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August 2004
Almost two years ago I posted an entry about the Rejection Hotline, which is a service that provides you with a phony number to give to losers in clubs (or elsewhere) who are trying to get your phone number. When they call it up they hear a message telling them that they've been rejected. A new internet version of the Rejection Hotline is called Paper Napkin. It provides you with a phony email address to give to people. When they write to it, they automatically get this response: "This email is a rejection notice directed toward yourself from someone who gave you this bunk email address. That lovely person wants to communicate a message to you. In short, they are not interested."
Categories: Sex/Romance
Posted by Alex on Mon Aug 16, 2004
Comments (1)
An interesting comment was left by 'Nello' on the Top 100 April Fool's Day hoaxes board regarding the 26-day Marathon (in which a British paper reported that a Japanese runner thought he had to run for 26 days, not 26 miles, and was spotted still running on the country roads of England). Since it involves a story from the Olympics I thought it was especially timely. Here it is:

A real story coming out of the Stockholm marathon at the Olympics in 1912
involved a Japanese runner named Kanikuri, who simply disappeared during the
race. Nobody had any idea of what became of him until 50 years later, when
Kanikuri finally appeared to explain how and why he went AWOL. He was about
halfway through the marathon, when he took some well-meaning spectators up
on their offer to stop for a drink. Embarrassed by his lack of discipline,
Kanikuri abruptly hopped on a tram and left for home without a word to
anyone.
This has really happened!!! In Sweden years after the olympics, people still
claimed they had seen him, still running.
Categories: Sports
Posted by Alex on Sat Aug 14, 2004
Comments (2)
image I've noted before how popular celebrity death hoaxes have become. In fact, it's kind of like a weird sign of status for a celebrity to have their death falsely reported. It shows people care, in a sick and twisted way. Britney still leads the pack, having been killed in car crashes many times, but now American Idol anti-star William Hung has joined this elite group of prematurely-reported-dead celebrities. Reports of his death via heroin overdose have been spreading all around the internet. They originated from a faux-news piece on Broken Newz. His suicide note was particularly touching: "I have no reason of living... my art which is my importance to the best everybody laugh to... I make end here... goodbye world of cruel." (via David Emery's Urban Legends and Folklore)
Categories: Celebrities, Death
Posted by Alex on Sat Aug 14, 2004
Comments (89)
True or false: you'll soon be able to buy Arnold Schwarzenegger urinal cakes? It's true! Businessman John Edgell is set to market a line of Arnold Schwarzenegger urinal cakes and urinal screens. I'm sure he'll come up with some catchy name for them like 'The Urinator'. Edgell was the guy who was previously going to market a line of Arnie bobblehead dolls, until Schwarzenegger sued to stop him. He's dreamed up the Arnie urinal cakes as a way to get back at the governor. (Thanks to 'Big Gary' for submitting this. He admits that it's not really a hoax, but it was so weird that it seemed like it belonged here anyway. I agree.)
Categories: Politics
Posted by Alex on Fri Aug 13, 2004
Comments (1)
Birth hoaxes are always the weirdest. A religious guru in Britain, 'Archbishop Gilbert Deya,' has been convincing his female followers that they've been impregnated by Jesus. He then helps them to give birth to these 'holy ghost babies'. The catch is that the women aren't actually pregnant, though they now have a child on their hands. I've researched hoaxes a long time, but still it's hard for me to fathom how someone could be so gullible that they would believe they're pregnant (when they're not), and that they've given birth (when they haven't). The mind boggles. He's assisted one 56-year-old lady 'give birth' thirteen times in the past three years!!! You have to wonder what planet this lady is living on. British authorities suspect that the 'Archbisop' is involved in some kind of illegal baby trafficking trade.
Categories: Birth/Babies
Posted by Alex on Fri Aug 13, 2004
Comments (3)
image The Korea Times has an article about the new weblog of North Korean leader Kim Jong-Il (known to his people as 'Dear Leader'). It appeared on Cyworld (which I'm guessing is like the Korean equivalent of LiveJournal) a few days ago, and already is getting a lot of attention. On the blog Dear Leader shows off his tanks and other stuff. Of course, it's a fake blog. I can't actually find the blog itself, but here's a screenshot of it. Of course, Kim Jong-Il once had a LiveJournal blog, but it looks like that hasn't been updated in almost a year.
Categories: Identity/Imposters, Politics
Posted by Alex on Fri Aug 13, 2004
Comments (2)
image What caused the Tunguska Event, that massive, nuclear-bomb-strength blast that occurred in Siberia in 1908? A meteorite, is the standard answer. But a few days ago Russian researcher Yuri Lavbin claimed to have discovered "blocks of an extraterrestrial technical device" in the Tunguska area. Lavbin's theory is that a meteorite was headed for the earth, but it was blasted apart by an alien spaceship, thus causing the massive explosion. Why aliens blasting something out of the sky caused an alien technical device to fall to the ground isn't clear to me.

Lavbin announced this discovery in Pravda (which is kind of like announcing a major scientific discovery in the National Enquirer). He's transported a piece of this alien device to the city of Krasnoyarsk, though, of course, he hasn't yet allowed the general scientific community to view the thing.

