearly replied, "Hurt mommy." The mother assumed that the little boy had banged his elbow or something while playing.

    They left to return home. A half and hour after they were home, the mother noticed some big red welts on the little boys arms and legs. Not being able to figure out what they were, the mother started to look at them closer. Could be red ant bites . . . she did not know.

    An hour later, the little boy died. Come to find out, when returning to Burger King to see if there were red ants in the play area, in case the little boy had an allergic reaction. Burger King employees and herself discovered that there was a family of baby rattlesnakes living underneath the balls in the ball-pit area. She has since found out that this happens more frequently than not. The snakes will crawl into the ball pit because it is dark and warm in there. She knows for a fact that another death has occurred because of this in South Carolina. Please use caution when letting any children play in an outside play area of a fast food resturant, this could happen anywhere. Burger Kings are now building their play area's inside the buildings for more safe environment.



    Variations:


    McDonald's and Burger King are both named as places where this tragedy supposedly occurred, with the nod going to McDonald's as the one most frequently cited.

    The fatal fanging is said to have taken place in Arlington and Dallas, Texas; Baton Rouge, Louisiana; Arizona; and Alabama.

    Although the rattlesnake is the most common critter mentioned, water moccasins and "vipers" also stand accused.
    Origins: Despite their benign appearance, children's indoor plastic ball pits often pose health and safety hazards. Those who clean these play areas report finding everything from used syringes to dirty diapers in them. Before letting your child loose in one, make sure the play area's maintenance staff spot clean the pit once a day and wash all the balls every week. Diapers come off in ball pits, and half-eaten candy is routinely found in there. More disturbingly, syringes and knives have turned up in there.

    Yes, ball pits have their dangers. But snakes aren't one of them. That part is pure lore.

    (A made-up cyber story about a child who supposedly died after being pricked by a heroin-filled needle found in a ball pit is also nothing but lore. Our Kevin Archer page gives details about this particular tale.)

    People have been reporting hearing the 'snakes in the ball pit' tale since at least the mid-1990s. It's a horrific tale of a parental nightmare -- one wants to believe there are at least some places a child would be safe in. If not a supervised play area, then where?

    Though this legend has gotten around, there are no real life incidents that correspond to it. No children have been bitten by venomous snakes lurking in ball pits. Though injuries and one death have occurred in ball pits, none of them was snake-related.

    It's no wonder: A ball pit is one of the last places an animal such as a rattlesnake would choose for a residence. Just as we dislike snakes, they don't much care for us, either. A rattler will avoid people and inhabited areas whenever possible. As well, snakes are cold-blooded and depend upon their environment to regulate their temperature. Therefore, they seek out places that will keep them warm when the weather is cool, and vice-versa. Snakes tend to burrow under things like rocks and sheets of metal that provide shade when the weather is hot and offer surfaces for basking in absorbed or reflected heat when the weather is cooler. The bottom of a ball pit doesn't see the light of day and thus is much too cold and damp an environment for a rattlesnake.

    Also, snakes do not live in "families." The female rattlesnake gives birth in a nest and continues on her way -- she doesn't wait around to make sure the young ones are all right, nor does she attempt to care for her young in any way. With no parents to take care of them, the newborn snakes have no reason to remain together as a family unit. Their number one priority is to scatter in search of food, not huddle with one another. (It's a neat folkloric juxtaposition, though -- the "evil" family of snakes destroys the "good" family of humans.)

    This legend of a child's fatally encountering a venomous snake in an amusement area is closely related to a similar tale about a wooden carousel horse. A little girl rides the merry-go-round to her death as her mother discovers all too late the painted hollow steed was home to a nest of vipers that bit her daughter all through the ride. Similar tales abound of snakes' nesting in roller coaster cars just unhoused from winter storage and bad-tempered venomous vipers' fanging any hand carelessly trailed in the water of an amusement park's Tunnel of Love.

