Today is the first day of spring, or as astronomers refer to it, the vernal equinox. The word equinox means equal night. On this day the tilt of the earth’s axis toward the sun is such that day and night are of equal duration. This happens one other time during the year – the autumnal equinox in September.
You may have read news articles or seen reports on your local television station about today being the day when you can balance a raw egg on end. This apparently comes from a notion that special gravitational forces are in effect today because of the sun’s equidistant position between the earth’s poles.
When I went in search of the truth behind this, I ended up at an urban legends website (or several sites actually) where I learned that if you have an egg that’s just the right shape and you have just enough patience, you can balance it on end any day of the year.
So much for spring and egg balancing.
But while I was at the urban legends websites, I did a little browsing and decided today I’d impart a little urban legend knowledge. So you’ll be able to sleep better tonight (since night and day are the same length) here are twenty-five things you can stop worrying about:
- The painted cats you saw in that email aren’t really painted. They are what one website referred to as "manipulated images."
- There IS a website where you can donate feminine hygiene products to women’s shelters, but because of overwhelming response to their efforts, they’ve suspended the action until they figure out the logistics of managing cyberspace’s generosity.
- Microsoft will not send you a check for forwarding a particular email. There is no software that can track an email from one computer to another. So just delete it and move on.
- Likewise, Nike will not send you a free pair of shoes if you send them your old ones.
- Go to www.thebreastcancersite.com and click on the appropriate button to fund a mammogram for a low-income woman. You can do this every day and help another woman protect her health. And please be sure to get your own done when the doctor says it's time.
- You cannot cook an egg between two cell phones.
- Pringles are not made from recycled McDonald’s French fries.
- Women’s purses ARE a hotbed of germs, especially the bottom. Use an antibacterial cleaner to wipe off your purse, don’t sit it on the kitchen counter where food might be close by and think twice about setting it on the floor in a public restroom.
- AOL is not going to start charging for Instant Messages.
- Pop Rocks and Coca Cola didn’t kill Mikey and the combination won’t kill your child either.
- The following photos have been circulated around the internet and titled “Alabama Wedding.” We in the great state of Alabama are more than delighted to announce they’re fake. The first photo shows what is purported to be an actual cake at a 1998 wedding reception in Iowa and the second photo with the smiling newlyweds was a 2004 entry in a Photoshop contest called “If Rednecks Ruled.”
- There are no missing shipments of UPS uniforms nor large numbers of them purchased by terrorists on eBay. eBay banned the sale of UPS uniforms in February 2003. So stop worrying about what brown might do to you.
- The lyrics to “Louie, Louie” aren’t dirty. They ARE unintelligible because the lead singer had strained his voice the night before, he was wearing braces, the mike was too high to pick up the sound well and what the band thought was a rehearsal was actually the only take for the recording.
- Chewing gum doesn’t take seven years to digest if you swallow it.
- Coca Cola is not an effective spermicide.
- Magic Eraser doesn’t contain formaldehyde, which is great news to several Playfriends who swear by it. Scrub on!
- Rice thrown at weddings won’t kill birds. It can, however, make for slippery walking conditions.
- The flush toilet was not invented by Thomas Crapper nor was the brassiere invented by Otto Titzling.
- Dr. Seuss wrote “Green Eggs and Ham” after his editor challenged him to write a book with less than fifty different words.
- The “Star Trek” theme has lyrics.
- The youngest mother on record was a five-year-old girl Peruvian girl who gave birth in 1939.
- Eating celery DOES result in negative calories.
- Eelskin wallets won’t demagnetize a credit card.
- Hotel key cards don’t contain personal information.
- Letssaythanks.com allows the public to send free personalized postcards to US troops overseas.
And if you have money to burn, you can put your photo on a tissue box and you can personalize M&Ms .
What’s YOUR favorite urban legend and/or favorite crazy email? Anybody else find it hard to believe folks actually fall for that Nigerian bank scam?
P.S. Our winner from yesterday is Michelle Buonfiglio! Please email the Problem Child to claim your prize.