The Museum of Hoaxes
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Hoax Museum Blog Posts From
September 2006
Motorcycle-Eating Tree — Back in July I posted about a bicycle-eating tree in Washington state. That tree is real. Now here we have a motorcycle-eating tree. I don't have much information about it. According to the site I found it on, the picture was taken in Thailand. I'm inclined to think it's real. After all, there are trees that grow quite fast, and this motorcycle does look rusted.
Posted: Thu Sep 21, 2006.   Comments (9)

Con Artist Poses as Rock Star — A man identifying himself as Rob Valenti claimed to have been the guitarist for REO Speedwagon and managed to con two men out of hundreds of dollars. On Saturday, he contacted real estate agents, saying he was interested in purchasing property as a tax investment. After they'd showed him properties from $800,000 upwards, he started preliminary paperwork on at least two properties, before the agents bought him dinner and arranged for him to have a room for the night. That evening, he…
Posted: Wed Sep 20, 2006.   Comments (4)

Real-Life Donkey Kong? — It took me a while to decide whether or not this photo had been photoshopped, perhaps because I really wanted it to be real. But eventually I grudgingly decided it had to be photoshopped. (I was thinking an artist may have placed cardboard cutouts on the scaffolding.) I found the photo on hot-potato.org, which identifies the building as McCarren Park in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. The photo was taken by Steve Ingkavet.
Posted: Wed Sep 20, 2006.   Comments (12)

Quick Links: Magic Goats, etc. — Murdered goat turns into man Here's an original alibi: What I killed was a goat, Officer. Then that goat magically transformed into my brother. I'd like to see this excuse appear in an episode of CSI. Man, 29, passes for toddler Mark Coshever flew from Britain to Amsterdam using his two-year-old daughter's passport. Airline staff never noticed. He must have a babyface. Fifth grader generates glass pieces from her head "The phenomenon started when Sarita fainted one day after which…
Posted: Wed Sep 20, 2006.   Comments (15)


The First Amish Newsletter — The First Amish Newsletter is a fake website with this introduction: Hello! My name is Eli Lapp and I'd like to welcome thee to the first Amish Newsletter, made by the American Amish for the American Amish. Now that we've hit the 21st Century, our church elders have decided that we will try to not be so "technologically impaired". We are discovering electricity, computers, and other modern wonders. I'm especially enjoying this thing called Internet! Throughout the site are many nice…
Posted: Tue Sep 19, 2006.   Comments (15)

See The Lord! — If you feel deprived because you've never had a vision of Jesus, here's your chance to see him float before your eyes. Just look at the image below and follow these instructions (via somareview). 1. Relax and concentrate on the four small dots in the middle of the image for roughly 30 or 40 seconds. 2. Then, stare at a blank wall near you (any smooth, single-colored surface will do). 3. You will see a circle of light developing—the onset of a holy vision. 4. Blink your eyes a few…
Posted: Mon Sep 18, 2006.   Comments (15)

1979 Pakistan Airlines WTC Ad — Alex from Colombia sent me this picture. He writes: This is supposed to be a PAKISTAN AIRLINES ad, posted on the newspaper LE POINT on March 19, 1979. It announced nonstop voyages from Pakistan to New York. I saw it on this page. Interesting coincidence. This image has been circulating widely around the internet during the past week. For instance, it appeared on Digg four days ago. The question is, is the image really an ad from 1979? Following the link chain back, you soon arrive at
Posted: Mon Sep 18, 2006.   Comments (14)

Waterlily Supports Baby — Marco sends along this photo of a baby supported by a Victoria amazonica, a giant waterlily from South America. He writes: The Leiden Hortus Botanicus grows Victoria amazonica in one of their greenhouses. So what better way for the Hortus Botanicus to get some publicity than to organize a photoshoot for mothers with their babies, having the latter posing on one of such Victoria amazonica leaves? Apparently however, they were not so sure themselves about the myth that the leaves can…
Posted: Mon Sep 18, 2006.   Comments (11)

LonelyGirl15 — 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…
Posted: Sun Sep 17, 2006.   Comments (23)

Quick Links: Sheep Rescued from Tree, etc. — Sheep Rescued from Tree Firemen were called to rescue a sheep, later nicknamed 'Tarzan', from seven metres off the ground. (Thanks, Gerrit.) Oldest New World Writing Discovered A stone slab discovered in Mexico in the 1990s shows the oldest example of New World writing, new evidence suggests. (Thanks, Dave.) Pierce Your Ride As far as I can tell, a non-hoax website selling vehicle piercings. They look pretty cool, and I have to say that, if I drove, I wouldn't mind them on my car...
Posted: Fri Sep 15, 2006.   Comments (10)

