The Museum of Hoaxes
hoax archive hoax archive hoax archive hoax archive hoax archive
HOME   |   ABOUT   |   FORUM   |   CONTACT   |   FACEBOOK   |   RSS
The Top 100
April Fool Hoaxes
Of All Time
April Fool Archive
April fools throughout history
Hoax Photo
Archive

Weblog Archive
November 2003
jamie oliverHere's a picture of the 2004 calendar of Jamie Oliver (aka The Naked Chef). Note the suggestively placed piece of bread. This image originally appeared on the website of Boots, which is a British pharmacy. And it quickly attracted attention, at which point Boots cropped the image in order to remove the offending piece of bread. I can't find another picture of the calendar anywhere online to compare this picture to, but I'm assuming that the piece of bread must have been photoshopped in. Probably by a mischievous Boots employee.

Update 2 (11/17/03): David Emery reports that he was able to find the real version of the Jamie Oliver 2004 calendar, and it looks nothing like the fake version that appeared on the Boots website. Oh, and what I thought was a piece of bread was actually a brown paper bag that had been photoshopped.
Update 3 (11/18/03): jamie oliverDavid Emery has done some great sleuthing and discovered that the Jamie Oliver calendar being sold by Boots is absolutely real and unaltered. Boots sent him a full-size image of the calendar cover (which he was kind enough to forward along to me). It shows Jamie taking oranges out of a paper bag and peeling them. Full-size the image looks quite innocent, but shrunk down to thumbnail size, the position and shape of the paper bag becomes rather suggestive. Personally I think that whoever created that calendar must have been aware of the two ways of viewing that paper bag when they chose that image. It's an old advertising strategy: put a bit of subliminal (or not so subliminal) sexual imagery in an ad and watch the product fly off the shelf.
Categories: Celebrities, Photos/Videos, Sex/Romance
Posted by Alex on Sat Nov 15, 2003
Comments (0)
A modern-day 'Catch Me If You Can' criminal is on the run in Australia. He cons women out of money by posing as a pilot. Except that Frank Abagnale was a teenager when he posed as a pilot, whereas this guy is in his 30s.
Categories: Con Artists, Identity/Imposters
Posted by Alex on Fri Nov 14, 2003
Comments (0)
Tim Radford has a piece in today's Guardian on his Top 10 favorite Science Hoaxes of All Time. The Piltdown Man comes in at number one. Strangely, he seemed to omit a number of very famous cases, such as the Great Moon Hoax of 1835, the Cardiff Giant, the Paul Kammerer 'Case of the Midwife Toad', William Summerlin and his painted mice, Shinichi Fujimura's Stone Age discoveries, and the recent Piltdown Chicken (of National Geographic fame). But then, it is his list, and I guess everyone would pick something different.
Categories: Science
Posted by Alex on Fri Nov 14, 2003
Comments (0)
Here's even more stuff about the Piltdown Man (there's a lot of stuff about this because of the anniversary of the exposure of the fraud). The Independent reports that two academics are going to give a lecture in which they'll argue that two independent hoaxers were responsible for the piltdown frauds. But as far as I know, this theory has actually been floating around for a while.
Categories: Science
Posted by Alex on Fri Nov 14, 2003
Comments (0)
According to legend, the sport of Rugby was born in 1823 when a schoolboy at Rugby School named William Webb Ellis picked up the ball during a football game and started running with it. But according to an interesting piece in the 'Questions Answered' section of the London Times, this legend is probably a hoax. Unfortunately I can't link to the piece, so I've cut and pasted the relevant paragraph:

