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The Hoax Museum Blog
Category: Identity/Imposters
Belly Dancer Has Half Her Bottom Removed German belly dancer Julia 'Cleopatra' Meyer went to a private clinic to get liposuction on her thighs. Unfortunately, the surgeon removed fat from her right buttock instead. She was awarded the equivalent of £12,000 - twice what she had asked for in compensation. (Thanks, Sophie.) Imposter at Stanford For eight months, Azia Kim lived on campus, studied with friends, and ate in the cafeteria. Trouble is, she wasn't actually a student there. Swedish TV Apologises to Prime Minister Over Water Prank
Fake Sewage Workers Go Door-to-Door
Posted by The Curator on Sun Apr 15, 2007
Here's an odd story reported in the Mainichi Daily News: A tablet given to a local woman by a group of men posing as sewage workers who told her to swallow it if her tap water became dirty, has proven to be an chemical pipe cleaning agent, investigators said.... Several men visited the home of the victim in the Nagata Sannodai district of Minami-ku, Yokohama on Thursday morning, and handed a blue and white tablet to the resident, bureau officials said. "We're carrying out sewage works…
Fake Gucci Advertisemant Fools Newspaper A man in Switzerland phoned a national newspaper and managed to get them to run a two-page advertisement showing himself posing beside a bottle of Gucci perfume. He told the newspaper he was a representative for the company, and told them to send the 60,000 Swiss Frank bill to Gucci. Forum thread here. (Thanks, Carlotta.) Shark with ‘Webbed Feet’ Caught A Malaysian fisherman recently caught what…
Quick Links: Fake Cyber Romance Leads to Death, etc.
Posted by Boo on Wed Jan 24, 2007
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…
Quick Links: Giant Pawprints Puzzle Couple, etc.
Posted by Boo on Mon Nov 20, 2006
Giant Pawprints Puzzle Couple Mr and Mrs May, of Ipswich, are mystified by a set of large pawprints, seemingly of an animal with claws or toes, which have appeared in their garden. Maybe it's Bernard. Drivers Buy Fake Emblems Increasing numbers of car owners are going to dealers, or to eBay, to buy emblems to make their cars look like more expensive versions. Fake Breastfeeding Picture of ABC Anchor Elizabeth Vargas was disappointed that the magazine Marie Claire photoshopped…
Quick Links: Bull on Roof, etc.
Posted by Boo on Tue Oct 24, 2006
Bull on Roof Chumuckla Elementary School found a lifesize fibreglass bull on the roof on Monday. The bull belongs to a local ranch owner, and is worth more than $1000. £1/4M Compass is £50 Fake A compass, said to have been used by Lawrence of Arabia in his adventures and sold for £254,000 at Christie's auction house along with a watch and cigarette case, could be worth no more than £50. Kaczynski stands in for Kaczynski Polish President Lech Kaczynski has stepped…
Fake College Student
Posted by Boo on Tue Oct 17, 2006
David Jovani Vanegas claimed to be a sophomore transfer student at Rice University. In reality he had never managed to get into Rice. Last September, Vanegas started attending classes. He also ate in the university's cafeterias, hung out with other students, and occasionally crashed in people's dorms when he was too tired to go back to his off-campus lodgings. Vanegas appears to have been relatively friendly towards students, but didn't seem to form many lasting relationships. Hardly surprising, really. It was Vanegas' friend Daniel Rasheed that turned him in to the police. He says he wasn't expecting such repercussions. On September 13th 2006, Vanegas was arrested.
1990 Buckwheat Hoax
Posted by The Curator on Wed Oct 11, 2006
In October 1990 ABC aired an interview with a man who, so they believed, had played Buckwheat in the Our Gang series during the 1930s. I have a page about this case of mistaken identity in the hoaxes throughout history gallery: Buckwheat was the wide-eyed, African-American character played for almost ten years by William Thomas. He was famous for his signature phrase, "O-Tay!" After leaving the show, Thomas dropped from the public eye. 20/20 claimed that it had tracked him down to Tempe, Arizona where he was working at a low-paying job as a grocery bagger. It aired an interview with him…
Categories: Identity/Imposters Comments (11)
Quick Links: Itsy Bitsy Imposter, etc.
