July 15

Origins of Urban Legends

We have all grown up hearing, reading, and telling urban legends. These stories are passed around from generation to generation. Sometimes they are funny, while other times they are shocking and scary. They are usually meant to be used as a life lesson or for a warning. Urban Legends are entertaining, but have you ever stopped and asked, what are the origins to these stories? Is there any truth to them? Or better yet, some of them are so silly that you really don’t understand how they became an urban legend in the first place.  Today, we are going to attempt to look at some origins of a few urban legends. Even though these have been researched, part of the appeal of urban legends is that it could be anyone’s story. It has been said there is a bit of truth to ever urban legend. Let’s see how spooky, or even how silly those origins might be.

 

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1. Drinking Diet Coke and Eating Mentos will cause your stomach to explode.

I think most of us have heard a variation of this particular urban legend. If you drink a full can of diet coke, and then follow that with eating the candy, Mentos, your stomach will blow up. Sometimes, it’s drinking a full can. Other times, it says to take a sip of the Diet Coke, and put a Mentos in your mouth. If you swallow them at the same time, then that will cause your stomach to explode. Does this actually happen? Of course not, but there is reasons behind this story. The origin comes from the fact that there is a very real chemical reaction that happens when adding mint Mentos to Diet Coke. If you place Mentos in a Diet Coke, it will cause the soda to shoot out of the container. However, this isn’t the same effect when you add in a human to the mix. What will really happen to you if you mix these two items? You may have a bad taste in your mouth, and get some gas. It’s not going to explode your stomach.

 

 

 

 

2. I’m carrying Spider Babies in my cheeks!

I clearly remember reading this story in the “Scary Stories”  books when I was a child. This really bothered me, as I’m sure it bothered many people. This urban legend states that a young girl went on vacation overseas. When she was at her destination, she was bitten by a spider on her cheek. They didn’t seek medical attention because it was not bothering her. By the time she had arrived back home, her cheek was swollen. While taking a bath, her cheek burst open and baby spiders came out of her face! I can say one thing about the origins of this myth. A spider can’t lay eggs in your face. Keep in mind, I said a spider only. There are many creepy crawling creatures that can do some serious damage to you. When you travel, take all the precautions that you need, including learning about the local wild life.

 

 

3.If you put batteries in the Fridge, they will last longer.

This may be a very dated urban legend since everyone has chargers for everything. However, there are still those certain things, like your TV remote, that requires actual batteries. Many people stored their unused batteries in the Fridge right next to the milk and butter in an attempt to keep them fresh. My Grandparents did this, and I think my parents did as well. The thought process behind this origin is that many years ago, different chemicals were used to make batteries. It might have been instructed on the packages to store in a cool, dry place. Many people decided to put their batteries in the fridge because they thought it would help them not to spoil. This became a learned behavior, and as technology improved, the need to do this anymore stopped. However, many people still store their batteries in the Fridge even though it may actually be damaging to them instead of extending their life.

 

4.Throwing a Penny from a high location can kill someone!

Have you ever been to a really high place like the Sears Tower and saw warning signs about not throwing anything off the side of the building? That makes a lot of sense, because there is a lot of items that can do some damage. However, people fear the tiny little penny as a weapon of death! To date, not one death has been caused by a penny. There also has never been property damaged done by a falling penny. The origin to this urban legend comes from the fact that items gain velocity while falling. Meaning objects that fall get faster, therefore have a greater force when it finally stops. A penny is not ever going to be enough force to hurt anyone, or anything if falling from a huge building. However, other falling objects can cause a lot of damage, so don’t throw anything off a building, and be careful where you are standing!

 

5. Chain Letters, Emails, Posts:

This super rich celebrity is going to pick one lucky person to give a million dollars to give to! All you have to do is like, share, and comment on this post. They will see it, trust me! Or, this random person won the lottery, and they want to share their money with one person! All you have to do is forward this email to everyone in your list! If this post gets 1 million likes, this person will give away a car to one of the people who clicked the like button. Did you fall for it? Many people have. The origins of this is simple. Most of the time, these are ways to collect your data. Many of these posts that you are sharing come with an unwanted guest, a virus that scans and collects data from your phone and computer. Let’s just be clear, if it’s too good to be true, it is not real.

 

Those were a few of the strange origins to some urban legends. They may vary, but essential the message is the same. What are some of your favorite urban legends?

***When commenting, use #urbanlegends

 

January 29

Five Movies That Wouldn’t Make it Today

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Have you ever watched a movie from your childhood and realized that there is no way in the world that it would work in today’s world? These movies that I am talking about are not the ones from the 1940’s, or the 1950’s. These movies would be from a time not that too far in the past. I am talking about the 1980’s to even the early 2000’s. While we may enjoy these movies, the same story would not work at all in today’s world. Here is a list of the 5 movies that would be vastly different if they were written today. Most likely, they wouldn’t be a very long movie at all!

1.Harold and Kumar Go to White Castle:

This movie came out in 2004. It follows college friends, Harold and Kumar on their adventures to get to White Castle while they are drunk and stoned. They go on an adventure and silliness happens. However, there is no way this movie would take place today due to all the options of deliver. This would be the entire movie.

