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Issue 57 - Hoax-Slayer Newsletter

Issue 57: December, 2005

This month in Hoax-Slayer:
Car-Jacking Scheme Warning - Paper on Rear Window

The widely distributed "warning" message shown below claims that brazen car-jackers are placing pieces of paper on the back window of parked cars as a ruse to get drivers to leave their vehicles with the keys still in the ignition and the engine running. According to the message, when a hapless victim exits the vehicle to remove the offending paper obstruction, lurking car-jackers quickly jump in and steal it away.

The warning has spawned a number of versions and has been set in several countries, including the United Kingdom, the United States and Australia. Often, the message claims to originate from an official organization such as a police department, motoring body, or insurance company.

The car-jacking scheme outlined in the email is not implausible. It is possible that criminals could use such a method to steal a car from an unwary victim. However, this degree of plausibility does not mean that such crimes are actually happening. Extensive searches of news, police department and motoring organization websites around the world have offered no confirmation that the car-jacking scheme described is actually occurring. If such car-jackings were really happening in three or more nations, it would be eminently newsworthy. If true, the mainstream media would almost certainly be reporting on such incidents.

The Richland County Sheriff's Department denounces the message as a hoax. The Florissant Police Department also denies that such incidents have been reported in its jurisdiction. Both organizations have been inadvertently associated with versions of the "warning".

An English version of the message (shown below) states that such car-jackings are currently occurring in London and claims to originate from a UK based insurance company. However, there is no information about this apparent endorsement of the "warning" email on the insurance company's website. Furthermore, London's Metropolitan Police Service website has no warnings or reports about this method of car-jacking. Another version claims to be from the NRMA, an Australian motoring and insurance organization. I have contacted both the NRMA and the UK insurance company. Both have denied any involvement with this "warning" message.

A number of credible organizations have published tips for protecting oneself from car-jackers. Tellingly, however, none that I could find mention the "paper on the rear window" ruse as a car-jacking scheme to watch out for.

The fact that virtually identical versions of this warning are set in different parts of the world also strongly indicates that the information in the message is not based on fact. Obviously, from time to time, someone alters an earlier version of the message to suit a local audience by substituting local place names or organizations before forwarding it onward. Thus, they are simply recycling an already dubious warning rather than reporting on events that are actually occurring in the targeted area or country.

Given that there are no credible reports of such crimes occurring in any of the targeted nations, forwarding this email seems counter-productive. Alerting all your friends about a non-existent car-jacking crime wave by emailing them a factually spurious "warning" is unlikely to be at all helpful. In fact, in our already crime-plagued society, perpetrating false warnings just spreads unnecessary fear and alarm. Hoax emails of this nature can also tie up valuable police resources because police personnel have to field numerous enquiries about the status of the messages.

These messages should be deleted rather than forwarded.



References:
How to Prevent a Carjacking
Richland County Sheriff's Department: The Paper on the Windshield Carjacking Email
ERRONEOUS E-MAIL CAUSES ALARM IN CITY OF FLORISSANT
Metropolitan Police Service
Trendmicro: New Carjacking Scheme Hoax

One example of the hoax:
ALL CAR OWNERS AND CAR DRIVERS, PLEASE READ

(originated from [Name of Insurance Company Removed])

Be aware of a new car-jacking scheme. You walk across the car park, unlock your car and get inside, lock the doors, start the engine and select reverse. You look into the rear-view mirror to back out of your parking space and notice a piece of paper stuck to the middle of the rear window. So, you shift back into park or neutral, unlock the doors and get out to remove the paper (or whatever it is) that is obstructing your view.

When you reach the back of your car the car-jackers appear out of nowhere, jump into your car and take off. Your engine was running and you would have left your handbag or briefcase in the car.

APART FROM NICKING ANYTHING OF VALUE, THEY MIGHT FIND YOUR ADDRESS AND THEY ALREADY HAVE YOUR KEYS!

Remember, if you see your rear view blocked like this just drive away and remove the paper later! It is stuck to your window!

