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Miscellaneous
The software that I use to run this site comes with a "wiki module," which allows the capability to add a wikipedia-style encyclopedia to the site. For the past few weeks I've been working on getting this feature working. It's still very much a work-in-progress, but I think it's at a point where I can let everyone see it. I'm calling it the Hoaxipedia.

I'm slowly transferring all of the content contained in the various "galleries" of the museum into the Hoaxipedia. It's going to be a slow process. So far I've only transferred a handful of articles. But the nice thing about transferring the content into the Hoaxipedia is that it allows me to categorize the articles much more easily. It also makes it easier to edit existing content and add new material.

Another interesting feature of the Hoaxipedia is that any registered member of the Museum of Hoaxes can add or edit content. I suspect that I'll be the one adding most of the content for the foreseeable future, but in the past people have asked me if there was any way they could contribute articles to the Museum, and now there is an easy way for them to do that. If you're interested, please try it out -- even if it's just to write some hoax haiku to accompany some articles.
Categories: Miscellaneous
Posted by Alex on Tue Jun 05, 2007
Comments (4)

I've been out of town recently. My wife and I drove up to Santa Barbara last weekend, where she had a work-related event to go to. While she was busy at that, I decided to check out Santa Barbara's used bookstores. I was browsing at The Book Den, when a student photographer approached me and asked if I would be willing to participate in a project she was working on. She was taking pictures of people in the bookstore, posed in various ways, and then digitally inserting them into a box. She had me climb a ladder. She just sent me the resulting image, and I think it looks pretty cool. It seems like something that's crying out for a good caption, but I can't think of one. Any ideas?

After Santa Barbara we spent a couple of days in Merced, in central California. We're thinking of moving there -- because the University of California, where my wife works, just opened a new campus there, and because the cost of living is so much cheaper there. (Though there's not a whole lot there.) Any move would be at least a year away.

image
Categories: Miscellaneous
Posted by Alex on Mon Apr 30, 2007
Comments (22)
Wow! It's been almost a month since I posted. Last time I posted, I thought that work on my next book was winding down. That turned out to be overly optimistic. I still had a lot of work to do, but now it truly is all done. The manuscript has been sent to my publisher.

Meanwhile, thanks to Flora for keeping this place running while I took a leave of absence!

As proof that I really have been working on a book, the book itself -- Elephants On Acid: and Other Bizarre Experiments -- is now listed on Amazon, although it will only be in stores in October or November. Also, from what I understand, the cover that you see on the Amazon page is not the actual cover. It's just a placeholder. The design department hasn't finished work on the real cover yet.

The book is not about hoaxes at all. It's about, as the subtitle suggests, bizarre scientific experiments. Here's the advertising blurb that the publisher wrote about it:
When Tusko the Elephant woke in his pen at the Lincoln Park Zoo on the morning of August 3, 1962, little did he know that he was about to become the test subject in an experiment to determine what happens to an elephant given a massive dose of LSD.
In Elephants on Acid, Alex Boese reveals to readers the results of not only this scientific trial but of scores of other outrageous, amusing, and provocative experiments found in the files of modern science.
Why can't people tickle themselves? Will babies instinctually pick a well-balanced diet? Will the average dog get help in an emergency? Is it possible to restore life to the dead? Read Elephants on Acid and find out!
Categories: Miscellaneous
Posted by Alex on Fri Apr 13, 2007
Comments (14)

Save Boston
A little game based on the Boston bomb scare.

Children’s TV Presenter Accused of Obscenity in Sign Language
Mr Tumble, a presenter on the children's BBC programme Something Special has been greeting the viewers with controversial signing. The BBC claim that the misunderstanding was due to their use of Makaton sign language, as opposed to British sign language.
(Thanks, Madmouse.)

Man Banned From Pub for Farting
Since Scotland's smoking ban came into force, an Edinburgh man's 'unbearable stench' has led to him being barred from his favourite pub.
(Thanks, Matt.)
Categories: Entertainment, Literature/Language, Miscellaneous
Posted by Flora on Tue Mar 27, 2007
Comments (3)

Princes Prank Queen’s Voicemail
Reports have come out that Princes William and Harry recorded a message for their grandmother when she found herself confused by the workings of her voicemail.
The message allegedly says:
“Hey, wassup! This is Liz. Sorry I’m away from the throne. For a hotline to Philip, press one. For Charles, press two, and for the corgis, press three.”
(Thanks, Zoom.)

First Draft of Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds
This is a joke ebay auction, but at least it’s not another ‘haunted’ item, or an item with an alleged image of a deity on it.
(Thanks, Robert.)

