welcome to the simple complexities of my mind...

Tuesday, September 26, 2006


Soo... I've simply been reading blogs lately and haven't been doing any blogging of my own. And now I have a little catching up to do as there are quite a few stories and topics I have on my mind waiting to be entered into the blogosphere.

But first... you know those emails you get where they give you a warning so you ought to watch out that it doesn't happen to you? Welllllllllllll... I got one that really does make me sick to think of the possibilities.

Disclaimer: I don't know if it's true. I personally never verified it. But the idea that this does/could/is/or would happen is just soooooooooo wrong. It just worries me that this could actually happen to kids. I don't know...

McDonalds, Chuck E Cheese, Discovery Zone... Some of you might not be
parents, but you may have nieces, nephews, grandchildren or friends with
children. This will pertain to you too. As I read the following, my heart
sank. I cannot stress how important this is!This is very disturbing

In addition to the following true story...One son lost his watch, and
was very upset. We dug and dug in those balls, trying to find the
watch.Instead, we found vomit, food, feces, and other stuff I do not want to
discuss. I went to the manager and raised hell. Come to find out, the ball
pit is only cleaned out once a month. I have doubts that it is even done
that often. My kids will never play in another ball pit.

Now read this:

PRETTY SCARY!!Hi. My name is Lauren Archer, my son Kevin and I lived in
Midland,TN. On October 2nd, 1999 I took my only son to McDonald's for his 3rd
birthday.After he finished lunch, I allowed him to play in the ball pit. When he
started whining later on, I asked him what was wrong, he pointed to the back of
his pull-up and simply said "Mommy, it hurts." I couldn't find anything wrong
with him at that time. I bathed him when we got home, and it was at that point
when I found a welt on his left buttock. Upon investigating, it seemed as if
there was something like a splinter under the welt. I made an appointment to see
the doctor the next day, but soonhe started vomiting and shaking, then his eyes
rolled back intohishead.From there, we went to the emergency room. He died later
that night. It turned out that the welt on his buttock was the tip of a hypodermic needle that had broken off inside. The autopsy revealed that Kevin had died from a heroine overdose. The next week, the police removed the balls from the ball pit. There was rotten food, several hypodermic needles: some full, some used; knives, half-eaten candy, diapers, feces, and the stench of urine.If a child is not safe in a child's play area then where? You can find the article on Kevin Archer in the October 10,1999 issue of the Midland Chronicle.

Don't think it's just McDonald's either or that this is something that just started. When my oldest son who is now 9 was small the area Burger King closed
their play area for awhile for "remodeling" because in another town there had
been an incident similar to the one described above that happen @ a Burger
King.A little boy had been playing in a ball pit & started complaining of
his legs hurting. He later died too. He was found to have snake bites all over
his legs & buttocks. When they cleaned the ball pit they found that there
was a copperhead nest in the ball pit. He had suffered numerous bites from a
very poisonous snake.

In Florida and other places on the East Coast a group of people are putting
HIV/AIDS infected and filled needles underneath gas pump handles, so when
someone reaches to pick it up and put gas in their car, they get stabbed with
it. 16 people have been a victim of this crime so far and 10 tested HIV
positive. Instead of posting that stupid crap about how your love life will suck
for years to come of you don't re-post, post this. It's important to inform
people, even if you don't drive, a family member might, and what if they were


Blogger IAMB said...

Just an FYI...

According to Snopes, it's a crock. Thought you'd want to know.

6:55:00 PM  
Blogger Carmel said...

Well now I know if it's true or not. Still... the possibility of it disturbs me. I don't know if I would want my future kid playing in the ballpen anymore.

I do hope they clean the ballpens more often than that though.

12:03:00 AM  
Anonymous Matt said...

According to Snopes McDonalds had this to say: "Unfortunately these types of rumors bring unnecessary concerns for our customers. It is important to know that safety is a top priority at McDonald's, especially as it relates to children. We take many precautions to ensure our Playlands are safe.

We do realize that the Internet is a "hotbed" for irresponsible rumors, and for that reason, we especially appreciate the fact that you have taken the time to contact McDonald's for the facts. I encourage you to share this e-mail with anyone who shares this rumor with you."

It is scary, but places with playlands, I have a feeling, are very well aware of the safety risks. Even if it isn't for fear of someone getting hurt and more out of fear the would be sued...


4:26:00 PM  
Blogger Carmel said...

