Sunday, November 22

It's pishtacos not fishtacos. And they're real!

The Andean Quechua people have an old myth about pishtacos, vampire-like men who suck the fat out of their victims. The Peruvian novelist Mario Vargas Llosa wrote about pishtacos in his book, Death in the Andes:

Pishtacos "needed human fat to make church bells sing more sweetly and tractors run more smoothly, and now, lately, to give the government to pay off the foreign debt ... They not only slit their victims' throats but butchered them like cattle, or sheep, or hogs, and ate them. Bled them drop by drop and got drunk on the blood."

Sergio’s grandfather is said to have had a run-in with a pishtaco. As a truck driver, he slept on the side of the road one night, and woke up with a giant cut on his lower back where he thought the pishtaco had extracted his fat.

And grandpa's not the only one. Just this week the Peruvian police reported (see NYT story) that they had captured suspected assassins with bottles of human body fat from their victims. They planned to sell the fat on the black market for use in skin treatments. 

Check out this AP report on it:

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