The Museum of Hoaxes
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Script of Casablanca rejected, 1982
Bizarre pictographs of Emmanuel Domenech, 1860
Jean Gauntt, the Immortal Baby, 1939
The Hoaxing Hitchhiker, 1941
Dead Body of Loch Ness Monster Found, 1972
The Diaphote, a television hoax, 1880
The Stone-Age Tasaday Hoax, 1971
Rare planetary alignment decreases gravity, 1976
Old-Time Photo Fakery, 1900 to 1919
The Great New York Zoo Escape Hoax, 1874
Attack of the Mario Power-Up Cubes
Status: Misinterpreted April Fool's Day Prank
image This story offers a sad commentary on the state of affairs in America. Five teenage girls living in Ravenna, Ohio got into the spirit of April 1st by decorating a few public places in their town with brightly colored boxes designed to look like the power-up cubes in the Super Mario Bros. game (the ones you jump up to hit and get extra energy). They got the idea from qwantz.com. Local residents who didn't recognize what the boxes were supposed to be weren't amused and called out the bomb squad. And it seems like the police are coming down pretty hard on the girls:

[Ravenna Police Chief] McCoy said even though no harm was intended by the girls, they could face criminal charges for their actions. “The potential is always present when dealing with a suspicious package that it could be deadly,” McCoy said. “In today’s day and age, you just cannot do this kind of stuff.”... McCoy said the incident will be referred to the Portage County Prosecutor’s Office for possible charges against the girls.

Lots of blogs are posting this story, and it seems like everyone agrees that the police seem to be overreacting. The incident reminds me of April 1, 2003 when seven young guys were charged with making terrorist threats because they posted signs reading "All your base are belong to us" around Sturgis, Michigan.

Update: It seems that the prosecutor has decided not to charge the girls with any crime: "The girls were imitating an art project which they found on the Internet,” the prosecutor said. “None of the girls had any prior contacts with the police or juvenile court and are all good students.”
Categories: April Fools Day, Hate Crimes/Terror
Posted by The Curator on Wed Apr 05, 2006
Comments (15)
Seems like Mario has enough trouble, now when he wants to power up he has to wait for a Rainbow Six team to clear the package. I think I saw Sam Fisher inspecting Sonic's shoes before getting on an airplane. Thankfully all our base are not belong to terrorists, imagine what they could do with all our base.
Posted by Lonewatchman  on  Wed Apr 05, 2006  at  02:33 AM
Hey, you can't blame the cops for this one. I mean, if you were a terrorist, wouldn't YOU plant your evil Weapons of Mass Destruction all around town in golden boxes with question marks on them, making them look as if they belonged to The Riddler from Batman?
Posted by Cranky Media Guy  on  Wed Apr 05, 2006  at  04:11 AM
Counter Terrorists win.
[*DEAD*]T-Mario: OMG this map sucks!
[*DEAD*]T-Luigi: they were haxing!!1
CT-Officer 1: oh yeah 1 sec left difuse!
[*DEAD*]T-Mario: OMMMMG!!!!!11 i had no money left!
[*DEAD*]T-Luigi: they haaaaaaaaaaaaaaax!!!!!11
[*DEAD*]T-MarioGurrrl: omg im quitting u suck stupid lag omg...
CT-Officer 2: LOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOL rage quit!!!

Okay seriously, that is taking it a bit too far. I suppose dressing up as the Doom Marine and hunting my friends dressed as Imps is out of the question. :(
Posted by Soldant  in  Brisbane  on  Wed Apr 05, 2006  at  07:18 AM
"Oh my god Irene! Look, Marios come back from the dead and he's out to get us after I crashed his red car into a wall during a tournament game in MarioKart! It might be a banana peel or something! Don't touch it!"

1-800-BOMB-SQUAD
because you'll never know we your childish fears take advantage of you...
Posted by Blood For Nothing  in  Somewhere in the Arctic  on  Wed Apr 05, 2006  at  10:00 AM
this seems to be a trend in the states now..

http://www.sun-sentinel.com/news/local/florida/sfl-331bombscare,0,4231404.story?coll=sfla-news-florida
Posted by mrkurto  on  Wed Apr 05, 2006  at  10:03 AM
It's sad that millions of kids are blowing things up daily and getting away with it because their bombs don't look like bombs (pop bottles filled with explosive things are popular), but these girls are getting in trouble for attaching something that may vaguely look like a bomb to light poles.
Posted by Dracul  on  Wed Apr 05, 2006  at  04:40 PM
Odd. I live right by Ravenna, and I haven't heard about this.
Posted by Iria  on  Wed Apr 05, 2006  at  05:20 PM
We're turning into a nation of wusspusses whose obsessive terrorphobia is slowly eroding any respect the rest of the planet has for us.
Posted by martinelli  on  Wed Apr 05, 2006  at  09:30 PM
The problem is we want keep to a reactive response to terrorism, so we end up looking foolish trying to clean up anything a terrorist might have left. What we need is a proactive response, which means a terrorist life expectancy should be nil. Natural selection has been put on hold as people decide self defense is too mean.
Posted by Lonewatchman  on  Wed Apr 05, 2006  at  10:26 PM
OH MY GOSH!! I posting in a box...there might be a...BOMB...IN IT!!!! Quick, someone come difuse this test box!
Posted by Maegan  in  Tampa, FL - USA  on  Wed Apr 05, 2006  at  11:35 PM
Hmm. . .well, the police did the right thing as far as treating the packages with suspicion and checking them out. As for punishing the girls, though, they've probably already been punished enough just by having to answer to the police and the fear of being prosecuted. Anything more than a stern lecture would really be taking things too far against them.
Posted by Accipiter  on  Thu Apr 06, 2006  at  02:20 AM
martinelli said:

"We're turning into a nation of wusspusses whose obsessive terrorphobia is slowly eroding any respect the rest of the planet has for us."

Yeah, but other than that...

Actually, I completely agree with you, martinelli. I'm ashamed of my generation for turning into a bunch of assholes scared of their own shadows who want to wrap their kids in bubble wrap and hide, cringing behind the curtains, in the false "safety" of their gated communities.
Posted by Cranky Media Guy  on  Thu Apr 06, 2006  at  04:50 AM
That's so sad. I laughed out loud when I read about what they'd done, thinking it was really clever but obviously the cops don't share that sense of humour.
Posted by Nettie  in  Perth, Western Australia  on  Thu Apr 06, 2006  at  07:29 AM
Go to the link and See some of the examples wink
Posted by Mollie  on  Wed Apr 12, 2006  at  08:25 PM
Hey, where's my link?
Here...
http://gifmashup.eyebeamresearch.org/
Posted by Mollie  on  Wed Apr 12, 2006  at  08:26 PM
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