Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Did You Know...

That the soldiers who guard the Tomb of the Unknowns have to live in a barracks below the tomb, aren't allowed to speak to anyone for their first six months, and can never drink alcohol again?

That Lee Marvin's ass was saved on Iwo Jima by Captain Kangaroo?

That Mister Rogers was a Navy SEAL who fought in Viet Nam, and knew dozens of ways to kill, and who wore those long-sleeved sweaters so you couldn't see all the tattoos on his forearms?

What? You didn't know these things?

That's because they aren't true. Yet every day I get crap like this in my email from friends. Most of the stuff is easy to figure out and debunk. A few minutes of research online get the truth out. Especially if you go to the Urban Legends Reference Page.

Snopes has become one of my favorite pages in the last few months. It's a one-stop shop, especially their inboxer rebellion pages, where you can quickly find out that Lee Marvin was wounded (in the ass, yes) at Saipan, not Iwo Jima; that Captain Kangaroo, while a Marine, never saw any action, and had enlisted two weeks after Iwo Jima; and that Fred Rogers was never part of any military branch, and in fact had been producing Mister Rogers' Neighborhood since 1963, thereby making it impossible to serve in 'Nam.

I usually refer the emailer to the Snopes.com website whenever I get another howler forwarded to me. I had hoped that it would reduce the number of these types of emails. It hasn't. I still get them, but now people add 'is this true?' to them.



Blogger Jessica said...

I like Snopes' photo gallery. There's also an interesting NPR piece on web rumors here.

8:22 AM  
Blogger Daniel Hoffmann-Gill said...

Wikipedia has a nice thing on web rumours also and anyone who sends me such shit is immediately killed.

I got one last week actually off a blogger I link to (but no more) which said that everytime I fowarded it the cancer ridden child would get a dollar...


8:37 AM  
Blogger Colleen said...

i hate email like that, but i haven't seen any of those that you mentioned. that one about mr. rogers cracks my shit up.

the one i'm getting now is that swiffer wet jet kills pets. so fake.

snopes is awesome.

8:52 AM  
Blogger Notsocranky Yankee said...

I watched "MythBusters" last night on the Discovery Channel with my daughter. Here's the description:

In this episode, Adam and Jamie take on the myth that illegal immigrants are firing themselves 200 yards across the border and into the United States with a slingshot so accurate, it can land the human projectiles safely on a carefully placed mattress. Border patrols are reportedly baffled — can the MythBusters' handbuilt human-sized slingshot solve the puzzle?

It was entertaining and early on you realize they are making fun of anyone who believes this myth.

Luckily I don't receive too many of those types of emails but if I get a chain letter I will send it to daniel...

9:39 AM  
Blogger elaine said...

you'd get along like a house on fire with my friend the 'door.

7:42 PM  

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