Well, that as I said before it is a relief. These rumors are just gross. Can worry a parent sick to death by just hearing about such things.

Thanks for the clarification from the both of you.

10:50:00 PM  
Blogger fancy said...

This exact type of hoax has been around for a long time. It first surfaced years ago (over 20) only a couple of years after the ball pens became popular. If we had the information superhighway then as we do now.......well, those rumors would have been squashed as well. With that in mind, anything is posssible (some idiot put a poison in an over-the-counter pain reliever in the 80's-----And that was a fact! So as a person with ties to many children, I intend to be careful and attentive to their safety at all times. It's about all you can do. Makes you wonder what type of peron finds horrifying parents and others amusing.

4:43:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You won't find an article about Kevin Archer in the October 10, 1999 issue of the Midland Chronicle. In fact, you won't find a Midland Chronicle - The paper doesn't exist. The title is a combination of the Houston Chronicle and the Midland Reporter-Telegram, both of which have been falsely credited with this story. Further, there have been no reports of a child by that name (or any other) dying in any McDonalds restaurant in Midland, TN; Sugarland, TX; or any of the other towns different versions of this letter place him in. McDonalds firmly denies the allegations - There have also been no reports of snakes or any other such risks in fast-food restaurant play areas.

doteasy.com - free web hosting. Free hosting with no banners.
Urban legends like the one about Kevin Archer often describe believable and plausible scenarios. They describe them as events that actually happened to give them more clout and urgency. A story about a child who died from a ball bit injury is far more compelling than a generic warning that alleges the dangers of the play areas. Nothing is worse than a deadly danger lurking behind a symbol of happiness and joy, thus this legend appeals on very fundamental levels.

However, labeling this one a legend isn't the same as saying that fast food ball pits are the cleanest and safest places in the world - afterall, they are designed for and used by children, who aren't exactly the cleanest or most conscientious folks on the planet. But even adults can be careless (even malicious) and use the play areas as a trash can, a hiding spot for incriminating items, emergency restrooms and other undesirable uses. Some of the children who use them aren't always the cleanest creatures on the planet either.

Most businesses with the play areas spot clean them daily, with a more thorough cleaning at least once a week. If you're concerned about your kids' safety, ask the management at your favorite place about their cleaning schedule and take a moment to check it for yourself before letting the kids in. If it doesn't look safe, report it to management. Break this Chain!

2:12:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I also read on Snopes that it was false after receiving that email. But it's scary to think that it CAN actually happen.

5:34:00 PM  
Anonymous sheryl said...

completely and totaly false....heres the link to prove the claim is in-accurate

3:41:00 AM  
Blogger PumpkinNiki said...

I got a myspace bulletin saying the same, and posted it on my blog. I later did the research (as I promised I would), and posted that as well. It's sad to think people have nothing better to do than come up with a bunch of crap! And it is even more amazing how long that tale has been in circulation.....and it still gets people!!!

5:25:00 PM  
Blogger Carmel said...

I did say that at the beginning I didn't know if the story was true or false.

I am glad that the story is false and I find great relief in that.

I do agree with you though, that it is sad people will come up with this kind of crap and for what? To freak others out while ruining the rep of a business? It's pretty pathetic... I'm just sorry I fell for it.

8:46:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

One rumor is that a Kevin Archer died in a ball pit with ball pit balls at a McDonald's in Midland, TN, USA. He died because he was punctured with a hypodermic needle full of HIV/AIDS.

There are several reasons why this story is just a story. There is supposed to be story about him and his encounter with ball pit balls in the October 10, 1999 issue of the Midland Chronicle. There is no such article. There is no newspaper called the Midland Chronicle. There is no report of a child dying at a McDonald's in Midland, TN.

There is another rumor going around that there is an infant who died in a ball pit. Apparently, there were not just ball pit balls in the ball pit. There were also rattlesnakes.
According to urban legend folklorist Jan Harold Brunvald, this is a later-day version of an urban legend that he calls "Death in the Funhouse. These versions are usually set in amusements. People could have died on a water slide full of water slide. People could have died of snakes on the merry-go-round.

For the record, on October 23, 1999, the Burger King Corporation categorically denies that rattlesnakes killed anybody at their ball pits that are full of ball pit balls, not rattlesnakes.
People should be careful about what they believe on the Internet and examine these ball pit balls stories closely.

12:54:00 AM  

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