Man Builds Bungalow in Barn
In a bid to circumvent the green belt laws which prohibit building on protected land, farmer Graham Head spent six years building a bungalow inside a barn, surrounded by straw bales.
Categories: eBay, Miscellaneous, Technology
Posted by Flora on Tue Mar 13, 2007
Comments (12)
Some may have noticed that I haven't been around here much for the past few weeks. (I owe a lot of thanks to Flora for keeping everything running.) I've been busy scribbling away, trying to finish my next book. The deadline when I have to hand in the manuscript to my publisher is, appropriately, April 1. Although the book has nothing to do with hoaxes. The title is now officially, Elephants on Acid -- and other bizarre experiments. This was my original title for the book, but then it was dropped for a while because my publisher worried it would be too cryptic, and might possibly offend elephant lovers. But finally the marketing department at Harcourt decided that Elephants on Acid was a lot catchier than Strange Experiments (or any other title along those lines). So it returned to the original title.

Anyway, the completion of my book is in sight, so I'm hoping I'll have more time to spend around here. Though I won't make any promises. I know myself too well to do that.
Categories: Miscellaneous
Posted by Alex on Mon Feb 12, 2007
Comments (11)

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 per person, a group of young Germans are offering themselves as demonstrators for whatever protest you happen to be running.

(Thanks, Firefly and Charybdis.)
Categories: Identity/Imposters, Miscellaneous, Politics, Sex/Romance
Posted by Flora on Wed Jan 24, 2007
Comments (15)
A few months ago one of the site-related projects I was working on was revising the Tall-Tale Creature Gallery. Before I got totally sidetracked by having to focus on my next book, I managed to add quite a few new creatures to it. I also added a feature allowing people to post haiku about the creatures, thus returning to the theme of hoax haiku first seen here two years ago.

I didn't expect to get many haiku contributions. After all, I hadn't told anyone that I had updated the gallery, and it usually only gets a few visitors. But to my surprise people have found it and have been posting haiku. So I wanted to give a heads up about it here on the front page in case anyone else feels like trying their hand at poetry. Here are a few examples of contributions so far:

The Tree Squeak
Tree hugging tree squeek
why do you squeek so loudly
hush I cannot think.

The Haggis
Shy, furry haggis
lover of the highland glens
stay safe in your den

Pacific Northwest Tree Octopus
Eight armed octopus
Swinging through the trees above
what on earth was that?

Eventually I want to integrate hoax haiku throughout more of the galleries, but that will have to wait until I have more time. Though I definitely plan to add it as a feature to the Top 100 April Fool's Day Hoaxes before next April 1, so if anyone wants to start posting haiku in the comments there, feel free to do so. A few of the hoaxes in the 'Hoaxes Throughout History' Gallery also have haiku in the sidebar: The Shroud of Turin, Pope Joan, The Feejee Mermaid, Cardiff Giant, Piltdown Man, Cottingley Fairies, Loch Ness Monster, War of the Worlds, and Bigfoot.
Categories: Folklore/Tall Tales, Literature/Language, Miscellaneous
Posted by Alex on Sun Nov 05, 2006
Comments (16)
imageBull 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 in to replace his identical twin Jaroslaw, Poland's prime minister, at a European Union summit meeting in Finland.
Categories: History, Identity/Imposters, Miscellaneous, Politics, Pranks
Posted by Flora on Tue Oct 24, 2006
Comments (10)
imageAccording to Reuters, a mock-up plane crash erected as a Halloween display was mistaken for the real thing. Los Angeles police visited the home, but were informed by the homeowner that it was not a real accident.

The homeowner is an aircraft mechanic in training and the parts are from a real Gulfstream jet. Apparently, once people realise it's just a display, the only problem is them slowing their cars to take a good look.

(Thanks, Robert.)
Categories: Miscellaneous
Posted by Flora on Mon Oct 23, 2006
Comments (13)
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.

On the day of Vanegas's arrest, criminal trespass charges were filed against him (but later dismissed). Within the next few weeks, campus administrators alleged that Vanegas had taken close to $3,700 worth of food from Rice cafeterias. On September 28, the district attorney's office filed felony charges for aggregate theft. Bail was set at $2,000.

The reason he gave for his fake studies? He didn't get into the university, but it would have broken his mother's heart for him not to attend.
Categories: Identity/Imposters, Law/Police/Crime, Miscellaneous
Posted by Flora on Tue Oct 17, 2006
Comments (34)
imageBanyan Tree Gets Police Protection
A century-old banyan tree in Jakarta has been given police protection after a group of youths attacked it to prove it had no mystical powers.

Parents Kidnap Bride-To-Be
The day before her wedding, Julianna Redd's parents told her they were taking her on a shopping trip. Instead, they drove her 240 miles to Colorado and held her there until after the wedding was supposed to take place.

3D Studies of the Mona Lisa
New 3D studies of the Mona Lisa have led scientists to be able to pinpoint more precisely the date it was painted.

Common Job Scams
A brief rundown of some of the most common job scams.

(Thanks, Accipiter.)
Categories: Art, Law/Police/Crime, Miscellaneous
Posted by Flora on Wed Oct 04, 2006
Comments (6)
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