THIS SCAM IS HAPPENING IN LONDON RIGHT NOW AND WILL SURELY SPREAD TO OTHER AREAS Be thankful that you read this email and forward it to friends and family especially to women!

JUST BE AWARE AND TAKE CARE. IT WILL SOON ARRIVE IN YOUR AREA.


[TOP]



Q33 NY Wingdings Hoax Elevens and the Wrath of the Eagle

The absurd email forward included below combines three earlier hoaxes that have been circulating in one form or another for several years.

The message first draws attention to the high number of "elevens" that can be derived from names or elements pertaining to the September 2001 attacks on the United States. It then discusses a verse supposedly taken from the Quran that seems to predict The US involvement in Iraq. Finally, it claims that the flight number of one of the 9/11 planes shows a pictorial representation of the attack on the Twin Towers when converted to the "Wingdings" font in Microsoft Word. As discussed below, all three of these claims are unfounded.

The continued recurrence of the number eleven in relation to 9/11 may seem to have some weird relevance at first glance. However, it is easy to manipulate the details of an event so that an apparent numerical pattern emerges. There are many other 9/11 elements that have no relation to the number 11. For example, "World Trade Center", "Twin Towers", "Osama Bin Laden", "American Airlines," "United Airlines" and a great many other 9/11 related items do not add up to the number eleven. In fact, hundreds of items could be legitimately included on such a list, the majority of which have no "eleven" connection. In other words, the person who created this "elevens" list carefully chose only those 9/11 related items that fit the pattern and discarded all others.

Furthermore, the hoaxster is apparently quite willing to bend the truth to fit the story. Flight 77 was carrying 64 people not 65 as claimed in the email. The message also claims that Flight 77 hit the Twin Towers. However, Flight 77 crashed into the Pentagon, not the World Trade Center.

In addition, the email states that the "total number of victims inside all the hi-jacked planes was 254". However, this is untrue. Various reliable sources concur that the total number of people on the hijacked planes was 265 (see Data Table below). If you subtract the 19 hijackers, the total number of victims on the planes (passengers and crew) was 246 not 254. Neither 265 nor 246 add up to eleven.

Thus, claims of some supernatural association between the terrorist attacks and the number 11 are blatantly contrived and highly misleading.

The second part of the message claims that Chapter 9 Verse 11 (9.11) of the Islamic holy book the Quran contains a startling prophecy presumably related to the US invasion of Iraq. However, research indicates that the quoted verse does not appear in the Quran at all. Chapter 9 Verse 11 of the Quran is concerned with repentance and charity. Abdullah Yusuf Ali's translation Of The Holy Qur'an, records Verse 11 as:
But (even so), if they repent, establish regular prayers, and practise regular charity,- they are your brethren in Faith: (thus) do We explain the Signs in detail, for those who understand.
Other translations may differ slightly in wording but carry essentially the same message. None make mention of the "wrath of the Eagle" or any other elements contained in the "verse" quoted in the message.

The Quran "verse" has also circulated as a separate message with the following description:
This is something to think about! Since America is typically represented by an eagle. Saddam should have read up on his Muslim passages...
The final part of this hoax email claims that changing "Q33 NY" to the Wingdings symbol font in Microsoft Word will reveal a hidden message directly related to the 9/11 attack on the twin towers. Q33 NY rendered in Wingdings is:
Certainly, this combination of symbols is likely to make even the most cynical readers do a double take when they first observe it. However, a minimal amount of research reveals that the Wingdings claim is based on an outrageous lie and therefore has no validity what so ever. None of the planes involved in the 9/11 attacks had the flight number "Q33 NY". The flight numbers of the planes that crashed into the Twin Towers were in fact "11" and "175". Clearly, someone has simply made up this supposed flight number in an attempt to make the spurious claim seem valid. In an absurd twist, the current version of the hoax actually contradicts itself. One part of the message states, "The first plane crashing against the Twin Towers was flight number 11." Later in the same message it states "Type in capitals Q33 NY. This is the flight number of the first plane to hit one of the Twin Towers."

