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Hoax Museum Blog Posts From
August 2007
Glass-Eaters Sentenced
Posted by The Curator on Thu Aug 16, 2007
Here's a couple that were making a career out of the inappropriate things found in food scam. Ronald Evano and his wife Mary would go to a restaurant, purposefully eat glass, get themselves hospitalized, and then threaten to sue the restaurant. They did this at least a dozen times and collected over $200,000 in compensation. The AP reports: Evano said in court that he and his wife ate the glass because they needed money. "We would go to a restaurant, and I'd say I had glass in my food," Evano said. "Then I would go to the hospital…
Categories: Con Artists, Food Comments (4)
Poe Toaster Revealed
Posted by The Curator on Thu Aug 16, 2007
RainOubliette has beaten me to the punch and already posted about this in the forum, but I've been getting so many emails about it that it obviously belongs here on the front page as well. For decades a mysterious figure has visited the grave of Edgar Allan Poe in Westminster Churchyard, Baltimore on the anniversary of Poe's birthday and placed three roses and a bottle of cognac on the writer's grave. The figure has become known as the "Poe Toaster." Now a man, Sam Porpora, has stepped forward who claims to have been the original Poe Toaster,…
Everything is back to normal
Posted by The Curator on Thu Aug 16, 2007
After a couple days of fussing with the design of the site, I've decided to put everything back to almost the way I had it when I started -- except for a few minor tweaks. I decided I couldn't stand having the google ads smack in the middle of the weblog, even if they do generate more money there. (It's probably a trade off anyway between making more money and driving off readers, so it comes out even in the end.) You can all carry on as if nothing ever happened.
Categories: Miscellaneous Comments (10)
Floods deter crop circle makers
Posted by The Curator on Wed Aug 15, 2007
Relatively few crop circles have appeared in British fields this year. This could be because the space aliens who make them are busy elsewhere, or it could be because their human makers have been hampered by the widespread flooding that occurred in the UK this summer. The Oxford Mail interviewed Geoff Amber, of the Oxfordshire Centre for Crop Circle Studies, who claims that 90% of crop circles are made by "non-humans" (farm animals? sudden gusts of wind?). Ambler says: "Two years ago it was very prolific and last year was rather good. But they don't seem to have…
Malaysian Man Masquerades as Dentist
Posted by The Curator on Wed Aug 15, 2007
An unidentified Malaysian man ran a dental practice out of his home for 29 years -- without any kind of dental training. He learned his trade by carrying the bags of an army dentist for sixteen years. But apparently while he was carrying bags he was also observing closely, because he later figured he could do what the dentist did. And the truth is, after 16 years of watching the guy, he might have been right. The fake dentist charged 20 ringgit for extractions and 130 ringgit for dentures. The police have now arrested him and charged him with illegally practicing dentistry.
Mother poses as son’s wife
Posted by The Curator on Wed Aug 15, 2007
Christopher Crowe had pleaded guilty to domestic battery. When the judge asked his wife to stand up and state if she accepted the plea deal, 47-year-old Rebecca Crowe stood up and said she did. But Rebecca was actually his mother. (Let's hope she was just pretending to be his wife, and it wasn't anything weirder.) The court realized the deception when a prosecutor later saw a picture of Crowe's actual wife. The article also notes: "Courtroom personnel later admitted they thought the woman looked too old." But that wouldn't have been a good basis for suspecting fraud because older woman/younger man matches are becoming much more common. The most frequently cited example are Demi…
Another Site Redesign
Posted by The Curator on Tue Aug 14, 2007
Once again, I've redesigned the look of the front page. What prompted the redesign was that quite a few people had mentioned to me that they didn't realize the site was anything more than the blog. So I've put links to the entire contents of the site right up top where they're harder to miss. This also allows me to feature the hoax forum more prominently, and increase the width of the column for the blog. One of these days, after I win the lottery, I'll get a professional to design the site. But until then, we'll see how this format works out.
