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June 2003
A visitor named Heinz Klostermann sent me quite a bit of info about Joseph Papp, a Hungarian-born inventor who first claimed that he had built a submarine capable of traveling at 300 mph, and later claimed to have built a car engine that could run for six months without refueling. Heinz sent an article about Papp that appeared in the San Jose Mercury News in 1989, as well as an article apparently written by the physicist Richard Feynman describing a demonstration of Papp's engine. It turns out that Heinz has been working for the past three years to reinvent Papp's engine (the secret of how to build it died with Papp). If you have any info about Papp he'd like you to contact him at: AHK2@rcn.com. Also check out the comments I've received over the years about Papp and his submarine.
Categories: Free Energy
Posted by Alex on Sun Jun 22, 2003
Comments (1)
This day in hoax history. June 20, 1977: Alternative 3 aired in England. Viewers learned that a secret world government has been creating a Noah's Ark colony of humans on Mars in anticipation of the environmental catastrophe that will soon make the Earth uninhabitable.
Categories: Conspiracy Theories, Extraterrestrial Life
Posted by Alex on Sat Jun 21, 2003
Comments (0)
Another visitor contribution: ...I guess this Website can't be Dis-Proved, but it might make an interesting addition to your Museum: Dolphin Sex (Warning: some of the content isn't safe for work)
My response: I assume the site is just a joke. But given all the things that people have supposedly tried to mate with throughout history (see my Birth Hoaxes Gallery for some examples) one can never be too sure.
Categories: Animals, Sex/Romance
Posted by Alex on Sat Jun 21, 2003
Comments (4)
A visitor asks: http://crossspot.net/objective/kidz.html
is this site for real,or just mocking christian web sites?
My answer: My vote is that it's satire, though it's pretty hard to tell. To my jaded sensibility the site definitely has a tongue-in-cheek feel to it. For instance the proposed redesign of the American flag to include the word 'GOD' stamped in huge letters across the top of it seems a little much. But there are people who go for that kind of stuff. What confuses me are the banner ads on the site which appear to lead to genuine Christian businesses. But maybe the ads are put there just to give the site a façade of authenticity.
Categories: Religion
Posted by Alex on Sat Jun 21, 2003
Comments (14)
This day in hoax history. June 19, 1812: The Wimbledon Common Grand Military Review. 20,000 people assembled on Wimbledon Common in England to witness a 'Grand Military Review' that pamphlets had promised would occur. When it became clear that no parade was happening the crowd began to grow restless and set fire to the grass. They weren't appeased when officials explained that no parade had ever been planned. The pamphlets were just the work of some mischievous prankster. The crowd continued to grow ever more violent, so violent that the police were not able to contain them. Eventually a detachment of guards was swiftly dispatched from London with orders to parade up and down on the Common, just to satisfy the wishes of the crowd.
Categories: Military
Posted by Alex on Fri Jun 20, 2003
Comments (0)
Here's another case of the underlying reality of what an ad is showing being out of sync with the message the ad is trying to deliver. A Canadian campaign commercial shows a shot of a smiling family accompanied by a voice over that says, "I want a premier who believes what I believe." But the family shown is an American family from Oregon. Oops.
Categories: Advertising
Posted by Alex on Fri Jun 20, 2003
Comments (0)
virgin mary in a window More info about the image of the Virgin Mary that's appearing in the window of Milton Hospital. Plus a picture. I guess I can sort of see how it looks like the Virgin Mary, but it also looks a little like the state of New Hampshire if you squint your eyes just right.
Categories: Religion
Posted by Alex on Fri Jun 20, 2003
Comments (0)
More from Gary Poole, a spokesperson for Beer for the Homeless: "It was originally intended as an internet satire, but very quickly took on a life of it's own when people really did start donating money. The group that does it even had to hire an accountant to keep up with taxes and such. smile They'll be featured in an upcoming issue of FHM Magazine, in fact."
Categories: Pranks
Posted by Alex on Fri Jun 20, 2003
Comments (0)
This is disappointing. Poland Spring water turns out not to be spring water at all, just highly treated groundwater. Nestle is being sued for false advertising. I used to drink Poland Spring all the time before I moved out to California.
Categories: Food
Posted by Alex on Thu Jun 19, 2003
Comments (6)
A few weeks ago I linked to a site called Beer for the Homeless, which I suspected of being a hoax. After all, it reminded me of the classic Arm the Homeless campaign, which was definitely a hoax. Turns out my suspicions were wrong. I just got this note from a spokesperson for the site:
Just as a note, the "Beer For The Homeless" website is indeed NOT a hoax. It's a real site that really uses the money raised to buy and deliver beer to homeless people living in Chattanooga, Tennessee.
One of our talk show hosts is the one who came up with the idea and really has made a beer run - check out the photo gallery on the site for pictures from the latest delivery.
Gary Poole,
Citadel Broadcasting
Categories: Pranks
Posted by Alex on Thu Jun 19, 2003
Comments (0)
big rooster A visitor named 'AJ' wrote in with this question:
Awhile back there was a picture of a Very Big Rooster with a guy
in a cowboy hat and a rope tied around the neck of the rooster, where Can I
find that picture?

Here's the picture, plus a look at some other big roosters of yesteryear.
Categories: Animals, Folklore/Tall Tales, Photos/Videos
Posted by Alex on Thu Jun 19, 2003
Comments (0)
The Czar of Bizarre: sideshow-related art, prose, and links.
Categories: Art, Folklore/Tall Tales
Posted by Alex on Thu Jun 19, 2003
Comments (0)
It turns out that Hitler wrote a sequel to Mein Kampf, and unlike the infamous Hitler Diaries, it's not a hoax. It's soon going to be published in an English translation. This NY Times article about it also contains a good summary of the Hitler Diaries hoax.
Categories: History
Posted by Alex on Wed Jun 18, 2003
Comments (0)
Miami deejays hoax Fidel Castro with a prank phone call. It's the same pair that earlier hoaxed Hugo Chavez.
Categories: Radio
Posted by Alex on Wed Jun 18, 2003
Comments (0)
High-school seniors superglue the locks on their teachers' doors. The teachers are not amused. In other senior prank news, piglets are released in a school the day of the senior barbeque.
Categories: Pranks
Posted by Alex on Wed Jun 18, 2003
Comments (253)
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