Episode 75: Fake or Folklore? (with Eric Silver)

Welcome to Fake or Folklore, the game show sensation that’s SWEEPING the nation! Hosted by Charles the Gamesman, aka Eric Silver of Join the Party, Amanda and Julia are put to the test to see if they can parse actual folklore from a morass of weird stuff from Eric’s brain, the internet, and beyond! The best part is, you can play along at home—download your scorecard on our Patreon.

The Scientology/Neopets relationship, as mentioned in this episode, is a great read.



Eric Silver is an audio producer, writer, teacher and poet. He is the host, the Dungeon Master, and a producer of Join the Party. He loves chunky peanut butter, cardigans, and being five minutes early. Follow him on Twitter (and wish him a happy birthday) @el_silvero!



Skillshare is an online learning community where you can learn—and teach—just about anything. Visit skillshare.com/spirits to get two months of Skillshare Premium for $0.99!

Our favorite Skillshare classes: “Write the Real You” with Ashley C. Ford and “Going Freelance: Building and Branding Your Own Success” with Justin Gignac.


Find Us Online

If you like Spirits, help us grow by spreading the word! Follow us on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, & Goodreads, and review us on Apple Podcasts to help new listeners find the show. You can support us on Patreon to unlock bonus audio content, director’s commentaries, custom recipe cards, and so much more. Merch is for sale at spiritspodcast.com/merch.


Amanda: Welcome to Spirits podcast, a boozy tour through mythology legends and folklore. Every week we pour a drink and learn about a new story from around the world. I'm Amanda.

Julia: And I'm Julia.

Amanda: And this is episode 75, "Fake or Folklore" with Eric Silver.

Julia: This idea was so wonderful. It was so very good.

Amanda: It really was. What was the origin? Okay, so this is a game and this is a game where Eric Silver, a noted gamesman and host of Join The Party, another show on Multitude asks us about creatures and we have to decide if they are fake or they are folklore.

Julia: You asked about the origin. The origin was Eric posted a weird creature on the Multitude slack and he's like, "This cannot be real," and I was like, "It is real," because it was some weird creature that gets sad and when it gets hunted down by hunters it cries and dissolves into tears and he's like, "This cannot be real." It was real. So we decided game show, fake or folklore. It was very fun.

Amanda: You will have to listen on to figure out who one, but the answer may surprise as to how much each of us scored.

Julia: Yeah.

Amanda: But you know who wins every game that they ever enter?

Julia: Would that be our newest patrons?

Amanda: Our newest patrons, Katelyn, Jessie, Ann, and Hector, as well as our supporting producer level patrons, Neil, Philip, Julie, Christina, Josh, Ior, Jessica, Maria, Cammy, Ryan, Mercedes, Phil Fresh, and Debra.

Julia: You guys never go to jail in monopoly, just never.

Amanda: Also, folks who always win in Catan, but in a way that feels like they are not dominating the whole game until at the end. They're just like, bam, and then they win, that is our legend level patrons, Buggy, Rachel, Sandra, Ashley, Marie, LeeAnn, Ashley and Cassie.

Julia: You build a fortress across the entire Catan land, so that's how Catan works, right Amanda?

Amanda: It is. Every time I play Catan I always want to just like ring the sheep and keep them safe and build my little walls around them but that's not how you play Catan. What were we drinking during this episode?

Julia: Amanda, in the spirit of game shows and gamesmanship and the fact that it's almost summer, I brought a nice bottle of sparkling rose for us to celebrate with, for the winner to celebrate with.

Amanda: Yeah, we might have sampled some before the show started.

Julia: Yes.

Amanda: But that's how we roll.

Julia: Sometimes you got to celebrate early. Sometimes you gotta celebrate before the victory.

Amanda: Indeed. This week we are sponsored by Skillshare. We are super stoked about this and we're gonna tell you about it later, but you can go to skillshare.com/spirits to join the millions of folks that already learn new skills and hobbies on Skillshare every single day and to get two months of Skillshare for just 99¢, that's skillshare.com/spirits.

Julia: You can buy like a-third of a coffee with that amount of money.

Amanda: You can buy almost nothing at The Dollar Store for that much money.

Julia: Yeah, that's the sad part, nothing is under a dollar anymore, but Skillshare is.

Amanda: Skillshare totally is, two months of Skillshare in fact. Good segue Jills.

Julia: Also exciting news. Amanda and I and I bunch of Multitude folks are going to be at Podcast Movement in Philadelphia in July.

Amanda: Yeah, we're gonna be doing a workshop/panel on how to monetize your podcast, so how to get great sponsors, how to have a great relationship with your listeners and cultivate patron community. It's gonna be lots of fun. We're gonna have lots of jokes, our slides are gonna be Italian chef kiss emoji. So if you're in Philadelphia, if you live in the region or want to party like the founding fathers did in Philadelphia in July but with more air conditioning, come and join us.

Julia: I appreciate that 1776 joke, my friend.

Amanda: Yeah, it's not a history joke, it's a 1776 joke.

Julia: It is. It is. So come join in the games master. What was his name again, Charles?

Amanda: Gamesman. Oh, yeah, Charles I think.

Julia:  Charles the Gamesman.

Amanda: Today, episode release date is actually Eric Silver's birthday, so if you enjoy this game, wish him a happy birthday. He is el_silvero on Twitter and you can also tweet them to us and we'll pass them along.

Amanda: Without further enjoy Spirits podcast episode 75, "Fake or Folklore" with Eric Silver.

[Upbeat game show commercial music]

Eric: I had a gamesman voice and everything. [In exaggerated old timey broadcaster accent] Welcome to the "Fake or Folklore" quiz. I'm your gamesman.

Julia: Have we started doing the actually episode yet?

Amanda: Cold open.

Julia: Okay, cool.

Eric: [In exaggerated old timey broadcaster accent] I'm Charles, the gamesman.

Julia: I love Charles, the gamesman.

Amanda: I just pictured Stanley Tucci as a character in Edward Scissorhands, like animated and everything. No wait. [Laughs] Nightmare before Christmas. That's the one-

Eric: On no.

Julia: [Horrified] What.

Amanda: On no.

Julia: Oh god, no.

Eric: I'm so glad-

Amanda: You're already starting off real strong in this game and I appreciate it. Or am I so imaginative that I'm going to definitely win?

Julia: That could also be it. I could be fucked.

Eric: This is only gonna be up in the air 'cause when you first addressed this I'm like, "Oh Julia is gonna win. She knows the most about folklore," but them I'm like, "Amanda knows random stories and can tell what thing are right or not."

Julia: That's true. She could beat my ass, I don't know.

Amanda: We'll see.

Eric: I'm excited.

Amanda: All right. So Stanley Tucci can you tell us ... wait, hold on, who are you?

Eric:  Charles the Gamesman.

Julia:  Charles the Gamesman.

Amanda: This is Eric Silver. My cohost on Join the Party, and also Charles the Gamesman.

Julia:  He joined the party.

Eric: It's a character. I do voices on microphones.

Amanda: You're basically a professional gamesman.

Eric: I am. I'm pretty much a professional gamesman.

Amanda: Yeah, as our dungeon master on Join The Party, you design the story, you make up all of the characters that we meet along the way, you do a whole host of voices, only some of which are inspired by The Room, and you're really, really good at world building.

Julia: Those are sick burns.

Eric: Only one of my voices is inspired by the real one.

Amanda: [Teasing] Is it though?

Eric: This first section called "Fake or Folklore" I'm gonna to read the name and the description of a cryptid. You're gonna tell me if it's folklore, if it's a real monster from a real civilization storytelling or it's fake. Fake can be it is made up contemporarily, as a fan from a fantasy novel or from some other fiction or it came directly from my brain.

Amanda: Okay, cool.

Eric: Then if you think that something is fake, we're going to determine whether you think it came from my brain or it came from a piece of fiction.

Julia: Oh boy.

Amanda: So for example, Dementors from "Harry Potter" would be fake. But they're from like extant source, so it's not from your brain, it's from somewhere.