Categories: Miscellaneous Comments (20)
Vegansexuality
Posted by The Curator on Tue Aug 14, 2007
The New Zealand Press reports on a new sexual phenomenon: Vegansexuality. Here are some extracts from the article: Vegansexuals are people who do not eat any meat or animal products, and who choose not to be sexually intimate with non-vegan partners whose bodies, they say, are made up of dead animals... Many female respondents described being attracted to people who ate meat, but said they did not want to have sex with meat-eaters because their bodies were made up of animal carcasses... Christchurch vegan Nichola Kriek has been married to her vegan husband, Hans, for nine…
Categories: Food, Sex/Romance Comments (18)
The Bermuda Triangle of Cats
Posted by The Curator on Tue Aug 14, 2007
Cats are disappearing from the town of Stourbridge in the West Midlands. Up to 40 lost cats have been reported so far, all from the same small neighborhood. Metro.co.uk reports: The pets disappeared from just a few streets and no signs of any of them have ever been found. Some families lost as many as three cats, one after the other. But there is one resident who, like others in the town of Stourbridge, refuses to believe it's just a coincidence. 'It really is a bit of a Bermuda Triangle for cats,' said Julie Wottoon. She has started a campaign…
Categories: Animals, Places Comments (12)
Playing Chicken with a Train
Posted by The Curator on Tue Aug 14, 2007
News.com.au analyzes a series of photos they recently received via email, apparently showing a woman being struck by a train. They consulted some amateur photo sleuths who theorize that the images (or, at least, the final image of the four) have been photoshopped, pointing out details such as the lack of a shadow under the woman in the final photo. However, at least one photo expert suggested the images are real. But, to me, the final comment in the article is the most convincing: "Have a look at the train, there is a blind in the front window…
Categories: Photos/Videos Comments (12)
Moving Rocks of Death Valley
Posted by The Curator on Tue Aug 14, 2007
On Flickr someone with the screenname "melastmohican" has uploaded a picture of a "moving rock" located in the Racetrack Playa region of Death Valley, California. The caption reads: Deep in the heart of the California desert lies one of the natural world's most puzzling mysteries: the moving rocks of Death Valley. These are not ordinary moving rocks that tumble down mountainsides in avalanches, are carried along riverbeds by flowing water, or are tossed aside by animals. These rocks, some as heavy as 700 pounds, are inexplicably…
Categories: Photos/Videos, Places Comments (27)
Zombies Crash San Diego Wedding
Posted by The Curator on Sat Aug 11, 2007
Imagine this scenario. It's your wedding day. You've been planning for it for months. It's cost you thousands of dollars, but finally the big day has arrived and the entire wedding party is gathered in San Diego's beautiful Balboa Park -- the guests, the caterers, the photographer... and the zombies? Balboa Park is an extremely popular spot for weddings. In fact, it's where Beverley and I got married five years ago, but it's also completely open to the public. Usually this is no problem. But it became an issue last month when Balboa Park served as the location for San Diego's first-ever…
Categories: Paranormal, Sex/Romance Comments (16)
Reuters Searches for the Titanic beneath North Pole
Posted by The Curator on Sat Aug 11, 2007
Last week two Russian submersibles descended to the seabed beneath the North Pole and planted a flag, as a symbolic gesture of staking a claim to much of the Arctic Sea. When Reuters ran the story it seemed to have scooped all of its rivals by obtaining an actual photo of the Russian submarines beneath the North Pole. It ran a picture with the caption: "Russian miniature submarines are seen under water in the Arctic Ocean in this image taken from a television broadcast yesterday." The image was subsequently reproduced by many newspapers around the world. But a 13-year-old Finnish schoolboy who saw the picture thought there was something strange about it. He had seen it before.…
Categories: Journalism, Photos/Videos Comments (5)
Omni-Directional Treadmill
Posted by The Curator on Sat Aug 11, 2007
Walk forwards or backwards, left or right. It makes no difference. Whatever direction you walk in, the omni-directional treadmill, developed by Virtual Space Devices, moves beneath your feet to match where you're going. It's like a real-life holodeck. Check out the video. When I first watched it I was skeptical that the machine could actually do what its makers were claiming. For instance, it seemed to me that the guy in the video spends a lot more time walking left and right than he does going north and south. And perhaps it's all just some kind of camera trick But after browsing through a technical paper about the invention (click the pdf…
Categories: Technology Comments (10)
iPhone Thumb-Reduction Surgery
Posted by The Curator on Fri Aug 10, 2007
The North Denver News reports that big-thumbed Thomas Martel, of Bonnie Brae, Colorado, has had his thumbs surgically altered, thanks to a "revolutionary new surgical technique known as 'whittling,'" in order to make it easier for him to use his iPhone: "This is really, on the edge sort of stuff," explains Dr. Robert Fox Spars, who worked on developing the procedure. "We're turning plastic surgery from something that people use in service of vanity, to a real tool for improving workplace efficiency." The procedure involved making a small incision into both thumbs and shaving down the bones, followed by careful muscular alteration…
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