The Hoax Museum Blog
Posted by The Curator on Fri Dec 24, 2004
The cheerleader goes up, and comes down exactly through the basketball hoop. It seems like there has to be a trick to it somehow, though I can't figure out what the trick might be. As I watched the movie clip, I kept thinking 'what if her foot got caught in the net'. At the very least the net must be rigged so that it would rip away from the hoop if her foot were to catch it.
The Leg Shocker
Posted by The Curator on Fri Dec 10, 2004
The Leg Shocker is an add-on device for PlayStation 2, specifically for the games EA Sport's FIFA 2002 and FIFA World Cup 2002. Using this device allows you to feel the game, so to speak. It's a modified shin guard with a built-in hammer that bangs your shin if your virtual player on the screen gets tackled, tackles someone else, etc. There's a movie of the Leg Shocker in action. It's not clear to me if this is an actual working device, or just an art-project concept.
Posted by The Curator on Sun Dec 05, 2004
Cluster Ballooning is air travel achieved by means of tying numerous helium balloons to yourself. I knew about Larry Walters' famous 1982 cluster balloon flight in which he took off from the LA area on a lawn chair tied to helium balloons, so I knew it was possible to do. But I didn't think that people did this regularly as a sport. Apparently they do. It actually looks like fun (the site has some great pictures).
Yale to Harvard: You Suck
Posted by The Curator on Tue Nov 30, 2004
In a reworking of the Great Rose Bowl Hoax of 1961, Yale students, posing as members of the 'Harvard Pep Squad', managed to trick Harvard fans into holding up flip-cards reading 'WE SUCK' at the Harvard-Yale football game. I guess it's true that the great pranks never go out of style. (Thanks to Mormagli for giving me a heads up about this on the message board)
Posted by The Curator on Tue Nov 30, 2004
I noticed this article about the sport of competitive Cup Stacking in today's issue of the San Diego Union Tribune. That would be plastic cups... stacked up... as a sport. All the internet research I've done indicates this isn't a hoax. The sport of Cup Stacking is real. For instance, here's the site of SpeedStacks.com, the leading manufacturer of cup stacking equipment. But still, I'm having a hard time getting my brain around the concept of it. Maybe it's the testimonials in the Union Trib article that are giving me a hard time. Check out what student Jason Counts says about cup stacking: "It changed my life. Before…
Posted by The Curator on Wed Nov 24, 2004
Last week British journalists were all abuzz about the 'surf rage' phenomenon: vigilante Cornish surfers waging a kind of guerrilla war against out-of-town surfers. One group calling itself Locals Only! had a website in which it proclaimed it would use harassment and force to defend its surfing spots. But now a bunch of marketing and journalism students have declared that they invented the whole 'surf rage' concept to hoax the media (which, of course, willingly took the bait). The media is now backpedaling, admitting that the Locals Only! group may have been a hoax, but insisting that the surf rage phenomenon itself is real.
Man Lifts Planes, Elephants
Posted by The Curator on Fri Nov 19, 2004
Earlier this month 'spiritual teacher' Sri Chinmoy lifted a 5,322lb airplane off the ground. And the guy is 73 years old. I know there's got to be some trick here. How exactly did he lift that much weight? Was he using a lever of some kind? This weight-lifting success follows on the heels of a little 3,100 mile jog he and some of his followers did. Not a cross-country jog, mind you. No, they jogged around a city block in Jamaica, Queens. It took them seven weeks, running for 18 hours a day. The jogging I'm perfectly ready to believe. The weight-lifting, I'm not so sure about.
Remote Control Hunting
Posted by The Curator on Tue Nov 09, 2004
If you'd like to go hunting, but, for one reason or another, you don't want to get up from your computer, there's a new option available: remote control hunting. Live-shot.com is a site that allows its members to control, via the internet, a pan/tilt/zoom camera located on a ranch in Texas. The camera, in turn, is connected to a rifle. Aim your shot and fire away. Sounds a little odd, but I guess there's no reason a system like this couldn't be set up. But currently live-shot will only allow you to remotely fire a gun that's in a shooting range. But their site promises that in the…
Indecently Exposed Toothbrush
Posted by The Curator on Thu Nov 04, 2004
Jan Harold Brunvand calls it the "Indecent Exposure" urban legend. It involves a vacationing couple whose hotel room is broken into and robbed of everything save a toothbrush and a camera. When they get home and develop the film in the camera, they discover pictures of their toothbrush up the robber's rear end (to put it not so delicately). It appears that this urban legend has now served as the unfortunate inspiration for a prank that a New Zealand golfer played on his rival. As this article describes it: The Dominion Post understands bad blood between teenagers Kauika and Aucklander Kevin Chun boiled over when a bare-bottomed Kauika misused Chun's toothbrush as…
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.
Posted by The Curator on Wed Oct 20, 2004
If you're searching for unusual thrills, why not try getting kidnapped? Extreme Kidnapping promises that it will allow you to "customize your own kidnapping!" Yup. For the right price, women in fishnet stockings will show up unannounced at your door, whisk you away, and keep you bound and gagged in their basement for a few days. As weird as this sounds, I actually think it's real, mainly because I've heard of this before. Back in 2002 a guy called Brock Enright was in the news for staging 'Designer Kidnappings'. Enright commented that even though all his abductions occurred in broad daylight, in front of witnesses, no one had ever intervened to help the faux victim. Everyone…
Cow Manure Tossing
Posted by The Curator on Tue Oct 12, 2004
CNN reports that Oklahoma tourism officials have recalled about 200,000 brochures because they contain, among other things, "a photo of an event in which lumps of cow manure are thrown as a part of a contest in the town of Beaver, in western Oklahoma." The way the article described it, I wasn't sure if the cow-manure tossing was a joke that somehow made its way into the brochure, or if it was a serious event. But a quick google search reveals that it's real enough. Here are some photos of the event. I wonder if there's some kind of special trick involved in throwing a cow chip (does it fall apart easily?), or is it just…
Enormous Wave Video
Posted by The Curator on Tue Oct 12, 2004
When I first saw this movie clip of a guy surfing a huge wave (windows media player file), I figured it had to be fake, especially since the wave just seems to get bigger and bigger as the camera pans out. But on second thought, I think it's real. Waves in Hawaii or Australia can get huge, and some of those surfers are insane enough to surf them. This clip seems to be footage from the surfing documentary Billabong Odyssey.
The Perfect Moment
Posted by The Curator on Thu Oct 07, 2004
Posted by The Curator on Wed Sep 29, 2004
Is Norway really going to start promoting seal-hunting tourism? Apparently it is, if this article in Aftenposten can be believed (and I don't see any reason not to believe it). Here in San Diego seals are treated pretty much like royalty, and seal-watching is a major tourist attraction, especially in La Jolla (advice for tourists: the seals at seal island are fun to watch, but they stink to high heaven). So the idea of shipping in tourists to hunt seals seems bizarre... a bit like organizing kitten-hunting expeditions (or raising kittens inside of glass jars). No word yet on whether Norwegians consider seal-hunting to be a religion, but I suppose that's next.