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Hoax Museum Blog Posts From
December 2006
Quick Links: Pac-Man Hits the Road, etc.
Posted by Boo on Sat Dec 23, 2006
Pac-Man Hits The Road Wright County sheriff Gary Miller was amused to see that, where Highway 55 has painted ovals on the road to show drivers how far apart they should be, some anonymous artist had added a Pac-Man. Man Made to Wear 'I AM A LIAR' Sign Having lied to the police about having been abducted, Craig Breuwet was made to walk up and down a busy street wearing a sign stating 'I AM A LIAR', rather than facing trial.
Santa is an Illegal Immigrant?
Posted by Boo on Sat Dec 23, 2006
According to a new website, Santa Claus is no longer welcome in the town of Hazleton, Pennsylvania. The website, www.nosantaforhazleton.com claims that, in line with the Illegal Immigration Relief Act passed in July, "the town intends to keep Santa out this Christmas because he represents the illegal immigration the town council believes increases crime and burdens local services." The controversial July laws state that any businesses or landlords who hire or rent rooms to illegal immigrants will face penalties. A lawsuit has been brought against the town regarding this, and is due to be heard in early 2007. The website discusses why Santa is clearly an…
Categories: Law/Police/Crime, Websites Comments (14)
Tall-Tale Postcard Gallery
Posted by The Curator on Thu Dec 21, 2006
The Wisconsin Historical Society has just posted a large collection of tall-tale postcards online, along with some accompanying history. Definitely worth checking out. Highlights include galleries devoted to two early masters of the tall-tale genre, William H. Martin and Alfred Stanley Johnson. It's also possible to buy reproductions of these prints through their website. The only thing I find regrettable is that their site is full of all kinds of warnings threatening people not to use any image from the site without first obtaining written permission from them. If an image is public domain (as many of these tall-tale postcards are, since they were published before 1923), then can the Historical Society actually set…
The Virtual Milgram Obedience Experiment
Posted by The Curator on Thu Dec 21, 2006
Back in the early 1960s Stanley Milgram conducted a famous experiment at Yale University. Volunteers were told that it was designed to test the effect of punishment on learning. Would a person learn a list of word pairs better if they were punished every time they got an answer wrong? The volunteer was instructed to deliver an electric shock to the learner every time one of his answers was wrong. The shocks increased in intensity for every wrong answer. Of course, the experiment wasn't actually about the effect of punishment on learning at all. It was really designed to see how long the volunteers would obey…
Categories: Psychology, Science Comments (28)
Traveling Baby Jesus Prank
Posted by The Curator on Thu Dec 21, 2006
Last year a plastic baby Jesus was stolen from the nativity scene outside the home of the Leising family in Buffalo, New York. The Leisings were devestated, feeling that Jesus should have been off-limit from pranks. But recently Baby Jesus reappeared on their doorstep, along with a book titled "Baby Jesus Chronicles" that showed all the adventures he had been on during the past year. He had been camping, made brownies, went on a bike ride, had a few drinks, etc. Mrs. Leising commented, "They didn't go anywhere real expensive and spend a lot of money on Jesus, but they showed him a really good time." So now all is forgiven. This year Jesus is back in their…
Categories: Gnomes, Pranks, Religion Comments (6)
Quick Links: Pig-Tossing, etc.
Posted by Boo on Wed Dec 20, 2006
Pig-Tossing A number of incidents involving animal throwing have been reported in West Point, Miss., leading one to the conclusion that the sport is the new fad for those to whom cow-tipping is just too passé. Mayor of Lebanon Sends Chain Letter The Mayor of Lebanon was not available to comment after he discovered that the Make-A-Wish chain letter that he sent to 33 other businessmen was a hoax. Woman Sues Over Fake Avocado Dip A Los Angeles woman has filed a lawsuit against Kraft, claiming that what they label as guacamole... well, isn't.
