This page is a round-up to provide readers with a quick check of some hoax-like items found around the web which we haven’t had a chance to do full write-ups on yet.

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Sources: Colts kicker Vanderjagt attempts life

By CLIFF BRUNT, Associated Press Writer
January 17, 2006

Colts kicker Mike Vanderjagt attempted to take his own life yesterday at his Indianapolis home.

Carmel 911 received a frantic call from Janalyn Vanderjagt at about 4:35 Monday evening. Apparently, Janalyn had just arrived home along with the couples son Jay Michael. Janalyn found her husband Mike attempting to hang himself in the couples bedroom. Janalyn tried to persuade Mike to rethink what he was about to do. Mike repeatedly attempted to kick the chair out from under him but was unsuccessful.

Indianapolis Colts place-kicker Mike Vanderjagt did not attempt to commit suicide the day after missing a game-tying field goal in an NFL Divisional Playoff game against the Pittsburgh Steelers. Someone fabricated a spoof article (as evidenced by such jokes as “Mike repeatedly attempted to kick the chair out from under him but was unsuccessful”) and mocked it up to look like a genuine Associated Press article distributed on-line via Yahoo! News.

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Earvin ‘Magic’ Johnson is in a coma

Thursday, September 18, 2003
Posted: 1810 GMT

(CNN) — Former L. A. Laker Earvin “Magic” Johnson is in a coma tonight at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles and is not expected to live. Johnson, 44, is suffering from complications related to HIV, and internal bleeding, a spokesman for Johnson’s attorney told CNN. “His eyes are open, but it’s just a dead stare. He could go any day now,” said the spokesman, who asked that his name not be used.

Magic Johnson is not in a coma. Someone just plugged his name into an older CNN article about Martin Luther King assassin James Earl Ray:

Red bullet MeatShake!

Here at MeatShake Corporation, we have a simple vision: Meat. Lots of meat. We bring you our vision in the most amazing and scrumptious forms imaginable. Our dedication to meat is nothing short of mighty. That’s our promise to you, the valued customer.

MeatShake is not a real chain of restaurants serving meat-based shake drinks with franchises in Los Angeles and New York. The web site is a promotional gimmick for Taste the Secret, a CD by the Long Beach-based group Ugly Duckling, a concept album about working at a fast food chain called Meatshake and its inter-business war with an all-veggie fast food stand.

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Disgruntled Asian Tattoo Artist Inks His Revenge

Pitt junior Brandon Smith wanted a tattoo that proclaimed his manliness, so he decided to get the Chinese characters for “strength” and “honor” on his chest. After 20 minutes under the needle of local tattoo artist Andy Sakai, he emerged with the symbol for “small penis” embedded in his flesh.

As the copyright notice indicates, the source of this article, Souf Oaklin fo’ Life!!!, “is a satirical newspaper published by Wooo Media.”

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Beta-tester for Sega football video game has frequent blackouts during which he randomly calls out plays, then tackles unsuspecting people and objects.

Beta-testing would drive just about anyone crazy, and this site is a good spoof of just how crazy.

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General Motors Purchases Indian Languages

General Motors (GM) has announced the purchase of exclusive rights to the entire Algonquian language family, including such well-known tongues as Cheyenne, Cree, and Mohican, in a $1.6 billion dollar deal.

“We are confident that this acquisition will benefit both the peoples who speak these languages and GM,” said company spokesman Karl Hennessey. “This is truly a rare win-win situation.”

Those who read The Watley Review’s About page would learn that “The Watley Review is dedicated to the production of articles completely without journalistic merit or factual basis, as this would entail leaving our chairs or actually working.”

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Primate Programming

“Humans and higher primates share approximately 97% of their DNA in common. Recent research in primate programming suggests computing is a task that most higher primates can easily perform. Visual Basic 6.0 was the preferred IDE for the majority of experiment primate subjects.”

The real Iowa Primate Learning Sanctuary was disgruntled about the Primate Programming, Inc. spoof web site and recently asked to remove all references to the sanctuary from their site.

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Adding and Subtracting

Ryan and Dave are the most unique identical twins you’ll ever meet. After tiring of piercing, tattoos, and implants about three years ago, they began exploring much heavier surgical modifications. Dave had spent two and a half years in pre-med at Queens University in Kingston, and using contacts made both there and online he and his twin brother have changed themselves in ways far beyond anything anyone else has ever attempted.

No, one identical twin isn’t growing a third arm or an extra-long finger removed from his brother and grafted onto his own body. Astute readers will take a hint from the legend at the bottom of the page: “This interview posted April 1, 1999.”

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This game had a very limited release, one or two backwater arcades in a suburb of Portland. The history of this game is cloudy, there were all kinds of strange stories about how kids who played it got amnesia afterwards, couldn’t remember their name or where they lived, etc.

The bizarre rumors about this game are that it was supposedly developed by some kind of weird military tech offshoot group, used some kind of proprietary behavior modification algorithms developed for the CIA or something, kids who played it woke up at night screaming, having horrible nightmares.

No arcade game called Polybius induced amnesia, caused gamers to wake up screaming in the middle of the night, or attracted the attention of mysterious “men in black” who periodically came to “collect records” from Portland-area machines. This one is just a gag someone invented several years ago which has now become enshrined on the web, another version of the conspiracy rumors involving military intelligence agents visiting arcades to collect stored information from game consoles which date to at least the early 1980s. (Back then we were supposed to watch out for men in black who came around to take down the initials of high scorers at Space Invaders, Asteroids, and Defender.)

Last updated:   29 November 2007


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