Eric: Right, like I am not J.K. Rowling, I'm Charles the Gamesman.

Julia: Oh Jesus.

Amanda: You're definitely not because you would know it's pronounced rowling [rhymes with bowling].

Eric: Hmm, okay I'm just an American, so it's fine. So this is gonna have 10 questions, so please put 10 answers on your piece of paper.

Amanda: Oh god, it’s like taking the SATs again.

Eric: I'm making this happen. You are going to do the test well and I'm the Gamesman and there are points in everything.

Amanda: Well enjoy it. What am I gonna get when I win?

Julia: I will bet you-

Amanda: Yeah?

Julia: The loser has to make boozy brunch for the winner.

Amanda: I love that 'cause it sounds like we all win.

Julia: Yes, and everyone gets booze and champagne and mimosas and also probably french toast.

Amanda: And Bellinis.

Julia: Hmm.

Amanda: Do you know the place down the block does a mimosa flight for $10 at brunch?

Julia: We're going.

Amanda: Every single-

Julia: I would say we're going right now but we can't.

Amanda: Every single weekend when I leave my house to record Join The Party I look at the sign and I think, "What am I doing with my life? Why am I making a podcast instead of having boozy mimosa flight rounds?"

Julia: Just be like, "Sorry, I'm gonna be an hour late because boozy brunch."

Amanda: An hour is pretty generous.

Julia: Yes.

Amanda: I think I could kill the in 20 minutes.

Eric: It's gonna be bad when Amanda walks in and I'm already there.

Amanda: Oh no.

Eric: Whoa, the game's there.

Julia: Oh that darn W train, sorry.

Eric: The R train dropped me off with the mimosas, the MTA, I'm sorry.

Julia: So weird.

Amanda: That's funny because the trains suck in Astoria.

Eric: Yeah, good job. All right, you guys ready?

Julia: Yeah, I have 10 things down, see? I should point out that Eric is making us write these down so we can't cheat.

Eric: It's more Julia. Julia is such a cheat.

Julia: Um, um-

Eric: Amanda has the constitution of like Templar Knight, just without the religious cleansing.

Amanda: Thank you.

Eric: She's a power. She's awful good.

Julia: And I am?

Eric: Chaotic barberia.

Julia: Okay, yes, that's fair.

Eric: That's very fair. It's time the play "Fake or Folklore," and here's your host, Charles the Gamesman. All right. Let's get this game going. This is "Fake or Folklore," and you know how to play. I'm gonna say a cryptid, you're gonna tell me if it's fake or folklore. I changed my voice. Now I'm Charles the Gamesman.

Julia: He's so concerned about Charles.

Amanda: This is a perfect Venn diagram between David Rheinstrom and Eric's best friend, Heddy.

Eric: It's pretty close.

Julia: Wow.

Amanda: It's really beautiful.

Eric: It's good.

Julia: That's kind of amazing.

Amanda: Thank you.

Eric: All right. Okay, here is your first monster.

Amanda: I'm ready.

Eric: This is the Kasa-obake. This is a Japanese yōkai, so we're talking Japanese folklore monster. The translation of Kasa-obake is paper umbrella priest boy. This is a silly looking yokai that is a transformation of Chinese style oiled papered umbrellas. Think it's one or two legs, a single large eye, a very long tongue, but it's an umbrella.

Amanda: This has to be real. This is too horrifying.

Eric: It's favorite method of surprising humans is to sneak up on them and then deliver a large oily lick with its enormous tongue. Although this is traumatic enough, everyone should take caution but it is not inherently dangerous, it is just playful. Also, it's an umbrella.

Julia: It's an umbrella Lickitung and I love it and it's my child now.

Amanda: Definitely folklore.

Julia: It's 100% folklore

Eric: And the answer is, this is folklore.

Julia: Yah.

Amanda: Yah.

Eric: This is absolutely true. Japanese folklore is bananas.

Julia: It's so good.

Amanda: It's so good. It's so good.

Julia: Also, it's one characters when we were hanging out here doing ... what was the game called, Eric?

Eric: I actually wrote this down.

Julia: Yah.

Eric: This TKO, one of the games in The Jackbox Party Pack.

Julia: Yes, I remembered it.

Amanda: What?

Eric: Because it was a little umbrella boy.

Julia: Yeah.

Amanda: Do you think a Lickitung would need a Dexter style murder mask for its own spit? Like the tongue has to go under the murder mask and then just like shields it from the spit.

Julia: [Horrified] What? I don't even know where to start with that.

Eric: I would say no. I would say no.

Julia: Yeah, I wanna go with Eric. That's a hard no, friend.

Amanda: It's hard to have two people here who hate my ideas.

Eric: Horrified. I'm gonna be licked by a giant turtle with a massive tongue and a giant umbrella with a giant tongue. We're gonna go to number two. In the Amazon, there is a monster called The River Dolphin that are prevalent to the mythology of the native South Americans. They're often characterized by their mythology as wielding superior musical ability, seductiveness and a love of sex and they super love to party. They can shape shift to human form and they also have the power to control storms, enchant humans into doing their will, transform humans into Encantados, that's the Spanish word for river dolphin.

Julia: So specific a word.

Eric: Yeah, and inflict illness, insanity and even death. Shamans need to intervene if this ever happens. Now a main thing in their folklore is kidnapping. River dolphins or Encantados are said to be fond of abducting humans with whom they fall in love, children born of their illicit love affairs, or just about anyone near the river who can keep them company and takes them back to their home.

Julia: Just don't hang out by the river maybe.

Eric: But like everything is in the river.

Julia: I know.

Eric: Oh man, the Amazon, tight River, oh there's river dolphins who are gonna come hump me when I don't want them to.

Amanda: Oh no.

Julia: That's a thing that dolphins actually do.

Amanda: Too bad all human society is gathered around water.

Julia: Yeah, that kinda sucks, doesn't it?

Amanda: Hmm.

Eric: Especially when you're gonna get humped.

Julia: It's almost like that's the reason why we worship river spirits and stuff.

Amanda: Yeah, it's real.

Julia: Yeah.

Eric: The amount of stuff I had to take out of this quiz because of like, "Oh man, they totally know this stuff already. They know the tropes, water, no, birds, no grandmas."

Julia: Oh no.

Amanda: Grandmas? No.

Eric: Okay, the river dolphin that wants to hump your leg. Is this fake or is it folklore?

Amanda: Julia, what do you think?

Julia: It's folklore.

Amanda: Yeah, I also think folklore.

Eric: The answer is. This is folklore.

Julia: Yah.

Amanda: Woo. You know why? It was too weird.

Julia: You know why I know this too?

Amanda: Why?

Julia: There's an episode of the Wild Thornberrys about this specific spirit. Less of the rape and more of just like the transforming into river dolphins thing.

Amanda: One of my favorite shows.

Julia: I know.

Amanda: Yeah, I knew when it said native South Americans and I was like, "Yeah, no, I don't think Eric would write that." Like there's many hundreds

Eric: I rewrote all these-

Amanda: There's many hundreds of people who live in South America.

Eric: Here's another thing. Well, I guess it's like anything around the Amazon, so it's like the entire continent.

Amanda: Sure, yeah.

Eric: Here's the thing that I didn't tell you 'cause I knew you'd think this was real. When it is under human form, it wears a hat to hide it's blowhole.

Amanda: Yes, yes.

Julia: [Delighted laughter]

Eric: Because it doesn't disappear when the shape changes.

Amanda: So perfect. I love it. I want to set him up with deer woman.

Julia: Okay.

Amanda: They should be BFFs. Oh, I love it.

Julia: I like it.

Amanda: I love it. Good call, Eric. That would have been a total giveaway.

Eric: That would have been a giveaway.

Amanda: Yeah.

Eric: Okay, monster number three is the Braintree. The Braintree is a massive oak with a literal massive brain in the top of it and a spooky face on the front.

Julia: Cool, spooky face, got it.

Amanda: Naturally.

Julia: You know, spooky face, key.

Amanda: It's a tree.

