What are the Urban Legends in your profession?

We soldiers have many. Ask me about the guy who got a profile requiring him to masturbate at least ten times a day or risk non-judicial punishment. I can also tell you about the FOAF who tried to kill himself with a floor buffer, but instead was charged for the cost of the floor buffer. How about the soldier who was reduced in rank for getting a sunburn. There is also my favorite story to share about the guy who was discharged for a mental disorder for dribbling a basketball.

We Soldiers have many UL’s. What are some from the other occupations?

Sgt Schwartz

I work in tech support. We don’t have urban legends. Nothing anyone could make up could ever match reality.

I always used to hear about the Doc Drawer who got fired because the mortgage papers they drew up had a 0% interest rate on them, and once the borrowers signed, there was nothing the bank could do about it.

Oh come on, Priceguy, the optional cupholder on the computer can’t be true, but you must have heard it. Tech support probibly have some of the best UL’s IMO.

Sgt Schwartz

The cup holder one definitely counts as a UL. Remember they don’t have to be false to be ULs!


I came in here to post that one. Also, the one where the tech support guy tells the user to box the computer back up and return it because they are too stupid to own one.

I had one come in that I’m sure people would think I was making it up, so I printed out the original request:

“User needs a wireless cable in conference room XX immediately”

I completely believe that one.

Just yesterday, I advised the front-line helpdesk agent (I do third-level support and assist the agents when the tough calls come in.) to tell the user to hang up and go home because they’re too stupid to be in the building. The fool had utterly no idea of what they were supposed to be logging into - didn’t know the server name, database name, their name, nothing. It wasn’t until I looked up their manager’s info and IMed it to the agent so the agent could say “How about I conference in Sandy so she can tell us what you’re trying to do?” that they grew a brain cell and suddenly knew their login ID. :rolleyes:

There are a number of ULs about my chosen profession.


The “Chevy Nova” story springs to mind.


The two that spring immediately to mind are the list of insurance claims and the cigars.

I dont know about UL, but there is a lot of crap in the Army that gets passed along as if it were true when it’s utter bullshit.

  1. Compasses don’t point directly north because of an iron ore deposit in Hudson Bay. (Or wherever)
  2. M16 bullets are designed to tumble in flight.
  3. Bullets have some kind of loft ability and “rise” when the leave the barrel.

I’m sure there’s more that drive me crazy, but that’s all I can think of right now.

As far as UL stories go, here’s one:
Some hardcore soldier (usually a Navy Seal , Marine or someshit) is going through Airborne school. He unhooks his static line before leaving the plane and uses his reserve chute to land safely. Once on the ground, he trades his used reserve chute with someone’s unused chute. So when he gets to the turn-in point, he hands the rigger two unused parachutes and says “SEALs dont need chutes!”.

Computer guy here.

One I heard about ten years ago: The source code for Microsoft Word contains some 100,000 lines or so of extraneous code that does not seem to actually accomplish any application-related task, but the program stopped at all when they tried to remove it.

In my field Environmental Non-Profit - think green peace but smaller.

That we are all Birkenstock wearing dirt worshipping, tree huggers.

Og that snow feels cold through my wool socks…I shouldn’t have worn my Birks today… :wink:

Higher Ed here.

Common ones are the “if your roommate commits suicide, you are awarded a 4.0 for the term” and “school xx has a swim test requirement because some alum died and his wealthy parents gave a large gift stipulating that all future students must know how to swim.”

I’m a professional brewer, I hear all kinds of ULs and misinformation about beer.

The most common one is “Bock beer is the beer from the bottom of the tanks when they clean them in the spring” or variants thereof.

There are so many things wrong with that idea. First of all, every single tank is cleaned as soon as it is empty, there is no sludgy beer accumulating in the bottom. Secondly, bock is a style of beer that gets it’s "chewiness’, for lack of a better descriptor, from a combination of ingredients and process. It is not “old beer” or “leftover beer”.


We’ve (veterinarians) all heard the story about the veterinarian who was very unhappy with his/her employer, so she gave 2 weeks notice. During her final two weeks she performed a bunch of spays, purposefully leaving an ovary in each animal.

Those animals would exhibit signs of estrus at some point, the owners would be pissed, and the employer would have to do a difficult surgery at no charge to make things right.

Oilrig related UL.

A drillcrew member dropped a spanner/lump hammer/metal object down the hole whilst the drill assembly was not in the hole. As drilling cannot proceed the rig had to spend several days fishing out the object, the drillcrew member felt bad about his screw up and pulled extra shifts and generally busted his nuts to help out.
When they pull the object out the hole the toolpusher/companyman/ rig headhoncho hands the object to the crew member and says
‘keep this as a souvenir, you’re fired/runoff/longgonemofo’
The crew member calmly looks at the chief and tosses the hammer back in the hole and walks off the drill floor with his co workers cheering.
Everyone claims to know this story and has been on that rig/well.

UL 2
On offshore rigs with female stewardesses (cleaning catering crew) employed from some former soviet republic you can leave XXX dollars under your pillow, and that night a hand will poke through the curtains on your bunk and help you get a good nights sleep.

Seriously doubt this true.

Rig XX was about to go off contract and was drilling a probable dry hole. Due to screw up/ delay in communications the orders to stop drilling and plug back did not come through. The rig then hits biggest field in XX region.
This is a true UL, it has happened several times.

Mobile phones.

They don’t crash planes and they don’t blow up petrol stations.
They might not even cause cancer.

If they don’t have to be false, I have a shitload. Some of them happened to me.

That one is true, up to a point. He just wished he could say the final line, but didn’t.