Did you hear about the…? #atozchallenge2017

Did you hear about that couple who went to a hotel and slept overnight over a dead girl’s body stuck in the bed’s box spring? How about the funhouse mummy that turned out to be a real corpse that had traveled here and there for decades? Do you know anything about the Red Room? Please don’t even Google it, or else…!!!

Urban Legends. Life just isn’t fun enough for people, right?

An urban legend, being a legend, is a kind of folklore. The difference from the regular legend, though, is it’s based on pop culture. In other words, it’s modern-day folklore. That’s where the “urban” comes from–to differentiate it from the age-old legends, not necessarily to say it just happens in urban places. The term was first recorded in 1968.

It is called by other names: urban myth, popular legend, contemporary legend, urban tale. But to tweak Shakespeare’s words, a legend, by any other name, would still be fiction. Well, mostly.

It is said that while urban legends may be a figment of people’s imagination, some of them are not exactly that totally made-up.  They are based on supposedly real stories, passed on by people to other people until many start to believe them. And many of these urban legends are passed on through writings, including through media. In the age of the millennials, the reach of these tales has widened.

What is the purpose of urban fiction? It is…

a modern story of obscure origin and with little or no supporting evidence that spreads spontaneously in varying forms and often   has elements of humor, moralizing, or horror.” (Dictionary.com)

A scene from the Japanese film Ringu

Often, the idea is to scare people, which Hollywood took advantage of. Films of popular and not-so-popular urban legends have been  made. Films of supposed ones that weren’t really have also been made. Why, even a movie is entitled Urban Legend , leaving no doubt in anyone’s mind that it’s meant to be suspenseful and scary. There was the film The Blair Witch Project that was fiction, inspired by various documentaries on paranormal phenomena. Ringu was specifically based on actual records of actual people also.

Fiction or not, urban legends are here to stay and even multiply. It is up to us to decide which is true, which is not, and if they actually matter.



Any urban legends you can share? The comments section is just below to serve you 🙂

U is for “Urban Legend”


This piece serves as my Letter U post for the A to Z Challenge 2017.

Truth? I had a hard time thinking of a topic for the U post that it took me days. I thought I’d just post my missing letters, but no, I wanted to do it forward. Then I encountered a few problems, but those, I will discuss in the reflections post once I am done.

For my previous posts, kindly visit my A to Z Challenge 2017 page.

10 thoughts on “Did you hear about the…? #atozchallenge2017

  1. I’ve heard some pretty crazy stories and many of them have actually been true. The touring fun house corpse apparently has a true story to it. I recall reading several years ago about a figure that people had assumed was some sort of sculpture that had been on display at an amusement park in Long Beach, CA that was discovered to be an actual mummified corpse. They discovered this after the park had closed down and items were being auctioned off or thrown away. Someone did the research and traced the corpse back to its origin. You can find the story here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elmer_McCurdy

    Arlee Bird
    Tossing It Out


  2. Hello Again! 🙂 I was nominated for the Mystery Blogger Award… part of that means I get to Nominate others and you are one of the places I have chosen. I enjoyed your writing during A to Z and thought I’d like to give you more wor… I mean an award 🙂

    Wander on by my place today and see what I did and what you now get to do …. If you accept. (I had fun doing it).

    Liked by 1 person

    • Wow, thanks!!!! I am actually trying to finish the A to Z still, ha ha haa!!! Hopefully, with my new laptop, I can work better now. Thanks again!!! I’ll get to this once I can. And congratulations to you 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  3. So many interesting Urban Legends out there, usually involving murder and mayhem. Sleeping with a dead body under the mattress? Well, first, ‘EWWW’; second thought: Wouldn’t that be awfully lumpy and uncomfortable! Fun post, J. Gi. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • It’s almost always the kids who learn about these first, I think. What I remember is the fictional sipay that parents used to scare kids with so children would stay put and stop wandering to strange places. The sipay supposedly would abduct kids who happened to wander alone. Nowadays, though, I don’t ever hear anyone mention that anymore.


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