My friend Joel reports:
A couple of months ago a sausage manufacturer in Wales was forced by Trading Standards officials to drop the name of his very popular “Welsh Dragon Sausages”—because they were made of pork, not dragons!
An urban legend, say I. True story, says Joel. Not in Snopes. Anyway, it is sourced: to the BBC (link). And as it happens, a Google search for “dragon sausage powys county wales” turns up 382 hits.
But wait. These hits are virtually all repeats of the original story. They all seem to source the same person: one Jon Carthew, speaking for something called “Black Mountans Smokery in Powys.” Evidently he reports a “warning letter” from the Powys county council’s trading standards department. A later Times story says that the product “will have to be renamed” because the manufacturer “could face prosecution”—but this story appears to be nothing but a hyped up version of the original BBC account.
Un hnh. So far as I can tell, no real human regulator is ever named in these stories—only “a spokesman.” Powys is a small place, not so? Just how many brothers-in-law does Mr. Carthew have? Meanwhile, a search at the
But more generally—so far as I can tell, nobody has a motive to contradict this yarn. Certainly not Carthew, who has got the best publicity he’s got in years. Nor the regulators who at worst are hoping it will just go away. And by all means not the gazillions of internet readers (guilty, your honor) who are just waiting to pounce on any instance of bureaucratic blindness. And of course, certainly not your friends at BBC (
Verdict: not proven. But I do recall hearing that
Fn: Meanwhile, my friend John says I have been taken in by the Swedes—apparently “fjuckby” doesn’t mean what you think it means. Put a sock in it, John—nobody wants to know the truth here.