Friday, March 28, 2008

Hawk May Have Snatched Small Dog

27 March 2008

Hawk May have Snatched Small Dog

By Holly Bristow

SEMINOLE COUNTY, Fla. (WOFL FOX 35, Orlando) -- A 3 pound toy Papillion mysteriously disappears in from the play yard at a local kennel.

No one saw what happened to the tiny dog, but kennel workers believe she was swooped up and carried away by a hawk. [...]

[The dog was eventually found a half-mile from the kennel. Her owner, Brandon Gusler, is "not so sure he buys the hawk story."]

WKMG-TV [Orlando, FL]
27 March 2008

Hawk Flies Off With Family's Pet At Doggie Day Care

3-Pound Papillon Dog Remains Missing

OVIEDO, Fla. -- A family's 3-pound Papillon dog was snatched, carried off by a large hawk after it was let outside at a doggie day care business, according to a manager. [...]

Rumors at Murray State University

The Murray State News [Murray, KY]
28 March 2008

MSU Myths Busted

Officials set the records straight on campus-wide rumors

Emily Wuchner

[MYTH If your roommate commits suicide, you will receive straight A's.
MYTH If you are hit by a car (or in a crosswalk) on campus, you will receive free tuition.
MYTH If the teacher is more than 10 minutes late to class, class is canceled.
MYTH College Courts was built on top of an American Indian burial ground.
FACT There is a horse buried at Roy Stewart Stadium.
MYTH If a car is parked illegally with its parking flashers on, Public Safety will not issue a ticket.
MYTH Motorcycles are not ticketed.
UNSOLVED A ghost haunts the elevators in the Price Doyle Fine Arts Center.
FACT The Roy Stewart Stadium parking lot was once the town dump.
FACT There are a few children buried on University property near the Nathan B. Stubblefield monument.]

Sundry Rumors about Musicians,,2268367,00.html

The Guardian [UK]
28 March 2008

If it's not a hit it's a myth

John Pidgeon

[Various music legends and rumors are debunked.]

Contents of University Recycling Bins End Up in Trash

Cardinal Courier [St. John Fisher College, Rochester, NY]
28 March 2008

Guest Essayist: Contrary to myths, Fisher does recycle

By Kaitlin Daly, Residence Director, Founders Hall

When I first arrived at St. John Fisher College as a new employee, a bit of campus folklore I overheard was that Fisher doesn't recycle.

I was confused by this as there were recycling bins all over campus. When I asked others about recycling at Fisher, their explanations implied that the students, faculty and staff at Fisher do not recycle.

Yes, I was told, the bins are there, but supposedly all the contents of these "recycling" bins end up in the trash. [...]

Billionaire Plans to Drill a Tunnel Across the Bering Strait

The Daily Mail [UK]
26 March 2008

Has billionaire Chelsea boss Abramovich bought the biggest drill on earth to dig a tunnel between Russia and America?


Daily Telegraph [UK]
28 March 2008

Roman Abramovich denies Bering tunnel plans

A spokesman for Chelsea FC owner Roman Abramovich has strongly denied that his plan to buy the world's largest drill is intended to make a Channel Tunnel-style link between Russia and America. [...]

Gang Initiations Tend to Occur in April

News-Record [Greensboro, NC]
28 March 2008

Police: Gang e-mail a hoax

From Staff Reports

GREENSBORO -- Police said today that a false e-mail is circulatling around the Triad claiming that gang initiations tend to occur in April.[...]

The e-mail states that an FBI agent spoke to members of a local church about gang initiations that tend to occur during April. The message then details specific situations that are allegedly used by gang members during initiations.

Hypnotized Man Swindled, Vladivostok

Vladivostok News [Russia]
27 March 2008

Hypnotized man swindled

A Vladivostok resident, who was robbed of 4,500 rubles ($188) in the street by two Gypsies in what he claims to be a result of hypnosis, later came across them and reported them to the local police.

The man, whose name is not disclosed, turned to the police on Tuesday saying he had recently been stopped by two Gypsy women on Khabarovskaya Street in the residential district of Pervaya Rechka. According to the man, the two offered to tell him fortunes. He refused, but while talking to them was sent into a trance and after coming to his senses discovered that the two had taken money and documents from his pocket. [...]

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Gang Initiation Rumor, Buffalo, NY

The Buffalo News [NY]
27 March 2008

Warning issued on street gang

Motorists alerted over initiation rite


Buffalo police are concerned that a violent street gang with Central American roots could be planning an initiation rite targeting motorists and police.

Police Commissioner H. McCarthy Gipson issued a public alert early Wednesday evening, cautioning motorists in Buffalo and surrounding communities to be wary if involved in a rear-end collision because it could be part of the gang's initiation ritual.

Gipson said police received "credible information" that suggested the ritual could involve gang member recruits ca using rear-end collisions and then committing acts of violence against drivers. Gipson would not elaborate, but sources said gang members were urged "to shoot" drivers. [...]

The Buffalo News [NY]
27 March 2008

Buffalo police stand by warning to motorists about violent gang

Buffalo police are taking seriously warnings that a violent street gang may be planning an initiation rite that targets unsuspecting local motorists, despite some local media reports that dismissed the claims as urban legend.

Police officials reiterated today that they are taking this possible threat very seriously, although no such incident has happened locally. [...]

WGRZ-TV [Buffalo, NY]
28 March 2008

Probably A "Hoax"

Dave McKinley, Reporter

Buffalo Police Commissioner H. McCarthy Gipson warned city residents on Wednesday to be wary of gang initiation rituals which could result in harm to innocent victims.

But several other law enforcement agencies across the nation decided not to issue similar warnings after concluding information which came to them about such occurances amounted to nothing more than a hoax. [...]

The Buffalo News [NY]
28 March 2008

Were police hoaxed into airing warning about gang?

Initiation rite targeting motorists is considered an urban legend by many

By Vanessa Thomas

It was the talk of the city Thursday: Were Buffalo police brass the victims of a hoax when they warned the public that the violent MS-13 street gang could be planning an initiation rite targeting motorists?

Even some law enforcement insiders said the gang account is simply an urban legend. But Buffalo Police Commissioner H. McCarthy Gipson said the decision to alert the public was based on the shooting of an innocent victim this month.

Gipson revealed Thursday that this shooting involved a man driving his car in Buffalo, who pulled over when a vehicle behind him, occupied by at least three men, began flashing its lights at him.