Posted by Boo on Thu Sep 28, 2006
Itsy Bitsy Imposter Paul Vance, co-writer of the song 'Itsy Bitsy Teeny Weeny Yellow Polka Dot Bikini' was slightly startled to read his own obituary - the result of an imposter. Robot Art Goes On Display A Portugese artist has devised a robot that creates its own paintings. Teddy Bear Causes 2,500 Trout Deaths A teddy bear that fell into a pool at a Fish and Game Department hatchery earlier this month clogged a drain, and suffocated a large number of trout in New Hampshire. A written warning has been given: "RELEASE OF…
Writer Behind J.T. LeRoy Comes Clean
Posted by Boo on Thu Sep 28, 2006
Laura Albert, the writer behind J.T. LeRoy, has finally confessed to the hoax. She says that her psychiatrist encouraged her to write when she was in therapy. In terms of her attitude to perpetrating a hoax, the article says: When asked if she felt any shame about misleading people, she replied: "I bleed, but it's a different kind of shame... If knowing that I'm 15 years older than (LeRoy) devalues the work, then I'm sorry they feel that way." Although it was fairly clear that the young man was fictional, even when Geoffrey Knoop (the partner of Laura Albert, and half-brother to LeRoy's 'public face', Savannah Knoop)…
LonelyGirl15
Posted by The Curator on Sun Sep 17, 2006
I've been guilty of ignoring LonelyGirl15. For months I've been getting emails asking me whether or not she's real. I checked out her YouTube videos, and I'll admit that I found it hard to care whether or not she was real (maybe because I'm getting old), so I never posted about her. (Though there has been a thread in the forum about her for over a month.) But I evidently misjudged her appeal, because this week there have been hundreds of articles about her following the revelation that she was a fake. For anyone who has somehow…
Categories: Identity/Imposters Comments (23)
Quick Links, KFCruelty.com, etc.
Posted by The Curator on Tue Aug 15, 2006
Mr. KentuckyFriedCruelty.com Changes Name Last year Christopher Garnett officially changed his name to "Kentucky fried cruelty.com". (It was a PETA publicity stunt.) Now he's had enough and is changing it back. Anyone feel like changing their name to "Museum of Hoaxes.com"? I'll give you a free book if you do. (Thanks, Beverley) Thames Town, China The cobbled streets, Georgian houses, and Tudor-style pub might make you think you're in England. But you're really in Thames Town, a faux British village being constructed in China. I've heard of faux English towns in Korea also, but the Korean…
Sheep Thinks She’s A Dog
Posted by The Curator on Wed Jun 07, 2006
Status: Case of mistaken identity It's not quite as dramatic as the cases of humans raised with wolves, but it's interesting nevertheless. Rolo the Sheep was raised with collies, and now seems to believe that she's a dog. The BBC reports: Rolo - named after her favourite sweets - competes with sheepdogs to jump through hoops, walks on a lead and herds ducks at her Gwynedd home. Owner Emlyn Roberts says Rolo likes nothing more than watching football on TV after calling up for her…
Categories: Animals, Identity/Imposters Comments (10)
Vatican Warns on Fake Papal Organist
Posted by The Curator on Fri Jun 02, 2006
Status: Imposter This is over a week old, but it struck me as odd enough to be worth posting anyway: The archpriest of St. Peter's basilica has warned European concert organizers against a musician who is falsely advertising himself as the "official organist" to Pope Benedict XVI... An Italian musician, Massimiliano Mussi, has issued publicity brochures in which he claims to a papal appointment. The cardinal warned promoters that the Vatican has only one official organist, American James Edward Goettsche. "Any other person who claims similar titles or merits should be considered dishonest," the cardinal said. So…
Categories: Identity/Imposters Comments (6)
Will The Real Guy Kewney Please Stand Up?
Posted by The Curator on Sat May 13, 2006
Status: Case of mistaken identity Guy Kewney, editor of newswireless.net, was scheduled to be interviewed by the BBC about the Apple Computer vs. Apple record label case. But as he stood in the lobby of the BBC building waiting to be met by the studio manager, he saw, to his surprise, someone else introduced and then interviewed under his name. Guy Kewney, according to his own description, is "fair-haired, blue-eyed, prominent-nosed, and with the sort of pale skin that makes my dermatologist wince each time I complain about an itchy mole." By contrast, the Guy Kewney being interviewed on air was "Black. Also, he spoke with a French-sounding accent, and he seemed as baffled as…
Categories: Identity/Imposters Comments (5)
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