Eric: The Braintree has lived in the haunted woods for a very long time and is known to give rewards to the heroes who complete his quest. It's a he gendered apparently. Usually he wants to know when and where certain people have died. He is engaged with a long battle with a beast that lurks behind him and often has scars for encounters with it. He bears the burden of scars in order to protect the people from the evil of the beast in the woods.

Amanda: All right, I think I'm going to go with fake.

Julia: I'm on the same boat.

Amanda: Because it is too generalized. It sounds like a parable and not like a fucking weird story from someone's hometown.

Julia: Yes, I agree and also, I like how specific it is, like he wants information, like where people died. That seems like a weird to want, but there you go.

Eric: It's very specific. Okay, if you both think it's fake, did I come up with this or did I get it from fiction?

Amanda: I think it sounds like something from fiction.

Julia: It's seems D&D to me.

Eric: Okay, Amanda, where do you think I got this from?

Amanda: I got kind of fantasy novel vibes. It feels like something a student of fantasy would make 'cause it's slightly off kilter from what I would expect. So I think it is a fantasy series.

Eric: The answer to this, the Braintree is fake.

Amanda: All right.

Eric: And I did get it from fiction. However, neither of you got it right.

Julia: On no.

Amanda: Where is it from.

Eric: The Braintree is from Neopets.

Amanda: [Screams] Shit.

Julia: No, oh my god.

Amanda: How did we miss this is? I'm so mad.

Julia: Fuck. What the fuck? Amanda.

Eric: I ripped it literally from Neopets and anytime it said Neopets or Neovia, which is literally the name of the city inside of-

Julia: That's why it was so—

Amanda: Neopia?

Eric: No, Neovia, like Barovia, Neovia.

Amanda: Oh, like old timey.

Eric: Yeah, so that's the haunted town in the haunted woods.

Julia: Oh shit, yeah.

Amanda: [Somberly] I am fucking ashamed of myself.

Julia: I'm so embarrassed of our Scientology upbringing. Sorry, I will link the article, but that's a reference.

Eric: I will give you both two points, but you are not getting it because I figured one of you, Amanda, would get Neopets.

Amanda: You know what? I also had a picture in my brain of that fucking Braintree. I know what it looks like. Ugh, damn it.

Eric: See I tried to rewrite these so you wouldn't go off of context and yet here we are.

Julia: Here we are. We scored well on our SAT reading sections.

Amanda: You did a great job, Eric.

Julia: You did, this is wonderful.

Amanda: This is very much our shit.

Eric: Okay, okay. Number four. We're talking about, this is a place.

Julia: Okay.

Eric: This is Ilha da Queimada I don't why it's spelled like ... oh, it's because it's Portuguese because it's from Brazil.

Julia: Yeah.

Eric: I'm like, "This Spanish is weird."

Julia: What up with this weird Spanish?

Amanda: Either I'm drunk or it's this Portuguese.

Eric: I read in a novel that it was just like is this person speaking Portuguese or I am I just too drunk to understand the Spanish.

Amanda: Yeah, literally every time I read Portuguese I'm like, "’Em’? ... oh, okay, okay, okay."

Eric: This is the Ilha da Queimada Grande but it is better known as the Snake Island because the Sanke Island is home to 2,000 Golden Lancehead vipers. The Golden Lancehead are the most venomous in the world of all time of all history because their venom will literally break down the meat on your hands. It is flesh dissolving.

Julia: The breaks down the meat.

Eric: The meat. Your meat hands.

Amanda: It's a meat tenderizer for humans.

Julia: Oh geez.

Eric: The venom will dissolve your hands and also parts of your ... even if you get a dose of anti-venom or get a-

Amanda: Yeah, I think they can't be real hands.

Eric: Or get something from the shaman or anything, if you're bitten, you're probably going to die. Local fisherman in São Paulo tell tales of people who've ventured onto the island in search of food or other resources and never returned. Something believe that pirates brought the deadly snakes there to protect a trove of Golden galleons and then just died because pirates are dumb.

Julia: Pirates are dumb.

Amanda: This is not Neopia even though galleons were also in Neopia.

Julia: Yeah.

Eric: Whether there's truth to this legend or not, the Brazilian navy closed the island to the public in '20s. Now this might be related, but who knows. There's no documented case of anyone ever bitten by the Golden Lanceheads because no one has ever survived long enough for someone to know about it.

Amanda: And the body just dissolves, so ...

Julia: Wow, this one is hard.

Amanda: I love these perfect danger noodle nieces. I love them all.

Julia: I'm struggling with this one. Yeah, there's wonderful.

Eric: If by perfect you mean will kill you if you look at it.

Amanda: I said perfect, Eric. Yeah, I'm torn. I think the historical detail might be a little bit too much on the closing the island, but the Amazon is also bizarre and full of terrors, so I think I'm gonna go folklore.

Julia: Oh man, I'm conflicted 'cause I was feeling fake for most of that, but the details were very good. You know, I'm gonna go fake for this one. I'm writing it down.

Eric: Okay, Julia?

Julia: Yes.

Eric: If you said fake, do you think I came up with this or is this a real thing in the world or did it come from a fantasy novel? What do you think?

Julia: 'Cause I have this idea in my head, but then I'm remembering wrong 'cause I thought for a second, I was like, "Well, this is one the ... I think this is the island that one of those dumb Pottermore schools is on," but it's not. It's not.

Amanda: That would have been very good 'cause I have no idea where any of those are.

Julia: Yeah, so I'm gonna go ahead and say this is a brain thing. I'm gonna go for your brain. I think this is something that your brain came up with.

Eric: The brain in the brain space.

Amanda: Eric's brain is full of venomous snakes.

Eric: I don't know, agha. You gotta get bitten from the inside. The answer to this, the Golden Lanceheads are not folklore. They're fake.

Amanda: Oh damn.

Eric: But Julia, these are literally real.

Julia: Yeah.

Eric: This is a real place.

Julia: Okay.

Eric: And vice in 2015 sent a bunch of people out there-

Julia: Oh no.

Eric: To show scientists, measuring them and trying to do studies to actually figure out how venomous they are. This is a real thing. Also, told to me by a local South American enthusiast and historian, Kathryn Addington.

Julia: Amazing, Kathryn.

Amanda: Kathryn.

Julia: Good job.

Amanda: Listen, I could push back and say I thought they were real in the world and they are in fact real in the world, but they're not folklore, they're just biology.

Julia: So do we both not get points for that?

Eric: Julia, you get two points-

Julia: Two points.

Eric: And Amanda gets zero points.

Julia: Ooh, dang.

Amanda: You know what? Knowledge that these things are real in the world is winning enough for me.

Eric: Well you can see that even the real things and the fake things ... we're talking about is it a story or is it like something else entirely.

Julia: Gotcha.

Eric: So, for example, about this next one. You guys know what Jai Alai is?

Julia: No.

Amanda: No.

Eric: Remember in the Road to El Dorado?

Julia: Yes.

Eric: When they are playing the spore-

Julia: I remember all of it.

Eric: You're playing the spore with the ring in the middle?

Julia: Uh-huh.

Eric: That's like a bastardized version of Jai Alai. Jai Alai is a traditional Spanish game that's pretty much like handball, where you throw a hard ball against a wall and someone else needs to grab it or pick it up on the bounce. The Jai Alai is different. It is known as the most dangerous game ever played because they use the hardest ball possible and they use these massive scoops to literally whip the ball against the wall.

Julia: Sure.

Amanda: Cool, so more deadly lacrosse, got it.

Eric: Well, like traditional lacrosse by like the Native Americans before people named Chad and Addison as dude appropriated it.

Amanda: Very true.

Eric: I'm gonna tell you the story of how Jai Alai came to be called Jai Alai. Like I said, the Jai Alai ball is about three-quarter the size of a baseball and it's made from rubber, which is wrapped in thread and covered by two hardened goat skin covers. Apparently you need to replace the cover ... I mean that's traditional Jai Alai, you have to replace the cover every 15 minutes because it gets so bug wild.

Amanda: Nice.

Julia: That's fucked up.

Eric: That's all true. That all true, that's not part of it.