Some have claimed that "Q33 NY" was actually the tail or registration number of one of the planes. However, this is also untrue. The actual tail number of Flight 11 was "N334AA". Nor did any of the other hijacked aircraft have the registration number "Q33 NY" (see Data Table below). Searches of the Federal Aviation Administration website afforded no results for "Q33 NY". In fact, most civil aircraft registrations in the United States start with the letter "N" and nationality and registration markings are commonly referred to as "N-Numbers".

Flight and tail numbers aside, the Star of David in the Wingdings "message" has little relevance to 9/11 since the attacks were not perpetrated by or directed at those of Jewish faith. This hoax actually builds on a foolish conspiracy theory involving Wingdings that goes back as far as 1992. Typing "NYC" ("New York City") in Wingdings reveals a skull and crossbones symbol, the Star of David, and a thumbs up symbol. This has been interpreted by some conspiracy-theorists as a deliberate anti-Semitic message. Microsoft has denied that this arrangement of symbols is anything more than an unfortunate coincidence.

In short, this email message is a load of baloney and it should not be forwarded. Hoaxes that perpetrate falsehoods about real terrorist attacks are especially heinous. One wonders at the mentality, and motives, of the imbeciles who create hoaxes of this nature. This hoax message dishonours the memory of those who lost their lives in the 9/11 attacks. Please do not forward it.

9/ll Data Table
Airline and Flight Number Tail Number Total # People Onboard # Hijackers
American Airlines Flight 11 N334AA 92 5
United Airlines Flight 175 N612UA 65 5
American Airlines Flight 77 N644AA 64 5
United Airlines Flight 93 N591UA 44* 4
Total: 265 19

* Some reports put the number of people on Flight 93 at 45. According to Wikipedia, one passenger may have booked two seats, which caused some early confusion over the actual number of passengers.

An example of the hoax email:
Subject: FW: number11

Amazing! Do exercise at end

This is SO weird!!!!

THIS IS REALLY FREAKY!

1) New York City has 11 letters
2) Afghanistan has 11 letters.
3) Ramsin Yuseb (The terrorist who threatened to destroy
the Twin Towers in 1993) has 11 letters.
4) George W Bush has 11 letters.

This could be a mere coincidence, but this gets more interesting:

1) New York is the 11th state.
2) The first plane crashing against the Twin Towers was flight number 11.
3) Flight 11 was carrying 92 passengers. 9 + 2 = 11
4) Flight 77 which also hit Twin Towers, was carrying 65 passengers. 6+5=11
5) The tragedy was on September 11, or 9/11 as it is now known. 9+1+1=11
6) The date is equal to the US emergency services telephone number 911. 9+1+1=11.
Sheer coincidence..?!

Read on and make up your own mind:

1) The total number of victims inside all the hi-jacked planes was 254. 2+5+4=11.
2) September 11 is day number 254 of the calendar year. Again 2+5+4=11.
3) The Madrid bombing took place on 3/11/2004. 3+1+1+2+4 =11.
4) The tragedy of Madrid happened 911 days after the Twin Towers incident.

Now this is where things get totally eerie:

The most recognised symbol for the US, after the Stars & Stripes, is the Eagle. The following verse is taken from the Quran, the Islamic holy book:

''For it is written that a son of Arabia would awaken a fearsome eagle. The wrath of the Eagle would be felt throughout the lands of Allahand lo, while some of the people trembled in despair still more rejoiced: for the wrath of the Eagle cleansed the lands of Allah and there was peace."

That verse is number 9.11 of the Quran.

Still unconvinced about all of this..?!

Try this and see how you feel afterwards, it made my hair stand on end:

Open Microsoft Word and do the following:
1. Type in capitals Q33 NY. This is the flight number of the first plane to hit one of the Twin Towers.
2. Highlight the Q33 NY.
3. Change the font size to 48.
4. Change the actual font to WINGDINGS

What do you think now..?!


