World Trade Center Survivor Hoax...

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This story completely blows me away.

Alex in NYC, Thursday, 27 September 2007 17:40 (fifteen years ago) link

holy shit

gff, Thursday, 27 September 2007 17:56 (fifteen years ago) link

I realize that "blows me away" might not be the most tasteful phrase to have utilized in this context. Apologies.

Alex in NYC, Thursday, 27 September 2007 17:57 (fifteen years ago) link

when events overshadow people, some/many people feel a need to be a part of said events

gabbneb, Thursday, 27 September 2007 17:58 (fifteen years ago) link

Still, to have managed to insert herself that deeply into it -- I'd almost be impressed if it wasn't so reprehensible.

Alex in NYC, Thursday, 27 September 2007 17:59 (fifteen years ago) link

I am no longer surprised by this type of thing.

El Tomboto, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:02 (fifteen years ago) link

people be serious attention whores

carne asada, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:03 (fifteen years ago) link

this girl i worked with claimed to have had a boyfriend who died on 9/11. said he was a port authority officer. but her story didn't add up for several reasons. in the end it was confirmed she was lying. i think people want to ascribe meaning to their own lives and attach themselves to big events like that to garner attention.

omar little, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:04 (fifteen years ago) link

It all just screams "personality disorder."

xpost - I was about to say. She can't be the only person to have lied about what happened to her that day.

xero, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:05 (fifteen years ago) link

Which is more confounding, though - that people are capable of perpetuating such falsehoods in depth or that other people, who are not clinically dissociative, will believe these sorts of things until the entire shebang just catastrophically falls apart?

El Tomboto, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:05 (fifteen years ago) link

i think it's one of those things no one would dare question, right? you almost have to give those people the benefit of the doubt. it's not like some dude saying, yo i fucked nikki cox this weekend and right away you'd be like, bullshit.

omar little, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:07 (fifteen years ago) link

yeah "why would somebody lie about being victim of something so terrible" etc

El Tomboto, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:08 (fifteen years ago) link

is there a name for this kind of phenomenon? It’s sort of like munchausen syndrome biproxy on a grand scale or somethin

carne asada, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:10 (fifteen years ago) link

munchausen by proxy is when you hurt someone else to get attention, munchausen syndrome is when you hurt yourself. just for clarification

El Tomboto, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:12 (fifteen years ago) link

but no I don't think either of those are necessarily what we're talking about here

El Tomboto, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:13 (fifteen years ago) link

munchausen by airplane

sanskrit, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:14 (fifteen years ago) link

it's not like some dude saying, yo i fucked nikki cox this weekend and right away you'd be like, bullshit.

i think it is like that! that's the sad thing. like you told everyone in 2nd grade your uncle had a monster truck.

gff, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:16 (fifteen years ago) link

xxpost
i wasn’t referring to the act specifically just the attention seeking part. just wondering if this is a classified disorder

carne asada, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:17 (fifteen years ago) link

i'm not astounded that someone would do this on a moral level, but rather that this woman had the gall to think no one was going to call bullshit. i guess that might make her unspeakably stupid tho.

or she thought it was going to get debunked and didn't care? aye.

Jordan Sargent, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:18 (fifteen years ago) link

i think sanskrit is onto some DSM VI type shit

Mr. Que, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:18 (fifteen years ago) link

It sounds like, up until this hoax was discovered, this woman was having a blast.

jeff, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:19 (fifteen years ago) link

It is said that half the population of Russia claimed to have been present at the storming of the Winter Palace.

Aimless, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:19 (fifteen years ago) link

But there's an extra manipulative trick here, though -- she's relying on people failing to question her story given the horrific nature of the circumstances. She's taking advantage of the good faith of sympathizers.

Alex in NYC, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:19 (fifteen years ago) link

it reminded me of fanfic, too, esp all the shit about almost being married to this heroic guy who died.

i wouldn't be surprised if this is a recognized disorder

gff, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:20 (fifteen years ago) link

For that last bit -- reaching out to the parents of the man she claimed rescued her, she should be fed to the lions.

