WHETHER it is tales of haunted dormitories told around the campfire, dubious sporting facts related in the pub, or junk e-mails clogging up the inbox, there is no doubt that myths are a huge part of modern life.
Now a team of top international academics are set to discuss topics ranging from UFO crop circles to Fidel Castro's baseballing skills at a conference in Ceredigion.
The subject matter might sound legendary - and it may well be, because the International Society for Contemporary Legend Research will be coming to Wales for the first time.
Speakers at the conference in Aberystwyth this month will include Jan Harold Brunvan, who wrote the influential book The Vanishing Hitchhiker and virtually invented the phrase "urban myth". The 1980 book explored why some myths stick around while others are quickly exposed as scams, lies or half-truths.
The society was founded in Sheffield in 1982 and has held alternate annual conferences in America and Europe since then.
Its coming to Aberystwyth has been influenced by Dr Mikel Koven, an expert on urban legends and horror films who works at the University of Wales.
Originally from Newfoundland, Canada, he believes that the types of urban myths floating around at any one time can reveal a lot about society's values.
"It is a bit of a strange thing to study. When I started my PhD I thought we would be looking at fairy tales," said Dr Koven.
While we may believe we are past the days when people told tall stories and the gullible actually believed them, Dr Koven believes we are still being entranced by myths and legends.
"The vast majority of legends are these days transmitted by email and not word of mouth," he said. "Everyone must have had the Nigerian scam email where one is asked for money to help release a vast sum of cash locked in a bank account.
"First time I saw that, I was wondering if it is real or not. Now I am wondering who is still sending it, and how many times I can send an insulting reply, because it is blatantly a scam."
He added that the way these myths fade in and out of fashion sometimes matches large-scale world events.
"September 11 is a good indicator, there were lots of myths dragged up in the months afterwards. But others are always around, like every town has a rumour about the food at some ethnic restaurant or other. Why does that rumour persist?"
Recently he said the trend was for "Glurge", or emails with religious overtones telling people how to live their life.
"But being into horror movies, my favourite are always the ones about hook-handed axe murderers. The funny thing about urban myths that stick around is that they usually have a moral to the tale, like don't stay out late at night or park in cars with boys. Sometimes it's good advice, other times not so good."
A spokesman for the University of Wales, Aberystwyth, said, "It is an unusual conference. The stories range from the humorous to the horrific.
"It's great to be welcoming it to Wales for the first time."