Amanda: Okay.

Julia: I'm like yeah, folklore 'cause it's real.

Eric: Folklore, goats are dumb.

Julia: Goats are dumb, fuck them. No, I love goats.

Eric: Sports aren't real.

Julia: Goats are great.

Amanda: I love goats so much.

Julia: Goats are great.

Amanda: I love them.

Julia: It's okay. I understand. You're looking at me like, "Yep, Mm-hmm (affirmative), there we go."

Amanda: Goats are great.

Eric: Okay, goats are great.

Amanda: Thank you.

Eric: Right. I'm gonna tell you the story of how Jai Alai came to be. Now Jai was the name of a swarm of bugs that cursed the Basque region for years. So Jai Alai comes from the Basque region of Spain and the work Jai is a Basque word for ... they were pretty much locusts, but bigger and more monstrous because this is a story.

Eric: They descend upon the crops of grapes for Spanish wine and they just destroy everything.

Amanda: Uh-huh.

Eric: Like they will eat anything that they touch. It is said that a great farmer, once rebuked a beggar who asked for both water and wine, saying that those who beginning should only expect scraps and water. The beggar turned out to be a powerful demon names Jai-

Julia: Sure.

Eric: Who then sent the plague of the locusts that are also named Jai.

Amanda: It was either Jesus or a powerful demon.

Julia: It's gotta be one of those.

Eric: Those are the only choices. I can't help you. The farmers, after dealing with this for years and years and years and being unable to grow grapes, they found that the best way to kill the bugs was to throw rocks at them and eventually they figured that the best way to throw rocks was to use baskets and put a handle on them and literally throw them at the bugs, which then eventually became the Jai Alai scoops, and then instead of rocks it became this extremely hard, extremely small ball. So Jai is from the demon and the bugs and Alai means a way in Basque. So Jai Alai comes from the story of the locusts and the demon. Do you think this is folklore or fake?

Julia: This is getting harder as we go.

Amanda: I was feeling so confident getting the first three right. I don't know, I feel like the Basque region was way too Catholic to talk about demons that casually.

Julia: Oh, I feel the opposite in that regard. Yeah, I'm gonna go folklore.

Amanda: Yeah. The thing that's tripping me up is the movement from rocks to balls, which are more intensive to make than rocks, which why would you play with a ball if you could play with a rock which you can just pick up right now?

Julia: Because they're not uncivilized, Amanda.

Amanda: Yeah.

Eric: 'Cause that's how the sports work.

Amanda: You know, when in doubt, I just go with my hopes and I hope this is true, so I'm gonna go folklore.

Eric: Okay, you two both think this is folklore?

Amanda: Yeah.

Julia: Folklore.

Eric: Okay. The answer to Jai Alai is, it's fake. I made it up.

Amanda: Oh, dang.

Eric: I dang go your brains.

Julia: You got me, oh darn.

Amanda: Darn.

Eric: You two are just covering the fact that I totally got you in your brains.

Amanda: Yeah.

Julia: Yeah, you did.

Amanda: Where'd you make it up from?

Eric: I don't know. I don't know anything about Basque.

Julia: It's gonna be like, I don't think those are…

Amanda: Basque isn't a language?

Eric: Yes, the Basque dialect of Spanish.

Amanda: Oh, all right, fair.

Eric: Jai Alai is from Basque and it is a Basque word.

Amanda: Okay.

Julia: See, that was tripping me up and then you said it so confident. I'm like, "I guess it's folklore then.

Eric: The game is actually called pelota vasca in Spain.

Julia: See, that sounds more like Basque Spanish.

Eric: But then it moved from Spain to South America and it kinda changes a bunch and the Western hemisphere calls it Jai Alai because in Basque it means merry festival because they used to play it on Sundays.

Julia: That's adorable, very cut.

Amanda: Should have gone with my gut. I'm mad at myself.

Julia: You should have.

Eric: Well Amanda, I want to give you a chance to catch up. So I'm gonna do your specialty.

Julia: Oh no.

Eric: This is from Irish folklore.

Julia: Oh no.

Amanda: Ooh.

Julia: That's not my specialty.

Eric: Now while most people are no doubt familiar with the leprechaun, few people probably know about his party-loving cousin who likes to just get trashed, the Clur-

Amanda: Yeah, no, it's real.

Julia: Good luck.

Eric: The Clurichan.

Amanda: How do you spell it?

Eric: C-L-U-R-I-C-H-A-N. While the leprechaun is traditionally though not any more associated with the trait of the shoemaker, the Clurichan is a surly drunk who enjoys riding on the backs of sheeps and dogs.

Julia: You found my people.

Amanda: Yeah, no, I'm gonna throw my hat in for folklore right now.

Julia: Yeah, it's gonna be folklore.

Eric: Come to think of it, these people would actually be much better than a leprechaun for St. Patrick's Day in America because all they like to do is get drunk and ignore their responsibilities.

Amanda: Yeah, for every leprechaun there's a brother that's a Clurichan or whatever.

Eric: What do you think about the Clurichan? Amanda obviously thinks it's folklore.

Julia: It's folklore.

Eric: Yeah, this thing is super real.

Amanda: Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah, good.

Julia: You had me at riding sheep and dogs, was that it?

Eric: Yeah.

Amanda: Yep.

Eric: Sheep and dogs.

Julia: That's a thing that they do.

Amanda: But also in every Irish family there are the ones you brag about and the ones you don't talk about and there has to be one to beat the other.

Julia: Yep, checks out.

Eric: I was reading this and I'm like, "They would totally think that I took any monster and then gave it a weird brother." This was too good for Irish folklore.

Amanda: Yeah, yeah, yeah, this was great.

Julia: For the next weird brother, we'll just assume it's your brain.

Eric: That's true. This is the Clurichan brother, Steve.

Julia: I love Steve, the Clurichan.

Eric: He likes petting goats. It's so weird.

Julia: Yeah. He milks them and makes weird cheese.

Eric: By weird you mean delicious cheese.

Julia: I mean both.

Amanda: The weirder the cheese the better.

Eric: We're gonna have an American myth. Get excited. I love American myths. Like relatively modern but still like within our ideas of Americana this is very good.

Julia: They're all wonderful and terrible, they're all real good.

Eric: I know your blind spots though.

Julia: Yeah.

Eric: American myths after 1800.

Julia: Okay.

Eric: And then like anything in South America-

Julia: South America not my specialty.

Eric: And like vaguely the Pacific rim.

Julia: I know the Pacific rim!

Eric: Eh.

Julia: Eh.

Eric: Okay.

Amanda: Got ‘em.

Eric: Got ‘em. It's Romans, phsh, nah, psh, pshaw.

Julia: Fuck them.

Eric: This is the three-legged crow of New York state. It the town of Witchbane New York, elections are overseen by a three-legged crow. Originally, the town of Witchbane was settled by colonists, a devout group of pilgrims, read, Christians. So best spot to make the town was obviously at the top of the hill, but at the top of the hill there was a spooky and creepy shack-

Julia: Just casual shack.

Eric: They soon figure out…

Julia: What up with that?

Eric: They showed up and like, "Hey, what's going on over there?" [Sarcastically] It's almost like there were things there before the colonists showed up.

Julia: It's weird man.

Eric: So strange.

Amanda: It's so weird. It's like we immediately forget that all the time.

Eric: They soon found out that this was a night hag's den and everyone just probably decided to just burn it down.

Amanda: Tag yourself, I'm night hag. Are you a day hag or a night hag, Julia?

Julia: I'm a night hag.

Eric: I'm like a mid-morning hag. I might not-

Amanda: I'm like a late riser hag.

Julia: I'm an early evening hag.

Amanda: Yeah, you're one o'clock hag.

Julia: Yes I am.

Eric: I'm a brunch hag.

Amanda: Oh yeah.

Eric: It's a liminal space in between.

Amanda: I'm actually, “Is this restaurant open yet hag 'cause I need my dim sum.”

Eric: I need dim sum and it's 11:59 [AM].

Julia: Oh man, now I want dim sum.