Alex in NYC, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:20 (fifteen years ago) link

i don't think people who do shit like this admit to themselves they're making it all up

gabbneb, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:21 (fifteen years ago) link

this seems like some twisted wanting to be type of the cool crowd type shit.

Jordan Sargent, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:21 (fifteen years ago) link

nice of the times to feature the mayor so prominently!

gff, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:21 (fifteen years ago) link

i don't think people who do shit like this admit to themselves they're making it all up

-- gabbneb, Thursday, September 27, 2007 1:21 PM (5 seconds ago) Bookmark Link

eventually they believe it and "i'm a wtc survivor" becomes second nature

Jordan Sargent, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:21 (fifteen years ago) link

alex nyc otm about the mother of the dude who "saved" her

Jordan Sargent, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:22 (fifteen years ago) link

isn't munchausen syndrome when you claim to be a "sufferer" (and in some cases hurt yourself, but not necessarily so, you can lie about having had an injury/whatever)?

anyway, you can label it whatever, but it's still despicable.

stevienixed, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:22 (fifteen years ago) link

Hmm, whoever said "personality disorder" above is OTM. I think there is some kind of mental illness involved with this, rather than her just being an "attention whore." It's not really something she should be scolded for, as pathetic as it seems. She's got some serious issues there.

I knew someone in college like this, a kind of pathological liar. Claimed all sorts of crazy stuff that clearly did not fly, but was incredibly sincere about it. The guy was really nice, and people were torn between hating him for making all this crap up and feeling sorry for him for having such a serious problem.

Mark Clemente, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:23 (fifteen years ago) link

i don't think people who do shit like this admit to themselves they're making it all up

i wonder if she really was in mourning for her 'fiance'?

It sounds like, up until this hoax was discovered, this woman was having a blast.

otm

gff, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:24 (fifteen years ago) link

Anyone who has met a pathological liar (as I have) will understand that the compulsion to make one's life more fascinating to others is a prime symptom. Just saying, not diagnosing.

Aimless, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:24 (fifteen years ago) link

It's just the regular Munchausen syndrome, IMHO: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Munchausen_syndrome , none of the other descriptions of http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Factitious_disorder seem to fit.

The only other examples I seem to be able to find are fake holocaust survivors:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Binjamin_Wilkomirski
http://www.isurvived.org/4Debates/SollyGanor/DeliStrummer-discredited.html

but there's no mention of a possible syndrome/affliction there.

StanM, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:24 (fifteen years ago) link

i don't think people who do shit like this admit to themselves they're making it all up

-- gabbneb, Thursday, September 27, 2007 1:21 PM (5 seconds ago) Bookmark Link

eventually they believe it and "i'm a wtc survivor" becomes second nature

I definitely agree. I imagine she really believed all the stuff she was saying. I'm sure there was a kind of sincerity in going to the parents of the her (claimed) rescuer.

Mark Clemente, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:25 (fifteen years ago) link

it's a lack of self confidence thing also~ she's likely never had any attention bestowed on her like she had with this story, plus she gave herself a romance (which ended in a shakespearean tragedy kinda way), plus another man saved her life selflessly, plus she was sort of heroic and giving. she wrote her own script beautifully.

omar little, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:28 (fifteen years ago) link

let's get Sean Penn to direct

Shakey Mo Collier, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:29 (fifteen years ago) link

no wait, Ang Lee

Shakey Mo Collier, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:29 (fifteen years ago) link

Just like all the people who said they were at the Beatles Shea stadium concert-they probably actually think they were there.

There was a guy who died about a month ago who lied for about 30 years that he was an ex-major league baseball player. He even had his wife fooled, and toured the banquet circuit on the stories. When he died, the real guy, who is alive and kicking, had the strange experience of reading his own obituary. He then set everybody straight. This, I guess, happens a lot.

