The 'House of Urine' Rumor Evaporates

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Denver City Councilman Doug Linkhart got more than he bargained for when he mentioned to reporters last month that the Denver Fire Department was aware of a residence in town where protesters are supposedly storing up urine to use against police.

But his use of the phrase "house full of urine" with no further explanation left many, many important questions unanswered.

Where is this mysterious house? How is it that the house is "full" of urine? Does it brim to the ceiling or to the attic? Does urine spray out of the mail slot when the postman comes around? Does the neighborhood smell like piss?

Despite this troubling lack of information, the story is still making the news rounds nationally, most recently in the New York Post.

When Linkhart was asked about the source of his information at the August 4 city council meeting, he said, "I was just quoting a firefighter. I trust him. Don't we all trust firefighters?"

Well, Westword tracked down Linkhart's source, a fire department union official who was more than a little embarrassed by how far the urine-house story has gone. He says it was mentioned to Linkhart in casual conversation, but he never intended it to be taken as cold, hard fact. The union rep says the whole thing came about in May, when he and other firefighters were hanging out at a Park Hill station after a meeting.

"This car pulls up, and there's some kids in there who needed directions to the highway to get back to Boulder," he says. The three individuals looked "hippyish," like possible activists. One said that they had been at a DNC protest meeting nearby and had been asked to urinate in a bucket that would be used against police. The statement was so casual that "we didn't think anything about it at the time," the union rep says. "We didn't get the license plate or anything, and we never asked where the house was."

It was also more than three months before the convention. That's a long time to be storing someone else's piss.

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Jared Jacang Maher