When the man got out of his car, one of the men inside the other vehicle opened fire, striking him, according to Gipson. The victim sought medical treatment and has survived his injuries. [...]

The Buffalo News [NY]
7 April 2008

Motorist robbed after being rear-ended

A 27-year-old Buffalo man was the victim of a gunpoint carjacking this morning when his Jeep was rear-ended in the city's Kensington-Bailey neighborhood, police said.

The victim was at Comstock and Midway avenues at about 1:45 a.m. when a black vehicle occupied by two or three men rear-ended his Jeep, according to Northeast District police.

One of the men, wearing a red bandanna over his face, approached the victim and pointed a silver handgun at him.

Police said the men then stole his brown 2001 Jeep Cherokee, $60 and his cell phone before fleeing west on Hutchinson Avenue.

Buffalo police recently warned motorists about a possible gang initiation rite targeting motorists who are robbed after stopping when someone bumps into their vehicle. Police advised motorists involved in such collisions to keep driving to a well-lit area and immediately call 911 from a cell phone.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Gang Initiation: Cars Rammed, Drivers Killed

WHQR Public Radio [Wilmington, NC]
26 March 2008

Urban Legend Clogged Police Phones

Catherine M. Welch

WILMINGTON, NC (2008-03-26) -- An urban legend kept police departments across the state busy Tuesday night fielding calls from concern[ed] citizens.

Law enforcement from Wilmington to Charlotte say they were flooded with calls about a cell phone text message warning that cars would be rammed and drivers killed as part of a gang initiation.

At least one of the messages singled out the violent Central American gang MS 13. [...]

The Fayetteville Observer [NC]
26 March 2008

Police: No truth to gang initiation ruse

The Fayetteville Observer [NC]
28 March 2008

Police: No evidence of gang initiation plan

A staff report

Rumors are still circulating in Fayetteville about a gang initiation ruse that targets vehicle drivers. [...]

Delano, California, Police Department

News Releases

March 27, 2008

To all citizens of Delano and surrounding area

On 3/27/08, the Delano Police Department Gang Unit received information that a California Criminal Street Gang is going to be holding gang initiations in the Cities of Delano and McFarland. Prospective members are to collide their vehicles into random vehicles from behind. As the driver of the victim vehicle exits, the prospective members will open fire. This information has not been substantiated nor do we know if it is credible. [...]

Fresno Bee [CA]
28 March 2008

Delano police say gang-attack scare possibly a hoax

By Tim Bragg / The Fresno Bee

Delano police officials said today warnings that gang members would target motorists as part of violent gang initiation are possibly a hoax.

The Delano Police Department issued a warning Thursday after receiving information that gang members in Delano and McFarland had planned to rear-end motorists, then start violent confrontations after the drivers got out, as part of a gang initiation.

Today, police learned the source of the information might not be credible, Sgt. Eddie Perez said. [...]

New Haven Independent
27 March 2008

Gang Initiation Feared

by Paul Bass

Cops and City Hall workers received an email Thursday warning of a possible gang initiation Thursday night aimed at rear-ending unwitting motorists and then shooting them.

"Hey guys," began the forwarded email message, which began with an employee of a city department. "My friend who works at the Whalley Avenue Jail has just informed me that there will be a gang initiation tonight where they will rear end you and once you get out of the car they will shoot you." [...]

Dallas Morning News [Texas]
1 April 2008

Ignore those gang initiation e-mails

Steve Blow

Once again, the Internet grapevine is whipping folks into a tizzy. And once again, it's bogus.

Mass e-mails are flying around today about a supposed gang initiation in which cars are being bumped "all over the metroplex." Contrary to what the e-mail says, this has not been confirmed by Dallas police. Sgt. Gil Cerda, spokesman for the department, said he has heard nothing of the sort. [...]

The Chronicle [Duke University, NC]
2 April 2008

DPD: No truth to gang rumor

By: Ally Helmers

Although many students received listserv e-mails Monday evening warning of a dangerous initiation practice by the gang Mara Salvatrucha, Durham Police Department officials said the e-mails are unsubstantiated.

The e-mails state that members of the gang, also known as MS-13, rear-end cars and then shoot drivers who get out to inspect the damage. [...]

KKTV 11 News [Colorado Springs, CO ]
3 April 2008

E-Mail Hoax Fools Hundreds

Reporter: Mindy Stone

A terrifying e-mail is circulating through cyberspace. But, Fountain police say it's fake.

The e-mail warns the reader about the gang MS-13. It says they'll be having a car bumping initiation this week in Southern Colorado. [...]

Casa Grande Dispatch [AZ]
5 April 2008

Urban myth keeps 200 students home

By SUSAN RANDALL, Staff Writer

Casa Grande Union High School was the victim of an urban legend Friday.

Superintendent Nancy Pifer said some parents decided not to send their children to school because of a rumor of gang violence. Attendance was about 200 students lower than on a normal day. [...]

The recent version was that gang members drove around at night bumping cars - if the other drivers stopped, they would be shot.

The local version was that after the initiations, which always took place at night, there would be violence at the high school. [...]

Atlanta Journal-Constitution [GA]
16 April 2008

DeKalb police: Gang initiation e-mail is mere rumor

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

The e-mail, circulating for the last several weeks among metro Atlanta parents and teachers, is alarming and scary and, it turns out, to be taken with a grain of salt:

"MS-13 is a NEW GANG going through initiation this week," it reads in bold type. "They are targeting single women as well as single drivers. They will bump the rear of your vehicle...once you get out observing/asset [sic] the damage, they will stab you! Their motive is to KILL an individual in order to gain acceptance into the gang." [...]

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Pharm Parties

Debunking "pharm parties" for the third time.

By Jack Shafer

Do pharm parties exist?

Back in 2006, I concluded "no" after investigating a smattering of press stories about teenagers raiding their parents' medicine cabinets for pharmaceuticals, gathering to share their booty in a big bowl, and swallowing the pills at random like "trail mix." My two pieces ran on June 15 and June 19 of that year. [...]

Friday, March 21, 2008


Daily Mail [UK]
21 March 2008

'Look into my eyes': Supermarket robber who hypnotises checkout girls to get the cash is hunted by Italian police

Italian police have issued video footage of a man who has been hypnotizing supermarket checkout staff and getting them to hand over the cash.

In every case, according to reports, the last thing staff remember is a man leaning over and saying 'Look into my eyes' before suddenly finding the till is empty. [...]