[TOP]



Eye Of God Image - Hubble Telescope Email

The image included in this email forward does indeed represent a real celestial object. However, the description that arrives with the image is inaccurate.

The picture is a composite image of the Helix Nebula and was NASA's Astronomy Picture of the Day for May 10th 2003. The Helix Nebula is a planetary nebula that formed at the end of life of a star and is estimated by scientists to be as close as 450 light years from our Sun. Images taken from the Hubble telescope were combined with others taken from an Earth based observatory to form this quite compelling picture. According to information on NASA's HubbleSite:

The composite picture is a seamless blend of ultra-sharp NASA Hubble Space Telescope (HST) images combined with the wide view of the Mosaic Camera on the National Science Foundation's 0.9-meter telescope at Kitt Peak National Observatory, part of the National Optical Astronomy Observatory, near Tucson, Ariz.
While the image does indeed resemble a giant eye, there is no record of NASA actually referring to it as "The Eye of God". It is not clear who first called the image "The Eye of God", but the name appears to have "stuck" for obvious reasons. A number of non-NASA websites refer to the image by this name. In fact, other planetary nebulas have also been called "The Eye of God", including the Hourglass Nebula, MyCn18.

The Helix Nebula is actually a vast tunnel of glowing gases a trillion kilometres long. Since Earth's position in relation to the nebula means we are looking more or less directly into the mouth of this tunnel, Helix appears to us as an eye-like bubble rather than a cylinder.

The claim that the "event" only occurs once in three thousand years is pure nonsense. The Helix Nebula is readily viewable by scientists all the time and can even be seen by amateur astronomers using telescopes or binoculars. Naturally, due to the composite nature of the image and the high-powered telescopes and photographic equipment used to create it, the nebula is unlikely to look as compelling or as "eye-like" from the ground as it does in the emailed image.

In spite of the inaccurate description, the picture is certainly a delight to behold. One wonders why somebody felt the need to make up a nonsensical explanation to go with the picture. Such amazing natural phenomena virtually speak for themselves.

References:
Astronomy Picture of the Day: 2003 May 10
NGC 7293:The Helix Nebula
Iridescent Glory of Nearby Planetary Nebula Showcased on Astronomy Day
Hourglass Nebula, MyCn18
The Helix Nebula

An example of the email:
Subject: FW: Hubble picture, the eye of GOD

This photo is a very rare one, taken by NASA. This kind of event occurs once in 3000 years.

This is a picture NASA took with the hubble telescope.

Called "The Eye of God".

Too awesome to delete. It is worth sharing.

Eye of God Image


God loves you and watches over you every day.


[TOP]



IRS Refund Scam Email

A scam email, purportedly from the US Internal Revenue Service (IRS), is currently targeting Internet users. The message informs recipients that they are eligible for a tax refund and directs them to follow a link to fill out a refund form. The email claims to be from "tax_refunds@irs.gov". However, the message is a phishing scam and does not originate from the IRS.

If recipients access the link provided in the scam, they are asked to enter sensitive personal information into a bogus web form. The scammers can collect any information entered.

The IRS has issued a warning to consumers about these phishing scam emails. Part of the warning is reproduced below:
The Internal Revenue Service today issued a consumer alert about an Internet scam in which consumers receive an e-mail informing them of a tax refund. The e-mail, which claims to be from the IRS, directs the consumer to a link that requests personal information, such as Social Security number and credit card information.

This scheme is an attempt to trick the e-mail recipients into disclosing their personal and financial data. The practice is called "phishing" for information.
The IRS does not send unsolicited emails to consumers. If you receive one of these emails, do not follow any links provided or supply any information. Do not reply to the email.

