The paper reconstructs the history of a discussion over the proposal to abolish the spelling of the letter Ъ at the end of words, which went on in the late 1770-s and early 1780-s. It is shown that a parodic petition published in September 1780 in the magazine «Something» (Chto-nibud’), which was edited by V.V. Lazarevich, played a substantial role in the discussion. The parody implied that the letter Ъ was useless. A better known parody, “b’s petition”, attributed to D.I. Fonvizin and aimed at S.G. Domashnev, then Director of the St.-Petersburg Academy of Sciences, a proponent of eliminating Ъ, apparently was a response to that publication.