London Times [UK]
23 March 2008

Italian hypnotist 'sent cashier into trance'

Richard Owen of The Times, in Rome
[Some other reports of hypno-thefts:]

The New Yorker
11 July 1936, p. 42


W. E. Farbstein

A Hindu mystic walked into a bar on the Riviera and hypnotized the barman into giving him a drink free of charge.

Hereward Carrington & Nandor Fodor, Haunted People (Toronto: Signet Mystic Books, 1968 [orig. 1951]), 118.

[A certain woman] could not resist her urge for stealing jewelry, [writes her analyst, Paul Federn, about a case from 1925.] During the treatment she fought strongly against her urges and succeeded in regard to minor objects. During this period it frequently happened that she coveted something while shopping for her daily needs. When she came home she then discovered that the coveted objects were in her bag wrapped in paper; they found their way into her pocket without having been paid for. The kleptomanic wish was apparently so strong that it communicated itself to the clerk behind the counter and made the clerk hand over the goods without conscious awareness; all this happened by an automatism.
National Lampoon
Oct. 1986, p. 14


This item appeared in North Carolina's Hickory Daily Record:

"A Hickory woman reported that she was the victim of a flimflam Thursday in the parking lot of K Mart on U.S. 64-70 East.

"Joyce Ancola Surrat said she was approached by a couple at approximately 7:20 P.M. According to a Hickory Police Department report, Ms. Surrat said the man moved his eyes back and forth, putting her in a trance. While she was in the trance, the man removed fifty-five dollars in cash from her purse and replaced the money with newspaper clippings."

The Daily Telegraph [UK]
26 May 1999

Woman gave cash 'under spell'

A SHOPKEEPER who gave stlg70 to two women posing as fortune tellers believes she was hypnotised into handing over the money. The woman, of Downham Market, Norfolk, who has not been named, believes she is a victim of spellbinding, where people are persuaded to hand over goods. West Norfolk police said no crime had been committed. A spokesman added: "She clearly remembers reaching into her till but hasn't a clue why she handed them such a large amount."


The Independent [South Africa]
13 July 2000

Look into my eyes ... now hand over the loot!

Kuala Lumpur - A man posing as a census-taker hypnotised an entire family in their own home then robbed them, a Malaysian newspaper reported on Thursday. The man convinced the family to let him in after telling them that he had forgotten to bring his identity badge, deputy commissioner of census for field operations Aziz Osman told the paper. The family, who live in Terengganu state in northern Malaysia, could not recall what happened from the time the man began a so-called interview and did not know when he left, Aziz said. They only realised they had been conned when they discovered some money missing. Their only explanation was that he had hypnotised them. About 53 000 census-takers are currently visiting homes across Malaysia for the country's first population count in a decade. - Sapa-AFP

Indian Express
17 Oct. 2000

`Hypnotised' woman robbed

CHANDIGARH, OCT 16: In a strange incident, Vijay Batta of Modern Complex, Mani Majra, claimed that she was robbed of her gold chain, kara and ring after being hypnotised near a local temple.

In her late 60s, Batta said that on October 13, she was stopped first by a male passer-by with a question, and then a woman in her 40s. ``She hypnotised me and made me give up my jewellery'', Batta told Chandigarh Newsline. ``I don't remember what happened after that.''

Batta's son Sudhir said his mother was found unconscious in the street. The Batta family said that though they had submitted a written complainant at the Mani Majra police station, no case had been registered.

Indian Express
16 Nov. 2000

Woman hypnotised by stranger, robbed of cash, ornaments

Manoj Dhiman

Ludhiana, Nov 15: An elderly woman was robbed of Rs 2,000 and gold ornaments by an unidentified man on Monday. The woman, Raj Kumari Sharma, a resident of Sector 39, Urban Estate on the Ludhiana-Chandigarh Road here, was on her way on a rickshaw at around 12 noon when she was stopped by a stranger near Calvery Church on the Brown Road.

The stranger called the woman bhuaji (aunt) and asked her to come with him as he could get her pension started from the concerned department. When she refused, the man continued talking to her and pursuing her to come with him, she said adding that after about 15 minutes she lost her senses as probably she was hypnotised by the stranger.

She added that then the stranger asked her to hand over her cash and jewellery to him saying she would not come under the pension scheme if the officials learnt that she was rich. [...]

Times of India
1 March 2001

Beware of that itch, it's meant to dupe!

By Dilnaz Boga

MUMBAI: Beware as you step in and out of your bank. You just could be the next victim of the tricksters waiting to fleece you. With their cheating modus operandi getting more innovative, a lot of people are falling prey.

On February 23, Ishrat Ali Lalljee, 37, a professor of Hinduja College was hypnotised by an unknown man while withdrawing her salary from Bank of India's Opera House branch. She registered a case at the D B Marg police station.

"I withdrew 40 notes of Rs 500 and was seated near the cash counter. A well-dressed man, around 30 to 35 years of age, 5ft 9 inches in height, fair, clean-shaven, came to me and mumbled something. He snatched the money from my hand and within a split of a second, returned it. For the next 30 seconds, I was spellbound. I went totally blank. By the time I got my bearings, it was too late, he had left and I fell short of Rs 6,000."

ACP B N Chougle of Girgaum division explains, "There is a group of two or three individuals who use this peculiar modus operandi. They keep on changing their area of operation, hence it has been a little difficult to nab them. This has been going on in areas like Chembur and Ghatkopar since several years. We might be able to trap them the next time they strike." [...]

New Straits Times
5 April 2001

Bewitched woman loses cash, jewellery, handphone to conman

[Penang, Malaysia]

By S. Shankar

A 21-year-old female factory worker was bewitched with cigarette smoke and robbed of cash, jewellery and a handphone worth a total of RM5,000 by a man, within minutes of being befriended by him. The victim told police the incident took place near the Komtar bus interchange at 3pm yesterday, after she had withdrawn money from an automatic teller machine (ATM) In her report, the victim claimed she was walking towards the interchange to board a bus when she was approached by a stranger. He introduced himself and befriended her, said Georgetown criminal investigation chief Superintendent Mohd Aris Ramli, adding that while they were walking towards the interchange, the man suddenly blew cigarette smoke into the victim's face. The victim felt drowsy after inhaling the smoke, and handed over her handbag containing cash RM2,400 and the handphone and jewellery to the man when asked to do so, Mohd Aris said. The victim only came to her senses after the man fled the place in a car parked nearby. […]

Ananova [UK]
19 May 2001

Australian police question suspect in hypnosis hold-ups

Police in Sydney have questioned an Indian man over a series of shops raids using hypnosis.