Bill Magill, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:31 (fifteen years ago) link

this story annoys people like me who actually did survive those attacks

omar little, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:32 (fifteen years ago) link

yeah that is what I meant up above about "dissociative" - this type of thing is symptomatic of a psychological disorder, otherwise, why not make a load of money playing poker

El Tomboto, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:32 (fifteen years ago) link

lol Bill Magill and I read Rick Reilly

El Tomboto, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:33 (fifteen years ago) link

and yeah I am beginning to get the idea this happens a LOT A LOT A LOT more than we think it does

El Tomboto, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:35 (fifteen years ago) link

*develops sudden suspicions of tombot*

Shakey Mo Collier, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:36 (fifteen years ago) link

there are a lot of pathological liars out there, some small-scale, some big scale. i wonder how many people claim to have been in dealey plaza? i think jim garrison based his case on testimony from people who were actually sleeping off a hangover in fort worth.

omar little, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:39 (fifteen years ago) link

here's the story about the serial Pittsburgh Steeler impersonator

http://sports.espn.go.com/nfl/news/story?id=2860426

He's pretended to be like three different players on the team. On the surface it seems like a straight-up con but why would you keep doing it over and over after being arrested? CRAAZY

El Tomboto, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:41 (fifteen years ago) link

Ishmael wasn't even ON the Pequod.

rogermexico., Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:41 (fifteen years ago) link

did you hear about that guy who impersonated a world-class impersonator, he made it into the Guinness Book of World Records

Shakey Mo Collier, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:44 (fifteen years ago) link

"lol Bill Magill and I read Rick Reilly"

That's where I got it from. I don't get the impression that guy pocketed a great deal from it either. I think he just got swept up in it. The real ex-player didn't seem to be too upset about it.

Bill Magill, Thursday, 27 September 2007 18:47 (fifteen years ago) link

Reminds me of the 18 year old girl who attended Stanford, living in the dorms, for 8 months without being a student there.

Azia Kim

nickn, Thursday, 27 September 2007 21:30 (fifteen years ago) link

did you hear about that guy who impersonated a world-class impersonator, he made it into the Guinness Book of World Records

-- Shakey Mo Collier, Thursday, September 27, 2007 11:44 AM (2 hours ago) Bookmark Link

that was me.

max, Thursday, 27 September 2007 21:39 (fifteen years ago) link

that's an amazxing shakey impression, i was totally taken in

gabbneb, Thursday, 27 September 2007 21:40 (fifteen years ago) link

no rachel ray ref no credibility

Shakey Mo Collier, Thursday, 27 September 2007 21:43 (fifteen years ago) link

Remember when there were like 3 Alex in NYCs and eight or nine Dr Morbiuses running around?

El Tomboto, Thursday, 27 September 2007 21:46 (fifteen years ago) link

HOW DID THEY FOOL SO MANY PEOPLE

El Tomboto, Thursday, 27 September 2007 21:47 (fifteen years ago) link

There was that news story from last year about the bloke who told everyone he wrote Itsy Bitsy Teeny Weeny Yellow Polka Dot Bikini, it went pretty well until he died and the man who really wrote it had his obituary printed in the papars

http://www.nytimes.com/2006/09/28/arts/music/28bikini.html?ex=1317096000&en=c049ae10c803ce44&ei=5088&partner=rssnyt&emc=rss

V, Thursday, 27 September 2007 22:09 (fifteen years ago) link

But there was an extra manipulative trick there, though -- he was relying on people failing to question his story given the horrific nature of the circumstances. He was taking advantage of the good faith of sympathizers.

omar little, Thursday, 27 September 2007 22:14 (fifteen years ago) link

I am just hell of gullible, so when I encounter compulsive liars I am enchanted for a day or two and then just irritated–they're only entertaining for so long. Plus they infringe on the legitimacy of my TRUE true-life tales which are occasionally improbable.

Abbott, Thursday, 27 September 2007 22:16 (fifteen years ago) link

Reminds me of the 18 year old girl who attended Stanford, living in the dorms, for 8 months without being a student there.

Here's the UK vers. of this.

Raw Patrick, Thursday, 27 September 2007 22:35 (fifteen years ago) link

Very weird - there's a poem by Ai (that's the poet's full pen name), a long narrative poem, in which this exact story takes place, only it's a woman who claims she is looking for a sister. It's in a book called "Dread."

J0hn D., Thursday, 27 September 2007 22:40 (fifteen years ago) link

An Amazing Woman & Her Smile (Tissue Alert!

