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August 2002
A crop circle appears in a field in Eaton County, Michigan. Due to its similarity to the crop circles in Signs, authorities dismiss it as a prank.
Categories: Crop Circles
Posted by Alex on Sat Aug 31, 2002
Comments (0)
Rumors that the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources was introducing rattlesnakes into Wausau County get tempers rising. But the rumors were false.
Categories: Animals
Posted by Alex on Sat Aug 31, 2002
Comments (0)
Yesterday the website of the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) was hacked and temporarily replaced by a hoax website designed to look like the official one, but actually featuring various subversive links such as "Where can I find information on giant monkeys?" and "Piracy can be beneficial to the music industry." It also offered a free download of Linkin Park's album Reanimation, was headlined "RIAA against music sharing? Not Anymore!" and apologized for the "heavy-handed manner" in which the RIAA had earlier tried to shut down Listen4ever.com.
Categories: Technology
Posted by Alex on Fri Aug 30, 2002
Comments (1)
Hoax Website: www.ayleeorgnet.com. It looks like the homepage of a web design corporation, but it's not. A reader explains what it is:

This is a hoax site related to the comic strip at www.sluggy.com. There was an evil web design corporation in the strips for the last few months of this name. There's never been an actual link to the site, but they've mentioned it in the strip several times, and the website is set up just like it would be in the strip. The photo of the receptionist looks just like Gwynn, the cartoon character who was the receptionist. The other title page picture of a ferret is another allusion to the strip, where a ferret is a main character. The joke of the strip is that Aylee, an alien (long story) who runs the webdesign company tends to eat people. You can find various jokes about that on the website as well.
Categories: Technology, Websites
Posted by Alex on Fri Aug 30, 2002
Comments (0)
Here's an odd report from the frontlines of the war against terrorism in Argentina (quoted from Agence France Presse):

"Authorities said they found fake US dollar bills bearing the portraits of terrorist mastermind Osama bin Laden and Iraqi President Saddam Hussein in the home of a possible suspect in the 1994 bombing of a Jewish center here. Presumably meant for propaganda purposes, the fake money was found along with numerous Arab documents and visa forms filled out by Lebanese citizens at the home of a Lebanese national, court officials told reporters Thursday. The suspect, whose identity was not provided and who is apparently out of the country, is sought in connection with the July 18, 1994 bombing of a Jewish center in Buenos Aires that killed 85 people -- Argentina's worst terrorist attack."
Categories: Business/Finance, Hate Crimes/Terror
Posted by Alex on Fri Aug 30, 2002
Comments (1)
In Australia a fake paraplegic faces charges of fraud. He walked into the court house unaided, using his fully functioning legs.
Categories: Con Artists, Identity/Imposters
Posted by Alex on Wed Aug 28, 2002
Comments (0)
Some more news from Australia: More than 700,000 people identified their religion as "Jedi Knight" in Australia's national census conducted last year.
Categories: Religion
Posted by Alex on Tue Aug 27, 2002
Comments (1)
Securities regulators announce that there's a "bull market in fraud."
Categories: Business/Finance
Posted by Alex on Tue Aug 27, 2002
Comments (0)
Yesterday's NY Times piece about mock weddings sparked my interest in the subject. A quick search on Google pulled up some more info about the phenomenon:Northern New York's Mock WeddingsThis website reports that mock weddings were a popular activity for church groups in the 1930sThis page references Frazer's The Golden Bough to note that at the dawn of civilization "Mock weddings were often carried out as part of harvest and fertility rituals, sometimes culminating in human sacrifice, or reminicances of such sacrifice."
Categories: Sex/Romance
Posted by Alex on Tue Aug 27, 2002
Comments (1)
As the first anniversary of Sept. 11 approaches, I guess it's inevitable that the e-mail scare stories start up again. I remember that after Sept. 11 the big scare was that we weren't supposed to go to malls on Halloween. The new scare is that we're not supposed to drink Coke after August 31st. Good grief. I wouldn't believe this for a second. Here's the text of the e-mail that's going around:

This is from me, Amy M. Fairburn. What I was told today has lead me to warn everyone that I know, because each and every one of us deserves to live.My neighbor (Nancy Cavinee) informed me that her mother overheard some shockingnews, while awaiting to get her hair cut at a shop, just yesterday. The woman stated that while waiting in the check-out line at Wal-Mart, the lady before her was $1.00 short with her purchases, and she had no more money to cover it. The cashier insisted that she was short $1.00. The woman (from the shop) reached into her purse, handed the cashier the dollar and told her to give the lady her things. The lady waited outside of Wal-Mart for the woman to walk out, and stopped her. She thanked her very much for being so considerate as to help her out, and told her she wanted to return the favor. The Islamic lady told her not to drink any Coke after August 31st, and turned and quickly walked to her car where other Islamic women were waiting. They then drove off, and the woman was left standing there in Horror. Although she did not even think to get the license plate number of the vehicle, she did notify the police as soon as she got back to her senses. Whether you believe this or whether you don't, I would advise temporarily stopping the consumption of this beverage and any other like it, for the simple fact that September 11th is just around the bend, and we have no clue as to who, what, where, when , or how the next attack will present itself. It certainly is not going to kill any of us to revert to drinking iced tea, bottled water, or what have you, until this is clarified by the Government or local officials.Keep in mind that Zanesville, Ohio has a Coca-Cola plant, and it was there that this happened. BE SAFE! MAKE SENSIBLE DECISIONS FOR YOURSELVES AND YOUR FAMILIES! THIS IS NOT A JOKE. INFORM EVERYONE THAT YOU HAVE AN EMAIL ADDRESS FOR. LET THEM CHOSE LIFE OR DEATH FOR THEMSELVES, BUT ATLEAST INFORM THEM!Thank You for your time, everyone!
Categories: Email Hoaxes, Hate Crimes/Terror
Posted by Alex on Mon Aug 26, 2002
Comments (2)
The Lawton Triangle Hoax: Was it a true UFO or a Microsoft Optical Mouse glowing in the dark? UFOlogists opt for the former option.
Categories: Extraterrestrial Life
Posted by Alex on Mon Aug 26, 2002
Comments (0)
A deejay at a Montreal radio station made a successful prank phone call to Britney Spears. While pretending to be Celine Dion, the deejay got Spears to agree to sing a duet with Tiger Woods called Let's Make A Hole in One. All for charity, of course. Read about it here. Or visit the homepage of the radio prankster where you can buy a recording of the actual prank.
Categories: Celebrities, Pranks, Radio
Posted by Alex on Mon Aug 26, 2002
Comments (26)
South African con artists recently set up a hoax website pretending to be the official website of the South African Reserve Bank. They used it to scam international investors out of thousands of dollars.
Categories: Con Artists, Websites
Posted by Alex on Sun Aug 25, 2002
Comments (0)
The LA Times reports that subliminal advertising is still widely used in Russian ads, even though the whole concept was revealed to be a hoax back in the 1960s. (Requires registration).
Categories: Advertising, Psychology
Posted by Alex on Sun Aug 25, 2002
Comments (0)
The growing phenomenon of mock weddings: the NY Times reports that across the country young people are throwing elaborate wedding ceremonies at which no one actually gets married. Apparently they figure that since they're probably not going to get married until they're much older, they might as well have the party now. As the Times puts it: "Across the nation, whether for artistic expression or just to have a good time, perhaps dozens of men and women in their late teens and early 20's have been putting on costly pseudo-weddings, complete with a ceremony, reception and festivities."
Categories: Sex/Romance
Posted by Alex on Sun Aug 25, 2002
Comments (1)
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