In the incidents, a man hypnotised store employees before persuading them to hand over cash.

Storekeeper Kauser Jamal told the Daily Telegraph that a man had talked to her, made predictions about her future and hypnotised her before talking her into handing over Aus $100 (35) twice in recent months.

The 26-year-old tourist from New Delhi was questioned and released on Thursday in connection with a string of similar incidents in stores across Sydney, the newspaper reported.

The Telegraph said police had no immediate plans to charge the man, whose identity was not released, because of the difficulty of proving he had broken the law.

Daily Express [Malaysia]
2 Nov 2001

'Conned by woman in Tudung' claim

Keningau: A 76-year-old widow here was conned of RM4,000 in cash and jewellery by a woman in "tudung" in a fake four-digit scam.

The victim's son, Rafaee Suip, said his mother was hypnotised by the woman aged about 18 before handing over the cash and valuables. [...]


Times of India
8 Jan 2002

'Psyched' youth hands over ornaments


CHANDIGARH: Two youths "hypnotised" teenage boy of Sector 23 and escaped with a large quantity of gold jewellery The incident took place on Saturday noon when Varun, class XI student, on his way to his great grandmothers house in Sector 22 met two youths in their mid-twenties near the Sector 23 temple.

Varun's father S N Sharma told Times News Network that the two youth engaged his son in conversation and hypnotised him.

They then told him that the gold jewellery in his house was under evil influence that would cause his parents' death.

They promised to drive out the evil if he brought them all the gold ornaments. [...]

Ananova [UK]
8 March 2002

Thieves 'hypnotise victim'

Two Romanian women have been arrested for allegedly using hypnosis to rob a man in a public park.

Police say the two women lured their victim promising they would read his palm but they took his wallet instead.

He was left in a trance sitting on a park bench in Sibiu. He woke up after half an hour and went to the police.

Libertatea newspaper reports the women are to go before a court charged with robbery.

Police in Sibiu say other people have been hypnotised before having their possessions stolen.


The Guardian [UK]
22 Aug 2003

Hypnotist thieves mesmerise Moscow

Kevin O'Flynn in Moscow

A Russian synchronised swimming champion is the latest victim of a pair of hypnotist thieves in Moscow.

After being put in a trance, Yulia Shestakovich, 21, took the two women to her flat and handed over cash and jewellery worth 19,000. A member of the Russian team that won the 2001 world championships, she is believed to be the pair's third victim in less than two months. [...]

Daily Record [Glasgow]
30 March 2004


A FAKE priest who hypnotised shopkeepers into handing over cash has been arrested.

The 63-year-old conman would wave his fingers in front of shopowners who would open their cash registers and hand over money.

Police in Rome said the conman then left the shopkeeper in a trance until an accomplice snapped them back to reality.

He is believed to have made more than £20,000 in a series of 10 stings over six months in the Italian capital.

Gulf Daily News [Bahrain]
2 Aug 2004

'Spell' cast by thieves


AN Indian jeweller claims he was hypnotised by three mysterious women, who tricked him into handing over BD580 in cash.

Abdul Hameed, 46, says he was counting out change for the women when they began making strange actions with their hands.

He claims he became suddenly depressed, but says he can't remember what happened next.

The last thing he recalls is watching them leave the shop, but it was only later when he thought about the strange encounter that he realised what had happened. [...]


Seattle Times
1 Feb 2005

Hypnotism in Russia a street-crime weapon?

By Kim Murphy
Los Angeles Times

[...] Across Moscow, a chestnut as old as crystal balls and gypsy curses makes regular appearances on the crime logs - hundreds of victims a year who say they were seduced out of their money in seemingly chance encounters with strangers. Many claim they were hypnotized by intense stares, mesmerizing babble and warnings of curses on their loved ones. [...]


Sydney Morning Herald
11 Oct 2005

Hunt for hypnotic robber

Moldovan police are searching for a con artist using hypnotism to steal tens of thousands of dollars from unwitting bank tellers, the Infotag news agency reported on Monday.

The suspect, identified as Vladimir Kozak, 49, is believed to have taken more than $39,000 from bank employees unable to resist his powers, police said. [...]


Gulf Daily News [Bahrain]
7 February 2006

More 'trance thieves' are questioned

Three more suspected Euroasian trance thieves appeared before the General Prosecution yesterday.

They were caught at Bahrain International Airport trying to leave the country, said Capital Police director-general Colonel Isa Abdulla Al Musallam.

The trance gang admitted their involvement in a string of hypno-thefts after they were caught on camera at an ATM. [...]


WMUR-TV [Manchester, NH]
27 September 2007

Storeowner Says Men Hypnotized Him Into Giving Them Cash
Police Warn That Scammers Could Target Other Stores

MARLBOROUGH, N.H. -- Two thieves scammed a Marlborough storeowner by claiming they could read his mind and reveal personal information about him before stealing money from his store, police said.

Police said that two Indian Punjabi men stole more than $1,000 from the Marlborough Country Convenience Store on Monday. The men told the storeowner that they were guruji, a type of Hindu priest, and that they could read his mind, police said.

Storeowner Yogesh Patel, 29, who is also from India, said that he had heard of the scam but never believed it and never thought it could happen to him. He said he's now upset and embarrassed.

"I'd never been (scammed), and every time I heard about it I laughed at it," Patel said.

Patel said the scam began with a simple mind game. The men asked him what his favorite flower was, and they opened a paper with the correct answer on it: "Rose." They then told him to think of a wild animal, and they again had written down his choice.

The scam quickly escalated to personal information involving family members and a former girlfriend.

"They also said my wife's name that not too many people know," Patel said. "My mom's name, they told me. And they told me what was my future goal."

Patel said he believes the men were able to hypnotize him into giving them money. Surveillance tape shows him putting cash into a hollowed-out book before getting more money from the safe.

After watching the tape, police said Patel seemed to have fallen under their sway.

"From him telling me, I wouldn't believe it," Detective Steve LaMears said. "Seeing the video, saying he's hypnotized, it makes it a little stronger." [...]

Gang Initiation Rumor: Mall Shooting, Virginia

The Virginian Pilot [VA]
21 March 2008

Chesapeake police dispute widespread mall rumor

By Kristin Davis
The Virginian-Pilot

Police say that a rumor circulating about gang violence at Greenbrier Mall is just that - a rumor.