In fact, be wary of any email that asks you to provide sensitive personal information such as banking or credit card details. Legitimate government agencies or private companies are highly unlikely to request sensitive information from customers via unsolicited email. To find out more about phishing scams, click the link below:
Phishing Scams - Anti-Phishing Information

References:
IRS Warns of e-Mail Scam about Tax Refunds
US-CERT Alert: Reports of IRS Phishing Emails



[TOP]



Naked Chef Free Cook Book Hoax

An email forward is circulating that supposedly includes a free copy of "The Naked Chef 2" which the message claims is a new cookbook by British celebrity chef Jamie Oliver. The email carries a large, 121 page Microsoft Word attachment that contains a number of Jamie Oliver recipes collected into a "book" complete with an index and illustrations.

The message claims that an employee of Jamie Oliver's publishing company inadvertently began the circulation of the new book when he or she sent a Microsoft Word version to a friend. However, this claim is unfounded. In fact, the word document is not a copy of Jamie's new book at all. Instead, it consists of recipes stolen from other Naked Chef publications and tacked together to form the bogus "book".

The "book" began circulating via email in July 2003. Several versions of the email, all with the same attached cookbook, have been distributed since then, including the late 2005 variant shown above.

Jamie has the following disclaimer on his website:
Thank you to everyone who has emailed us about the hoax book that has been circling the globe via the internet. Just so you know, it's not my new book but a bunch of recipes that have been taken from the website in the US. Not good either way though.
According to a 2003 article from "The Age", Jamie's publisher Penguin "is alarmed by the breach of copyright and lawyers said it could trigger a spate of similar "books". The culprit could face a substantial compensation claim."

This bogus recipe collection seriously breaches Oliver's copyright and should not be forwarded. Also, the email and attachment weigh in at over 500 kilobytes, so repeated forwarding consumes a sizable slice of bandwidth, and could prove especially annoying to dial-up users.

Forwarding this cookbook is unfair on Jamie, ethically dubious, and is likely to be illegal.

References:
'Naked chef' in a stew over crookbook
Jamie's Diary - That email
Jamie Oliver email is a hoax

Example of the hoax email:
Subject: early xmas pressie.

Jamie Oliver's new cook book for free!

How good is this.....

Cook book = 20
Ingredients = 10
Getting sacked for "accidentally" releasing the book to the entire planet before it even hits the shelves = PRICELESS!

It seems that someone at Jamie Oliver's publishing company sent a word document version of his 2nd book to one of their mates this morning. Unfortunately for the poor sap who sent the word document, it is now flying around the web at a rate of knots. So print what you like AND please spare a thought for the poor bugger that originally sent it, while enjoying the food you make from the recipes!!!

The deal of the day - Jamie Oliver's latest cook book.

RRP 20 at most participating book stores.

Yours for nothing!
Enjoy & Pass it on!!


[TOP]



Laughter is a Great Stress Reliever

A couple of weeks ago, I bought myself an early Christmas present in the form of the "That's Comedy! Joke Book". This is an excellent eBook for all those who enjoy a good joke. This book is simply packed with hundreds of very funny jokes!

The book comes in .pdf format, which means you can easily read it right on your computer screen. I've been keeping the joke book open when I'm working on my computer. From time to time, I take a quick "joke break" by popping into the book and reading a few more jokes. Laughter is a real stress reliever, and I find that taking a little break to read a few good jokes helps keep me focused and working productively. The eBook runs to well over 400 pages, so these jokes should keep me going for quite some time.

The jokes are clearly formatted and divided into chapters for easy access - a far cry from the garbled funnies that often find their way to my email inbox.

If you have a friend or relative who loves jokes - perhaps he or she is guilty of forwarding you dozens of the garbled funnies I mentioned earlier - then this joke book will make a perfect Christmas present.

The "That's Comedy! Joke Book" is well worth the purchase price and you even get a couple of bonus eBooks to sweeten the deal! I consider this book to be very good value and I'm happy to add it to the small list of products that I'm willing to promote as an affiliate.

Click the link below to visit the "That's Comedy! Joke Book" website:

That's Comedy! Joke Book

[TOP]

Premium Rate Phone Fraud Hoax

Variations of these hoax emails have been circulating since at least 2004. Some of the emails claim returning a missed call on a mobile phone can result in a phone charge of around 100 for fifteen minutes. Others claim that victims are being duped into participating in premium rate phone calls that are charged at 20 per minute.

