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Hoax Museum Blog Posts From
July 2005
Fake Quotes in Newspaper
Posted by The Curator on Sun Jul 31, 2005
Whenever I see the opinion of a 'man on the street' quoted in a newspaper, I always wonder if the quote is for real since it would be so easy for a reporter to simply make something up without interviewing anyone. Now here's a case, at the Reidsville Review, where that actually happened. The reporters invented quotations, but, strangely enough, attributed the quotations to real people. They should have just gone ahead and put the phony quotes in the mouths of phony people: The newspaper's "Two Cents Worth" feature includes a small picture of a person, along with their name and response to a question. But on several days in May the item apparently featured…
Categories: Journalism Comments (15)
Gibraltar Airport
Posted by The Curator on Sun Jul 31, 2005
This seems kind of odd: a runway with a road going across it. And yet it's real. It's Gibraltar Airport, which is the only airport in the world that has a road crossing the runway. A view of the airport can also be seen via Google Maps (if you don't believe the picture is real). It reminds me of Princess Juliana Airport in St. Maarten, in terms of being a very unusual airport. (via Outhouse Rag)
Categories: Photos/Videos, Places Comments (17)
The Mozart Effect
Posted by The Curator on Sun Jul 31, 2005
The Mozart Effect is the term for the idea that listening to classical music will improve your intelligence. The idea is baloney, and yet it enjoys wide belief. Check out, where Don Campbell sells a variety of products that will supposedly help people use music to improve their minds and bodies. The Skeptic's Dictionary has a good article debunking the phenomenon. Now Stanford researcher Chip Heath and his colleague Adrian Bangerter have published research tracking the evolution of the idea of the Mozart Effect. They trace The concept back to a 1993 experiment that found college students experienced a slight rise in IQ when listening to classical music (other researchers were never able…
Categories: Birth/Babies, Entertainment Comments (38)
Bigfoot Hair
Posted by The Curator on Fri Jul 29, 2005
A mysterious clump of hair found in the Yukon earlier this month turns out (surprise, surprise) to NOT be Bigfoot hair. Instead, it's hair from a bison. The sample was analyzed by David Coltman, a geneticist at the University of Alberta in Edmonton. This isn't the first time 'Bigfoot hair' has been analyzed and shown to be something other than fibers from a shedding Sasquatch. It's quite remarkable, if you stop to consider it, that despite being frequently sighted and heard, all the Bigfoots out there have managed to avoid leaving a single physical sample of their presence (such as hair, skin, or bones) that can be verified by researchers. Although they do…
Categories: Cryptozoology Comments (19)
Rad Monkey Electric Cowbells
Posted by The Curator on Thu Jul 28, 2005
Rad Monkey™ are the creators of the electric cowbell: Nothing can be more disheartening for the modern cowbellist than to find the sound of his instrument drowned out by the overpowering volume of today's electric guitars and drums. That sweet tone -- crafted and refined through hard work -- is lost in the din before it ever reaches the audience. Cowbellists around the world are turning to Rad Monkey™ Electric Cowbells to level the playing field. The Rad Monkey™ XLM500's active pickup provides ear-drum splitting power, allowing your cowbell to cut through any sonic onslaught. Anywhere. Anytime. I'm assuming this is a hoax (the fact that the only thing it's possible…
Categories: Technology, Websites Comments (9)
Vote For Juanzo
Posted by The Curator on Wed Jul 27, 2005
One of the contestants in this year's Baby of the Year competition hosted by the Kent & Sussex Courier was a little different. The odd baby out was Juanzo Bell. The strange grimace on young Juanzo's face was attributed to Wolf Syndrome, "a rare condition in which fur and whiskers grow - eventually obscuring the baby's smile." But in reality Juanzo was the photoshop creation of the guy who created the Vote For Juanzo blog. His aim was to undermine the integrity of the Kent & Sussex Courier's baby contest, since he views it as a cynical gimmick used by the paper to bump up…
Categories: Birth/Babies Comments (10)
