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Category: Entertainment
Quick Links: Bonsai Contortionist, etc.
Posted by Boo on Mon Aug 14, 2006
Bonsai Contortionist Hugo Zamoratte is known as 'The Bottle Man' and has the ability to dislocate almost every bone in his body. Playing Astronauts The Haughton Mars Project's research and development of ways to survive in space seem like a dream come true for big kids. Cardboard Office Mike, a keen prankster, pushed his co-workers too far. It was probably a mistake to then take a few days away from the office. Lobster Pinches Wallet A man who lost his wallet during a late-night swim was surprised when it turned up in the…
Hanging Munchkin set for Stage Debut
Posted by Boo on Wed Aug 09, 2006
The well-known and much maligned Wizard of Oz urban legend – that of a scene in the film where one can ‘see’ one of the munchkins hanging himself at the back of the set – is the centre theme of a show opening in Dublin this week. Trainspotting author Irvine Welsh has focused the play, depicting the lives of the actors who portrayed the munchkins, around the premise that the legend is true. The BBC quotes him as saying: "It's a persistent myth - the point about myths is they…
Professional Staredown Contests
Posted by The Curator on Sun Jul 16, 2006
Status: Fictional Unflinching Triumph, a recently released movie, explores the little-known subculture of Professional Staredown contests (aka Staring Contests). You can view the movie in its entirety online (free and legal!), or view the trailer at YouTube. If you believe the movie, there really is such a thing as professional staredown contests. This illusion is strengthened by the website of the National Association of Staredown Professionals (NASP) and the website of Staredown Champion Tony Patterson. However, I'm pretty sure that the movie is a mockumentary, and that the NASP and Tony Patterson sites…
Categories: Entertainment, Sports, Websites Comments (11)
The Vegetable Orchestra
Posted by The Curator on Thu Jul 13, 2006
Status: Strange, but true Vienna boasts the world's only vegetable orchestra. Members of this orchestra play only instruments made out of vegetables. Among their instruments: the cuke-o-phon, the radish-marimba, and the carrot-flute. (A few kitchen utensils such as knives and mixers are also used, on occasion.) And I love this part of the concept: "the instruments are subsequently made into a soup so that the audience can then enjoy them a second time" In their FAQ, the vegetable orchestra reports that yes, they are serious about their music. It's not just a gag. And they seem to have quite an…
Categories: Entertainment, Food Comments (12)
Hope Against Hope
Posted by The Curator on Fri Jun 23, 2006
Status: Fake Band A new band called Hope Against Hope managed to cultivate an enthusiastic online fanbase, and leveraged this popularity into an invitation from Alan McGee (a music industry exec famous for discovering Oasis) to play at the trendy Death Disco club. What neither Hope Against Hope's fans nor Alan McGee knew was that the band was fake. It didn't exist. So how did they all get fooled? Simple. Because although the band wasn't real, it did have a myspace profile. The Independent reports on the hoax:
Categories: Entertainment Comments (14)
Fake Happy Families Sell Homes
Posted by The Curator on Tue Jun 06, 2006
Status: Strange, but true California realtors have devised a new way to sell homes. They're hiring actors to play "happy families" during open houses: Attractive film and stage actors are cast in the roles of cheerful-looking parents and their angelic children, recreating scenes of domestic bliss that they hope will impress prospective buyers... With Hollywood just down the road, there is no shortage of photogenic and unemployed actors, for whom the alternatives are normally bit parts in television advertisements and waiting on tables. Centex recruited Jaason Simmons, 35, best known for his three-year stint as a…
Categories: Entertainment, Places Comments (9)
Victorian Rock Music
Posted by The Curator on Mon Jun 05, 2006
Status: True Most people think rock music got its start as an identifiable genre in the 1950s with artists such as Chuck Berry, Buddy Holly, and Elvis Presley. Not so. As Paul Collins points out in the current issue of The Believer, there was a thriving tradition of rock music during the nineteenth century. In fact, rock music was invented in 1785 by a retired sailor named Peter Crosthwaite in the Lake District village of Keswick. Of course, the nineteenth-century version of rock music was a bit more low-key than its twentieth-century successor, since it involved music played with rocks, as opposed to guitars and drums. When I first saw Collins's article, I…
Categories: Entertainment, History Comments (8)
Story Rights to Purdue Basketball Hoax For Sale
Posted by The Curator on Wed Apr 05, 2006
Status: True. Make an offer! Back in December 2003 media outlets including ESPN and the San Diego Union Tribune ran a story about Purdue signing the wrong Jason Smith to a basketball scholarship. Due to a paperwork mix-up, Purdue had apparently given the scholarship to 5'6" Jason Smith computer geek, instead of 6'6" Jason Smith point guard. (Both Smiths attended the same school.) The story, it turned out, wasn't true. It was the fictional work of Josh Whicker who had posted it on his website, hoosiergazette.com, along with a warning that his site was an inaccurate news source. The media, in typical fashion, didn't heed this warning and reported the story as fact anyway.…
Categories: Entertainment, Sports Comments (5)
JT Leroy: The Movie
Posted by The Curator on Thu Mar 09, 2006
Status: Movie planned about a recent hoax Variety reports that the JT Leroy hoax is already heading to the big screen. The Weinstein Company has committed to making a film about Laura Albert's elaborate deception. (Laura Albert was the woman who invented the JT Leroy character.) The time between the hoax being exposed and a movie deal about it being inked seems to have occurred incredibly fast. What is it... a month or two since the hoax was confirmed? The dust has barely settled. I hope the movie is good. In its favor is that hoaxes seem to…
Mr. Six Revealed?