    The message is clear: danger lurks amidst the gaiety, and a wise parent never takes his eyes off his kid. The juxtaposition of venomous snakes and amusement areas makes an even stronger statement than if these selfsame snakes were putting the chomp on youngsters in less carnival-like settings -- say, a schoolyard or a department store. Such legends work to caution parents to not relax parental vigilance even in presumed safe settings.
    "The very existence of flamethrowers proves that some time, somewhere, someone said to themselves, 'You know, I want to set those people over there on fire, but I'm just not close enough to get the job done.'"--George Carlin

  9. #9
    Little Dreamer
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    Claim: Canadian radio commentator Gordon Sinclair delivered a stirring, pro-American editorial in 1973.

    Status: True.

    Example: [Collected on the Internet, 1999]


    Good reading, from a Toronto newspaper's editorial page!
    Widespread, but only partial news coverage was given recently to a remarkable editorial broadcast from Toronto by Gordon Sinclair, a Canadian television commentator. What follows is the full text of his trenchant remarks as printed in the Congressional Record:

    This Canadian thinks it is time to speak up for the Americans as most generous and possibly the least appreciated people on all the earth.

    Germany, Japan and, to a lesser extent, Britain and Italy were lifted out of the debris of war by the Americans who poured in billions of dollars and forgave other billions in debts. None of these countries is today paying even the interest on its remaining debts to the United States.

    When the franc was in danger of collapsing in 1956, it was the Americans who propped it up, and their reward was to be insulted and swindled on the streets of Paris. I was there. I saw it. When distant cities are hit by earthquakes, it is the United States that hurries in to help. This spring, 59 American communities were flattened by tornadoes. Nobody helped.

    The Marshall Plan and the Truman Policy pumped billions of dollars into discouraged countries. Now newspapers in those countries are writing about the decadent, warmongering Americans. I'd like to see just one of those countries that is gloating over the erosion of the United States Dollar build its own airplane. Does any other country in the world have a plane to equal the Boeing Jumbo Jet, the Lockheed Tristar, or the Douglas 10? If so, why don't they fly them? Why do all the International lines except Russia fly American planes?

    Why does no other land on earth even consider putting a man or woman on the moon? You talk about Japanese technocracy, and you get radios. You talk about German technocracy, and you get automobiles. You talk about American technocracy, and you find men on the moon - - not once, but several times - and safely home again.

    You talk about scandals, and the Americans put theirs right in the store window for everybody to look at. Even their draft-dodgers are not pursued and hounded. They are here on our streets, and most of them, unless they are breaking Canadian laws, are getting American dollars from ma and pa at home to spend here.

    When the railways of France, Germany and India were breaking down through age, it was the American who rebuilt them. When the Pennsylvania Railroad and the New York Central went broke, nobody loaned them an old caboose. Both are still broke.

    I can name you 5,000 times when the Americans raced to the help of other people in trouble. Can you name me even one time when someone else raced to the Americans in trouble? I don't think there was outside help even during the San Francisco earthquake.

    Our neighbors have faced it alone, and I'm one Canadian who is damned tired of hearing them get kicked around. They will come out of this thing with their flag high. And when they do, they are entitled to thumb their nose at the lands that are gloating over their present troubles. I hope Canada is not one of those.




    Origins: On June 5 1973, Canadian radio commentator Gordon Sinclair decided he'd had enough of the stream of criticism and negative press recently directed at the United States of America by foreign journalists (primarily over America's long military involvement in Vietnam, which had ended with the signing of the Paris Peace Accords six months earlier). When he arrived at radio station CFRB in Toronto that morning, he spent twenty minutes dashing off a two-page editorial defending the USA against its carping critics which he then delivered in a defiant, indignant tone during his "Let's Be Personal" spot at 11:45 AM that day.

