FacebookTwitterRedditEmail

Hall of Hoaxes

Took a brief but necessary vacation to visit the world famous City Museum Complex.

The plaque outside The Hall of Hoaxes read, “Everything the City promised you, but never delivered. Everything the Nation promised you, but never delivered.”

Hyperbole, true, but what can one expect from The Hall of Hoaxes?

The Hall featured exhibit upon exhibit of hoaxes hoaxed upon citizens of the previous century. Lot of money during those Main Street days when Citizens gladly paid to be bamboozled. Who can forget the Great Hoax of the Giant unearthed? This alleged precursor to the Citizens’ glory was, like all artifacts in the museum, an enormous but lucrative fake created from limestone. Neuter (so squeamish were the Main Street days Citizens that few questioned the naked Giant’s missing genitalia). The Giant was displayed again, after the hoax was revealed, earning thrice the loot as people queued up to gaze upon the “false ancestor who gulled millions.”

Am I a hoax? No exhibit for me here. Nor for promises broken by friends, lovers, teachers, innocence lost, disappointing lives…only the big things, the obvious things. The two-headed boy and the shin-bone of an angel. Skull of an alien from outer space and a handwritten love letter from God…

Disfigured fetuses in pickle jars; dinosaur eggs; cavemen preserved in ice. All sorts of freaks and hoaxes, but none so famous as the Fossil Giant, nine feet tall, three feet wide sleeping, arms folded across his great expanse of chest and sleeping peacefully on a slab of marble. His existence carved meticulously from limestone, down to the detailed pores in his bone-white skin.

The Giant had been unearthed in the heart of the Nation, somewhere out West, suggesting that before the Indians a great race roamed the land, the true inheritors of The Nation’s great expanse of real estate. The perfidious Indians stole their land.

The City con-man impresario, originator of the hoax, intimated the original people of the Nation – not Indians – were a race of friendly Super Giants. White. Specimen pulled from the ground petrified, but intact. Nomadic hordes migrating from the North, later to be known as “Indians,” slaughtered these Giants and ate them, grinding their bones to foot powder and aphrodisiacs. Away, away the community and culture of these friendly Titans. Dead. Hence, whatever Citizens of the Nation later did to the Indians was well deserved.

“Many people parted with their money to gaze upon the face of this giant unearthed during the height of the Indian wars,” Plantman read from pamphlet. “One day an honest archeologist, posing as a typical rustic of the Nation – for scientists were not allowed anywhere near the Giant – exposed the giant for the Pygmy that it was: a life-like statue carved from stone.

“Headlines read ‘Giant Hoax,’ and much newsprint was devoted to the sham, which had already become famous worldwide, generating literature and speculation of a master race of Giants (some people in the Nation believe the legend of the Giants to this day).

“Unexpectedly, even for cynics of the Nation, the Giant and its creator made even more money after the hoax was exposed. People gladly paid to see the statue now billed as the ‘False Giant who fooled millions.’

“Even those who saw the Giant the first time parted with twice the money to review the piece of stone that had duped them and so mesmerized the Nation.”

I pocketed the pamphlet, scrutinized Giant. Old Time Main Street decorum: the naked Giant had no testicles or penis.

I left the Hall of Hoaxes somewhat disappointed. I had expected bigger, more immediate, contemporary hoaxes to be revealed. Perhaps the hoaxes of today are quieter, less visible, more discreet. Perhaps the Citizens of today are more subtly fooled.

ADAM ENGEL can be reached at bartleby.samsa@verizon.net.

This is an excerpt of a longer piece called Topiary.

 

More articles by:

Adam Engel is editor of bluddlefilth.org. Submit your soul to bluddlefilth@yahoo.com. Human units, both foreign and domestic, are encouraged to send text, video, graphic, and audio art(ifacts), so long as they’re bluddlefilthy and from The Depths.

bernie-the-sandernistas-cover-344x550
Weekend Edition
August 23, 2019
Friday - Sunday
Paul Street
Notes on Inauthenticity in a Creeping Fascist Nuthouse
Andrew Levine
Recession Now, Please
Rob Urie
Mr. Trump Goes to Kensington
Jeffrey St. Clair
Deep Time and the Green River, Floating
Robert Hunziker
Earth 4C Hotter
Kenneth Good
Congo’s Patrice Lumumba: The Winds of Reaction in Africa
Pete Dolack
The Realism and Unrealism of the Green New Deals
David Rosen
The White-Nationalist Great Fear
Kenn Orphan
The War on Indigenous People is a War on the Biosphere Itself
L. Michael Hager
What Netanyahu’s Travel Ban Has Revealed
Ramzy Baroud
Jewish Settlers Rule the Roost in Israel, But at What Price?
Evaggelos Vallianatos
Is Environmental Protection Possible?
Josue De Luna Navarro
What It’s Like to Grow Up Hunted
Ralph Nader
They Don’t Make Republicans Like the Great Paul Findley Anymore!
Gary Olson
Whither the Resistance to our Capitalist Overlords?
Dean Baker
On Those Downward Jobs Revisions
Rev. William Alberts
Beware of the Gun-Lover-in-Chief
Helder F. do Vale
Brazil: From Global Leader to U.S. Lapdog
Laura Finley
Educators Actually Do “Work” in the Summer
Jim Goodman
Farmers Need a Bill of Rights
Tom Clifford
What China’s Leadership is Really Worried About: Rising Debt
Daphne Wysham
Saving the Planet Means Fighting Bipartisan Corruption
Tierra Curry
Amazon Fires Put the Planet at Risk
Nyla Ali Khan
Kashmir: Decentralize Power and Revive Regional Political Institutions
John W. Whitehead
American Apocalypse
George Wuerthner
How Agriculture and Ranching Subvert the Re-Wilding of America
Daniel Murphy
Capital in the 21st Century
Jessicah Pierre
400 Years After Slavery’s Start, No More Band-Aids
Kim C. Domenico
Finding the Comrades: Maintaining Precarious Sanity In Insane Times
Gary Leupp
“Based on the Fact She Won’t Sell Me Greenland, I’m Staying Home”
John Kendall Hawkins
The Chicago 8 Trial, Revisited
Rivera Sun
Tapping into People Power
Ted Rall
As Long as Enemies of the State Keep Dying Before Trial, No One Should Trust the State
Jesse Jackson
The Significance of the “1619 Project”
Thomas Knapp
“Nuance” in Politics and Public Policy? No Thanks
Christopher Brauchli
Trump and Endangered Species, Wildlife and Human
Mel Gurtov
China’s Hong Kong Nightmare, and the US Response
Ron Forthofer
Sick of Being a Guinea Pig
Nicky Reid
Why I Stopped Being White (and You Should Too)
Jill Richardson
As the School Year Starts, I’m Grateful for the ADA
Seth Sandronsky
Rethinking the GDR
Adolf Alzuphar
Tears / Ayizan Velekete
Stephen Cooper
General Jah Mikey: “I Just Love That Microphone, Man”
Louis Proyect
Slaves to the Clock
David Yearsley
Moral Cantatas
FacebookTwitterRedditEmail