Eric: The Christian colonist is at it, "It's a witch, let's just burn it down." Even though they were all in agreement, they decided to put it to a vote, ostensibly, but everyone just unanimously said, "I."

Julia: That's so Americana it's like, "Democracy yeah? All right, cool."

Eric: And they probably the shack down. Soon after, after the town was erected the colonists noticed a three-legged crow hanging around during the fall. Now according to legend, this is the familiar of the night hag, keeping an eye on everything going on even into the grave.

Amanda: Night hag. I go to bed at 9:30 p.m. 'cause I love myself hag.

Eric: During every election during the fall in November, the crow perches in the trees next to the local public school, which of course where the shack used to be built.

Amanda: There's so much America it's too much.

Julia: There's so much going on.

Amanda: It's so fake. It's so fake.

Julia: It's so fake.

Eric: People swear that they see it, but it may just be a superstition in Upstate New York.

Amanda: No, fake. Fuck-

Julia: No, fake. Fake is fake as hell.

Amanda: I knew it was fake starting from the election.

Julia: Or I knew it was fake frame Witchbane.

Amanda: Yeah, that's true.

Julia: Witchbane, New York, psh.

Amanda: Yeah, that's true. Julie looked at me when Witchbane was said and she was like, "Please."

Eric: Okay, do you think I got this from somewhere, like who wrote the Headless Horseman?

Amanda: I don't know.

Julia: I don't know but I know the character's name.

Eric: Who wrote that.

Amanda: Rip Van Winkle?

Eric: No, who wrote it?

Julia: It's a character.

Amanda: No, but it's the same author as Rip Van Winkle I think.

Eric: Yeah.

Amanda: It was the guy who named himself after a fake aristocracy.

Julia: It's not Ichabod Crane 'cause that's the character.

Eric: Washington Irving.

Amanda: Washington Irving.

Julia: Of course it is.

Eric: Was this like a Washington Irving short story or did I make this up from my brain?

Amanda: I think you made it up.

Julia: I feel like it's a shitty Neil Gaiman short story, not that any Neil Gaiman short story is shitty, but-

Eric: He just like dashed it off?

Julia: Yeah, he's like, "Yeah, that's fine."

Eric: It's like, "Hey Terry, look what I came up with."

Julia: Ah, I like you Terry.

Amanda: It was like an eleventh grader's reflections contest entry. New York Sate burn-

Eric: The story of the three-legged crow in Witchbane is fake.

Julia: Yep.

Amanda: All right, good.

Julia: Cool.

Eric: Also, came up with it from my brain.

Julia: Whoa.

Amanda: Aw. So is it two points for me on that on?

Eric: You get two and you get three.

Amanda: We get points-

Eric: Also, I'll take shitty Neil Gaiman short story. I will not take eleventh grader reflections, ma'am.

Julia: Yeah, see I was like, "If that came from his brain that's a sick burn he just laid out on him."

Amanda: Sorry.

Eric: First of all, I went to the Dodge Poetry Festival when I was in high school, so I know things about literature.

Amanda: I took a picture of a fireman helmet the year that 9/11 happened and won first place.

Eric: Boo.

Julia: I wrote like a three-note song and also won first place.

Eric: We are onto number eight. This is some good old Jewish folklore because this is what I do when I'm on spirits.

Julia: Oh boy. Bring it.

Amanda: Eric Silver of Golem episode fame, early spirits, deep cut, it's a great episode.

Julia: Bring it, bring it.

Eric: This is the Bar-Yucheni. Now I lied when I said there were gonna be no birds, but this is no bird husband. The Bar-Yucheni is a colossal legendary bird from Jewish mythology that was believed to have a wingspan large enough to block out the sun. The first mention of the creature comes from the Talmud, which tells of a Talmud egg falling from its nest and destroying 300 trees and flooding 60 villages. The Talmud says that the event, the question therefore arose, does the bird generally throw out its eggs and Rav Ashi replied, "No, that was a rotten one."

Eric: It is said that if the Bar-Yucheni is captured, it would roasted along with the Leviathan and the behemoth two other monsters from bible stuff. I feel like you've talked about this too before.

Julia: About this specific creature?

Eric: The Leviathan and the behemoth.

Amanda: The Leviathan.

Julia: Oh a little bit.

Eric: Those are two classic, the Leviathan and the behemoth literally just two very large things, one on land and one in the sea and this one is in the air. It is said that it will be roasted along with those two dudes and served at a banquet for the children of Israel at the Coming of the Messiah because Jews as you know, do not believe the Messiah has come back, so everything revolves around the Messiah coming back eventually and Jewish mythology.

Amanda: I think I'm gonna go folklore. I really liked that little sort of witticism from the Talmud.

Julia: Yeah, you starting talking about it and I wrote down folklore 'cause I'm pretty sure I've read about this before and if I haven't it's gonna be really embarrassing for me.

Amanda: If it is fake-

Julia: You're already breaking up, so I'm worried that it's fake now. Go ahead.

Amanda: I already wrote down folklore-

Julia: I already wrote down folklore too.

Amanda: If this is fake, it's exceedingly well done.

Eric: The Bar-Yucheni, the massive bird that flies around and is available for all Jewish comedians to make jokes about is folklore.

Julia: Yes.

Amanda: Whoa.

Eric: I just thought this was so funny.

Amanda: It's awesome.

Julia: No, it's real good.

Eric: The stuff at like the backend of the Torah are buck wild.

Amanda: You're like, "If you're still reading, you're welcome. Here's some great stories."

Eric: It's like, "Here's some monsters." Jewish monsters are just like the craziest things.

Julia: Is this also the vampiric one because there's a vampiric Jewish bird creature as well.

Eric: No, that's like the dybbuk, which we didn't talk about during the Jewish one, but it's like in the way that Yokai is for Japanese folklore the dybbuk is just like for Jewish folklore. So I didn't even say it in my Yiddish voice,

Julia: That's all right.

Eric: David Rheinstrom is listening. [With exaggerated Yiddish accent] "It's the dybbuk." It's just like general-

Amanda: Isn't general a monster?

Eric: It's like General Goul.

Amanda: Okay.

Eric: So I can only assume that you ascribe to any monster quality to the dybbuk and it's just kinda whatever.

Julia: Cool.

Eric: So I tried to pick something that was classic from text. The fact that this was in bible and they made dumb jokes about it just made it perfect.

Amanda: I love it. I love it. The only thing making me think that it could possibly not be folklore is that I haven't heard of it before and it's so great.

Eric: Yeah, I was surprised too.

Julia: The thing that I was thinking, by the way, 'cause I just Googled it, it's called the Estries I think.

Eric: I've never heard of that.

Julia: Okay, yeah they are female vampires of Jewish folklore that are said to prey on the Hebrew citizens and the name derives from the French word for night owl.

Eric: Oh, those are like the Disciples of Lilith sort of thing.

Julia: Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah.

Eric: All of the succubus stuff that you all were talking about a little while ago.

Amanda: It's basically the Hebrew succubus.

Eric: Yeah.

Amanda: From episode 69.

Julia: Nice.

Eric: Hebrew succubus is my klezmer punk rock [band name].

Amanda: I got to make it real.

Eric: Okay, we're going back to America and we're doing a contemporary myth.

Julia: Oh boy, not my specialty.

Amanda: Number nine.

Eric: Number nine, number nine. In Loveland, Ohio they've had multiple sightings of an unusual reptile, which has been come to known as the Loveland frog. The most famous sighting was by a police officer in 1972. He saw an animal lying beside the road and when he approached, it got up on two legs and ran away. He described it as three to four feet tall-

Julia: Papers reported about it. What year is this from?

Eric: 1972.

Julia: Okay, thank you.

Eric: So the ba-di-di-di-di-di-di, oh hang on. "I'm Hal Loveless from the Loveland Times. Sir, sir, excuse me please officer, what did you see from the frog?" "Well, it just stand up and run away."

Amanda: "And were you quite frightened?"

Eric: "Yes I was."

Julia: Yes I was.

Eric: This is Ohio. I can't do a Midwestern accent we'll pipe in Eric.

