Top 5 Biggest Urban Legends

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Urban legends are popular because they have a ring of truth about them. The ones that persist for years tell of things that could possibly happen with enough bad luck or stupidity. The locale doesn’t have to be urban, but they tend to have a medieval folklore flavor. The common factor in all of the biggest urban legends is that they’re completely false, yet folks just keep spreading them around.

5 Earwigs and Ears

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According to urban legend, earwigs can and have climbed into human ears where they eat the brain, causing the victim to go crazy or to have headaches severe enough for a trip to the hospital. In each legend, X-rays later reveal the nasty bugs burrowing in the victim’s brain. Worse than having a bug in your brain, the darn things lay eggs and horror ensues. You might even hear or read about people who claim to know someone that had this happen, but it’s false. According to McGill University’s blog, earwigs do not crawl into ears. Spiders do. There. Aren’t you relieved?

4 Gummy Tummy

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Almost every child has heard the urban legend about chewing gum taking seven years to digest if it is swallowed. Parents caution their children not to swallow gum all the time, many probably worried about what seven years of gum would do to their poor child’s tummy. The reality is that chewing gum is not forever. While gum does use a synthetic or resin base that makes it chewy, and this base does not dissolve in the mouth or stomach, it will pass through the body in a couple of days. Like corn, it comes out pretty much whole.

3 Kidney Bandits

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The legend of the stolen kidney dates back to 1997, and thanks to television and Internet, it refuses to die. It started with an email warning people about a stranger buying traveling businessmen drugged drinks. The man wakes in a tub of ice, where he finds a note telling him to call 911. He later learns his kidney was stolen. It’s been written off as a hoax because no one can find any official record of such a crime occurring. And, let’s be realistic; how likely is someone to survive having a kidney cut out in a bathtub?

2 Alligators in the Sewer

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Back in the 1930s, a wealthy New York family is rumored to have brought baby alligators back from Florida. Well, alligators grow real big, so they flushed them. Apparently, their toilet had the most amazing water pressure ever. While down in the sewers the alligators started breeding. Eventually the sewers of New York practically teemed with the toothy buggers. A sewer superintendent named Teddy May claimed to have seen the alligators in 1935. He said he ordered his workers to shoot them and they were killed off in about a month. This lie didn’t stop the legend, which is still told today, because no one saw the bodies and everyone knows there can be no confirmation of death without a body.

1 Bloody Mary

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One of the most popular urban legends to instill terror in the hearts of young people everywhere is that of Bloody Mary. The legend says that if you turn the lights out, look into the mirror and say Bloody Mary three times, you’ll summon the spirit of Mary Worth, who it is said was executed for being a witch. It varies from person to person what happens when Mary appears, but the consensus is that she’s bringing death with her. The actual ritual, including the words recited and how many times, varies from telling to telling, but every one of them are untrue.

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