Posted by The Curator on Tue Feb 07, 2006
Status: Highly possible The debate over the identity of Mr. Six, that crazy old guy who used to dance around in the commercials for Six Flags (Six Flags no longer uses him), has raged on for quite a while. Many were convinced it was Jaleel White, the actor who played Urkel on Family Matters. Others thought Mr. Six was played by a woman. But no one really had any clue, and Six Flags certainly wasn't telling. Now, at last, the mystery seems like it might have been solved. Paul Davidson has posted on his blog that Mr. Six was Danny Teeson, an…
Hoax Websites of Lost
Posted by The Curator on Sat Jan 28, 2006
Status: A few hoax sites After getting the first season of Lost on dvd for christmas, I've become hooked on the show. Although I'm beginning to suspect that the writers of the show are simply going to introduce one mystery after another without ever offering an explanation for anything. But anyway, here are some hoax websites related to Lost: Oceanic World Air (the airline that the Lost passengers were flying on), Dharma Industries (the mysterious project that was being conducted on the island), and The Hanso Foundation (The philanthropic foundation funding the Dharma Initiative. This page is part of an alternate reality game, as is the Dharma Industries site). If you know of…
Categories: Entertainment, Websites Comments (63)
Narnia Walks Out of WTO Meeting
Posted by The Curator on Tue Dec 20, 2005
Status: Hoax In a dramatic move, the representatives of the state of Narnia have walked out of the WTO meeting in Hong Kong. AFX News issued this news release: AFX News Limited WTO MEETING - Narnia walks out of talks; says tired of EU, US 'bullying' 12.18.2005, 07:16 AM HONG KONG (AFX) - The independent state of Narnia has walked out of trade negotiations here, citing pressure from the European Union and the US to enforce liberalization of its garment-related sector. Narnian spokeswoman Susan Aslan said in a statement that delegates 'were tired of bullying by EU and US delegations and would be returning immediately to their state capital at…
Xenacate
Posted by The Curator on Wed Dec 07, 2005
This is a request for help. The proofreader has been going through the manuscript of Hippo Eats Dwarf looking for errors. This is the final check that the book receives before it goes to print. After this, nothing can be changed. Anyway, in the final chapter of the book (about death), I include the following definition: Xenacate, v.: To kill a TV or movie character off so completely that no chance remains of bringing her back from the dead. Inspired by the TV show Xena: Warrior Princess. Its occurrence usually indicates that the actor playing the character has lost her job under unpleasant circumstances and has no hope of being rehired. The…
Categories: Death, Entertainment Comments (88)
The CSI Effect
Posted by The Curator on Tue Nov 29, 2005
Status: Fiction mistaken for reality I've included many definitions of hoax-related terms in Hippo Eats Dwarf. One of these terms is the CSI Effect. I define it as "The belief that all criminal cases are solved using the high-tech, forensic science seen on TV crime shows such as CSI. Lawyers have noticed that the lack of such high-tech evidence can seriously prejudice a jury against a prosecutor's case. A manifestation of the if-it's-not-like-what-we-see-on-TV-then-it-can't-be-real mentality." And now the Star Tribune reports on a recent occurrence of the CSI Effect: Dakota County authorities thought their felony case against a driver charged with criminal vehicular operation was solid. But jurors knocked it down to a…
Thalidomide: the Musical
Posted by The Curator on Thu Nov 17, 2005
Status: Real I've been compiling a list of odd (but real) musicals. So far I have: Fight Club, the Musical An opera based on the Strunk & White style guide Men are from Mars, Woman are from Venus (the musical) Jerry Springer, the Opera A musical based on the Labour Party's 1997 election manifesto (unconfirmed) To this short list I can now add Thalidomide: the Musical. It's described as "A PC-free musical with a short-armed punch. Set against the 60s thalidomide drug scandal this is a love story with show tunes, love songs and monster baby Tangos."…
Categories: Entertainment Comments (19)
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