The world is a mysterious place. The can of mystery highlights some of those mysteries. This site is a class project for Amanda Warren's English 101 class at the University of South Carolina Aiken.
Articles are uploaded once a year (on average) in the fall and/or spring.
If you have questions or tips on mysteries, please leave a comment or contact AmandaW at USCA dot EDU.
Since 1991, there
have been rumors of people who wake up with their kidney(s) stolen, as the name
of this tale suggests.As described by
Jerry Mayfield in You’ve Got to be
Kidneying Me, business travelers fall prey to organ- harvesting
criminals.Although there are reported
variations of the nature of these incidents, the scenarios are normally as
follows:Jonathan, a pseudonym for this
article’s sake, took a business trip to Las Vegas, ironically known as Sin
City! After a very exhausting, long day of work,
Jonathan went to a lounge to relax.Just
as Jonathan was about to order a drink, an attractive brunette walked up to him
and began to flirt.She told Jonathan
she noticed that he looked tired and offered to buy him a drink.As anyone would, Jonathan took the
offer.He had no recollection of
anything past his first sip of the “potion!”
woke up in a hotel with his body submerged in a tub filled with ice. He then noticed a note on the wall that instructed
him not to move and call 911. Jonathan
reached for the phone on a nearby table and dialed 911. As he began to explain his emergency, he
noticed that the operator seemed familiar with his case. The operator told Jonathan to feel his lower
back to see if there was a tube protruding from his back, and there was. The operator told Jonathan that his kidney had
been stolen! She then told him not to
move and she was sending paramedics to the hotel.
can only imagine that the victims of the kidney heist wake up frightened to
death, as an actor portrayed on an episode of Law and Order. When the victim from the episode (Sonata for
Solo Organ) was rushed to the hospital.
The doctor expressed that criminal had sewn the victim back up
well. Meticulousness is evident at that
point. As stated in You’ve Got to be Kidneying me, “The story went with a well- financed, highly
organized gang operating in various major U.S. cities was drugging business
travelers and making off with the kidneys to sell on the organ transplant black
market.” This statement also supports
the many claims that the criminals were sophisticated and meticulous.
According to Fred Hubert, Chairman
of the National Kidney Society, the effects of the rumor, The Kidney Heist are detrimental in that it keeps people from becoming kidney donors. According to Hubert in THE NATIONAL KIDNEY FOUNDATION DISPELS RUMORS ABOUT ILLEGALLY HARVESTED
KIDNEYS, “…more than
68,000 Americans are awaiting life-saving organ transplants and 13 to 14 people
on the waiting list die each day.” So,
obviously, this tale is not helping the betterment of the world. Dispelling this rumor is key and attainable
with research. Research can go in so
many other directions for this topic such as the origin of the tale, or even
comparing the kidney (renal) transplant done by the thief and an actual surgeon. For even more leads
than this article provides visit:
This web source
provides information on the origin of the rumor. The Washington post ran a story about The
Kidney Heist in 1991. A rejected movie
script inspired the story written by The Washington Press.
Kidney Heist -- And Other Urban Myths It`s
Really The Truth, We Swear It: Another Urban Legend Is Born.
This web source provides insight from Jan Brunvand, a
folklore professor at the University of Utah.
Brunvand feels the story is an American version of cases where kids in 3rd
world countries were kidnapped and killed for their organs.
Humes, Lindsey. Magazine spread ideas for the Urban Legend
"The Kidney Heist.”Cartoon.N.d.Behance.net. Web.19 Oct. 2013.
“The National Kidney Foundation
Dispels Rumors About Illegally Harvested Kidneys.”Kidney.org.
National Kidney Foundation. 2 Apr. 2000. Web. 9 Oct. 2013.
“Sonata for Solo Organ.” Law and Order. Dir. Fred Gerber.
NBC. 2 Apr. 2001. Television.
Got to Be Kidneying.” Snopes.com.
N.p., 12 Mar, 2008. Web. 9 Oct. 2013.