More babies are born in August than in any other month, which means couples are doing something more in December than just decorating the Christmas tree.


  Dr. Greg Neal, who is a fertility specialist at the Fertility Center of San Antonio, says there are probably more myths and urban legends about how to get pregnant than about any other single topic.


  His favorite is the idea that the time honored question 'boxers or briefs' has any impact whatsoever on whether a man can father children.


  "There has always been a theory that if you wear briefs there will be too much heat in the area and you should wear boxers," he said.  "That is definitely a misconception.


  But scientists do say that heat does affect sperm counts, so a man who spends too much time in a hot tub can have issues in fathering children.


  Everybody has also heard that the best way to conceive a child is to begin the process of adopting a child.  Dr. Neal says there is nothing to that, either.


  "I have a lot of patients who come to the office and say they have a friend who was going to adopt, and then they got pregnant," Neal said, pointing out that anecdotal urban legends are sometimes the toughest to debunk.  "It seems like everybody has a friend that this has happened to."


  Something else that has absolutely no impact on fertilization is sexual positions, or the way the woman lays down, stands up, or in some cases stands on her head after sex.  He says the sperm finds its way down the cervical canal in the same way regardless of this.


  How about food?  Same's a myth.


  "There has been a lot of speculation that you should have certain foods like grapefruit and oysters," he said.  "This is also speculation, there is no indication that those foods increase your fertility."


  He has also found couples where the man has actually put an ice pack on his private parts before sexual activity, on the mistaken belief that cooler sperm will be more likely to conceive.


  But urban legends or not, plenty of couples will conceive in the last two weeks of December.  The Centers For Disease Control says 387,000 babies were born in August in 2006, the latest year when monthly figures are available.  And September had the second most births of any month of the year.


  Maybe that mistletoe thing is not a myth!