So did he really find a piece of an alien ship? Or has he mistaken a piece of Cold-War-era space debris for an alien ship, as some are speculating? Or has he engineered a massive hoax? As is usually the case, time and scientific access to this 'extraterrestrial technical device' should provide the answer. In the meantime, here's a poll so that you can vote on what you think he's found:
Categories: Extraterrestrial Life, Science
Posted by Alex on Fri Aug 13, 2004
Comments (7)
image This is one of those great pranks that only gets discovered a long time after the deed is done. Oklahoma State University officials realized that the letters 'OU' (the initials of their rival the University of Oklahoma) were gracing the side of their recently renovated stadium. Apparently one of the bricklayers working on the renovation project used darker bricks to spell out the initials of their rival. Unfortunately the officials are not taking the prank in very good humor. They've ordered that the offending bricks be replaced, at the expense of the contractor who did the work. Personally I can't see the initials that well in the picture that accompanies the article. I guess it's one of those things that you have to squint to see, kind of like the 666 on the side of the Alamo (though unlike the Alamo-666 thing, no one is claiming that demonic forces played a role in the OU prank).
Categories: Pranks
Posted by Alex on Fri Aug 13, 2004
Comments (6)
The Olympic Games are about to start and a lot of people are probably thinking that it would be fun to go to Athens to check them out. But where to stay? Well, if you're "a girl, aged between 18 and 32, reasonably good looking and open-minded, you can stay in Athens in a beautiful house, free of charge." (Some language might make it NSFW). Oh yeah. There are just a few rules: "1. You cannot stay for more than 4 days. 2. You cannot bring any males with you. 3. You've got to be the landlord's lover for a night." Sure, this could be real. People do far more outrageous things. But what makes me think it's all a hoax is that a number of links on the site deceptively lead to commercial porn sites (though the links on the frontpage seem to be okay). In other words, it's a kind of bait-and-switch scam. The url 'EZ-B8' should have given it away. I guess it's working because people like me link to it anyway.
Categories: Sex/Romance
Posted by Alex on Thu Aug 12, 2004
Comments (0)
image I saw the link to this unusual toy store over at J-Walk Blog. It's One Eyed Bob's Inappropriate Toys for Children. I wish some of these toys actually were real because they'd be a lot more fun than the boring stuff I played with as a kid. For instance, what kid wouldn't love a Volcano Human Sacrifice Kit, or an Aztec Human Sacrifice Kit that includes real frog hearts?

Poking around on the site, I discovered that the same server hosted a bunch of other fanciful stores, presumably all created by Andrew Lehman (to whom the site is registered). Here they are:


  • The Creationist Fossil Shop: "On Day Three the Creator fashioned an amazing array of plant life. He mischeviously and creatively imbedded them perfectly in the firmament made the day before."


  • Luddite.com: Providing its customers with the finest in alternative communications since 1993. For instance, if you choose their ground courier service "an able-bodied young man or woman will deliver your message or small parcel (20 lbs. or less) on foot within a 100-mile radius within two weeks."


  • Zen Sears Home & Auto Center: "Is a car that holds 20 gallons, that contains 10 gallons, half full or half empty?"

Categories: Websites
Posted by Alex on Thu Aug 12, 2004
Comments (3)
image This may be perfectly legitimate, but it seems a little hoaxy to me. It's an anti-cellphone-radiation scarf. "The scarf makes it easy to keep an effective shielding between your cell phone and your skin. Thus your body tissue will not absorbe radiation from the cell phone. Scarfs from handy-fashions.com are fancy and at the same time the most effective protection against microwaves." Like I said, maybe this thing actually works. Maybe wrapping your head in a silver scarf really will shield you from microwave radiation. But it seems rather aluminum-foil-detector-beanie-like to me.
Categories: Technology
Posted by Alex on Thu Aug 12, 2004
Comments (6)
image Here's a hoax website from Denmark. It's Jydsk Atomic Power (in bad English via automatic translation here). I discovered the site through an article in a Danish newspaper (bad translation) that mentioned it, and also linked to my site. My Danish is a little rusty (nonexistent actually), but from what I can make out Jydsk Atomic Power claims to be overclocking their atomic reactor, thereby producing electricity with twice as much power. All electric devices drawing this double-strength power work twice as well. You'll be able to boil water on your stove in half the time! At least, I think that's what the site says. Any Danish speakers out there feel free to correct me.
Categories: Free Energy, Websites
Posted by Alex on Thu Aug 12, 2004
Comments (1)
image This isn't, strictly speaking, a hoax, because I'm quite sure that its creators are serious about it. It's a UFO Attracting Device "equipped with colored strobe lights, low-powered lasers, a radio transmitter and a series of gauges said to track atmospheric changes common to extraterrestrial encounters." It was originally built by Myron 'Mike' Muckerheide, but was then purchased by Julie 'Jitterbug' Pearce. I would definitely buy this thing, if given a chance. But instead of using it to attract UFOs, I'd use it to drive my neighbors crazy. Whenever they play their music too loud, I'd crank up my UFO Attractor and drown them out. If a UFO happened to land in their backyard as a consequence, all the better. (via The Anomalist)
Categories: Extraterrestrial Life
Posted by Alex on Wed Aug 11, 2004
Comments (0)
image The Nova Corp Xenomorphological Research Institute is "the world's leading centre for the study of extra-terrestrial life." As their website explains: "the NCXRI always attempts to study a species in its native habitat. However, when this is not possible specimens can be brought back to our high-tech research laboratory for further analysis. From simple metal cages to plasma-field containers and full sized aquariums, the NCXRI is fully equipped to house virtually any species." (via Liquito)
Categories: Extraterrestrial Life, Websites
Posted by Alex on Wed Aug 11, 2004
Comments (9)
Despite what you may have heard, South Africa hasn't cancelled Christmas. The South Africa Sunday Times ran a headline warning that the government was thinking of cancelling Christmas, since there were too many public holidays already and Christmas couldn't be considered off-limits considering the country's numerous religions. But the Home Affairs Minister has reassured the public that such reports are a hoax.
Categories: Politics, Religion
Posted by Alex on Wed Aug 11, 2004
Comments (2)
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