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The Hoax Museum Blog
Category: Hate Crimes/Terror
Bigot Mom Hoax
Posted by The Curator on Mon Feb 17, 2014
THE LATEST BIGOTED NOTE HOAX: Deejays for a New York radio morning show aired a story about two gay dads who had sent out invitations for their daughters birthday party and had received back a note from the mother of one boy saying, "Tommy will NOT attend. I do not believe in what you do and will not subject my innocent son to your 'lifestyle.' I'm sorry Sophia has to grow up this way. If you have an issue or need to speak to me: [number erased]." Turns out the entire story was made up. The deejays explained that they were staging a publicity stunt to boost ratings "attempting to…
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Miscegenation Hoax Anniversary
Posted by The Curator on Sun Feb 16, 2014
Philip Kadish, who's completing his Ph.D. in American Lit. at The City University of New York, notes that a 'neglected anniversary' recently passed by: the 150th anniversary of the Miscegenation Hoax of 1864, which, as he notes, was "one of the greatest and least remembered political media hoaxes in American history." The old hoax is certainly evidence that bigotry has always been a part of American politics. As Kadish notes, the hoax foreshadowed modern political hoaxes that play to bigotry, such as the claim that Obama is a Muslim. The race-mixing hoax that dogged Lincoln By Philip Kadish This year is the 150th anniversary…
Subversive Vodafone Puppet Ad
Posted by The Curator on Wed Jan 08, 2014
A Vodafone commercial featuring talking puppets has been the subject of some strange rumors in Egypt. The buzz is that the commercial is full of coded messages telling Islamist terrorists to bomb churches. You see, the commercial opens and closes with a shot of a four-branched cactus from which hangs a single Christmas ornament. The four branches, so the rumors suggest, represent the four-fingered salute of the Muslim brotherhood. The cactus itself represents bitterness and resistance. And the ornament is a bomb. The bulk of the commercial consists of a puppet, Mother Abla Fahita, talking on the phone to an unseen friend, whom she calls Mama Tutu. Obviously this friend…
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Things keep looking worse for that New Jersey Waitress
Posted by The Curator on Thu Dec 05, 2013
I posted yesterday that Dayna Morales (the "I received a homophobic note and no tip" woman) had been suspended from the restaurant where she was working. Now, the consumerist reports that someone got the idea of checking to see if she actually donated the money she received to the Wounded Warrior Project, as she promised she was going to. The news (kinda predictably) is that no donation was given under her name, or from the zip code where she lives, or from the restaurant. So unless she made the donation under a different name, it looks like she reneged on the one positive thing that people were giving her credit for.
Categories: Hate Crimes/Terror Comments (1)
Another Zero-Tip Receipt
Posted by The Curator on Wed Dec 04, 2013
Forrest Swan, a 22-year-old waiter and Auburn fan, says he got stiffed by a customer who was an Alabama fan. The customer also wrote a note on the receipt: "don't talk about being proud of Auburn to an Alabama Fan!" Naturally a photo was quickly snapped of the offending receipt and uploaded to twitter. [huffpost] Mr. Swan hasn't revealed what restaurant this happened at. So details are impossible to verify. But I have a hunch that this case actually is real, unlike the other recent zero-tip-receipt cases that have been in the news. Speaking of which, last Friday Gallop Asian Bistro announced it was suspending Dayna Morales, pending…
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Another case of a note on a restaurant receipt
Posted by The Curator on Tue Nov 26, 2013
Dayna Morales, a server at the Gallop Asian Bistro in New Jersey, says that a couple she recently waited on not only didn't tip her, but also left a note on the receipt criticizing her lifestyle. So Morales took a photo of the receipt and uploaded it to the facebook page of the "Have A Gay Day" organization. The photo attracted a lot of publicity and sympathetic supporters soon sent Morales almost $3000, which she says she's donating to charity. But the twist in the story: a couple has contacted a local news station claiming they were the ones whom Morales served and a) they did tip her…
Categories: Hate Crimes/Terror Comments (4)
The Mystery of the Racist Red Lobster Receipt
Posted by The Curator on Mon Oct 21, 2013
Red Lobster Waitress Toni Christina Jenkins shot to internet fame back in September after posting on her facebook page a picture of a receipt she claimed one of her customers left her, with a racist remark ("None N**ger") scrawled on it in place of a tip. The story received even more attention when, a few weeks later, a stranger who was moved by her story gave her a check for $10,759. But meanwhile, the guy who left the receipt insisted he didn't write that phrase. He admits he wrote the word "None" on the tip line, because he ordered his food to-go. But that other word, he says, wasn't his…
Categories: Hate Crimes/Terror Comments (1)
Seriously Richview Collegiate
Posted by The Curator on Tue Feb 12, 2013
A picture of a letter detailing a blatantly racist policy supposedly adopted by a Toronto-area high school, Richview Collegiate Institute, was all over Twitter recently. The letter reads: Dear teachers and students, As of late the safety of our students' has been brought into question. Due to a frequent increase in student robberies and fights this letter has been sent out to inform students on safety precautions that are to be taken to protect their well being. Personal belongings are to be kept with you at all times. Do not leave any belongings in the change room as they may be stolen. In the halls avoid eye contact with African-American students. They have a higher…
Was Mancow really waterboarded?