E-mails saying that people would be shot at the mall as part of a gang initiation began circulating earlier this month. One said that two black females would be targeted; a second one claimed that a mother and child would be targeted. Detectives who monitor gang activity so far have said there is no reliable information to support the threats, Chesapeake Police Spokeswoman Christi Golden said in an e-mail. [...]

Thursday, March 20, 2008

203 Apes

Notes and Queries, 26 April 1862.


It seems as if a good story could never die. The witty sayings of the earliest ages continually re-appear. They are altered in their outward clothing , adapted (as the phrase is) to new times and manners, but still the little germ, in which the vitality resides, shoots up through the darkness of many intervening ages, and re-appears as fresh as ever. A modern instance of this reproduction, although in a very minor degree, occurs in that amusing book, The Autobiography of Mrs. Piozzi, edited by Mr. Hayward (2 vols. 8vo, 1861). In a note upon Wraxall, in allusion to Lord Harry Powlett, afterwards Duke of Bolton, the alleged original of one of Smollett's characters, the lively author of The Three Warnings remarks: --

"I don't know whether this Lord Harry Powlett, or an uncle of his wearing the same name, was the person of whom my mother used to relate a ludicrous anecdote. Some lady with whom she had been well acquainted, and to whom his Lordship was observed to pay uncommon attentions, requested him to procure her a pair of small monkeys from East India -- I forget the kind. Lord Harry, happy to oblige her, wrote immediately; depending on the best services of a distant friend, whom he had essentially served. Writing a bad hand, however, and spelling what he wrote for with more haste than correctness, he charged the gentleman to send him over two monkeys; but the word being written too, and all the characters of one height, 100, what was Lord Harry Powlett's dismay, when, a letter came to hand with the news, that he would receive fifty monkeys by such a ship, and fifty more by the next conveyance, making up the hundred according to his Lordship's commands." -- ii.118.

Mrs. Salusbury, the lady who is reported to have told this story, died somewhere about 1775; and Lord Harry Powlett became Duke of Bolton in 1765. The story may, therefore, be approximatively assigned to about the middle of the eighteenth century.

I will now give you a version of this same story, which bears the date on the 19th January, 1635-6. On that day Sir Edmund Verney, Knight Marshal to Charles I., wrote to his son Ralph Verney, from London, as follows: --

"To requite your news of your fish, I will tell you as good a tale from hence, and as true. A merchant of London, that writ to a factor of his beyond sea, desired him by the next ship to send him '2 or 3 apes.' He forgot the 'r,' and then it was '203 apes.' His factor has sent him fourscore, and says he shall have the rest by the next ship, conceiving the merchant had sent for two hundred and three apes. If yourself or friends will buy any to breed on, you could never have had such choice as now. In earnest, this is very true." -- Verney Papers, p. 167.

Thus it is that our ancestors say our good things before us. Can any of your readers point out any other example of this story? I think I have seen it elsewhere, but I cannot recall the place to mind.

John Bruce

[Bruce modernized the spelling in Verney's letter. -- bc]

Sound of Porn DVD Alarms Neighbors

Reader's Digest (Canadian edition)
March 2008, p. 61.


As a brand new empty-nester, I decided to give my son's room a thorough cleaning. Among the dust bunnies, socks and empty water bottles under his bed, I found an X-rated DVD and decided to check it out. I popped it in the DVD player in the family room and turned on the surround sound. But, although the video was playing, there was no audio. I turned up the volume, but still nothing. While the movie played, I checked every connection to the room's speakers, DVD player, receiver and TV. Nothing seemed to be disconnected.

The phone rang, and I chatted with a friend for 15 minutes or so. She ended our phone call saying, "Well, I'll let you get back to whatever you were doing."

"Actually," I replied, "I was trying to watch a movie, but I can't get any sound from the speakers."

The moment I said those words, my mind flashed to the outdoor speakers my husband had recently installed on our patio. I raced to the back of the house and, as I opened the back door, heard the elusive audio blasting from the patio speakers. To my horror, it was so loud and clear that the "movie stars" could just as easily have been on my patio table, speaking into a microphone hanging from my umbrella.

I ran back into the house and shut down the system. As I did so, my phone rang. It was my neighbour calling me from her work. She said her husband had called her from their home and asked her to check on me, as he and another neighbour couldn't believe what they were hearing. Later that evening, they joked the volume was so loud that you could barely hear the ambulance that came to resuscitate the older fellow next door. -- J. B., Windsor

John Smoltz Got Burned Ironing a Shirt,0,5686821.story

Orlando Sentinel [FL]
20 March 2008

Braves' John Smoltz keeps ironing out the truth about urban 'legend'

Braves pitcher refutes tale that he burned himself with the appliance while still wearing a shirt.

Josh Robbins
Sentinel Staff Writer

John Smoltz wants to set the record straight.

No, he's not referring to his 207 regular-season wins, his 15 career postseason victories or his three seasons of at least 44 saves, numbers that may earn him a spot in baseball's Hall of Fame someday.

Instead, the Atlanta Braves pitcher wants to clear up one of sport's sillier urban legends once and for all. He says he never burned himself by ironing a shirt while he was wearing it. [...]

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Image of Jesus Survives Fire

Palm Beach Post [FL]
14 March 2008

Image of Jesus only thing that survives Port St. Lucie fire

Palm Beach Post Staff Writer

PORT ST. LUCIE - As police and firefighters combed through the debris of Cynthia Wright's burned home Thursday, one powerful picture sat untouched on a melted, blackened garage shelf - a photo of Jesus Christ tending sheep in a Bible photo title[d] "The Good Shepherd." [...]

The Canadian Lighthouse

Los Angeles Times
15 March 2008

Top of the Ticket

The Director of National Intelligence opens up to students

Mark Silva

[Mark McConnell, the U.S. Director of National Intelligence, opened his speech at a recent symposium at Johns Hopkins University with a familiar joke about a naval ship's radio conversation with a lighthouse. He claimed it was a true story: "I was in the signals intelligence business where you listen to the people talk and so on. This is true. It's an actual recording."]

Lewis and Faye Copeland, 10,000 Jokes, Toasts and Stories. Garden City, NY: Garden City Books, 1940, p. 691.


The fog was very thick, and the Chief Officer of the tramp steamer was peering over the side of the bridge. Suddenly, to his intense surprise, he saw a man leaning over a rail, only a few yards away.

