While on tour in support of his second solo album, 1981’s Diary of a Madman, former Black Sabbath singer Ozzy Osbourne shocked audiences at the Veterans Memorial Auditorium in Des Moines, Iowa, by biting the head off a live bat. It almost made sense in context: Osbourne had taken to hurling animal organs at his audiences, who in turn began to arrive armed with their own unsavory ammunition.
At the Des Moines concert, a bat was hurled at Ozzy’s feet, where it laid stunned by the bright stage lights. Ozzy, thinking it was made of rubber, bit its head off (a move he’d perfected with a dove during a record label meeting in 1981) and learned quickly that it was real. Rushed to the hospital and treated for rabies, he never made that mistake again.
As Osbourne described in his memoir, I Am Ozzy (brace yourself):
“Immediately, though, something felt wrong. Very wrong. For a start, my mouth was instantly full of this warm, gloopy liquid, with the worst aftertaste you could ever imagine. I could feel it staining my teeth and running down my chin. Then the head in my mouth twitched. Oh fuck me, I thought. I didn’t just go and eat a fucking bat, did I?”