Fruit Salad Tree Hoax
Posted by The Curator on Wed Jul 27, 2005
94-year-old Harry Tomlinson was amazed when his apple tree began to grow plums and blackberries, as well as apples. The 'fruit salad' tree generated some media interest, but horticulturalists took one look at the tree and saw that the plums and blackberries had simply been pasted on. The identity of the hoaxer remains unknown (assuming that it wasn't Mr. Tomlinson himself). I believe that there are real varieties of 'fruit salad' trees, which I've posted about before. They're created by grafting different types of trees together. However, another horticultural mystery that I once posted about--the orange that grew…
Categories: Food Comments (12)
Fun With Google Maps
Posted by The Curator on Thu Jul 21, 2005
In a series of articles over the past week, the Register has pointed out some strange things that can be found with Google Maps. First, check out the map of the moon that Google added to its service today in honor of the moon landing anniversary. Zoom in as close as possible and you'll discover an unusual revelation. Second, Google maps reveals that there's a building on a military base here in San Diego that's built in the shape of a swastika. Strange, but true. It's not clear why this design was chosen. Probably the…
Categories: Places Comments (23)
Top 10 Apollo Hoax Theories
Posted by The Curator on Wed Jul 20, 2005
In honor of the anniversary of the moon landing, has an article listing (and debunking) the top 10 Apollo Hoax Theories. Below are the top 10 points raised by those who believe the moon landing was a hoax. You'll have to read the article to get the explanation of why these points DON'T prove that the moon landing was a hoax. #10. Fluttering Flag: The American flag appears to wave in the lunar wind. #9. Glow-in-the-Dark Astronauts: If the astronauts had left the safety of the Van Allen Belt the radiation would have killed them. #8. The Shadow Knows: Multiple-angle shadows in the Moon photos prove there was more than one source…
Categories: Exploration/Travel, Science Comments (134)
When To Stop Tanning
Posted by The Curator on Wed Jul 20, 2005
Here's a picture that I got in my email, which is appropriate for these hot summer days. Not to be negative about sun worshippers, but it's pretty gross. The woman's skin could have been made to look like that with photoshop, but I suspect the image hasn't been manipulated because I know that there are people whose skin really looks like this.
Bear On The Green
Posted by The Curator on Tue Jul 19, 2005
Michael Perkins sent in this image (click the image to enlarge), asking whether or not it's real. I've never seen the image before, so I don't know where it comes from, but it looks like a fake to me. The background image of the bear in the woods seems to have been pasted onto the foreground image of the golfers. Note the unnaturally straight line where the green meets the forest directly behind the flag.
Categories: Animals, Photos/Videos Comments (49)
Vacation Photos
Posted by The Curator on Tue Jul 19, 2005
So I'm finally back in San Diego. I had a great vacation, but it involved a lot of driving which got tiring after a while, so it's good to be home. Here are a few of the hoax-related highlights of my trip (which started in Washington DC and ended in Minneapolis): Grovers Mill This is the one thing that I got a chance to post about (see below) while I was actually on the road, because the hotel I was staying at that night in Roxbury, NY happened to offer internet connection. But that turned out to be my last chance to connect to the internet during the trip. The Cardiff Giant…
Categories: Miscellaneous Comments (19)
Grovers Mill, New Jersey
Posted by The Curator on Wed Jul 06, 2005
So I managed to finish the first draft of my book the night before I flew to Virginia to spend the 4th of July weekend with my parents. And yesterday my wife and I started off on our driving tour of the east coast. Today we arrived in Grovers Mill, New Jersey (the first stop on our 'hoax tour'), where in 1938 Martians supposedly landed, thereby launching a mass panic throughout the United States. Here I am getting out of our rented car in Grovers Mill. The first thing we went to see was the War of the Worlds Memorial, located in a…
Categories: Miscellaneous Comments (21)
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