One mobile phone version claims to be from a Vodaphone account manager. An earlier variant pretends to be a "Warning from the Police". In spite of these efforts to add credibility to the message, the claims in the emails are untrue. In January 2005, the ICSTIS issued a press release debunking these messages:

(United Kingdom) January 24th, 2005 -- Over the last few days, ICSTIS has received dozens of enquiries about the above 'scams', which are being widely publicised by e-mail. To help us put an end to the current spate of enquiries, please pass this information on to all contacts. In the first case, the apparent 'deception' takes place when people receive a recorded message informing them that they have won an all-expenses paid holiday and are asked to press 9 to hear further details. It is then claimed that callers are connected to a 20.00 per minute premium rate line that will still charge them for a minimum of five minutes even if they disconnect immediately. It is also claimed that, if callers stay connected, the entire message costs 260.00.

In the second case, the apparent 'deception' takes place when people receive a missed call from a number beginning 0709. It is then claimed that, if callers dial this number, they are connected to a 50.00 per minute premium rate line.

Please note that these stories are NOT true!

20.00 per minute and 50.00 per minute premium rate tariffs do not exist - the highest premium rate tariff available is 1.50 per minute. Despite the dozens of enquiries received by ICSTIS about these 'scams' (and most people appear to have heard about them second or third-hand), not one person who claims that it has actually happened to them has been able to produce a phone bill to support their story.

ICSTIS urges any individual or organisation that receives an e-mail about these 'scams' to delete it immediately. Please do NOT forward it to others.
As the ICSTIS press release states, these messages contain false information and should not be forwarded. Sending such bogus warnings to others is a waste of bandwidth and helps nobody.

However, it should be noted that some companies have indeed used deceptive practices to trick recipients into making premium rate calls. In one case, a company made automated calls to consumers claiming that they had won a prize and urging them to call back to make a claim. At face value, this case may seem to partly verify the information in the "scam warning" email. However, the bogus warning above and the actual incident described here are not related and the details are quite different.

In the real incident, callers were charged at the maximum allowable rate of 1.50 per minute, not 20.00 per minute as claimed in the bogus warning. Also, callers were only charged for the actual time of the call, not a five-minute minimum even if they disconnected immediately. In November 2005, the company was fined by the ICSTIS and barred from running any prize type service for 12 months.

For more information about premium rate services in the United Kingdom, visit the ICSTIS Website

One example of the hoax email:
Please could you make your users aware of this possible scam

Please be aware that this weekend one a colleague received a missed call from a telephone number starting 070467..... when called back it passes you through to a messaging service.

The mobile user checked with BT discovered it is a new scam to pass you through three numbers and it costs about 100 for fifteen minutes. Please warn other mobile users of this 0704 code coming up on their phones and not to answer it. If it comes up as a missed call, it should be deleted.

The message starts, the caller is forwarding you to their messaging service, it rings for a while then it says they are not at that number we will try another one for you and so on.

This has been sent to Customer Services by a customer, so I can not verify it but it is worth being aware of.

Kind Regards

[Name removed]
Telephone Account Manager

Vodafone Corporate

[TOP]

Guts to say Jesus Virus Hoax is Back

Submissions indicate that the "Guts to say Jesus" virus hoax is enjoying something of a come back. This hoax first made its appearance back in 1998, and has become one of the most widely distributed of all email virus hoaxes.

The message claims that opening an email with the subject line, "It Takes Guts to Say Jesus", will activate a virus that will delete all information on the computer. However, the information in the email is completely false and should be ignored. There is no virus that has the characteristics outlined in this bogus email. There are several variations of this hoax, all equally untrue.

It is a good idea to check out any virus "warning" you receive at a virus or hoax information website before you pass it on to others.

Other common virus hoaxes

Example:
PASS THIS ON TO ANYONE YOU HAVE AN E-MAIL ADDRESS FOR.