Posted by The Curator on Mon Jun 01, 2009
Gawker devoted a series of posts last week to shockjock Erich Muller, aka Mancow. First they praised him for having undergone waterboarding so he could decide for himself whether or not it was torture. But then they obtained a series of emails from Mancow's publicist suggesting the entire thing was a hoax, that Mancow faked being waterboarded. Mancow insists the waterboarding wasn't faked, despite what his publicist's email may suggest. Apparently there's no video of the event, which is the only thing that would conclusively end the debate. Frankly, I find it hard to care one way or the other. Whether Mancow had water poured on his face…
Categories: Hate Crimes/Terror Comments (8)
Moms Behaving Badly
Posted by The Curator on Mon May 11, 2009
A dispute between two young girls escalated into an online fight between the mothers. The mother of one of the girls posted an ad on Craigslist offering sex with men, and listed the phone number of the other girl's mother as the contact. Twenty-two people called the number. The woman has now been charged with aggravated harrassment. [Newsday]
Mystery Stones Explained
Posted by The Curator on Fri Apr 17, 2009
The mystery of why someone has been leaving white stones with cryptic black markings on them around Orleans, Massachusetts has been solved. The creator of the stones sent an explanatory letter to the local paper: The writer said the backward “R” and an “R” separated by three slashes on one line and an “X” book ended by two vertical lines underneath means “Remember 9-11.” He (most believe the writer is a male) said he came up with the design about two years ago “When I became disheartened from our straying from our Afghanistan objective of going…
Categories: Art, Hate Crimes/Terror, Places Comments (11)
Little Green Pill Hoax
Posted by The Curator on Thu Apr 09, 2009
It must have seemed like a good idea to someone at Greenpeace to leave mysterious green pills labeled "nuclear radiation pills" on the doorsteps of various Toronto homes. The homeowners panicked and called the police. The pills were actually seaweed tablets. Greenpeace had been hoping to raise awareness of a nuclear power plant being built in the area. [citynews.ca]
Categories: Hate Crimes/Terror Comments (3)
The Dark Side of April Fool’s Day
Posted by The Curator on Wed Apr 08, 2009
For some, April Fool's Day means innocent fun. For others it appears to be an invitation to explore the dark corners of their twisted psyches. That's the only reason I can think of to explain why every April 1st stories like this one, featuring a woman who "pranked" her brother-in-law by calling him and telling him that her 1-year-old child wasn't breathing, appear in the news.
Over-Reacting
Posted by The Curator on Mon Apr 06, 2009
• A slight over-reaction, perhaps. Two guys at a science park pranked a colleague on April 1st by moving his car. When the guy couldn't find his car, the science-park security force naturally thought it must be a terrorist threat and evacuated the entire building. [Chester Evening Leader]. Update: Here's a link that should work. Plus, this article (unlike the first one I linked to) makes clear that what actually happened is that the guys moved the car into a restricted parking lot, meant only for nuclear engineers, which is why the security got nervous.
Helix High Hoax
Posted by The Curator on Thu Dec 18, 2008
Yesterday (Tuesday) there was a helicopter buzzing around in the sky outside my window for about half an hour. I was speculating what it might be: bank robbery, accident, men in black? No, turns out it was just a local, neighborhood hoax. (I live about 2 blocks from Helix High School in La Mesa, a San Diego suburb): A report of an armed man at Helix High School that prompted a lockdown on the campus Tuesday was a student hoax, police said. An investigation by school staff and the La Mesa Police Department determined that the student who…
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