The Crying Boy painting was a mass-produced painting distributed from the 1950s onwards, and particularly popular in England. In 1985, a Yorkshire firefighter interviewed by The Sun claimed that there were always undamaged copies of the The Crying Boy found amidst the ruins of burned houses -- as if somehow The Crying Boy was capable of escaping damage. He said that no firefighter would ever keep a copy in his house because it was bad luck. The Sun began organizing public bonfires to burn copies of The Crying Boy, and also began a rumor that in order to lift the curse, you had to reunite The Crying Boy with a similar painting of The Crying Girl. Eventually it was discovered that the reason the paintings always survived house fires was because they were treated with a fire repellant varnish. Duh.