Irwin Fans Take Revenge on Stingrays? — In the period of time since Steve Irwin was killed after being attacked by a stingray, at least ten stingrays have been found dead on the East coast of Australia, news sources report. Many of the stingrays have had their tails cut off. Government officials are investigating, and say there could be prosecutions. There is no proof that the incidents are related to Mr Irwin, but a quote from a spokesman for the Fisheries Department said that fishermen who inadvertently caught stingrays…
Posted: Thu Sep 14, 2006.   Comments (11)

Ghost Tree — People have been crowding around a seven-metre betel nut tree in Kuala Lumpur. The tree has developed what looks like a human face on one of its fronds, the
Posted: Wed Sep 13, 2006.   Comments (23)

Quick Links: Q-Ray, MIT, and Stupid Criminals — Q-Ray Made To Pay Remember the Q-Ray bracelet? There was a thread about it in the old forum. This "miracle bracelet" could do everything from curing arthritis to helping you win a marathon. Now a judge has slapped its inventor with a $22.5 million fine for false advertising. Turns out it couldn't do any of that stuff after all. Who would have thought? Woman Robs Bank With Toy Gun Another Stupid Criminal. Or perhaps a criminal suffering from senile dementia. A 79-year-old woman "walked…
Posted: Wed Sep 13, 2006.   Comments (11)

Tahoe Tessie — I spent the weekend in a small town (King's Beach) on the coast of Lake Tahoe. While there I figured I would investigate the local legend of Tahoe Tessie, a monster that supposedly lives in the lake. However, the legend doesn't appear to be widely known, even in the Tahoe area. Most people whom I asked about it gave me a blank stare. Some details that I found on AmericanMonsters.com include that: Legends of this creature first began to surface in the mid-1800's, when members of the…
Posted: Tue Sep 12, 2006.   Comments (9)

Quick Links: Police Threaten Arrest Over Gnome, etc. — Police Threaten Arrest Over Gnome Police are unamused by Gordon MacKillop's glowing garden gnome. Apparently it is offensive to his neighbours. Table of Condiments That Periodically Go Bad A joke site that has pretty much what the title suggests. Priest Confesses to Madonna Threat "A 63-year-old Dutch priest has confessed to calling in a phony bomb threat last week before a pair of Madonna concerts in Amsterdam in a last-ditch effort to stop the singer from staging her…
Posted: Mon Sep 11, 2006.   Comments (7)

Billboard Dollars Disappear — Sportsbook.com placed $100,000 in one-dollar bills inside a plexiglass box on a billboard in Las Vegas. Putting the money there was a publicity stunt to promote their betting business. As part of the stunt, they allowed people to bet on whether or not the money would be stolen from the billboard. And lo and behold, while a guard was on a break a thief somehow broke into the box and took off with some of the money. Although the theft itself sounds like a continuation of the publicity…
Posted: Sat Sep 09, 2006.   Comments (28)

Quick Links: Heart-In Baby Diamonds, etc. — Heart-In Baby Diamonds Anybody for an artificial diamond made of baby hair? Squirrel Sabotages Opera Singer A squirrel broke the nose of Finnish opera singer Esa Ruuttunen when it ran into the spokes of his bicycle. Flat Parents Life-sized cardboard cutouts of deployed service members are being given to their spouses, children and relatives by the Maine National Guard. Designer Underwear If you wish to sport the more... hirsute look, this pair of underwear may be for you. (Link not…
Posted: Fri Sep 08, 2006.   Comments (10)

Quick Links: Cheese, Aliens, Urine, & Paris Hilton — Mice Hate Cheese The popular legend is that mice like cheese, but this legend is false according to researchers at the Manchester Metropolitan University and the Stilton Cheese Makers Association. "As part of a wider study into animals and food, they found that a mouse's diet is primarily made up of grains and fruit. It found that they would reject something as strong in smell and rich in taste as cheese. Dr David Holmes, an animal behaviourist from the university, said: 'Clearly the…
Posted: Thu Sep 07, 2006.   Comments (20)

Accented Cows — Last month we posted a link to a story about cows mooing with regional accents. I think it's worth revisiting that story because (as was immediately pointed out by Greg in the comments) it turns out to be total baloney. Or should I say bull-oney? My guess is that the idea of accented moos probably originated as a tall-tale told amongst farmers, but at some point the claim came to the attention of a pr firm hired by the West Country Farmhouse Cheesemakers industry group. The pr firm…
Posted: Mon Sep 04, 2006.   Comments (10)

Animus Cult — The Animus Cult has been spreading posters and sigils around Adelaide, South Australia, recently. These posters proclaim ‘Animus is coming’, and some also contain a link to the website. They talk about Animus: So who is Animus? Why he is here and what is his purpose? His purpose is very simple. The Wicked are the disease. Animus is the cure. So now I must show you the truth. The strength of Animus lies in the Will of Man. Animus is here because the will of man is to rid itself of the…
Posted: Mon Sep 04, 2006.   Comments (16)

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