Harold: I’m hungry, let’s go to White Castle.

Kumar: That’s a great idea, but we are drunk and stoned.

Harold: Let’s use Uber Eats or Door Dash. That way we aren’t leaving the house!

Kumar: Great, I will use the app on my phone.

Roll Credits!


2. E.T.

This beautiful classic movie came out in 1982, It follows an alien who is hiding out with a boy and his family while trying to escape the government. Today this movie would be very different.

Aliens land, everyone takes pictures on their smart phones. They are quickly uploaded to YouTube and the government quickly silences it as a joke. There is no family interaction, nor fear of keeping the alien safe since everyone, everyone is being filmed at all times. The alien would never have a chance to make it to a family, and there wouldn’t be any sort of amazing bike ride, or any phoning home.

3. The Breakfast Club:

This John Hughes Classic from 1985 follows students from very different backgrounds who bond during their detention on a Saturday at school. Today it would never happen.

Students get Saturday school for various deeds done wrong. Some parents threaten to sue the school over harsh treatment and going to school on a Saturday. The students who actually make it to Saturday school never speak because they are on their phones the whole time. Several take this as an opportunity to post Instagram posts about how unfair this whole thing is and how detention is stupid!

4. Overboard:

While there is a remake to this 1987 movie in the works now,  the original story in today’s world would never work today.

A very rich woman falls overboard and forgets who she is. Even though she doesn’t have a wallet or any ID on her there is a plan. The doctors and nurses take her photo and release it to the media. Moments later, she is identified and is able to go back to her family and life after getting the care she needs. She never lives with another family who claims her after she was terrible to them.


5. Edward Scissor Hands:

This fantasy film came out in 1990. While a lovely movie, it would never be made today.

A young man who lived in a strange man’s home is discovered by a retailer. He is abandoned and looks very dangerous. Her survival instincts kick in, and she runs away after dialing 911. The young man is taken into custody and is treated for his hands, and his physiological issues. This takes years and lots of trial and error. Eventually, he becomes part of society while never interacting with the family of the realtor who found him.

 

 

 

While these movies are loved, they just wouldn’t be made in the same way today. Something has been lost in our advance world. We have more ways to keep in touch, but so many more ways to limit imagination. It’s important to be entertained, but it’s also important to have heart. It’s fun to enjoy what was, and hope we still have great stories to look forward to!

 

If you like these movies, try streaming them all on a Fire Stick with the Echo remote!

January 7

These Things I Believe

Underdogs, I realize that my wonderful readers may not know me very well, including what I believe. I thought since it’s supernatural Sunday, I would give you a list of things that may seem spooky or other worldly and let you know what I believe. What I like about beliefs is that they can grow and change. What I don’t like about them is some people hold on to what they believe with all their might. However, it might be very damaging to do so. For example, believing that looking at the sky will turn your hair purple. You spend your entire life looking down, and miss a good chunk of the world around you. Here are some things that I believe.

1.Ghosts:

I have always believed that ghosts are real. I think that I have had plenty of things happen in my life that makes me believe that there is something out there beyond us. I have seen people that aren’t there. I have heard things such as my name being called. I have had that prickling feeling down the back of my neck where all the hairs stand on end.  It’s such a strange thing, but I think ghosts are real. I am a skeptic, so I do look at each story and try to take each one of them as they come. There are some that I can disprove, and move on from. However, there are several that I can’t find any explanation for, and ghosts are a big one.

2.Aliens:

It would be crazy to believe we are alone in the universe. We have no clue how big the known universe is since we have no technology to help us. The universe could be as big as infinity for all we know. I think it is very vain to believe that we are the only living and intelligent beings. The odds are so vastly against that, I don’t think it’s even calculable. We are not alone, and I think we have had visitors. I think we will have proof in our lifetime that aliens are real.

3. Men in Black:

There are 3 movies and a Marvel comic out about this topic. I’m not talking about any of them. I’m talking about the group of people who apparently show up after an encounter with a UFO. I don’t have permission to talk about the story that I have heard, however I think these beings are real. They are supposed to be men who are bald, and wearing black hat and suits. They look identical and seem to read your thoughts. The MIB have been described as looking as though they were wearing masks. Like the skin was not real, and was pulled over like a mask. They seem like they are wearing make up and don’t look “real” at all. I think they are the keepers of alien information and they are trying to control what they can shield from the public.

4. Reincarnation:

This is where people believe that after you die, you will come back again as another person. Over half of the world believe this, while the other half does not. I think reincarnation is very real. I have written about some of my experiences in the past and will expand on them later if you want to hear my stories. I have memories of things that did not happen in this life. I don’t think this, I know it to be true with ever fiber of my being.

5. The Lock Ness Monster:

Something that is a bit funny. I had to add it in here. I think it’s possible for beings like the Lock Ness Monster to be very real. Nessie is a magical being that lives in Scotland. There is no proof outside of some old photos. Could a huge being that we don’t really know anything about be real? Of course! We haven’t explored the depths of every pool of water or every ocean. I’m sure there are animals that we can’t even imagine because we have seen so little of the number of animals on and off land. Nessie could be real.

