Rumor Flies

We got the sauce

Rumor Flies comically addresses the origins, evolution, and veracity of your favorite rumors, myths, and misconceptions. Tune in for more research, stories, and unsolicited commentary! Participation encouraged.

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205 - Animals: Sorry, Armadillos

This episode of the Rumor Flies Podcast is one of the best ones we have ever done. I am proud of it and think that it is a great example of what we strive for every week when the podcast is released. It was clean, concise - for the most part, and entertaining. Our goal is to make every episode like this and continue to build on it to make the best podcast possible.

As far as the topics go, the Lemmings committing suicide shook me to my core. The fact that someone set up these animals to jump off a cliff into their own demise breaks my heart. Maybe I’ve been watching too many Disney movies to fill my own cynical mind but it’s hard for me to ever justify something like that. Not to mention the movie won an Academy Award!

I have to admit my favorite segment of the episode was teaching Ryan and Greg a thing or two about history. It’s not very often that I get that opportunity, so it felt good to flex my history muscles for once on this podcast. I do believe there is something to be said about Ostrich’s and Roman soldiers burying their heads in the sand. There is some parallel there that I would love to know more about and see if they are actually related in some fashion.

Overall, I loved this episode. It was a topic that we discussed covering in season one buy couldn’t make it fit. It ended up being one of our strongest episodes and one that I will point to when people want to know what our podcast is all about. I hope you enjoyed this episode as much as we did. Stay tuned, bigger and better things are in store for the rest of the season.


204 - Cold War ft. The Eastern Border

Greetings, Comrades!

Firstly, I have to apologize for the sound quality on my part - after the recording, it turned out that skype had used my camera microphone instead of my normal one and I hadn't noticed. Then again, this episode now had an authentic Soviet vibe, and you should be happy anyway, because happiness is mandatory.

Secondly, Ryan told me that this is where I can write about what I forgot to tell or what else could I show you. Except urging you, comrades, to go and check out my show, there's also two more sites that you could, and totally should check out.

For you move fans out there - visit it's a place where you can view Soviet movies with English subtitles. Legally. And for free. And of all genres. So, definitely give that a try, I know Greg will spend many hours there. Don't forget to check out the cartoons section and take a look at Vinni Puh! He gets the honey and doesn't fear anything!

And, continuing the space theme - this is where you can see Soviet artist works, depicing the "bright communist worker's paradise - in SPACE!" and that's amazing - as sci-fi was the official genre in the USSR, and we all were huge space nerds.

Finally, there's the unofficial motto of the Soviet man. Pickle EVERYTHING! (And this is a kind-of addition to the food episode. :D ) Even green pine cones. And I urge you yo try this out: Get 1 lither of volume worth of green pine cones - must be new one's, while they're still soft. Then boil a lither of water, and when it's hot, pour it on the pine cones. At that point, they - and the water - should turn brown. Then you remove the water, boil another batch - this time, with a kilogram of sugar in it, place the pine cones in a jar, and pour the boiling water (with tons of sugar in it) over the pine cones. Seal the jar, place it in a cold place and wait until winter. Great Soviet cough medicine. Also, the weirdest jam you'll ever try.

So, that's about it. Not much more to add here - but you know, you can always listen to The Eastern Border and find out whatever else you wanted to know. Oh, and if you ever visit Riga, Latvia I'll take you on a tour.

Do Svidaniya, Tovarischi!

203 - Food: Salty over Coffee

Hey there,

So the food one. Once again, I was not present, so naturally I'm the ideal candidate to speak about this episode with authority! As always, it's fun to learn about the little facts/corrections that affect things we interact with every day. In this one we researched coffee, the ever-deadly “Chubby Bunny,” the mysterious pink goo, and more. I want to focus in particular on the McDonald's “pink goo” because it is surprisingly relevant with a lot of conversations happening right now about the media, peoples' agendas, and how misinformation gets propagated (especially during tense political elections/debates/etc.). Jeeves! My soapbox, please.

The “pink goo” was, as Ryan put it, another “facebook share.” While this is not a new phenomenon by any stretch of the imagination, a lot of people are once again calling attention to how much of an echo chamber the internet can be. Add in how we tend to surround ourselves even more than usual with like-minded people on social media and it's easy to see how people can put on the earmuffs. One major movement we have seen involves food. We have seen the rise and scrutiny of terms like, “farm to table,” “organic,” “all natural,” and a general trend towards questioning “processed” foods. These trends tend to ebb and flow, but right now we are definitely seeing a lot of marketing and even ideological trends surrounding how we acquire and prepare our food.