The Great Belgian Breakup Hoax
Posted by The Curator on Sat Dec 16, 2006
If I were going to draw up a list of the top ten hoaxes of 2006 (which I'm not because I don't have enough time), the Great Belgian Breakup Hoax would definitely have to be included in the list, sneaking in right before the end of the year. As has been widely reported, on Wednesday many people were briefly led to believe that Belgium had ceased to exist. An AP story summarized what happened: Suddenly and shockingly, Belgium came to an end. State television broke into regular programming late Wednesday with an urgent bulletin: The Dutch-speaking half of the country had declared…
Categories: Places, Politics Comments (29)
The 40 Best Celebrity Rumours Ever
Posted by Boo on Thu Dec 14, 2006
Nerve.com has compiled a list of classic and contemporary celebrity rumours. Many, many people love a good gossip about celebrities, and celebrity rumours are often used as a way to make oneself feel better - "They may be rich and attractive. They may be loved by millions, but..." We've covered celebrity rumours ourselves before (check out our 'celebrities' category), but this list seems to be pretty comprehensive, covering everything from the Richard Gere gerbil rumour to the celebrity death hoaxes which keep floating around. Royalty to Z-listers, sexual rumours to identity rumours... the obvious truth is that if you make your living in the public eye, it's very…
Categories: Celebrities Comments (15)
Quick Links: Baby Nessie, etc.
Posted by The Curator on Tue Dec 12, 2006
Baby Nessie Fossil Found in Antarctic Found on an Antarctic island. Rather far away from Scotland. "The five-foot-long animal would have resembled Nessie, the long-necked creature reported to inhabit Scotland's Loch Ness." Let blind hunters use lasers Texas legislation will allow blind hunters to use laser sights that will guide them as they aim at the animal. This sounds very weird to me. Why would a blind person even want to hunt? What's the point? I'm just not seeing it. (Thanks, Big Gary) Talking doll calls three-year-old "a slut" A California mother claims her daughter's Little Mermaid Shimmering Lights Ariel doll said…
Museum of Hoaxes Christmas Tree
Posted by The Curator on Fri Dec 08, 2006
We set up the Christmas tree in the house a few days ago, and in a flash of inspiration I figured, why not have some hoax-themed ornaments. So I created a few. All that was required was printing the pictures on card paper and cutting them out. I created a whole bunch. (I was procrastinating.) Pictured below (clockwise from top left) are the jackalope, fur-bearing trout, Bigfoot, Cottingley fairy, Nessie, and Touristguy. Nessie and Bigfoot kept fighting, so I had to move them apart. Now Bigfoot keeps wandering around and hiding behind the tree. I can tell already that he's a troublemaker. The one flaw with the tree is that it's real. Next year I'll need to get…
Categories: Folklore/Tall Tales Comments (15)
Crashed Brazilian UFO
Posted by The Curator on Thu Dec 07, 2006
Normally UFOs are shown flying around in the sky, such as in this (very fake looking) footage of a recent UFO seen in China (thanks, Kathy). But Christopher emailed a link to these photos of a UFO recently seen in Brazil that was hitching a ride on the back of a truck. The text explains:Possible crash involving a disk-shaped object is reported in Brazil. Brazilian UFO Magazine’s consultant witnesses the transportation of a strange disk-shaped object in the Brazilian state of Bahia On Saturday, November 25th... Despite the strangeness of that scene, the object was uncovered and totally exposed. “Even…
Categories: Extraterrestrial Life Comments (29)
Wife Fattening
Posted by The Curator on Thu Dec 07, 2006
Over at the Proceedings of the Athanasius Kircher Society, a clip was posted from the 1960s "shock-umentary" Mondo Cane (meaning "World of Dogs"). The film was a collection of all kinds of examples of bizarre human behavior from around the world. In this scene the Melanesian custom of wife fattening is shown. The narration (in spanish in the clip) says: We are at Tabar, the largest island of the Bismarck Archipelago, where, by tradition, the most beautiful women of the tribe are locked up in strong cages similar to those we've seen in Strasbourg to fatten geese and they get filled with…
Categories: Body Manipulation, Food Comments (17)
Valuable Stamp on Postal Ballot
Posted by Boo on Wed Dec 06, 2006
On Tuesday 7th November, a postal ballot for the US Mid-term elections was received in Fort Lauderdale. What set this particular ballot apart from all the others was the 1918 Inverted Jenny stamp affixed to the envelope, along with two stamps dating back to the 1930s, and one dating to WWII. The Inverted Jenny stamps are a run of stamps on which the biplane is printed upside down, and they are extremely rare. Only 700 were produced and, of them, only 100 have ever been owned by members of the public. Broward County Commissioner John Rodstrom believed…
Categories: Comments (20)
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