 

Those are just a few things that I believe. There is a lot of wiggle room on these beliefs. I question them, but I think it is always healthy to do just that. If you don’t break it down and explore why you believe in certain things, you are doing yourself a disservice. You need to understand why you believe something before you are willing to debate and defend it.

Do you believe in any of these things? Leave your comments below.

July 21

Fan Friday: Top 5 Favorite Comic Book Characters

Hello Underdogs, and I hope you are having a wonderful Friday! If you are one of the lucky ones, you are currently at Comic Con in San Diego, California right now. If you aren’t, then you are like me and are reading and streaming about the whole event and all the panels. Comic Con is a huge convention where both geeks and nerds gather to buy new products, and learn more about their favorite franchise.  Many cities have similar events, but not to this scale. This is where all the studios spend money and send their very biggest stars to get everyone hyped about what is coming next! You will see people from Marvel and DC as well as TV shows like Family Guy, The Simpsons, and Doctor Who. Normally, there is very exclusive promos that are only played at Comic Con, and you may never see them anywhere else. For example, for the 50th anniversary of Doctor Who, there was a trailer played that was never released to the public. It included things that never made it into the actual show. It’s a big deal, and one day I would like to be able to make it there. In the meantime, here are my top 5 favorite characters based off a comic book to keep us all hyped!

  1. Image result for Free Avengers WallpaperCaptain America: Captain America is the best ideals of America jammed packed in a man named Steve Rogers. Steve begged to get drafted into the war even though he was very sickly. He volunteered for a project and became as Super Solider. All of this because he believed in the cause, and loved his country. Steve Rogers as Captain America is story telling at it’s best. It’s a young boy from Brooklyn who grew up and fought for what was right. His fall into becoming No Man was hard, and thankfully, short lived. Today, it seems like Cap was a Hydra sleeper agent this entire time, but I am hopeful that we will find out this is all misdirection. I love Captain America so much because he is willing to do the right thing, and die for it. He is a true hero from the inside out. His drive and ethics remind me so much of my Dad. That, and of course Cap punching Hitler is one of the reasons he is my all time favorite super hero.
  2. Iron Man:Image result for Free Avengers Wallpaper A billionaire philanthropist, Tony Stark is Iron Man! Marvel Studios is where it is today because of Iron Man. He is a man with many, many faults but still tries to fight his demons and do the right thing. He battles his addition with alcohol in the comics, and PTSD in the movies. His visions are for a world without having to have the Avengers, but still have a safety net in place.  He brings the money, and the controversy but he understands the need to have a team. What I like most about Iron Man besides his charm and his sarcasm is his big flaws. He is suffering, and you can tell. He doesn’t deal with his demons in a very effective manner, but that makes him more human. It makes us want to see him to better.We still root for Iron Man, even when we are angry with him.
  3. Wonder Woman:Image result for free images of wonder woman I grew up with Wonder Woman. She was on TV in reruns, and on many different cartoons. I wasn’t that excited about her until this movie. I didn’t even like her on screen on Batman Vs. Superman, but that movie was terrible! That should have never been such an amazing character’s debut! I understand that it was a set up for The Justice League, but her character was wasted. It wasn’t until her stand alone movie where I saw how amazing Wonder Woman  really was. Not that I didn’t enjoy Linda Carter back in the day, but it was more campy than a very kick ass super hero. This Wonder Woman was amazing! I loved her background. I loved her boldness and her willingness to fight. I loved that she followed her mission and still fights for the little person for hundreds of years. Wonder Woman is going in an amazing direction, and I can not wait to see where she goes next! I will be sure to follow.
  4. The Joker:Image result for free images of the joker A villain so  complex had to make a list of favorites! The Joker has many different stories, which makes him so very complex. He started off as thief and morphed into a a sadistic murderer. He is capable of manipulating anyone, but is also very needy. He needs Batman in order to survive. It’s a very love hate relationship but they are too co-dependent. In the movies, The Joker killed Batman’s parents thus starting a lifelong obsession. In the comics, some random person killed the Wayne family, but in some versions, it becomes The Joker. The thing about the Joker is, you never know the truth about him because he changes it at will. Nothing is sacred to him except his love and hate for Batman.
  5. Batman:Image result for free images of the batman Where would I be without Batman? I watched the campy TV series all of the time, including the movie! Batman had such a tragic backstory. By witnessing his parent’s death, he became crazed and turned into Batman, a man who took the law into his own hand. Batman lives by a golden rule of not killing anyone. (However, he is really bad at that.) But he has saved countless people, and lives by working with the police and by going where no one else would go. He is a genius, billionaire, who has no limit on what he would do to fight crime. The movies are all very different versions of the caped crusader, but his heart is always the same. He wants to make his city safe and get rid of crime. Batman is the reason comic books exist, and the reason things are still going today.

The comic book world is full of amazing characters. The best ones are the ones with the most flaws. They stand the test of time and we root for them for a reason. It is very hard to narrow this down to only 5, and there are many reasons that I could list why these are my favorites. What about you? Who are your favorite comic book characters? Leave your comments below!

 

 

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