I was talking to a friend yesterday who alerted me to legislation out of California which would shut down churches because of what they preach. I doubted the authenticity of it and a quick Google search told me I was right; it was all a hoax. This story reminded me of something I used to deal with frequently. Although I don't get nearly as many of these rumors as I uesd to when I was employed by ye old megachurch, I still get the occasional email forward telling me not to flash my car lights in the ghetto lest I get killed. I've done it twice in two years and I still dwell in the land of the living.

I find it ironic that there are people of faith who decry gossiping yet don't think twice about sending an email to dozens of people that could contain slanderous information. Just because it sounds probable or even because you wish it was true doesn't mean that it's OK to send it out. Sending fake email forwards is just as sinful as lying, so if you're in the practice doing so you should stop. And no one wants to read email forwards anyway.

So before you push send on that email forward that you think will transform the world, just take the time to first check whether or not it's actually true. A couple of sites I use are Urban Legends @ About and Snopes. If you're going to use the  technology, use it to its fullest and fact check first.

And, no, combining pop rocks and soda won't kill you.

***And if you forward those chain letter emails ["forward this to ten people you love . . ."] then you need more advice than I can give you.