The pink goo played into this trend like crazy. Many people, already skeptical about the kind of food we get at a place like McDonald's (real talk: we all know what we are eating when we get fast food. Pink goo or not, we all know it's terrible for us, but that's not why we eat it. Just had to make that point). It's no surprise that when people went on facebook one day and suddenly saw a bunch of their friends who shared the same leanings towards health and food sharing this “fact” about McDonald's that they did no research and just shared it blindly. It fit their world view, it didn't surprise them, and it was popular enough that “it was probably true.” To be honest, I would not have been surprised in the slightest if it turned out it WAS accurate.

Anyway, this was long winded and ever winding, but I don't feel like going back to make this more concise so deal with it. My point is that once again we see how all these factors – the internet echo chamber, our propensity for surrounding ourselves with like-minded people, and the tendency we have towards “meh, sounds right” - contributed to the propagation of yet another completely fabricated claim that went viral. Who knows how many people still believe it's true. Just something to consider.



202 - The Anarchist Cookbook

This episode ended up being much more personal to me than I had expected or hoped. It's strange, the man who had inspired me as a pre-teen rebel ended up becoming an inspiration for me as a twenty-something reluctant adult. Obviously, these inspirations were for far different reasons, but it's a bit interesting how the story panned out. Everyone seems to get one window for other to look into them. Gene Wilder will never be seen as a great novelist, even if he trumped Shakespeare. Daryl Hannah will never be primarily known as the founder of the Sustainable Biodiesel  Alliance, even though it may be a far nobler act than playing an android. And sadly, I doubt William Powell will ever be known as a truly caring educator, as he was during the majority of his life.

Of course, those close to him will know the true Bill Powell, unlike me or any other people that have not met this low-key author. However, just from reading his great shame, The Anarchist Cookbook, I can tell that this man has always been curious and eager to disseminate knowledge. Yea, lots of it was bullshit. Yea, the rest of it was dangerous. It made people listen, though. I could only imagine what it would take to get dozens of people writing to the director of the CIA about your little, profitable act of rebellion without getting thrown in prison immediately. This 19 year old became a lord of the underground. He was THE fucking punk. But it meant nothing to him shortly after.

We wish our little podcast could open the window from the other side of William Powell, but we can only slightly crack it. I wish he could be our mascot. A person who realizes that, rather than inciting negative emotion by flirting with violent practices, teaching someone why people become so violent may have better results. This man who fed multiple generations of rebellion actively worked to be his own cycle-breaker. And he did it in the places that needed it most. The areas that may be more prone to exploitation an indoctrination of children. He knew that a child's mind, once solidified, is incredibly difficult to reshape. So he began shaping them reasonably, and training others how to shape. 

Our thoughts go out to Ochan Powell and the rest of William's family and friends. We hope you wouldn't have hated this episode, Bill.


201 - Disney: Moral Fixation

Season two is here and we couldn’t be more excited to be back in the swing of things. Our first ever episode was about Disney so the subject always holds a special place in my heart. Even with all the different topics we cover and the numerous fans of the show we have spoken to, Disney was almost always one of the topics of conversation.

Covering Disney media this year brought me a little more out of my comfort zone than season one. That’s not to say I can’t hold my own in Disney trivia, but Walt Disney World itself is what I pride myself in knowing more than the average bear.

When it came to doing the research, it was like strolling down memory lane of my childhood. Watching some of the films or some of the clips online brought a wave of emotions that I don’t get form anything else in the world. It was like watching home movies. Like I’ve said before, Disney is a huge part of who I am so it never felt like research or homework.

As far as the topics go, I went down the rabbit hole when it came to researching both Snow White myths/rumors associated with it. Digging into research of the history of cocaine was not something I expected, especially with the subject at hand. Also, learning about the artist who drew the phallic gate on the cover of the Little Mermaid put to rest some of my own previous misconceptions about the subject matter. See, even I learned something I didn’t know from this episode.

The most interesting topic for me was about Jessica Rabbit and her subliminal nudity. I had no idea something like that was true, as I’m sure most people assumed with the topless woman in The Rescuers. I learned the truth about that long before the podcast but Who Framed Roger Rabbit was not a film I had seen since I was younger. When Ryan told me about the reference to Alice in Wonderland written on the bathroom wall, I almost fell out of my chair. Little snippets of movies like that serve as their own form of history of the company and to know someone even referenced Michael Eisner puts into perspective the movies of that era. I don’t think something like that would ever see the light of day in 2016.

These Disney episodes are something Ryan, Greg, and myself always love doing. It means our podcast is back in full force, and it’s one that we always love spending countless hours diving into to get the most information we can. Disney Media is its own beast so I am glad we segregated these topics into their own episodes. Now to complete this trifecta, we are going to cover the man himself for season three.

We hope you enjoyed our kickoff to season two. I wanted to give a special thanks to all of you who came out and supported us for our release party. It was an astounding success and each one of you brought us a little more pixie dust to carry with us throughout the rest of the season. Have a magical day.