Tag Archives: #Urbanlegend

Parking attendant

Non-existent Zoo attendant, copied from Bristol Post

Fw: A well-planned retirement

From The London Times:

Outside the Bristol Zoo, in England, there is a parking lot for 150 cars and 8 coaches, or buses.

It was manned by a very pleasant attendant with a ticket machine charging cars 1 pound (about $1.40) and coaches 5 (about $7).

This parking attendant worked there solid for all of 25 years. Then, one day, he just didn’t turn up for work.

“Oh well”, said Bristol Zoo Management – “we’d better phone up the City Council and get them to send a new parking attendant…”

“Err … no”, said the Council, “that parking lot is your responsibility.”

“Err … no”, said Bristol Zoo Management, “the attendant was employed by the City Council, wasn’t he?”

“Err … NO!” insisted the Council.

Sitting in his villa somewhere on the coast of Spain, is a bloke who had been taking the parking lot fees, estimated at 400 pounds (about $560) per day at Bristol Zoo for the last 25 years. Assuming 7 days a week, this amounts to just over 3.6 million pounds ($7 million).

And no one even knows his name.

Bristol Post never intended that their 2007 April Fools‘ joke would become an urban legend. However, it continues to raise its head every once in a while and has probably been adapted to fit different locations. If one takes a few seconds to think about the matter it is clear that such an endeavour would have been impossible for that extent of time. For a shorter period of time … who knows.

Hostile radar equipment (1995)

Tornado - for joke about speeding ticket

Top this for a speeding ticket…

Two British traffic patrol officers from North Berwick were involved in an unusual incident, while checking for speeding motorists on the A-1.

One of the officers (who are not named) used a hand-held radar device to check the speed of a vehicle approaching over the crest of a hill, and was surprised when the speed was recorded at over 300 mph. The machine then stopped working and the officers were not able to reset it.

The radar had in fact locked onto a NATO Tornado fighter jet over the North Sea, which was engaged in a low-flying exercise over the Border district.

Back at police headquarters the chief constable fired off a stiff complaint to the RAF Liaison office.

Back came the reply in true laconic RAF style:

“Thank you for your message, which allows us to complete the file on this incident. You may be interested to know that the tactical computer in the Tornado had automatically locked onto your ‘hostile radar equipment’ and sent a jamming signal back to it. Furthermore, the Sidewinder Air-to-ground missiles aboard the fully armed aircraft had also locked on to the target. Fortunately the Dutch pilot flying the Tornado responded to the missile status alert intelligently and was able to override the automatic protection system before the missile was launched”.


The Barrel of Bricks (1930’s)

The Barrel of Bricks
Industrial Safety – Hitting the Bricks
by Alonzo Powers
(The story as cartoon)

A BRICKLAYER working on a three-story-tall chimney had set up a pulley system so that his helper could raise the bricks up to where he needed them. As he was working, his helper complained about how difficult it would be to get the last of the bricks up to the flat roof of the building. Just then another contractor had some material delivered and it was placed on the roof by a fork lift brought to unload it. The bricklayer asked if the driver would load the rest of the bricks up there as well and the driver agreed. The bricklayer realized that he would not need his helper any more and sent him home.

When the bricklayer completed the chimney he noticed that he had quite a few bricks left over and that the fork lift was no longer at the job site. Now he had to figure out how to get the leftover bricks back down by himself. If he dropped them, they would surely break. So he decided to use the pulley he had set up earlier to lower them down.

First he went down to the ground and raised a large metal bucket up to the roof level using the rope and pulley. Next, he tied the rope off onto a railing and climbed back up to the roof and loaded the bricks into the bucket. Then he went back down to the ground. He knew that the bricks would be heavy, so he wrapped the rope around his hand a couple of times and then untied the end of the rope with his other hand. Well, the bricks were heavier than he imagined and with physics being as it is, he was immediately launched upwards at a high rate of speed.

As he was racing up towards the roof he encountered the bucket full of bricks coming down at an equally fast rate. He collided with the bucket and broke his nose and his shoulder. The bucket passed him by as he sped upwards. He reached the pulley just before the bucket hit the ground and broke a few of his fingers as they were pulled into the pulley. When the bucket hit the ground, its bottom fell out and all of the bricks spilled onto the ground. Now the fun reversed. As the now light bucket sped upwards, the mason took a shot to the groin when one of his legs slipped into the empty bucket.

He then tilted enough to fall out of the bucket and continued with his gravity experiment. Eventually he landed on top of the pile of bricks and broke both feet. He collapsed in pain there on the bricks, but was glad to be alive. He let go off the rope and cried out for help.

It was then that the bucket hit him in the head and fractured his skull.