    The unusualness of any foreign correspondent -- even one from a country with such close ties to the USA as Canada -- delivering such a caustic commentary about those who would dare to criticize the USA is best demonstrated by the fact that even thirty years later, a generation of Americans too young to remember Sinclair's broadcast doubt that this piece (which has been circulating on the Internet in the slightly-altered form quoted above as something "recently" printed in a Toronto newspaper) is real. It is real, and it received a great deal of attention in its day. After Sinclair's editorial was rebroadcast by a few American radio stations, it spread like wildfire all over the country. It was played again and again (often superimposed over a piece of inspirational music such as "Battle Hymn of the Republic" or "Bridge Over Troubled Waters"), read into the Congressional Record multiple times, and finally released on a record (titled "The Americans"), with all royalties donated to the American Red Cross. (A Windsor/Detroit radio broadcaster named Byron MacGregor recorded and released an unauthorized version of the piece which hit the record stores before Sinclair's official version; an infringement suit was avoided when MacGregor agreed to donate his profits to the Red Cross as well).

    Sinclair passed away in 1984, but he will long be remembered on both sides of the U.S.-Canadian border -- both for his contributions to journalism, and for his loudly proclaiming a friendship that few at the time were willing to embrace.

    [img]graemlins/thumb.gif[/img] [img]graemlins/thumb.gif[/img]
    "The very existence of flamethrowers proves that some time, somewhere, someone said to themselves, 'You know, I want to set those people over there on fire, but I'm just not close enough to get the job done.'"--George Carlin

  10. #10
    Little Dreamer
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    Claim: Van Halen's standard performance contract contained a provision calling for them to be provided with a bowl of M&Ms, but with all the brown candies removed.

    Status: True.

    Example: [Harrington, 1981]

    Van Halen tends to make the news portion of radio more often than it gets airplay. There was the M&M riot in New Mexico where the band did thousands of dollars of damage to a hall when they were served brown M&Ms -- their contract said the brown ones had to be removed.



    Origins: Rock concerts have come a long ways since the days when the Beatles performed in boxing rings and hockey rinks, and made no greater demand of promoters than they be provided with clean towels and a few bottles of soft drinks. As the audiences grew larger, promoters stood to make more and more money from staging concerts, which meant that not only could rock stars command higher prices for their performances, but they were able to demand other perks as well, such as luxurious accommodations, lavish backstage buffets, and chauffeured transportation. It was inevitable that some high-demand acts, all their financial and pampering whims satisfied, would exercise their power and start making frivolous demands of promoters, simply because they could.

    By far the most notorious of these whimsical requests is the legend that Van Halen's standard concert contract called for them to be provided with a bowl of M&Ms backstage, but with provision that all the brown candies must be removed. The presence of even a single brown M&M in that bowl, rumor had it, was sufficient legal cause for Van Halen to peremptorily cancel a scheduled appearance without advance notice (and usually an excuse for them to go on a destructive rampage as well).

    The legendary "no brown M&Ms" contract clause was indeed real, but the purported motivation for it was not. The M&Ms provision was included in Van Halen's contracts not as an act of caprice, but because it served a practical purpose: to provide an easy way of determining whether the technical specifications of the contract had been thoroughly read (and complied with). As Van Halen lead singer David Lee Roth explained in his autobiography:


    . . . Van Halen was the first band to take huge productions into tertiary, third-level markets. We'd pull up with nine eighteen-wheeler trucks, full of gear, where the standard was three trucks, max. And there were many, many technical errors -- whether it was the girders couldn't support the weight, or the flooring would sink in, or the doors weren't big enough to move the gear through.
    The contract rider read like a version of the Chinese Yellow Pages because there was so much equipment, and so many human beings to make it function. So just as a little test, in the technical aspect of the rider, it would say "Article 148: There will be fifteen amperage voltage sockets at twenty-foot spaces, evenly, providing nineteen amperes . . ." This kind of thing. And article number 126, in the middle of nowhere, was: "There will be no brown M&M's in the backstage area, upon pain of forfeiture of the show, with full compensation."

    So, when I would walk backstage, if I saw a brown M&M in that bowl . . . well, line-check the entire production. Guaranteed you're going to arrive at a technical error. They didn't read the contract. Guaranteed you'd run into a problem. Sometimes it would threaten to just destroy the whole show. Something like, literally, life-threatening.