Curt1s Stephens, Thursday, 27 September 2007 22:41 (fifteen years ago) link

there's a whole bunch of literary hoaxes akin to this as well

Shakey Mo Collier, Thursday, 27 September 2007 22:42 (fifteen years ago) link

I can't find the article, but there's a similar 9/11 story about a NYC man who's wife disappeared on 9/11, even though she didn't have a reason to be at the WTC. He was trying to claim a share of the payout $$$$.

Elvis Telecom, Friday, 28 September 2007 00:26 (fifteen years ago) link

Con men are boring.

El Tomboto, Friday, 28 September 2007 00:48 (fifteen years ago) link

JT Leroy

El Tomboto, Friday, 28 September 2007 00:50 (fifteen years ago) link

Re-reading some of the Laura Albert courtroom testimony drama you start to wander if any of that stuff is true either, like, this is BIG TIME munchausen behavior

El Tomboto, Friday, 28 September 2007 00:54 (fifteen years ago) link

a lot of deluded egoism with that sort of type as well, like they know some big secret to life via "crazy experiences" that you will just never get because you weren't there, man. you see that a lot with people who claim to have been abducted by aliens as well.

omar little, Friday, 28 September 2007 01:03 (fifteen years ago) link

well, I think like Kim said upthread, maybe these are all borne out of a need to just one-up somebody, like you're just sick and tired of having this boring life you imagine nobody cares about, so you just flip and make something up to prove you've got some juice too, how do you like me now. Then you have to stick to your guns because how pathetic is that, to make up that you survived some ghetto madness when you were only 11 years old?

I bet a lot of these people are also some of the first ones to call bullshit on others whenever they're around somebody who has a competing traumatic adventure to recount. "I bet."

El Tomboto, Friday, 28 September 2007 01:13 (fifteen years ago) link

Does no one remember the former ILX regular who, after his girlfriend turned up alive in NYC a few days post 9/11, ended up entirely making up the story of the deaths of his two friends in the WTC, getting time off work to "grieve" for them, even going so far as to throw "benefit gigs" in London in their honour?

That's all I could think of this morning when I read the story.

Yeah, this stuff is unfortunately a lot more common than is comfortable.

Klaus M. Flanger, Friday, 28 September 2007 15:49 (fifteen years ago) link

^^^ whoa really?

gff, Friday, 28 September 2007 15:52 (fifteen years ago) link

Who the hell was that? I was on here in 2001 and I don't remember that!

Dr.C, Friday, 28 September 2007 15:59 (fifteen years ago) link

Tawana Brawley

Shakey Mo Collier, Friday, 28 September 2007 16:08 (fifteen years ago) link

Oh I do vaguely recall that....

Laurel, Friday, 28 September 2007 16:16 (fifteen years ago) link

what tania head did is a lot like what most of the country did just more so

also tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head tania head

jhøshea, Friday, 28 September 2007 16:17 (fifteen years ago) link

Don't famous historical traumas spawn these type of lies? I remember something about how in around 1900 there were far more people claiming to be veterans of Gettysburg than had actually fought there.

9/11 is just the latest trauma--and it's a bit easier to expose BS nowadays. Still, you have Rudy attempting to claim he spent as much time at Ground Zero as the rescue workers, etc.

mulla atari, Friday, 28 September 2007 16:25 (fifteen years ago) link

http://i23.tinypic.com/igzyth.jpg

jhøshea, Friday, 28 September 2007 16:47 (fifteen years ago) link

Ms. Head, who sometimes uses the first name Alicia
Ms. Head, who sometimes uses the first name Alicia
Ms. Head, who sometimes uses the first name Alicia
Ms. Head, who sometimes uses the first name Alicia
Ms. Head, who sometimes uses the first name Alicia
Ms. Head, who sometimes uses the first name Alicia
Ms. Head, who sometimes uses the first name Alicia
Ms. Head, who sometimes uses the first name Alicia
Ms. Head, who sometimes uses the first name Alicia
Ms. Head, who sometimes uses the first name Alicia
Ms. Head, who sometimes uses the first name Alicia
Ms. Head, who sometimes uses the first name Alicia
Ms. Head, who sometimes uses the first name Alicia

tom, Friday, 28 September 2007 17:21 (fifteen years ago) link

http://www.wondermark.com/comics/340.gif

nabisco, Friday, 28 September 2007 17:46 (fifteen years ago) link

He was trying to claim a share of the payout $$$$.

