The Museum of Hoaxes
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Hoax Museum Blog Posts From
July 2006
Magic Cheese — Status: Ponzi Scheme Chilean police have arrested a pair of con artists who had constructed an elaborate pyramid scheme based on the sale of "magic cheese". OhMyNews reports: The fraud consisted in selling people packs of "Yo Flex," a powder that, she claimed, would ferment milk into a special cheese. Giselle said that this "Magic Cheese" was the latest fashion in France, where women used it as a skin cosmetic, and which in Africa was used as a food supplement... In Chile, a pack of Yo…
Posted: Fri Jul 21, 2006.   Comments (16)

Beware of Hydrogen in Water — Status: Prank Here's a slight variation on the old dihydrogen monoxide prank. The director of the Waterfront Park in Louisville, Ky placed signs around the fountains warning people of dangerously high levels of hydrogen in the water: It seems authorities, tired of swimmers splashing around in the fountains and leery of the possibility of bacteria developing in the water, were hoping the public would be scared away by the foreboding signs — even though there was nothing amiss. David…
Posted: Thu Jul 20, 2006.   Comments (17)

Human-Toothed Fish Found in Texas — Status: Weird (but probably true) news A Lubbock, Texas news station has reported that a local fisherman recently caught a fish that seems to have human teeth: Fisherman Scott Curry reeled in the 20-pound fish on Buffalo Springs Lake and immediately noticed the catch had human-like teeth. A game warden photographed the fish and is attempting to identify it. General Manager of Buffalo Springs Lake Greg Thornton told KLBK13-TV in Texas that he has never seen anything like the fish in the…
Posted: Thu Jul 20, 2006.   Comments (18)

Godzilla Cloud — Status: Undetermined I don't have any information about this picture. It's just an image of a cloud shaped like Godzilla that I came across on the web. Is it real or fake? Well, it looks real to me, and I can't see any obvious signs of photoshopping. But I couldn't say for sure. Also, I have no idea what type of cloud this is.
Posted: Thu Jul 20, 2006.   Comments (14)


Garage Door Opener Triggers Priapic Response — Status: Old joke The Register has posted a transcript of a BBC radio call-in show during which a man phoned up claiming to have a highly unusual medical problem. Following an operation in Turkey to treat his impotence, the man now finds that every time his neighbor opens the garage door, he gets an uncontrollable erection: CALLER: But what is happening now is every time my neighbour comes back in their 4 x 4, I get an erection. HOST: Good Lord. CALLER: This is embarrassing. It's a big…
Posted: Thu Jul 20, 2006.   Comments (9)

Auto Dealer Scams — Status: Useful stuff to know if you're buying a car Florida businessman Earl Stewart has started a blog, Earl Stewart On Cars, that's full of useful insights about the auto industry. Some of his observations about auto dealer scams and deceptive sales tactics are particularly interesting. Here's a few of them: • The “Big Sale Event”. If you look in today’s newspaper, you will find that most car dealers in your area are having a sale of some kind. It may be because of a current holiday,…
Posted: Wed Jul 19, 2006.   Comments (14)

How To Fake Your Death On The Internet — Status: Public Service Video A highly informative Beginner's Guide To Faking Your Death On The Internet can be viewed on YouTube. It was created by satirist and internet scholar Luke Lewis. Some of the points it covers: → Interest in your death (or the death of your alter-ego) can be measured by Heinstein's 2nd Law of the Internet, which states: I = H x W x C. Or rather, INTEREST in your character equals their HOTNESS times their camWHORE factor times the CRAZINESS of the community in…
Posted: Wed Jul 19, 2006.   Comments (2)

Mouse-Infested Plane — Status: Weird (but true) news First I should note that I didn't title this post 'Mice On A Plane', since it seems that everyone else in the world who's written about this has already used that joke. The same with noting that the cure for mice on a plane is snakes on a plane. Anyway, the story here is that an American Airlines plane was recently grounded because of a mouse infestation. I know that my parents (who live out in the countryside in Virginia) often have problems with mice…
Posted: Wed Jul 19, 2006.   Comments (9)

Wraith Picket Experiment — Status: Literary Hoax The Weekend Australian recently announced the results of a literary experiment. They took chapter three of celebrated Australian writer Patrick White's novel The Eye of the Storm, changed its title to The Eye of the Cyclone, changed the names of the characters in it, and changed the name of the author to Wraith Picket (an anagram of Patrick White). Then they submitted this to twelve Australian publishers. Ten of them rejected it, and two never responded. One…
Posted: Wed Jul 19, 2006.   Comments (8)

Flying Cat — Status: Photoshopped This picture of a cat having a whitewater adventure is doing the rounds. Amusing, but pretty obviously photoshopped. (I don't think many cats would willingly get into a raft.) Here's the original from which the cat was taken:
Posted: Wed Jul 19, 2006.   Comments (7)

