Death by Fat Man – Myth with a sense of humor

Today I bring to you the funniest urban legend I have ever come across, not even kidding.

Every Filipino family knows someone who has been killed by the “Bangungot.” In Filipino folklore, bangungot is personified as a fat man who creeps into the bedroom of sleeping men and sits on their faces to suffocate them. (…because clearly fat people, no offense, have no other purpose in life, other than sitting on other people’s faces to suffocate them!)

This so called “fat man” is actually a disease known as Sudden Unexplained Nocturnal Death Syndrome, wherein the victims of the disease have been males in 99% of the cases, and of those 80% were between the ages of 22 and 45. (Hence, the assumption that somehow the fat man is interested in only obliterating the male population)

Now what happens is that during the first quarter of the sleep cycle there occurs a myocardial infarction in the lower left ventricle of the heart, thus causing a heart attack. (for the lay man, there occurs a sort of a blockage due to which blood is unable to reach the heart) Now because this happens while they’re asleep on their backs, their faces are usually contorted to be terrified, and justifiably so, (if I had a heart attack in the middle of the night while I was asleep, I’d probably be terrified myself!) that could explain why people thought a Fat Man killed them because men around age 22 – 45 are actually quite strong and difficult to just kill, so Fat Man needed to be overpowering. But then again, smothered by a pillow would have been a better, believable theory.

Somehow this sitting on someone’s face to kill them is a little weird (not to mention uproariously funny) to think about. Who ever came up with this folklore, either had a twisted sense of humor coupled with a quirky imagination, or none at all.

And with that, I’ve laughed myself to a point of near cardiac arrest, so I’m gonna go now.

More tomorrow!


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