"You confounded fool!" he roared. "Where the devil do you think your ship's going? Don't you know I've got the right of way?"

"Out of the gloom came a sardonic voice:

"This ain't no blinkin' ship, guv'nor. This 'ere's a light'ouse!"

Monday, March 17, 2008

Kidney Transplant Changes Woman's Personality

Lancashire Evening Post [UK]
14 March 2008

Mum's personality changed after kidney op

A single mum from Lancashire is convinced a kidney transplant has changed her personality completely.

There was a time when all Cheryl Johnson would read were low brow novels, but since the operation her book of choice has been Dostoevsky.

She says she has swapped celebrity autobiographies for heavier reads such as Jane Austen. [...]

The Sun [UK]
15 March 2008

I got new brain in kidney swap


MUM Cheryl Johnson had a life-saving kidney transplant — and wound up with the donor’s PERSONALITY as well. [...]

Single mum Cheryl of Preston, Lancs, said: “My brain power has definitely been boosted since having the transplant. [...]

Cheryl believes her donor, a man who died of an aneurysm, could have been a high-powered businessman or a scientist who studied ancient Egypt.

She said: “I used to watch soaps. Now I watch documentaries on the Egyptian pyramids. I can’t get enough of them. It’s weird.” [...]

Daily Telegraph [UK]
16 March 2008

New kidney 'changed my whole personality'

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Gang Initiation = "Buck Fifty" Slashing

The Daily Journal [Vineland, NJ]
15 March 2008

Police: Gang e-mail rumor has no truth

Staff Writer

VINELAND -- An e-mail circulating throughout the city warning of an alleged gang initiation is false, Police Chief Timothy Codispoti said Friday.

The e-mail warns people of a gang initiation called a "buck fifty," in which a person is randomly slashed with a knife, causing a wound that requires 150 stitches to close. [...]

Bridgeton News [NJ]
15 March 2008

Slashing was not a gang initiation


VINELAND -- An e-mail circulating locally regarding an alleged gang initiation is inaccurate, according to Vineland police.

The e-mail states that a person was slashed in the face in an incident last weekend at Sherman Avenue and Main Street, in Vineland.

The author of the e-mail goes on to state that the incident was "a new gang initiation call(ed) getting a buck fifty.'"

Vineland Police Lt. Tom Ulrich said Friday that, although the e-mail is based on a real incident, the conclusions it draws are false. [...]

Lhasa's Water Supply Poisoned

Xinhua News Agency [China]
15 March 2008

Lhasa water company dispels poison rumor

LHASA, March 15 (Xinhua) -- An official with the Lhasa water company said on Saturday that rumors on drinking water being poisoned amid the Lhasa turmoil are not true.

Soi'nam Gyaibo, director of the system management institute of the Lhasa Water Company, said the rumors began spreading on Friday that drinking water in the city were poisoned, but tests performed by the watch company and experts with the regional disease control and prevention center show the tap water is safe. [...]

Is Senator Obama a Muslim?

National Post [Canada]
15 March 2008

Why my kin won't vote Obama

Allen Abel, National Post

A visit with my born-again Texas cousins and their "Steeple People" allies is a window into Christian salvation, Southern politics, and the conviction that Muslims like Barack Hussein Obama have no chance of going to heaven. [...]

"Is Senator Obama a Muslim?" I ask, using the question as a test of the triumph of fervency over fact. [...]

[Respondents to Abel's question are unsure that Obama is a Christian.]

New Book about TV Rumors

Edmonton Journal [Alberta]
15 March 2008

Debunking TV's biggest myths
Joanie Loves Chachi wasn't a hit in South Korea -- or anywhere else, for that matter

Alex Strachan, Canwest News Service

Television not only convinces us of things we otherwise might not believe, it also convinces us of things that never actually happened.

Just ask Bill Brioux, a former staff writer for TV Guide Canada and author of the book Truth and Rumors: The Reality Behind TV's Most Famous Myths. [...]

[The article recounts Brioux's investigation of the rumor that Zsa Zsa Gabor once asked TV talk show host Johnny Carson if he'd like to pet her "pussy." Carson's co-host, a none-too-reliable Ed McMahon, told him the incident had actually happened.]

Friday, March 14, 2008

Pennies From Heaven

Dear Abby [syndicated advice column]
13 March 2008


DEAR ABBY: From time to time you print letters about finding "pennies from heaven." Are you ready for another one? [...]

[You bet she is. For links to some other Dear Abby "pennies from heaven" stories, see here: ]

Ring and Helium Balloon

The Sun [UK]
14 March 2008

Balloon seen in the sky with diamond


A HOPELESS romantic saw his engagement plans vanish into thin air – after a balloon containing a £6,000 diamond ring was BLOWN AWAY.

Luckless Lefkos Hajji wanted to surprise girlfriend Leanne, 26 – so he told a florist to put the sparkler inside a helium balloon.

But as he left the shop a gust pulled it from his hand and the balloon soared into the sky. [...]
[An earlier incident involving a wedding ring and a helium balloon:]

Scarborough Today [UK]
22 Feb 2007

Wedding ring calamity

A SCARBOROUGH dad is in the dog-house after a balloon-atic stunt ended in calamity.

Calum McFadyen tied his gold wedding ring to the string of his child's helium balloon to see if he could weigh it down.

But as he watched television in the front room he was horrified when he heard older son Henry, four, open the front door of their Alexandra Park home and wave goodbye to the Thomas the Tank Engine balloon as it floated off with the ring still attached. [...],,2-2007080842,00.html
The Sun [UK]
23 Feb 2007

White Student Stripped at South African University,,2-7-1442_2287825,00.html [South Africa]
14 March 2008

UFS e-mail untrue - rector

Bloemfontein - Allegations of disorder on the main campus of the University of the Free State (UFS) contained in an anonymous e-mail that was circulating in South Africa were untrue, said Rector Frederick Fourie on Thursday.

The e-mail makes reference to Tuesday morning, March 4, and tells of incidents of intimidation by black students which allegedly took place on the main campus in Bloemfontein.

Fourie said: "In the e-mail it was alleged a white girl was attacked at the food court, her clothes ripped from her body and thrown off the Thakaneng Bridge, the university's student centre, and that she had to run back to her residence (naked)." [...]

