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January 2007
Dave emailed us asking about this video that had been posted on youtube.

The video shows a 'pet spa' machine, used to automatically wash and dry pets, and a cat's reaction to it.

The person who submitted it to the site added to their posting:

A pet supply store offers a "pet spa". It has a device that will wash and dry your pet. After fighting with cats in the past. We decided to try it. The pet store told us that cats love it. As you can see he didn't like it. We stopped it ealry. He was much much cleaner but he did talk to us for a hour.

So, as to whether it's a real machine and a real video, I'd say yes. The CBS news website has run an article on the owner of one of the pet spa machines.
As for the video, some cats do freak out when in an enclosed space, or when water is sprayed on them. I suspect the cat was a little more nervous than those belonging to the satisfied customers.
Categories: Animals, Photos/Videos, Technology
Posted by Flora on Mon Jan 29, 2007
Comments (15)

Fake Cyber Romance Leads to Death
22-year-old Brian Barrett was shot to death by his 47-year-old co-worker, Thomas Montgomery, who was jealous of his internet relationship with the young woman that Montgomery had been having a cyber fling with. What neither of them knew was that the woman involved was not 18, as she said, but a 40-something mother who was using her daughter’s identity.

CNN Debunks Obama Report
CNN have refuted Insight magazine’s claims that Democratic Sen. Barack Obama was raised in a radical Muslim school.

Protesters for Hire
For around €150 per person, a group of young Germans are offering themselves as demonstrators for whatever protest you happen to be running.

(Thanks, Firefly and Charybdis.)
Categories: Identity/Imposters, Miscellaneous, Politics, Sex/Romance
Posted by Flora on Wed Jan 24, 2007
Comments (15)

Holy Spatula
A spatula used to flip a pancake that supposedly had the image of Jesus on it is now up for sale on ebay. The pancake itself was eaten. The seller says: ”Look closely at the middle photo, and you can see that it bears some mysterious symbols, possibly some kind of sacred message. I'm no religious scholar, but I'm sure this had some kind of spiritual significance.”

Art as Prank
A ‘Your Ad Here’ illuminated sign on the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angeles proved to be the work of L.A. graphic artist James Cui.

Man Fakes Robbery to Get Back to Prison
Danny Robert Villegas enjoyed prison so much that he staged a robbery in order to get sent back.
Categories: Art, Law/Police/Crime, Pranks, Religion
Posted by Flora on Tue Jan 16, 2007
Comments (13)

Toilet doubles as goldfish aquarium
Link submitted by Big Gary (the deputy curator in charge of fish) who notes, "Yet another way to torture goldfish ..."

Man cooks eggs on floor
"experts are investigating but have still not discovered why the floor of his home is so hot." Just a thought, but they might want to check if everything is okay in the apartment below him.

Banana tree predicts Lotto numbers
"They rub a mixture of powder and water on the tree's trunk, then wait to see what number the solution resembles as it dries." Probably works as well as any method of picking numbers.

Giant banana to fly over Texas
"A Montreal artist is planning to float a gigantic yellow banana in geostationary orbit above Texas next year." All hail the Flying Banana Monster.

Bride's joke ends wedding ceremony
"a bride in Austria jokingly answered "no" instead of "yes"... the official performing the civil wedding promptly broke off the ceremony." I guess wedding ceremonies are like going through security at the airport -- no joking allowed.
Categories: Animals, Food, Sex/Romance
Posted by Alex on Fri Jan 12, 2007
Comments (12)
‘Customised’ Jaguar
If you’re immensely proud of your car, and your co-workers are fond of pranks, you may end up with something like this: the workers at InPhonic covered the Jaguar S-Type with 14,000 Post-It notes.

Authorities Prank Hoax Caller
15 fake 911 calls had been made by the same cell phone number in Knoxville, Tennessee. So they phoned the number and left a message telling the owner that he’d won a gift card.

False Limb for Three-Legged Cow
The cow, who lives in northern Tasmania, fell down an embankment two months ago and had to have a leg amputated. Her owner is seeking someone to make a prosthetic limb for the heifer, who is valuable breeding stock.
Categories: Animals, Law/Police/Crime, Pranks, Technology
Posted by Flora on Mon Jan 08, 2007
Comments (6)
SUMMARY: An interesting and informative read, and one that's sure to raise a few laughs. The Museum of Hoaxes awards it four out of five banana peels.

Sir John Hargrave, as he’s now legally known, is host of the website. He has authored Prank the Monkey, a humourous book chronicling the various pranks, tricks and hoaxes he has perpetrated on deserving parties over the course of his prankster career.

John says: ”It’s not that I have a problem with authority; it’s that I have a problem with senseless authority. I have no problems with rules, just ridiculous rules."

Prank the Monkey certainly follows through on his reasoning. The book covers pranks involving everyone from Wal-Mart to Ashton Kutcher, from real-estate spammers to US senators.

For a full review, please click here.
Categories: Literature/Language, Pranks
Posted by Flora on Fri Jan 05, 2007
Comments (6)
imageAccording to the BBC, an association of cheesemakers from Somerset have come up with a new and innovative marketing campaign for the die-hard cheese lovers amongst us.

The new cheddarvision webcam is set up so that customers can watch their cheese maturing over the course of a year. The feed was reportedly started on the first day of 2007, but the site had been running for several days before that, and the counter has now reached 10 days.

So, is it legitimate? Difficult to say. The West Country Farmhouse Cheesemakers does seem to be a real organisation, and yes, they produce cheese. As to the webcam, that's more difficult to say. Cheese isn't the most mobile of subject matter, and it's nigh impossible to tell whether it is a current web feed or just looped footage. Or, indeed, a photograph.
(Thanks, Dave.)

UPDATE 2/4/07: It is clear now that this is a real web feed. Here is a time lapse video of months 0-3.
(Thanks, Beasjt.)
Categories: Advertising, Food
Posted by Flora on Mon Jan 01, 2007
Comments (39)