Amanda: It's true, it's true. Eric, put in your pickup now.

Eric Schneider: Look, Loveland, Ohio is in Southern Ohio, but it's still Ohio. We're not talking about going, "Ooh I was quite frightened." I mean all three of their accents are already closer to a Midwestern accent than the Midwestern they were just doing.

Julia: Beautiful.

Amanda: Beautiful. Love it.

Eric: Swing voters love that. Swing voters love the Loveland frog. The Loveland frog walks on two legs. It is described as three to four feet tall and about 60 pounds with the face of a frog or a lizard. No a different police officer had a similar encounter a few weeks later. The story had grew, but the original officers, both the first one and the second one said that the creature was like a monster, but possibly an escaped pet.

Julia: Those are two very different things.

Eric: However-

Amanda: They were just discovering environmentalism in the early '70s and they were like, "Oh no, cross contamination. Invasive species!"

Julia: Oh no.

Eric: The nuclear power plant is turning all of our frogs into frog things.

Amanda: You didn't talk about the three-eyed fish of Springfield. I would have known that that was from "The Simpson" story.

Julia: Into that.

Eric: That's true. No, I mean I put Blinky in there. However there have been other sightings other than these one in the '70s. In 1955 a businessman reported that he saw three creatures that were again, three to four feet tall and had wrinkles on their heads instead of hair, had webbed hands and feet and had the face of a frog.

Julia: I like that description where it's like, "It had wrinkles instead of hair. I don't know. I've never seen a bald person in my life."

Eric: I have one more sentence-

Julia: Okay, go.

Eric: But it's gonna give it away.

Julia: Go ahead.

Eric: You think this is folklore or fake? Ba-da-di-di-di.

Julia: Folklore.

Amanda: Yeah, I'm also gonna say folklore. It's so benign.

Julia: Yeah.

Amanda: That it has to be folklore.

Julia: I also think I've heard this one before.

Eric: The answer to this is folklore.

Julia: Yah.

Amanda: Whoa.

Eric: These are not real stories, but like people in Ohio in this town of Loveland.

Amanda: These are accounts, yeah.

Julia: Ba-da-di-di-di.

Eric: Decided.

Amanda: Ba-da-di-di-di.

Eric: Ba-da-di-di-di. Oh breaking news, I have the final sentence. The bizarre thing about the earlier sighting is that one of the creatures waived a wand and then emitted sparks.

Amanda: Love the '50s. I love it. Someone's child went to Disneyland.

Eric: No, this businessman just passed out on Quaaludes.

Amanda: He definitely was digging in DMA.

Julia: It's definitely not acid.

Eric: 50, '50's of DMA. That was on Ayahuasca. There were some recerts. We're coming to the last one of stage one.

Amanda: I'm ready.

Julia: Geez, yeah.

Eric: So this is also Japanese. Please excuse my pronunciation.

Julia: Go for it.

Eric: 'Cause this is, I'm transliteration for Japanese, but this is the Tō no dorobō, translated to the toe thief, but is colloquially known in translations as the Sock Stealer.

Julia: That's so cute.

Eric: This is a modern Japanese myth, so this actually around the '90s and early 2000's. So as cities in Japan started to expand and become really modern, laundromats started to spring up and even now-

Julia: Lost socks.

Eric: New laundry cafes. So literally it's like a café and you can do your laundry.

Amanda: Yes.

Eric: Laundromat owners blamed lost socks on little sprites who resemble detergent bubbles with two big googly eyes.

Amanda: Awe.

Julia: That's so cute.

Amanda: I want one.

Eric: The reason that they take your socks is because they eat them and therefore live in the place where socks are most likely to be lost and they realize that they look a lot like soap so they blend in.

Amanda: Adorable.

Julia: Do they eat them for power.

Eric: Just like for food.

Julia: Okay.

Eric: So I guess in the way that food is power and calories are power.

Julia: I guess, yes,

Eric: If there is a trail of soap left on your clothes, even after the rinse cycle, or a shirt mysteriously runs, you can blame the Sock Stealer as well. So, this modern Japanese myth, is this folklore or fake?

Amanda: Do you want to go?

Julia: No, you can go first. I already wrote it down.

Eric: Just imagine little googly eyes on a bubble.

Amanda: Yeah, I think it is fake because I think they're too cute and-

Eric: We did just talk about an umbrella person, an umbrella—

Amanda: I know.

Julia: I know, but that's creepy.

Amanda: Also, I have told you guys in our friendship before about how my brother and sister, Austin and Bailey used to climb around under the dinner table and take our socks off during dinner just to take, and just take them and leave them there and crawl away laughing.

Julia: Cool.

Amanda: It's adorable and I think this is too like that story.

Julia: I'm also going for fake. I have it written down.

Amanda: Mm-hmm [affirmative].

Julia: I'm just had to show Eric, 'cause it's like, "No, no, I got it," and I think it is from your brain. It feels like a very like "My Neighbor Totoro" kind of thing, but it also feels like it might be from your brain.

Amanda: This feels like a Tumblr post, where one person is like, "My socks keep going missing," and then a second person responds with like a beautiful 900-word story.

Julia: Yep, that checks out.

Amanda: Yeah.

Eric: Amanda, do you think this is from my brain, or you think it's from Tumblr?

Amanda: I think it's from the internet in some way.

Eric: The answer to this is it's fake.

Amanda: Yes.

Julia: Whoa.

Eric: I will also say that it came from my brain.

Amanda: Ah, cute.

Eric: Come on, googly eyes on a bubble?

Julia: Yeah.

Eric: That's very me.

Amanda: So cute.

Julia: Yes.

Eric: This is Charles the game master here to tell you the scores. At the end of round one, Julia is up in the front with 20 points but Amanda is coming up fast with 17.

Julia: Woo.

Eric: I need more brandy wine. Can you help me out with that?

Julia: Yeah, I think it's time for a refill.

Amanda: Yeah, we're gonna have more of this.

[Upbeat game show commercial music]

Julia: Amanda, obviously we love learning.

Amanda: I love to learn.

Julia: And we especially love learning from people who are passionate about what they do. I mean that's what this show is about basically.

Amanda: I know, we're like we said, "Make up a bunch of horrifying monsters, who should we talk to?" Hmm, Eric Silver.

Julia: So that's why we do the show. You get to learn from me your BFF and I love my area of expertise and that's actually basically what the concept is behind Skillshare. It is an online learning community with over 20,000 classes in design, business, technology, and more. Talk about people who are passionate about those topics.

Amanda: Yeah, so it's beautiful video courses that are laid out really well, they have communities so you can comment and share projects and check in on what other people taking the class are doing. You can do them at your own pace, on your own time, and I genuinely, so my last job before the job I have now was in marketing. I didn't know how to do marketing. I was a social media manager and I was like, "Hello, I'm a millennial." So I used Skillshare before I knew the people who worked there to learn how to do socia media, how to do marketing, what a KPI was and kind of all stuff I had to know for my job and it was so helpful. It made me not get fired.

Julia: I love that. Do you have a course that you want to recommend 'cause I have a course I want to recommend from Skillshare?

Amanda: Oh, you first.

Julia: Yeah, so I would recommend the "Write the Real You" class with Ashley Seaford and it's basically about writing-

Amanda: Oh, she's so good.

Julia: And using your own personal stories in order to share your experiences and it's so useful to me. It's like a person who needs to let stuff out through writing sometimes. It is the perfect class for me.

Amanda: And I really like Justin Gignak's  "Going Freelance-“

Julia: That's a great name.

Amanda: I know, "Going Freelance: Building and Branding your own Success." I know something with the word brand people are like, "I don't know what I'm doing here," but as people who make part of our living freelancing and building our own business, it was so helpful for me to learn stuff like, I don't know, I mean, I guess everybody has a brand, but what does that mean and like how to manage money and how to build a business that's different from you as a person, and it was really, really helpful.

Julia: Yeah, so their premium membership gives you unlimited access to high quality classes on must-know topics so you can improve your skills, unlock new opportunities and do the work you love. So you can join millions of students already learning on Skillshare today with this special offer just for our listeners. You can get two months of Skillshare for just 99¢.

