You can’t smell a podcast, which in today’s case is probably a good thing.

The world is full of mysteries, and reports of mysterious creatures. The Hodag. The Sasquatch. The Loch Ness Monster. Nicolas Cage.

But there’s one that may have outdone them all, at least when it comes to its aroma.

It was called the Big Muddy Monster, and whatever it is or was, it first made its presence known on this day in 1973 in Murphysboro, in southern Illinois.

A couple in a car said they saw it up close right around midnight, describing it as white-haired, about seven feet tall, and covered in mud.

Oh, and it smelled like either river slime or sewage. Or both.

Authorities brought a dog to the scene and traced the smell to a barn, but the dog refused to go in.

For more than a decade there would be occasional reports of what was nicknamed the Big Muddy Monster, the last one in 1988.

Was it an unusually dirty bear? A Bigfoot that woke up on the wrong side of the bed? Nobody knows for sure.

But as so often happens in these situations, Murphysboro grew fond of whatever was lurking around out there, and they’ve held a Big Muddy Monster Brewfest in its honor.

And people have worn Big Muddy Monster costumes in local parades and at community events.

Hopefully when they dress as the monster, they don’t also try and smell like it.

Today in 1977, the final ever concert by Elvis Presley, at the Market Square Arena in Indianapolis.

Critics were mixed; some thought he was actually in better vocal shape than previous tours, but one reviewer said Elvis took his fans to “bananaland,” which is probably not a reference to one of his favorite sandwiches.

Anyway, the arena has since been torn down, but Indianapolis does have a historic marker to mark where the King had one last audience.

Chasing Monsters: Big Muddy Monster still has Murphysboro residents wondering (The Southern Illinoisian)

Big Muddy Monster Case File (

The King’s Final Bow: Elvis’s Last Concert in Indianapolis (Indiana History Blog)

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Photo by Jimmy Emerson, DVM via Flickr/Creative Commons