If you receive an email titled: "It Takes Guts to Say Jesus" DO NOT OPEN IT. It will erase everything on your hard drive. This information was announced yesterday morning from IBM; AOL states that this is a very dangerous virus, much worse than "Melissa," and that there is NO Remedy for it at this time.

Some very sick individual has succeeded in using the reformat function from Norton Utilities causing it to completely erase all documents on the hard drive. It has been designed to work with Netscape Navigator and ! Microsoft Internet Explorer. It destroys Macintosh and IBM co imputable computers.

This is a new, very malicious virus and not many people know about it. Pass this warning along to EVERYONE in your address book ! and please share it with all your online friends ASAP so that this threat maybe stopped.

Please practice cautionary measures and tell anyone that may have access to your computer. Forward this warning to everyone that you know that might access the Internet.

[TOP]

Email Etiquette Tip - DON'T SHOUT!

If you USE ALL CAPS in your email or message board posts, you will immediately make yourself seem inexperienced or ignorant. Most experienced computer users consider the use of all capital letters to be the Internet equivalent of shouting.

For those of us who spend a lot of time hanging out in cyberspace, messages written in all capital letters are reminiscent of trying to hold a conversation in which one person is shouting every word while others are speaking at a normal volume.

Also, a message written in all capitals is harder to read. In blocks of text rendered in all capitals, words lose their "shape" because they are all the same height. Each word becomes a uniform rectangle. Most people read and quickly recognize words by looking at their overall shape. We do not read by visualizing words one letter at a time.

Capital letters are best left for their intended usage and, sparingly, to emphasize a particular word or phrase.

If you are new to the ways of the Internet, this restriction on the use of capital letters might seem silly and you might dismiss it as unimportant. However, using all capitals in your messages will adversely affect how people perceive you online.

[TOP]

Happy Holiday Wishes from Hoax-Slayer

I'd like to wish all subscribers a very happy holiday period! Wherever you may be in the world, I hope this time brings you peace, goodwill and happiness.

If you are waiting for Santa to come, then I certainly hope you have a wonderful Christmas. My children are getting very excited now and are taking every opportunity to poke at the presents under the tree when they think I'm not looking..lol.

I hope 2006 brings you health and prosperity. I have quite a few expansion plans for Hoax-Slayer in the New Year and I'm looking forward to getting started.

Thanks for subscribing to my newsletter!

By the way, Don't forget you can discuss scams, hoaxes or just pop in and say "hello" on the Hoax-Slayer Forums. I'll be monitoring the forums over the Christmas period as much as possible.

Also, I've been gradually adding more articles to my XP-Tips website. If you use Windows XP, you might like to pop in and check out the tips.


[TOP]

Hoax-Slayer Humour: Rudolph

Received via email:

Prior to the breakup of the Soviet Union, my wife and I had an opportunity to visit Moscow. It is a beautiful city with friendly people, all eager to help us enjoy our visit, including Rudolph Karnekov, the personal guide assigned to us by the concierge of our hotel. Moscow-born and bred and a former member of the Politburo, Rudy was very knowledgeable about the city and every aspect of Russian life, as well. We spent every moment possible out exploring the city, despite the often unpredictable Moscow weather.

One day, as we prepared to leave the hotel for a visit to a winery on the outskirts of Moscow, it began to rain/sleet/snow. I, at least, was sure it was snow. My wife was equally sure it was rain, and insisted upon a visit to a local department store, to purchase an umbrella. I thought the shopping spree was a waste of time - who needed an umbrella for a little snow? (Besides, I really wanted to get to that winery!) Well, a lengthy argument ensued which threatened to ruin the day's excursion, until my wife suggested we defer to someone whose judgement about local weather conditions was sure to be above reproach -- namely, our Muscovite guide. "After all," my wife insisted, "Rudolph The Red knows rain, Dear!"


Merry Christmas, everyone! Smile

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The Hoax_Slayer Newsletter is published by:
Brett M.Christensen
Queensland, Australia
All Rights Reserved
©Brett M. Christensen, 2008
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