Amanda: Two months of premium Skillshare for just 99¢.

Julia: It's amazing.

Amanda: We love deals.

Julia: Imagine taking college classes at that level for 99¢.

Amanda: I know. In this day and age, I don't often use my literary critical thinking that I learned in college though I apply it to lots of things, but the stuff that I do every single day and the stuff that allows me to make a living is stuff that I learned on my own and that's why Skillshare is the dopest because it lets actual people who do stuff for a living make classes and teach others how to do it.

Amanda: So that's at skillshare.com/spirits to get two months of unlimited access to all of their classes for just 99¢.

Julia: So you can act now on that special offer and start learning today, which I love that tagline.

Amanda: More like keep learning today.

Julia: Yeah.

Amanda: Because we are halfway through. I'm not sure how educational this episode specifically is.

Julia: We'll see what's up.

Amanda: But here we go. Thank you Skillshare for sponsoring us. Y'all go to skillshare.com/spirits and make sure that the good, good folks at Skillshare come back and sponsor us again.

Julia: Yes, please. They're awesome and we love them. Bye.

[Upbeat game show commercial music]

Eric: We're on to round two and this is the lightening round. Thors Hammer lightening round.

Amanda: Awe.

Julia: Are you doing the voice or no?

Eric: [In exaggerated old-school broadcaster accent] I'm Charles the game master.

Julia: There we go. Have a drink.

Eric: [In exaggerated old-school broadcaster accent] Welcome back to Spirits, Fake or Folklore. Let's tell these wonderful ladies what they've won. Whoever comes out on top is gonna have a boozy brunch, is gonna get a haunted doll that I found in a box in my mom's basement-

Amanda: Whoa.

Eric: [In exaggerated old-school broadcaster accent] And a sandwich.

Julia: Wait. I don't know if I want that haunted doll though. Charles, why?

Amanda: Julia, with great power comes great responsibility.

Eric: [In exaggerated old-school broadcaster accent] It's cursed me and now I talk like this. [Back to regular accent] All right.

Julia: Oh shit.

Amanda: That explains a lot. So how does this lightening round work?

Eric: So the lightening round is very simple. I'm gonna read out 10 names and the names are either gonna be heroes from folklore or stories or it is a name that I got from a fantasy name generator of World of Warcraft.

Julia: Please tell us what the name generator is called so people can play at home.

Eric: This is www.fantasynamegenerator.com/world-of-warcraft.

Julia: Thank you.

Eric: One, Nightengale the Robber. Two, Solovei the Brigand. Three, Sare Summersnow.

Julia: Oh no.

Eric: Four, Magnus Burnsides.

Julia: Wait, which one would that go for though?

Eric: Did I get it from the generator?

Julia: No, I don't think so.

Amanda: No.

Eric: There you go.

Julia: Okay.

Eric: Five, Sun Wukong. Six, Alug the Brightflayer. Seven, Ashling Lester. Eight, Zurun Wolfsplitter. Nine, Dusty Rowley. Ten, Atalanta of Arcadia.

Julia: I don't know why Dusty Rowley makes me laugh so bad. I think it's because it reminds me of a wrestler.

Eric: It does sound a little bit like a wrestler.

Julia: It does sound a little bit like a wrestler.

Eric: I'm Dusty Rowley and I'm here to take down HHH.

Julia: Okay.

Eric: One and two are both heroes.

Julia: Oh fuck me. This is bad.

Eric: These are actually the same heroes. He's like an anti-hero in Russian folklore, a part human with bird-like features.

Julia: What?

Eric: They're able to fly. They lived in a nest. Had a human family and received drinks with his hands. He said to live in a forest.

Amanda: I'm sorry, one of his powers is that he took drinks with his hands?

Eric: Yep.

Amanda: Geez.

Eric: He was said to live in a forest and would sit in a tree by the Road to Kiev and then stun strangers with his powerful whistle.

Julia: Did you get either of those?

Amanda: No.

Julia: Okay, good.

Eric: Yeah, those were both real.

Amanda: Wow, I'm shocked.

Julia: Those are both great.

Amanda: Russia is filled with a multitude of bird husbands.

Eric: I also love that they were the same person.

Julia: Yeah.

Eric: It's just like I had to keep them both. I love that.

Amanda: That's great.

Eric: All right, Sare Summersnow. That is from World of Warcrafts.

Amanda: Thank god.

Eric: Four, Magnus Burnsides. That's a hero.

Julia: Hey one, gimme.

Eric: Yeah, gimme, gimme.

Julia: Thank you.

Eric: 'Cause nine was a bad number. Five was Sun Wukong. That is a hero from Chinese mythology.

Amanda: Yes, I knew that one.

Eric: This is buckwild this guy.

Julia: Is that the Tale of the West guy?

Eric: I don't know.

Julia: Okay.

Eric: This is a money who became-

Julia: Yep, Tale of the West.

Eric: Crazy, all this stuff is ridiculous.

Amanda: Crazy. Sounds like a much better hero than fucking white boy from Marvel.

Julia: I'm sorry, Journey to the West is the thing that he's from.

Eric: Yeah, that's the one. Yeah, they should have made this like reformed monkey instead of Iron Fist.

Julia: Yes, idea.

Eric: Hot take.

Julia: Hot take.

Eric: Yeah, this is crazy. He fought, he refused to die. He rebelled against heaven and defeated all of heaven's best generals.

Julia: Yeah.

Eric: He was trapped under a mountain by the Buddha where he remained imprisoned for 500 years.

Julia: Oh yeah.

Amanda: My lord.

Eric: He was staff that weighed 18,000 pounds that could shrink and expand depending on what he said. He could use it to measure the sea, he was the monkey king.

Julia: I love him.

Eric: Very dope. Thank you son.

Amanda: Love it. Monkey has been much better than most bird husbands.

Eric: Good job monkey husband.

Julia: Checks out.

Eric: Alug the Brightflayer, that was from World of Warcrafts.

Julia: Yes.

Amanda: Nice. Anything that references liked in the last name, probably from a name generator.

Eric:  Ashling Lester, World of Warcraft.

Amanda: Awesome.

Julia: Oh, was that number seven?

Amanda: Yes.

Julia: All right, fuck.

Amanda: I knew that Lester was too much.

Eric: Zurun Wolfsplitter, also from World of Warcraft.

Julia: Okay, good.

Amanda: That was eight?

Julia: Yep.

Eric: That was eight. Dusty Rowley the wrestler. That is a human hero if I've ever heard one. That's from World of Warcraft.

Amanda: Yes.

Julia: Fuck.

Eric: You know, I used to be a high school teacher so I knew how to do these answers. You can't be like, "Hmm, I wonder if it's true or false?" I got you.

Julia: You did, you got me.

Eric: We're gonna hang out together at lunch and we're gonna talk about poetry.

Amanda: Any kid that knew what game theory was would have done so well in your classroom.

Eric: And number 10, Atalanta of Arcadia. She was a real hero.

Julia: Yah.

Amanda: Yah.

Eric: This was the only classic thing that I gave you. I had to say of Arcadia, because of course you know Greeks, they only have one name like Madonna.

Amanda: Yes.

Eric: So Atalanta was an excellent huntress and the fastest runner in ancient Greek mythology. She defeated Peleus, who was Achilles father in wrestling and she was the only female Argonaut.

Julia: The only way that she was ever married is that I believe Aphrodite gave one of her suitors, basically they had to be able to beat her in a race and so she gave one of the suitors golden apples and she gave the suitor a head start so he dropped these golden apples and Atalanta lost because she stopped to pick them up.

Amanda: Awe.

Eric: Okay, so Julia got five.

Julia: Not great.

Eric: And Amanda got seven.

Julia: Damn.  

Eric: So what was that. All right you are only one point different, but Amanda is behind, so she is going to start with the not what they seem challenge. This is stage three.

Amanda: Okay, what's this all about?

Eric: Not what they seem is exactly what you think it is. I'm going to describe-

Amanda: Which is exactly what it doesn't seem like.