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Fish Heads

Jamaica Observer
13 March 2008

Debunking those salt fish myths

Debra Edwards

[...] "If you ever saw the head of salt fish then you would never eat it," many have been told, but as the Jamaican media contingent that was recently invited to Norway by the Norwegian Seafood Export Council found out while exploring the country's booming fishing industry, don't always believe what you hear.

The tale of a visually unappealing cod head has been told for decades, and of late pictures of an alien-like figure have been doing the rounds on the Internet, which have some worried about what they are eating. [...]

Valentine's Day Flowers Came From Funeral

Dear Abby [Syndicated advice column]
12 March 2008


[A correspondent tells "Abby" that that the expensive flower arrangement her boyfriend gave her on Valentine's Day came from a funeral his parents had attended. After prying this information from him, she called him "greedy and cheap," and Abby agrees.]

Dolphin Guides Whales to Sea

New Zealand Herald
12 March 2008

Moko the dolphin helps locals save whales from beaching

It could have been a scene from a movie when Mahia's Moko the dolphin came out of nowhere to save two pygmy sperm whales from what looked like certain death.

The playful dolphin, who has set up home around Mahia on the East Coast, was the perfect helper on Monday as Department of Conservation worker Malcolm Smith toiled to refloat the mother whale and her one-year-old male calf. [...]

The Associated Press
13 March 2008

Dolphin Appears to Guide Whales to Sea


WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) - Most days, Moko the bottlenosed dolphin swims playfully with humans at a New Zealand beach. But this week, it seems, Moko found his mojo. Witnesses described Wednesday how they saw the dolphin swim up to two stranded whales and guide them to safety. [...]

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Woman Stuck to Toilet Seat

The Associated Press
12 March 2008

Sheriff: Woman Sat on Toilet for 2 Years


WICHITA, Kan. (AP) - Authorities are considering charges in the bizarre case of a woman who stayed in her boyfriend's bathroom for two years, spending most of her time on the toilet - so that her body was stuck to the seat by the time the man finally called police. [...]

[Some urban legends feature people who become stuck to freshly-painted or glue-covered toilet seats. Sometimes the embarrassed victim along with the attached toilet seat is taken to a hospital, where a doctor, viewing the prone patient, remarks, "I've never seen one framed before." In this case, Ness County Sheriff Bryan Whipple revealed that Pam Babcock had sat so long on the toilet "her body fat had grown attached to the seat....We pried the toilet seat off with a prybar and the seat went with her to the hospital....The hospital removed it." We are left to wonder if the attending physician was inspired to make the apposite comment.]

Gangs Steal Kids' Organs, Philippines

The Daily Inquirer [Philippines]
11 March 2008

Rizal cops return missing Quezon City kids to parents

By Marlon Ramos
Philippine Daily Inquirer

MANILA, Philippines -- More than 16 hours after they were mistakenly reported to have been abducted by several unidentified men on board a van, two five-year-old children from Quezon City had an emotional reunion with their parents at a police station in San Mateo, Rizal Tuesday. [...]

Residents in the area told the two women that several men on board a white van had seized their sons.

Agpaoa said the mothers became hysterical when a neighbor informed them of an alleged gang victimizing youngsters in the Calabarzon region. [...]

The Inquirer [Philippines]
12 March 2008

Kids abduction rumors a hoax, says PNP chief

By Thea Alberto

MANILA. Philippines -- Mobile text messages about a gang roaming around and seizing children in Southern Tagalog supposedly to sell their internal organs are a hoax, Philippine National Police Director General Avelino Razon Wednesday. [...]

Philippine Star
13 March 2008

Muntinlupa cops say `kidnap van' story a hoax

The Muntinlupa police yesterday allayed fears of parents about an alleged van whose occupants go around the city to kidnap children who are later killed and their internal organs taken. [...]

Monday, March 10, 2008

"Leave It On!"

New York Times
10 March 2008

Metropolitan Diary

[While walking down a New York City street lined with men selling fake goods, Gabrielle Levin took off her sweater, prompting one of the vendors to yell, "Leave it on! Leave it on!" -- or so the disconcerted woman initially thought. But she soon realized that he had been shouting, "Louis Vuitton! Louis Vuitton!"]

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Wolves Planted in Dodge County, WI

Fond du Lac Reporter [WI]
9 March 2008

DNR: Wolves planted in Dodge County only rumor

By Colleen Kottke
The Reporter

HORICON -- Some area farmers are howling that Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources officials have planted gray wolves in the area to combat burgeoning white-tailed deer populations.

Nothing could be further from the truth, said DNR educator and naturalist Bill Volkert, calling the claims nothing more than bad rumors. [...]

[Volkert also denies that the DNR has released rattlesnakes to eat turkey eggs.]

Statue's Missing Finger,0,5437310.story

Hartford Courant [CT]
9 March 2008

Statues Of Limitations

Erecting Memorials To Public Figures Becoming A Thing Of The Past?

Courant Staff Writer

[High school students in West Hartford used to put a condom on the index finger of the town's statue of Noah Webster, a tradition which ended abruptly when the finger was broken off. Some people believe that the missing finger was taken by "police officers who were tired of taking condoms off of it." Last year the statue finally got a new finger and, "after a decadeslong lull, an old tradition may have already returned. Town historian Tracey M. Wilson says she heard that a condom was found on the finger earlier this month."]

Saturday, March 8, 2008

The Wedding Rehearsal

Washington Post Magazine
9 March 2008, Page W06

Editor's Query

Tell us about a time you made a comically bad first impression

[Susan Hunter Lyon describes being locked out of St. Mark's Episcopal Church on the afternoon of her wedding rehearsal. She banged on the door and shouted in desperation, "For God's sake! Somebody please open this [expletive] door!", whereupon it did open, revealing her future mother-in-law and "their longtime family friend, the minister."]

Friday, March 7, 2008

Items in Recycling Bins Become Garbage

The Charlatan [Carleton University, Ottawa, Canada]
7 March 2008

Carleton recycling rumours cleared

by Tim Bryant

When you throw your empty pop can into a recycling bin on Carleton campus, where do you think it ends up? On campus, rumour has it that items in recycling bins are thrown out with the garbage. But Bill Radway, supervisor of custodial and ancillary services at Carleton's physical plant said that is not the case. [...]

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Curse of the Crying Boy Picture

The Sheffield Star [UK]
5 March 2008

Truth about the Crying Boy curse revealed

By Martin Dawes

[David Clarke has researched the legend of the "cursed" Crying Boy picture. His article, "The Curse of the Crying Boy," appears in Fortean Times 234 (May 2008), pp. 32-8.]

