Whenever we had a picnic near a lake as a child, we were told to never EVER go swimming for at least an hour or you were going to have cramps and die. Each time I heard that particular ridiculous information, all I wanted to do was defy the whole big pile of bunk.
Who started all these myths, and why?
Once a month, on a Sunday, we used to drive down to St Albans,Vermont for the day. After lunch, like clockwork, the whole "no swimming after eating for an hour" conversation began. I sat there quietly, waited for about ten minutes, and then told everyone I was going to gather shells by the water. In the distance I heard my mother scream,
"Linda, don't you dare go into that water! "
Sporting a sinister smile, I knew I was going to defy the laws of nature that day. I would prove to the world this myth was wrong. Plain wrong. Truth be told, I was a little scared as I inched my toes into the water. Suddenly I was up to my ankles, and immediately felt a huge stomach pang. Maybe they were right I thought, and backed out of the water quickly. Two inner voices started telling me what to do.
One said, "Go in!"
The other said, "You're going to die!"
Ahh, to heck with it, and with that, I ran in up to water up to my knees. Suddenly there was a huge commotion, and people were running towards me in the water. Good old Vermont 911 rescue was on the way for a young boy that was just inches away from me screaming in the water.
The roar of noisy moving water, and my mother “having a cow” on shore, brought me in pretty darn quickly. The boy was carried out immediately, and people were saying it was probably because he went in swimming right after eating. There was my mother, arms akimbo, with a stern look on her face and said,
"You see what happens if you go swimming after you eat?"
Well, according to Snopes, I am debunking this myth right now. You will not die if you go swimming right after lunch. You might throw up, but you won't die. Now, maybe those egg salad sandwiches that fermented on the two hour drive down there in the 90 degree weather might have killed us all. But it's not the darn water. Always remember there will be times in your life when things defy logic and seem crazy--especially to your mother. When that happens, listen to your instincts and ignore everyone and everything else--except for those warm egg salad sandwiches. Now that is an immediate death waiting to happen.