Monday, March 19, 2018

The Poisoned Pet (Husband’s Lunch variant)

Gillian Bennett & Paul Smith, Urban Legends (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 2007), 141.

The story below was told to Gillian Bennett in Manchester (UK) in the summer of 1981 by a neighbor who had heard it in the hairdresser’s. [...]

A woman I know always makes sandwiches for her husband’s lunch. Anyway, one day she makes him salmon sandwiches and gives the left-overs to the cat, and goes out shopping. When she comes back she finds the cat unconscious on the back doorstep. She panics, rings her husband at work, and tells him to go to hospital ‘cos the salmon must be contaminated. So off he goes, has his stomach pumped out, poor man! Later that evening a neighbor calls, says, “Sorry, I was working on the roof and I dropped a brick on your cat” (Bennett Collection).

Los Angeles Free Press, vol. 11, no. 17, issue 511, 3 May 1974, p. 3.

“Yvonne Fouger of Montelmar, France, telephoned the veterinarian when her dog passed out. The doctor […] diagnose[d] the case as one of food poisoning from the canned meat he had eaten. Fouger immediately telephoned her husband at work, to warn him that she had put sandwiches made from the same meat in his lunchbox.” 

Friday, March 16, 2018

No Need For a Stamp – Write “Frank” on the Envelope Instead

16 March 2018

By Mary Rayme

[…] “Just write the word Frank where the stamp goes,” I hear another inmate telling a friend in the library.

I have to ask what he is talking about. He tells me that it is common knowledge that a very wealthy man named Frank died and donated his millions of dollars to the U.S. Postal Service. Now all poor people have to do is write his name on an envelope in place of a stamp, and the mail will be delivered for free.

Many prisoners swear they have used this method, and that it works.

The cool and weird thing about Franking is that in the U.S., it was originally used in 1775 by members of the first Continental Congress—it allowed for representatives to mail letters just by signing their names. If you look up the word ‘frank’ in the dictionary, one of the definitions you'll find is, “The signature of the sender on a piece of franked mail serving in place of a postage stamp.” […]

Mary Rayme is a recently retired prison librarian who worked at correctional facilities in West Virginia and Maryland. She is currently writing a memoir.

Key Parties

SF Weekly
15 March 2018

    Joe Kukura

We take it as an article of faith that suburban swingers from decades past engaged in a partner-swapping phenomenon known as key parties. As the lore goes, sets of car keys picked from a fishbowl would determine randomized sexual pairings of Quaaluded-up couples who would then supposedly go off and fuck.

But did key parties really ever happen? Or did they grow into a widely accepted urban myth after Hollywood invented them? SF Weekly sifted through 50 years of human sexuality literature to see if we could lock down the truth about the legend behind key parties. […]