There is very little evidence to support the assertion that William Webb Ellis was the first person to pick up the ball and run with it. In 1876 Martin Bloxam, who had left Rugby in 1820, wrote an account for the school magazine based on hearsay. This was immediately contested by a peer of Webb Ellis from his schooldays. In 1895 the Old Rugbeians of the RFU set up a committee to try to keep the game in their control. They accepted the hearsay rather than a contemporary account. The journalist J. L. Manning investigated the investigators and concluded that the story was a perfect hoax and that the Old Rugbeians had falsified the history of rugby. By this time Webb Ellis himself was dead and unable to confirm or deny the story. Several witnesses, including Thomas Hughes, of Tom Brown's Schooldays fame, contested the Webb Ellis story but their account was left out of the report. The committee completed the hoax by having the commemorative stone cut and placed in the headmaster's garden.
Categories: Sports
Posted by Alex on Fri Nov 14, 2003
Comments (0)
tyndall grantMeet Lyndall Grant, professional Arnold Schwarzenegger impersonator. According to an article in the Columbus Dispatch, this guy earns almost $1000 a pop to imitate the Governator at corporate events and parties. Sometimes he does two events a night. When he's not imitating Ah-nold, he works as a landscape designer.
Categories: Politics
Posted by Alex on Fri Nov 14, 2003
Comments (0)
The actor Judge Reinhold is set to produce a movie based on the life of Ray Wallace, the man whose prank led to the name 'Bigfoot' being coined. Of course, i still haven't seen Shattered Glass, the movie based on the career of media hoaxer Stephen Glass. I want to, but it doesn't appear to be playing in San Diego.
Categories: Cryptozoology
Posted by Alex on Thu Nov 13, 2003
Comments (0)
This woman claims that she was happily eating her clam chowder at a restaurant in Irvine, CA when to her horror she discovered a condom floating in it. Actually, she discovered the condom by biting down on it. Incessant vomiting followed. The restaurant, meanwhile, is denying any responsibility, so the woman has filed a lawsuit, which will commence Jan. 12, 2004. It seems obvious that someone is lying here, but it's basically the woman's word against the word of the restaurant managers.
Categories: Food
Posted by Alex on Thu Nov 13, 2003
Comments (0)
Here's a pretty outrageous con. A convicted drug dealer has been caught posing as a lawyer and operating a Central Florida law firm while still in the custody of the U.S. Bureau of Prisons. Evidently he only has to spend the night in jail, but every morning he wakes up, hops into his Mercedes, and drives off to his day job as a fake lawyer, from which he's been raking in hundreds of thousands of dollars. I wonder if he'll act as his own lawyer at his trial.
Categories: Con Artists, Identity/Imposters
Posted by Alex on Thu Nov 13, 2003
Comments (0)
Andrew Nixon sends word of a tv program that British hoax enthusiasts might want to watch. It's BBC2's special commemorating the 50th anniversary of the exposure of the Piltdown Man. It'll be titled "Britain's Greatest Hoax," airing Friday 21st November at 9pm.
Categories: Science
Posted by Alex on Thu Nov 13, 2003
Comments (0)
cheating scumCheating Scum was a hoax website purporting to offer a forum in which people could expose 'cheating scum' boyfriends, girlfriends, wives, husbands, etc. It only existed for a little while, but Kirun sends word that a mirrored version of it is still online.
Categories: Sex/Romance
Posted by Alex on Thu Nov 13, 2003
Comments (1)
When I was writing up the book version of The Museum of Hoaxes, there were quite a few hoaxes that, for one reason or another, I had to leave out. I went so far as to write up descriptions of many hoaxes that I later had to cut from the book, in order to keep the book's length manageable. All these discarded hoaxes have been sitting on my hard drive for over a year now, but I've decided to put them all up here on the website. I should have done it sooner, but laziness got in the way. So over the next few weeks I'll be adding these hoaxes to the site. For the first hoax I'm going all the way back to the 1600s to the legend of the magical island of Hi-Brazil, and the man who claimed that he had actually found the island.
Categories: Exploration/Travel, History
Posted by Alex on Wed Nov 12, 2003
Comments (0)
real sheepHere's an odd site, sent along to me by Chris, whom I met while I was attending the Hoaxes conference in New Mexico. It's the Real Sheep site, selling the world's finest elastic, life-size love mutton (the site is safe for work). As Chris points out, Real Sheep appears to be a parody of RealDoll.com (not safe for work) which sells the world's finest love dolls.
Categories: Sex/Romance
Posted by Alex on Wed Nov 12, 2003
Comments (0)
Dan wonders if these 'Gas Be Gone' flatulence filter seat cushions are real or a joke. I've never actually seen one of these, but I've been aware of them for quite a while, and I think they're real. But the maker of them does appear to acknowledge the humor inherent in a flatulence filter.
Categories: Health/Medicine
Posted by Alex on Wed Nov 12, 2003
Comments (1)
mental flossCheck out this month's issue of Mental Floss (you can find it at bookstores like Barnes & Noble, Borders, etc.). The cover article is 'History's Greatest Hoaxes Exposed," and it was written by... guess who! That's right. Me. And while I'm tooting my own horn, I might as well mention that you can also listen to the audio broadcast online of NPR's recent Talk of the Nation segment (from October 30, 2003) that featured me, yakking away about hoaxes.
Categories: Miscellaneous
Posted by Alex on Mon Nov 10, 2003
Comments (1)
Page 2 of 3 pages  < 1 2 3 >