The Hoax Museum Blog
Posted by The Curator on Tue Nov 02, 2004
According to local legend in Manitou Springs, Colorado (legend that may or may not be true), a young woman named Emma Crawford was once buried at the top of nearby Red Mountain. But during a rain storm, her coffin came loose and raced down the side of the mountain. To commemorate this event, residents of the town now hold an annual coffin racing contest through the center of town. A few pictures from yesterday's race can be seen here. I'm not sure who won.
Man Dies, No One Notices
Posted by The Curator on Mon Nov 01, 2004
Yahoo News offers up this brief report about a British train conductor who "stamped and carefully returned the ticket of a slumbering passenger without realizing the man was dead." I guess people only realized the guy was dead once the train pulled into the station (York) and he failed to wake up. Now, by coincidence, I took this very same train last month, and the seats were pretty cramped, so either the train was quite empty, or whoever was sitting next to the dead guy was really oblivious. The story reminds me of the old urban legend about the guy who dies in his office, sitting at his desk, but none of his co-workers notice.
Who’s Buried in Yeats’ Grave?
Posted by The Curator on Wed Oct 27, 2004
William Butler Yeats is widely regarded as one of the greatest modern poets. He's also my favorite poet (and we happen to share a birthday!). When I spent a semester studying in Ireland fifteen years ago I made a special trip to visit his grave located just outside of Sligo. It's well worth a visit, even if you couldn't care less about Yeats, because the scenery there is stunning. But now I find out that Yeats may not occupy that grave. Instead, it may be a random Englishman named Alfred Hollis who's buried there. According to this article on Eircom.net it's very likely that a mix-up occurred when Yeats' remains were moved from France to Ireland in 1948.…
Posted by The Curator on Thu Oct 21, 2004
German artist Karl-Friedrich Lentze has applied for a patent on his new invention: a banana-straightening device (thanks to Hairy Houdini for posting this in the hoax forum). Obviously this is just what the world needs. Basically Lentze's idea is to chop off the bent bits and then seal the banana back up with a "biologically safe plaster." Here are some of Lentze's other projects: He asked the Bonn City Council whether it would be possible for him to be buried with an inflatable sex doll (the council said yes) He wrote to zoos asking them whether they'd be…
Fake LiveJournal Deaths
Posted by The Curator on Thu Aug 19, 2004
There's a LiveJournal community devoted to exposing fake LiveJournal deaths. I love it. You find cynical observations such as this: "you'll notice when visiting luna's journal that her dad died on August 8. He was immediately buried the next afternoon. In the meantime however, luna spent the hours posting bad poetry and stupid surveys." The Museum of Hoaxes also gets mentioned. Unfortunately it looks like they're configuring the community so that you'll now have to join it in order to see any future posts.
William Hung Not Dead Yet
Posted by The Curator on Sat Aug 14, 2004
I've noted before how popular celebrity death hoaxes have become. In fact, it's kind of like a weird sign of status for a celebrity to have their death falsely reported. It shows people care, in a sick and twisted way. Britney still leads the pack, having been killed in car crashes many times, but now American Idol anti-star William Hung has joined this elite group of prematurely-reported-dead celebrities. Reports of his death via heroin overdose have been spreading all around the internet. They originated from a faux-news piece on Broken Newz. His suicide note was particularly touching: "I have no reason of living... my art which is my…
Thatcher Isn’t Dead
Posted by The Curator on Thu Aug 05, 2004
Andy Has Returned… And He’s Got A Weblog
Posted by The Curator on Mon May 17, 2004
Posted by The Curator on Sun May 16, 2004
Posted by The Curator on Tue May 11, 2004
I should create a category for things that sound fake, but are actually real. In that category I would place LifeGem. According to their website, a LifeGem is "a certified, high quality diamond created from the carbon of your loved one as a memorial to their unique and wonderful life." Or, to put it more plainly, it's a diamond made from cremated human (or animal) remains. Actually, I'm just assuming it's real because it seems to have received quite a bit of publicity from places like the BBC and NPR. But the obvious con to watch out for would be that after someone pays…
Will Andy Kaufman Return?
Posted by The Curator on Tue Apr 27, 2004
Some say Andy Kaufman died on May 16, 1984. Some say he didn't. But whatever the case may be, Kaufman said that if he did fake his death, he would return 20 years later, and May 16, 2004 will be the 20th anniversary of his 'death.' In honor of this, Comic Relief will be holding an 'Andy Kaufman: Dead or Alive' show at the LA House of Blues on May 16. Perhaps Andy himself will put in an appearance. (Thanks, Julie)
Posted by The Curator on Tue Apr 27, 2004
As Gawker reports, a great 'take-this-job-and-shove-it' email has been making the rounds recently. It's penned by Bob Rubenstein, a publicist for a record label, who lost his job soon after the lead singer of the band he was supposed to promote, Pre)Thing, died of a heart attack. Bob, embittered for being fired, dishes some dirt on the company he was canned from, revealing how they brought in a psychic to talk with the departed spirit of the singer to see if he'd be willing to do any interviews with music journalists, via the psychic, from beyond the grave. But it turns out there's more to this story than Gawker realized. Rolling Stone reveals that…
Michael Jackson Isn’t Dead
Posted by The Curator on Fri Apr 16, 2004
Woman Killed by Frozen Urine
Posted by The Curator on Wed Apr 07, 2004
Kelli wrote in with a question about this strange photo showing a woman impaled by a long, yellowish-looking stick. The photo comes with an explanatory caption: This unfortunate woman was found dead on parkland in Yorkshire, England. She's believed to have been pierced by a shaft of frozen urine which had fallen from a leak in a toilet facility of an overhead plane. Kelli wants to know if it's real. Well, of course it's not. This photo has actually been floating around the internet for quite a while. As explained over at the Darwin Awards, it comes from a spoof news program aired in Britain called The…
A Wedding and a Funeral
Posted by The Curator on Tue Apr 06, 2004
New York artist 'Shishaldin' has announced her intention to marry the French poet, Isidore Ducasse. The one catch is that Ducasse has been dead for 134 years. But in France the President is allowed to approve marriages between the living and the dead thanks to a law that was passed following a case where a woman's fiancee died right before they could get married and the grief-stricken woman pleaded with the President to allow the marriage to proceed anyway. My one question here is that, okay, say Shishaldin gets married to the dead poet. What if she later changes her mind? How does she then go about getting a divorce? I…