[On reports of "The Crying Boy" picture surviving and possibly even causing fires in various homes in Britain in 1985-6, see Georgina Boyes, "Women's Icon, Occupational Folklore and the Media: An Examination of a Contemporary Rumour Legend in Process," in Gillian Bennett and Paul Smith, eds., The Questing Beast. Perspectives on Contemporary Legend, volume IV (Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press, 1989), pp. 117-131. See also Fortean Times 46 (Spring 1986), pp. 22-3; Fortean Times 47 (Autumn 1986), p. 36.]


David Clarke's article, "The Curse of the Crying Boy, "is now online:

Fatalistic Floral Tribute

New York Post
5 March 2008

Page Six [gossip column]

Richard Johnson
with Paula Froelich, Bill Hoffmann, Corynne Steindler, and Marianne Garvey

Wrong Words

MONIQUE van Vooren had a tragicomic surprise when she arrived at the Frank E. Campbell Funeral Home last week to pay her last respects to her longtime companion, Orin Lehman, the war hero who died at age 88. Since "I'll Be Seeing You," the 1938 torch song by Irving Kahal and Sammy Fain, was Lehman's favorite tune, van Vooren had ordered a magnificent floral arrangement from Olivier with a card that was supposed to say, "To my beloved Orin, I'll be seeing you. Monique." Instead, the prominently displayed card read: "I'll see you soon."

Strawberry Meth

BBC News
5 March 2008

Police duped over fictional drug

Police have sent out a hoax drugs warning to schools over a fake drug called "strawberry meth". The warning said that the drug was being given to children outside their school gates. At least 80 schools in west Oxfordshire received an e-mail warning, leading to some holding special assemblies. [...]

Oxford Mail [UK]
5 March 2008

Police in school drugs scare blunder

By George Hamilton

Hundreds of families were warned about a bogus drug being handed out to children after a blunder by a policeman. [...]

Race and Rumors

Baltimore City Paper [MD]
5 March 2008

Social Studies by Vincent Williams

Race and Rumors

[The African-American columnist notes that, in his experience, white and black Americans tend to spread different rumors by e-mail.]

[...] But we can change that, my white friends! The next time you get an e-mail talking about . . . well, whatever it is that these e-mails talk about, I promise I'll forward you one about how Ralph Lauren (or Tommy Hilfiger or Ann Taylor or Kate Spade--it all depends on the e-mail) was on Oprah and said he hated black people.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Gang Initiation Rumor Includes RCMP Warning

Barrie Examiner [ON]
4 March 2008

Gang initiation scare an urban legend: cops

Gangs are driving around with their lights off just waiting to initiate new members, or so the urban legend e-mail with an RCMP employee's name goes and has continued to go for four years. The e-mail, usually titled RCMP warning, claims gangs are cruising the streets waiting for drivers to flash their lights or blow their horn trying to signal that their headlights are off.

It is circulating again this week. [...]

Stolen Dogs Used as "Bait Dogs"

Cody Enterprise [Wyoming]
4 March 2008

No `dognapping' found in Cody, Powell

By Carole Cloudwalker

Despite persistent rumors of “dognappings” from backyards in Park County, community service officers in Cody and Powell have seen no evidence of the problem. Reports spread last week that the Cody Police Department's Community Service Officer, Duane Wiener, had issued a warning that people should be wary of anyone loitering near yards where dogs are kept. The rumor was that people have been “dognapping” pets to use as “bait dogs” for illegal dogfight training. [...]

Monday, March 3, 2008

Al Capone Slept Here

Kalamazoo Gazette [MI]
3 March 2008

Hideout for Scarface?

Posted by Chris Killian
Special to the Kalamazoo Gazette

[Spurred by neighbors' claims that their house had once served as one of Al Capone's hideouts, Jim and Jean Garland of Paw Paw, Michigan, dug in their basement for evidence of the mobster. ]

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Coyotes Introduced to Kill Deer, Pennsylvania

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette [PA]
2 March 2008

Coyote stocking a myth, says commission

By John Hayes, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

There's a persistent rumor -- call it a rural myth -- about how coyotes arrived in Pennsylvania. The story goes something like this: in a misguided effort to reduce the deer herd, the Game Commission secretly imported coyotes and released them throughout the state, later denying it when their numbers grew. [...]

[Game Commission spokesman Jerry Feaser believes the rumor started after a Wildlife Conservation officer attached a radio collar to a troublesome coyote. "With no official coyote tags available, he clipped on Bobcat Tag No. 26." A hunter later caught the coyote -- which by then had shaken off the collar but not the tag -- and assumed it was part of a program to stock coyotes.]

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Secrets Encoded in Musical Compositions, WW I

Norman Lebrecht, The Book of Musical Anecdotes. NY: The Free Press, 1985, p. 265.

[Frederick] Delius returned to England from France in 1918 with a new orchestral work for Sir Henry Wood's Prom. concerts. Wood, on meeting Delius was 'deeply distressed with his tired and tragic appearance' and as soon as they reached Wood's house, Mrs Delius insisted that her husband take a rest. Delius, recalled Wood, 'proceeded to unbutton his waistcoat, shirt and top trouser button, and, to my astonishment, pulled out sheet after sheet of manuscript which proved to be his new work, Once Upon a Time (Eventyr). 'What a relief to get it safely to London,' he murmured, and subsided into a chair. 'I, too, am relieved,' whispered Madame Delius. 'I was so afraid they might search him and commandeer it.' They had feared arrest throughout the journey, alarmed by rumours that a conductor in America had been transmitting coded war secrets to Germany in the guise of musical compositions.

[Source: Sir Henry Wood, My Life of Music, 1938.]


Contra Costa Times [CA]
19 February 2008

GARY BOGUE [Columnist]

'Lambchopophobia' sends pup into a fury

[...] About 14 or 15 years ago, I got a letter from a man whose pug went nuts and ran crashing into walls whenever his wife fried up some lamb chops.

I playfully and somewhat skeptically printed his letter and was immediately inundated with 40-50 letters about dogs and cats that had freaked out (in different ways) when their humans fried lamb chops. I have to say that was pretty unbelievable. [...]

Contra Costa Times [CA]
21 February 2008


Weird behavior comes in like cooked lamb ...


Tuesday, I wrote about pets that freak out when their humans cook lamb.

Some responses: [...]