Tales from the ER

Emergency room cartoon
Cartoon artist Jeff Parker 2008

A man rushes into the ER and yells … «My wife’s going to have her baby in the cab.» I grabbed my stuff, rushed out to the cab, lifted the lady’s dress and began to take off her underwear. Suddenly, I noticed that there were several cabs … and I was in the wrong one.

At the beginning of my shift I placed a stethoscope of an elderly and slightly deaf female patient’s anterior chest wall.

«Big breaths,»… I instructed.

«Yes, they used to be,» … replied the patient.

One day I had to be the bearer of bad news when I told a wife that her husband had died of a massive myocardial infarct.

Not more than five minutes later, I heard her reporting to the rest of the family that he had died of a «massive internal fart.»

During a patient’s two week follow-up appointment with his cardiologist, he informed me, his doctor, that he was having trouble with one of his medications.

«Which one?» I asked.

«The patch … The nurse told me to put a new one on every six hours and now I’m running out of places to put it!»

I had him quickly undress and discovered what I hoped I wouldn’t see. Yes, the man had over fifty patches on his body! Now, the instructions include removal of the old patch before applying a new one.

While acquainting myself with a new elderly patient, I asked «How long have you been bedridden.»

After a look of complete confusion she answered, «Why not for about twenty years, when my husband was alive.»

I was performing rounds at the hospital one morning and while checking up on a man I asked … «So how’s your breakfast this morning?»

«It’s very good except for the Kentucky Jelly. I can’t seem to get used to the taste.» Bob replied.

I then asked to see the jelly. Bob produced a foil packet labelled «KY Jelly

A nurse was on duty in the Emergency room when a young woman with purple hair styled into a punk rocker mohawk, sporting a variety of tattoos, and wearing strange clothing, entered. It as quickly determined the patient had acute appendicitis, so she was scheduled for immediate surgery. When she was completely disrobed on the operating table, the staff noticed that her pubic hair had been dyed green and above it there was a tattoo that read «Keep off the grass.»

Once the surgery was completed, the surgeon wrote a short note on the patient’s dressing which said «Sorry, had to mow the lawn.»

As a new, young MD doing his residency in OB, I was quite embarrassed when performing female pelvic exams.

To cover my embarrassment I had unconsciously formed a habit of whistling softly. The middle-aged lady upon whom I was performing this exam suddenly burst out laughing, further embarrassing me. I looked up from my work and sheepishly said «I’m sorry. Was I tickling you?»

«No, doctor, but the song your were whistling was «I wish I was an Oscar Meyer Wiener.»»

All of these are probably jokes or urban legends

Golden Eagle kidnapping video = FAKE

One of the latest videos that has gone viral is this Eagle Snatches Kid video. This is a myth that appears regularly.

The four troublemakers

The creators of the video have admitted that it is fake, fake, fake!!! They did it for fun.

You can see the making of it at this link.

People feel suckered. But folks – a two/three-year old weighs more than an eagle weighs. An eagle might attack a child, but carrying it away would prove difficult. When an eagle struggles to lift a fish, I’m sure you can imagine how heavy a child would be.

The eagle in the video is not even a Golden Eagle (above photo). In fact the Imperial Eagle in the video does not even live in North-America, which would make it kind of difficult for the eagle to kidnap someone from Montreal.

If you want to see a wild Imperial Eagle you are going to need to travel a stretch of land from Eastern Europe up into Siberia.

The incredibly stupid thing about this video is the opponents of wild predators have gotten “proof” of something that does not exist.

Combined horseshelter/ advertisement for Jens Braun

horseshelter as advertisementThe truth is usually much more fun than whatever fantasies people make up about things. This case of the horseshelters above is no exception. Snopes dug into the claim that the building of the table and chairs were a reaction to the council refusing a farmer to build shelter for his horses. Snopes.com discovered that the huge table and chairs were an advertisement for their owner’s business along with being shelter for the horses.

This unusual shelter has been around at least since 2002. If you try to find anything on the net about Jens Braun, these stories pop up all over the place. 2002 is the earliest mention I find of this story. After that it pops up with and without the legend. One story even claims that Jens Braun of Döllstädt at Erfurt felt that his horses had the right to a table and some chairs, just like anyone else.

horseshelter as advertisement TimeTime had the following caption: 
Three horses try to hide from the rain under an oversized table and chair in a pasture near Doellstaedt, eastern Germany. The huge garden furniture was installed by a local wood merchant to promote his products. (Wednesday, June 18, 2003)

Associated Press has a set of pictures depicting the advertisement shelters. They tell us that wood dealer Jens Braun came up with this unusual idea of a combined shelter/advertisement for his business.

The horses seem to enjoy being able to hide beneath chairs and table. Very Gulliver.