2016: a different time. Urbane Myths wasn't more than a whisper in the wind; the lights stayed on, mostly and I got to meet Arthur Goldstuck - possibly the country's only walking encyclopedia of local and global urban legends. Under the banner of Release The Geek, Les Allen and I got to interview the analyst/journalist/writer in front of a live audience at ICON Comics & Games Convention 2016. I invite you to travel back with us as we unlock the first door that led to the creation of the Urbane Myths podcast.
About 270 kilometres east of Johannesburg, on the road to Belfast, you’ll find one of the great questions baffling South African archaeology. The Stone Circles of Mpumalanga - a massive sprawling complex of walls over six feet high - cover an area of about 150 square kilometres and there are just as many theories as to what they are. Were they ancient cattle kraals; an alien facility of unknown purpose or the burial site for a long forgotten god? In this episode, I present and discuss some of the theories surrounding this amazing neolithic site.
Everyone has, at some point met someone or been someone that had a brush with the occult. Ouija Boards are testament to humanity’s endless quest to learn what lies beyond the veil. Some do it to seek knowledge, others, power and several more simply for the thrill of doing some they know might be dangerous. So it should be no surprise when the internet helped create a new viral craze for thrillseeking kids. In this episode we explore the occult roots and the history behind the Ouija Boardesque game of Charlie Charlie.
We’ve all told them. We all love them. They all happened to someone who knows a guy that dated a girl that met someone this happened to. Urban myths are the modern apocryphal tales of our time. Some are warnings while others are there to simply be a great story to tell around the couch when the power goes out. But where do they come from and are any of them true? Today on Urbane Myths, Les and I chat with that guy: The man who has the honour of being in on the creation of two lesser-known urban myths.
We’ve always been a thrill-seeking species: We explore, we delve and we share the tales of things we’ve seen. Then there’s the unseen world. Everyone has either met someone, known someone, or met someone that knew someone that has a had a brush with the paranormal. All those ghost stories have been passed down through our history like chainletters of the imagination. We love them and retell them, and now, I’m going to share a few of my own.
From 1953 to 1959, a serial killer or killers stalked Pretoria’s Naai Draai (Lover’s Lane). He targeted couples in cars knowing that, due to the elicit nature of their roundezvous’, many victims would be hesitant to come forward. His capture would lead to an amazing revelation regarding his identity and now, while his murder weapon rests on display in the South African Police Museum, his legacy continues. This is the story of The Panga Man.
Everyone’s had that feeling - a sense that they’re not alone in the dark. Naturally, we don’t often seek these feelings out and when we do, it is usually in the controlled environment of a horror film, a video game or a theme park attraction. Then there are the ghosthunters, paranormal investigators who actively seek these places out. I got to have a sit down with one such investigator where we spoke at length about her experiences. She told me about the known consequences of ghost hunting: of cold spots and a sense being watched. And then she told me about the time her work followed her home.
On the 22nd of September 1979, near the Prince Edward Islands off Antarctica, there was an event, an incident that has gone by several names including The Vela Incident and The South Atlantic Flash. A double flash of light was seen and recorded by an American Vela Hotel Satellite. 39 years later, no official explanation has been given as to its origin. Why the silence?
Because the Vela Hotel satellite had one purpose: to detect nuclear detonations. I look at this story with Les Allen and discuss what may or may not have happened off our coast all those years ago.
I was and still am that kid. I’ve always had a burgeoning interest in the untold truth. It’s an allergic reaction to lies or a deliberate attempt to fob off a cover story. And so many stories have yet to be told and the ones I do know, I want to share. In this, my first episode, I try to explain, along with my sanity anchor Les Allen, how I ended up here.
It is with great pleasure that Release The Geek presents a brand new podcast from RTG co-host Vittorio Leonardi - Urbane Myths!
Adjective - charming, worldly
Noun - traditional stories; widely held but false beliefs or ideas; misrepresentations of the truth
“There are stories from all around the world regarding the strange, the unexplained, the terrifying and the unreal… And yet, you’ll have to dig to find many from our shores. Urbane Myths is where we dig. It’s where you’ll find some of those local legends and tales of the unconventional, a place where you can begin your search into what lies beneath the veil.
We have our own conspiracies, prophecies, cover-ups and mysteries. It’s time they were told. Welcome to Urbane Myths.”
The Urbane Myths podcast will launch TODAY (October 31) at 3 pm SAST, before moving to its own platform. Stay tuned!