Eric: Exactly. I'm gonna to describe a cryptid or a monster, but it's actually something that you know very commonly in our world today.

Amanda: Okay.

Eric: The way it's gonna work, you're gonna go back and forth and I'm gonna tell you whose right and whose not. Amanda, you're gonna go first 'cause you are behind.

Amanda: Okay.

Eric: If you get it right, you get three points.

Amanda: Okay.

Eric: So Amanda, you're gonna go first.

Amanda: Yep.

Eric: Please listen to the story. This is like the verbal regents where you have to listen to a story out loud.

Amanda: Yes.

Eric: And you're like, "I have terrible verbal processing," and they're like, "You don't care you're gonna suffer in school."

Amanda: Fuck you, yeah.

Eric: Yeah. Not what they seem. This creature has one distinct feature that makes it stand out in all of folklore. It can be found on multiple continents and is not known to be dangerous unless provoked. It was commonly described in stories as an extremely wild woodland creature, a symbol of strength. While not found in Greek mythology, it has been written about in accounts from natural historians from around that time.

Julia: Can I steal from her if she doesn't get it?

Eric: Yes, of course.

Julia: Oh sweet 'cause I know this one.

Eric: In the 13th century, traveler Marco Polo, you might have heard of him when you're in the pool.

Amanda: Polo?

Eric: Marco?

Julia: Marco?

Eric: Marco Polo claimed to have seen this creature on the island of Java, which built its legendary status. Marco Polo was stunned by its speed, size and its one singular horn. What am I describing?

Amanda: I think it's either a rhino or a parrot.

Julia: A parrot? What?

Amanda: I'm gonna go with a rhino.

Eric: It is a rhinoceros.

Amanda: Yeah! Thank you.

Eric: It's really interesting-

Amanda: I thought it was gonna be a narwhal and I was like, "Fuck you. Narwhals aren't in the forest."

Eric: This is important. This is another suggestion from Kathryn. She told me I should do this and describe a rhinoceros like a unicorn.

Amanda: Yes.

Eric: And a lot of this stuff intersects. When people were thinking about the unicorn they were actually thinking about a rhinoceros. That thing about Marco Polo is real.

Julia: Yeah, yeah.

Eric: He thought he saw a unicorn, but it was actually a rhino-

Amanda: Oh Marco.

Julia: Oh Marco.

Eric: There is he like an Indian-

Amanda: Polo?

Eric: Marco? And they're are Indian and Javan rhinoceroses.

Amanda: Yeah.

Eric: So I thought that was cool. Also, that thing about the narwhal. People took narwhal horns and then sold them as unicorn horns.

Amanda: Wow.

Eric: So you are actually kind of correct.

Amanda: Yeah. Well, I thought that'd be funny if it was like a parrot or something 'cause it's got one big nose that's kinda like a beak anyway.

Julia: I was so worried about you .

Amanda: I'm proud of myself. I'm proud of myself. Thank you.

Eric: Okay, all right, Julia.

Julia: Yes.

Eric: So Amanda is up by two but we still have two more questions left.

Amanda: So that's worth three points?

Eric: That was worth three points.

Amanda: Okay.

Eric: Julia, here is your cryptid that is not what it seems.

Julia: Okay.

Eric: This massive burrowing snake is said to speed deep below the surface of major cities. It is said that it stretches over 5,000 feet, nearly 10 feet wide, and can crush anyone that dares venture into its tunnels. These snakes differ depending on location. Some go to sleep past midnight. Others spend more time above the surface, while other cities have never seen these snakes, but if you're quiet and can listen through the bustle of the city, you can hear the screeching of its claws as it passes underground.

Julia: I love this round so much.

Eric: Julia, what is this monster?

Julia: It's the subway.

Eric: It's the subway.

Julia: Whoa.

Eric: There it is. All right, Julia is up by one, but Amanda, you can take it if you get this one correct on the first try.

Amanda: I'm ready.

Eric: Amanda, here is your story. Mystics talk of an energy that ties nearly everyone in world together. It is a network of networks, a connection that binds private and public life, work and school, government and people. It's kinda hard to explain. Some say it's a cloud, others say it just binds all people and others say it like a series of tubes.

Amanda: It's the internet.

Julia: Let him finish at least.

Eric: This energy requires a receiver and requires physical and emotional maintenance. If it doesn't work you must reset your own mind and conduit that you receive it with. Spiritualists have argued for years about whether or not this energy is ultimately good or evil, but we cannot ignore it and must learn to navigate it during our daily lives.

Amanda: It's the internet.

Eric: This is the internet.

Amanda: Yah.

Eric: Ba-ba-ba.

Amanda: It looks like Julia will be making us breakfast which-

Julia: Wait.

Eric: Here's the thing is that Julia didn't get a chance to go.

Amanda: Okay.

Eric: So I'm trying to think of what to do now.

Julia: Do I get another question though?

Eric: I can give you one more. I just need to come up with it now.

Julia: Yeah.

Eric: 'Cause I didn't think this would happen. 'Cause I thought the points would shake itself out.

Julia: Yeah.

Eric: Julia.

Julia: Yes.

Eric: Your final not what they seem is for all the marks.

Julia: Da-da-da-da-da-da.

Eric: Julia, if you get this right, then Amanda needs to make us boozy brunch.

Julia: Yes.

Amanda: Hey, you invite yourself to boozy brunch?

Julia: Yes.

Eric: [In exaggerated old timey broadcaster accent] I'm Charles the gamesman and I don't go anywhere without five mimosas.

Amanda: Good quality Charles.

Julia: That's fair.

Eric: All right, here is your story.

Julia: Oh boy.

Eric: This monster is a danger to people crossing the arid wasteland. It attacks the unaware as sneaking up behind them to deliver a piercing blow. It leaves a mark, a piece of itself, that the victim must show as a sign of defenselessness and carelessness. Now, it would seem that only humans are its prey, as the animals surrounding this cryptid in its environs rely upon it for sustenance and protection in the hot, hot sun.

Julia: It's between two things right now.

Eric: What do you got?

Julia: The bee and a cactus.

Eric: Okay.

Julia: I'm gonna go with the cactus.

Eric: Julia, you're correct, it's a cactus.

Julia: Yah.

Eric: [In exaggerated old timey broadcaster accent] And that's all the time we have for Fake or Folklore! Julia you can pick up the haunted doll whenever you come by to my broken two-story walk up 12 stories. Okay.

Julia: Night hag shack.

Eric: I live in the night hag shack at the depths of Queens.

Amanda: God, goals.

Eric: Amanda, I just want you to know I love sausages and I expect 20.

Julia: Also bacon.

Amanda: We'll see what I can do.

Eric: [In exaggerated old timey broadcaster accent] I'm Charles the gamesman signing off and you know what they say. If you called me I will be with you for 10 years. Bye-bye now.

Julia: That's horrifying, Charles.

Amanda: You know what, Julia. I think this episode really qualifies as-

Julia: Kinda creepy.

Amanda: And kinda cool.

[Upbeat game show commercial music]

Eric Schneider: [In game show narrator voice] Spirits was created by Amanda McLoughlin, Julia Schifini, and Eric Schneider, with music by Kevin McCloud and visual design by Allyson Wakeman.

Boozy brunch prize package subject to local, federal and interdimensional taxes. 

Keep up with all things creepy and cool by following us on Twitter, Tumblr, Facebook and Instagram at Spirits Podcast. We also have all our episodes, collaborations and guest appearances, plus merch on our website, spiritspodcast.com.

All contestants receive one night's stay at a local haunted house!

Come on over to our Patreon page, Patreon.com/spiritspodcast for all kinds of behind-the-scenes stuff, most as little as $1 and get access to audio extras, recipe cards, director's commentaries and Patreon only live streams.

Spirits Podcast LLC not liable for damage, psychic or physical, from haunted dolls, horses or objects. Do not attempt this at home. Or do. I mean, we're not your parents.

And if you like the show, please share it with your friends. That's the best way to help us grow. Thanks so much for listening. Till next time.