    Nonetheless, the media ran exaggerated and inaccurate accounts of Van Halen's using violations of the "no brown M&Ms" clause as justification for engaging in childish, destructive behavior (such as the newspaper article quoted at the top of this page). David Lee Roth's version of such events was decidedly different:


    The folks in Pueblo, Colorado, at the university, took the contract rather kinda casual. They had one of these new rubberized bouncy basketball floorings in their arena. They hadn't read the contract, and weren't sure, really, about the weight of this production; this thing weighed like the business end of a 747.
    I came backstage. I found some brown M&M's, I went into full Shakespearean "What is this before me?" . . . you know, with the skull in one hand . . . and promptly trashed the dressing room. Dumped the buffet, kicked a hole in the door, twelve thousand dollars' worth of fun.

    The staging sank through their floor. They didn't bother to look at the weight requirements or anything, and this sank through their new flooring and did eighty thousand dollars' worth of damage to the arena floor. The whole thing had to be replaced. It came out in the press that I discovered brown M&M's and did eighty-five thousand dollars' worth of damage to the backstage area.

    Well, who am I to get in the way of a good rumor?



    [img]graemlins/bounce.gif[/img] [img]graemlins/bounce.gif[/img] [img]graemlins/bounce.gif[/img]
    "The very existence of flamethrowers proves that some time, somewhere, someone said to themselves, 'You know, I want to set those people over there on fire, but I'm just not close enough to get the job done.'"--George Carlin

  11. #11
    Good Enough Van Gully's Avatar
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    Hey, I heard this legend about this great "official" website for the rock group Van Halen. It was suppose to have all the up to date info. on the band and was suppose to be a really cool place to hang. The band members were even suppose to chat with the fans. WOW!!! This place sounds great. It's called the Pleasure Dome. But when I ventured there it turned out to be a bunch of whoey. Kinda like that phantom hitch-hicker tale.
    "Gully, watch yourself. I am dead serious." - Brett Norton, Emperor of VHLinks.com

  12. #12
    Atomic Punk FORD's Avatar
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    10.22.17 @ 08:55 PM
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    From the Christian Rock band "The Swirling Eddies"

    Urban Legends
    Words and Music by Camarillo Eddy
    ©1989 Broken Songs

    Remember the girl with the bee hive hairdo
    stung by a spider in a rat’s nest igloo
    hook man leavin’ his hook on the door
    after givin’ that girlfriend’s guy what for
    someone put a rat in the deep fry
    madman on the phone in the upstairs bedroom
    alligators down in the sewer lines
    i had a tough time believing all that

    ‘till i picked up
    the vanishing hitchhiker
    i picked up (the vanishing hitchhiker)
    he was an angel (the vanishing hitchhiker)
    i heard him say "stop telling lies."
    then he went away

    remember the dog in the microwave oven?
    it was turned to high, now there’s nothin’ left of him
    "there’s a hatchet killer hiding in your back seat, ma’am
    and a rat tail floating in your coca cola can."

    at midnight there stood a stranger on the highway
    somewhere there abouts, (i think) in corpus christi
    he smiled and said that he was goin’ my way
    no i couldn’t say that i believed in all that

    ‘till i picked up
    the vanishing hitchhiker
    i picked up (the vanishing hitchhiker)
    he was an angel (the vanishing hitchhiker)
    i heard him say "stop telling lies."
    then he went away

    I get my info from the backward masking
    I get the Word of God through prayer and fasting
    JFK is alive and well
    and Kissenger is a beast from Hell

    the face of Saint Paul in this butt roast
    assures me that i’m going up to Heaven
    the anti-christ does laundry on the east coast
    i doubted the most -- did not believe in all that

    ‘till i picked up
    the vanishing hitchhiker
    i picked up (the vanishing hitchhiker)
    he was an angel (the vanishing hitchhiker)
    i heard him say "stop telling lies."
    then he went away
    Eat Us And Smile

    Welcome back, Van HALEN!!!!

    ...It's the BAND and Dave is really the cat that can front VH. He sang his ASS off and was really cool. No cheese here guys, this is filet Mignon! - Steve Lukather's comment after witnessing a Van HALEN 2007 rehearsal

    "What then is this bleating of sheep in my ears?"- 1 Samuel 15:14

 

 

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