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Identity/Imposters
When the 'Green' brothers were found living in the wilderness outside of Vancouver, they claimed that they had been living there, in that condition, their entire life. News reports of the Wild Boys of Canada (or 'Bush Boys of Vernon') soon followed. But now it turns out that the pair weren't so wild after all. They were really born and raised in Sacramento, California, until they ran away from home last year and found their way into the Canadian wilderness.
Categories: Identity/Imposters
Posted by Alex on Mon Apr 05, 2004
Comments (0)
The Guardian invited Cynthia Payne, "Britain's best-known madam," to comment on the Belle de Jour weblog, i.e. did she think it's really written by a London call girl, or is it all the product of some writer's imagination. Payne declares that it's "a load of rubbish."
Categories: Identity/Imposters, Sex/Romance
Posted by Alex on Mon Mar 29, 2004
Comments (2)
Here's some free advice. If a guy you meet online claims to be Daniel Radcliffe, the young actor who plays Harry Potter, don't believe him. A teenage girl from Chile flew all the way to England with her mother to meet an online correspondent who claimed to be Daniel Radcliffe, only to find some random slimebag waiting for her. Which reminds me, J.Lo, I'm still heartbroken that you stood me up.
Categories: Identity/Imposters
Posted by Alex on Wed Mar 24, 2004
Comments (0)
imageThe Belle de Jour weblog, which records the daily trials and tribulations of a London call girl, began attracting a lot of attention a couple of months ago. It wasn't just the racy, sexy content that got people hooked. It was also the fact that the writing was unusually good. So it wasn't a surprise when the anonymous Belle landed a book deal. But now a new element of controversy has been added to the story. As the London Times writes, "There is growing evidence that Belle may be a fictional character who has never been a prostitute." Dr. Dean Foster, who earlier unmasked the author of Primary Colors, analyzed Belle's writing and concluded that it was very similar to that of 33-year-old music journalist Sarah Champion (see thumbnail). Champion's agent is denying the charge, but Champion herself is staying mum, though she has stated that she's never been a prostitute. So we'll have to wait and see how this plays out. When I first came across the Belle de Jour site I suspected it might be a hoax just because Belle's life seemed a bit too exciting and glamorous. It seemed like something a writer would make up.
Update 3/21/04: Sarah Champion has written a piece in the Guardian responding to the allegations and insists, "I am not Belle de Jour."
Categories: Identity/Imposters, Sex/Romance
Posted by Alex on Fri Mar 19, 2004
Comments (1)
Bobby Mason, former professional football player for the Wolverhampton Wanderers, was quite a celebrity in Southbourne. Problem is, Bobby Mason wasn't really Bobby Mason. He was an imposter who had been posing as the football player. The real Bobby Mason was quite shocked to learn that someone had been living as him for so long.
Categories: Identity/Imposters, Sports
Posted by Alex on Sun Mar 14, 2004
Comments (0)
Matthew Richardson, a 23-year-old student at St. Peters College in Britain, was asked to travel to Beijing to deliver a series of lectures about economic theory. He was flattered by the invitation, though puzzled since he knew nothing about economics. But undaunted, he packed an economics textbook in his bag and took off to Beijing. It was only after he got there that he figured out that the people in Beijing had probably intended to invite Prof. Matthew Richardson from New York University, who's an expert on financial markets. But the faux Richardson bravely soldiered on, reading from his textbook, and no one seemed to notice that he didn't have a clue what he was talking about. In fact, he got a few compliments on the clarity of his lectures.
Categories: Business/Finance, Identity/Imposters
Posted by Alex on Fri Feb 20, 2004
Comments (0)
If you're ever instant messaging on AOL and strike up a conversation with a 19-year-old female from California named Vixen Love, watch out. You're not really talking to a teenage girl. Vixen Love is actually a computer program. Quite a few people apparently have failed to realize this.
Categories: Identity/Imposters, Sex/Romance, Technology
Posted by Alex on Tue Jan 06, 2004
Comments (0)
I saw the movie Bad Santa last week and loved it. Now here's a case of a real-life bad santa who's scamming businesses in Mississippi by pretending to be collecting money for charity.
Categories: Con Artists, Identity/Imposters
Posted by Alex on Tue Dec 09, 2003
Comments (0)
The Roanoke Times reports on a fake sheik who duped some Richmond residents back in 1978.
Categories: Identity/Imposters, Pranks
Posted by Alex on Sun Dec 07, 2003
Comments (1)
BBC Legacies, the BBC's new website for exploring local history, is doing a feature this month on Local Legends, and has put up an article about one of Bristol's local legends, Princess Caraboo (though perhaps legends is the wrong word to describe the Princess, since she was quite real, though not a real Princess). It's a good article, and they were nice enough to link back to the Museum of Hoaxes in a sidebar.
Categories: History, Identity/Imposters
Posted by Alex on Wed Dec 03, 2003
Comments (0)
A modern-day 'Catch Me If You Can' criminal is on the run in Australia. He cons women out of money by posing as a pilot. Except that Frank Abagnale was a teenager when he posed as a pilot, whereas this guy is in his 30s.
Categories: Con Artists, Identity/Imposters
Posted by Alex on Fri Nov 14, 2003
Comments (0)
Here's a pretty outrageous con. A convicted drug dealer has been caught posing as a lawyer and operating a Central Florida law firm while still in the custody of the U.S. Bureau of Prisons. Evidently he only has to spend the night in jail, but every morning he wakes up, hops into his Mercedes, and drives off to his day job as a fake lawyer, from which he's been raking in hundreds of thousands of dollars. I wonder if he'll act as his own lawyer at his trial.
Categories: Con Artists, Identity/Imposters
Posted by Alex on Thu Nov 13, 2003
Comments (0)
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