That Girl Emily: Wife Plots Revenge on Cheating Husband — Status: Probably a hoax The latest mystery to capture the short attention span of the internet is ThatGirlEmily. It's a blog, supposedly written by "Emily" who during the past two weeks has discovered that her husband "Steven" is cheating on her. Coincidentally she started her blog just before all these interesting things in her life began occuring. Yesterday she decided to get even with Steven by placing a large billboard near where he works with this message on it: Hi Steven, Do I…
Posted: Tue Jul 18, 2006.   Comments (24)

Trained Flies — Status: Undetermined Posted on YouTube: a Japanese video of trained flies (actually they don't look like flies to me... maybe wasps or bees). They roll on their back and then juggle a ball on their legs. While it may be possible to train goldfish, I don't think it's possible to train flies. (Though, as one person on Digg pointed out, in laboratory experiments flies have been shown to be capable of learning.) My guess is that they've been drugged. This would account for them rolling…
Posted: Tue Jul 18, 2006.   Comments (20)

Horny Shark — Status: Undetermined Divester.com has been posting more Scary Shark: Real or Not challenges. Their latest picture shows a "horny shark." Is it real or not? The answer will be revealed next week. I'm not sure about this one. The shark kind of looks like it's made out of paper mache, so I'm going to vote that it's fake. They also had a good challenge last week which I forgot to post about. To me the picture looked like a rag-doll shark, so I voted that it was fake. But I was wrong.…
Posted: Mon Jul 17, 2006.   Comments (22)

Yet Another Two-Toned Lobster — Status: Strange, but real Big Gary forwarded me this story about a rare two-toned lobster found last week by a lobsterman, Alan Robinson, off the coast of Maine. Robinson donated it to the Mount Desert Oceanarium whose staff members say that "the odds or finding a half-and-half lobster are 1 in 50 million to 100 million. By comparison, the odds of finding a blue lobster are about 1 in a million." Something about this story struck me as very familiar. And then I remembered what it…
Posted: Mon Jul 17, 2006.   Comments (9)

Professional Staredown Contests — Status: Fictional Unflinching Triumph, a recently released movie, explores the little-known subculture of Professional Staredown contests (aka Staring Contests). You can view the movie in its entirety online (free and legal!), or view the trailer at YouTube. If you believe the movie, there really is such a thing as professional staredown contests. This illusion is strengthened by the website of the National Association of Staredown Professionals (NASP) and the website of Staredown…
Posted: Sun Jul 16, 2006.   Comments (11)

Quick Change Artists — Status: Magic Trick A lot of sites have been linking to this video of a pair of quick-change artists performing on NBC's America's Got Talent. The video is fun to watch if you haven't seen them performing before. The pair are magicians David & Dania, who were recently profiled in this Slate.com article. Apparently the duo have become the most popular act during NBA half-time shows. So how is the trick done? Slate.com reports that: the trick dates back to the 19th century, and the…
Posted: Sun Jul 16, 2006.   Comments (51)

Very Pregnant — Status: Hoax I missed this story last month, but better late than never. Early in June a lot of newspapers ran this photo of Qiao Yubo, a Chinese woman supposedly pregnant with five babies. Apparently it was one of the most viewed photos on Yahoo! News. The caption accompanying the photo stated that she was 1.67m tall, five months pregnant, had a waist measuring 1.75m, and was eating seven meals a day. Honestly, I have a hard time understanding how anyone thought this was real. Her…
Posted: Fri Jul 14, 2006.   Comments (13)

No Scruf — Status: Viral Marketing Campaign I've received a few emails asking me for info about noscruf.org. It appears, on the surface, to be a site created by the NO SCRUF organization, which stands for "National Organization of Social Crusaders Repulsed by Unshaven Faces." It's supposedly a growing coalition of women who have vowed not to shave until men start shaving. Their website, which features lots of photos of hirsute models (obviously photoshopped, or using glue-on hair), proclaims:…
Posted: Fri Jul 14, 2006.   Comments (19)

Marauding Machete-Wielding Clowns — Status: Weird News (True) Big Gary forwarded me this news story about a "machete-wielding gang in angry clown make-up" who have been attacking people in Washington State. The article notes that the group call themselves "juggalos" and often shout "Woo, woo, juggalo!" to each other as they attack victims. The article concludes by noting: "Juggalos often dress in black and wear clown face paint." Big Gary wonders: "Does Seattle really have a subculture of people who call themselves…
Posted: Fri Jul 14, 2006.   Comments (31)

The Vegetable Orchestra — Status: Strange, but true Vienna boasts the world's only vegetable orchestra. Members of this orchestra play only instruments made out of vegetables. Among their instruments: the cuke-o-phon, the radish-marimba, and the carrot-flute. (A few kitchen utensils such as knives and mixers are also used, on occasion.) And I love this part of the concept: "the instruments are subsequently made into a soup so that the audience can then enjoy them a second time" In their FAQ, the vegetable…
Posted: Thu Jul 13, 2006.   Comments (12)

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