that's what's interesting about this one, as far as anyone can tell she didn't get any money out of it except for charity. seemingly was more for attention / sympathy / give aimless life a purpose

since we're collecting all these hoaxers now, there was also this presidential photographer who claimed to have taken the famous JFK Jr. shot and a lot of other stuff .... when his obit ran a couple of weeks ago, a bunch of retired press-pool photographers saw their work being credited to someone else

Known For Famous Photos, Not All of Them His
http://www.nytimes.com/2007/09/15/nyregion/15photographer.html

dmr, Friday, 28 September 2007 17:52 (fifteen years ago) link

Does no one remember the former ILX regular who, after his girlfriend turned up alive in NYC a few days post 9/11, ended up entirely making up the story of the deaths of his two friends in the WTC, getting time off work to "grieve" for them, even going so far as to throw "benefit gigs" in London in their honour?

That's all I could think of this morning when I read the story.

Yeah, this stuff is unfortunately a lot more common than is comfortable.

-- Klaus M. Flanger, Friday, September 28, 2007 3:49 PM (2 hours ago) Bookmark Link

paul strange, kate st clares ex

and what, Friday, 28 September 2007 18:26 (fifteen years ago) link

wow that is mental. and yeah it must be really common!

gff, Friday, 28 September 2007 18:54 (fifteen years ago) link

u guys i founded al qaeda and am therefor indirectly responsible for 9/11. it's not what i intended. sorry. also i am hulk hogan.

jhøshea, Friday, 28 September 2007 18:57 (fifteen years ago) link

sorry I caused all that cancer

Shakey Mo Collier, Friday, 28 September 2007 19:01 (fifteen years ago) link

http://i20.tinypic.com/2cp4zk0.jpg

jhøshea, Friday, 28 September 2007 19:01 (fifteen years ago) link

Juelz Santana should be in there somewhere.

mulla atari, Saturday, 29 September 2007 02:42 (fifteen years ago) link

http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601087&sid=aJX.sej6xrYE&refer=home

"Morgan Stanley, the second-largest securities firm, will pay $12.5 million to settle regulatory claims it wrongly withheld e-mails in arbitration cases by saying they were lost in the Sept. 11 attacks"

StanM, Sunday, 30 September 2007 19:01 (fifteen years ago) link

Also, there's that episode of Curb Your Enthusiam where a rabbi's brother in law was killed in NYC on 9/11. He was going around yelling "I know someone who was killed on 9/11!" until it was discovered that the brother in law was killed by a bike messenger and not in the WTC.

Elvis Telecom, Sunday, 30 September 2007 23:50 (fifteen years ago) link

she should be given the electric chair

max r, Sunday, 30 September 2007 23:51 (fifteen years ago) link

Gosh, that reminds me of when my mom said that "She should commit suicide over this" re: Britney's performance on VMAs.

roxymuzak, Monday, 1 October 2007 00:32 (fifteen years ago) link

I am developing a distant fascination with this

El Tomboto, Friday, 12 October 2007 01:28 (fifteen years ago) link

I would have chalked that whole story up to being... well, a story (as the guy is a writer ffs!) but then theres that youtube video....

Trayce, Friday, 12 October 2007 01:50 (fifteen years ago) link

where was the youtube video Trayce?

J0hn D., Friday, 12 October 2007 02:29 (fifteen years ago) link

http://youtube.com/watch?v=XmPDGZPnYl0

(as per post on the noizeboard)

Trayce, Friday, 12 October 2007 02:31 (fifteen years ago) link

I guess it doesnt do much to add to the story but it certainly fits with what the guy described.

Trayce, Friday, 12 October 2007 02:32 (fifteen years ago) link

and pictured, on the last page of the article

jeff, Friday, 12 October 2007 03:24 (fifteen years ago) link

Harlan Ellison fans are a CREEEEEEEEEEPY bunch.

Nubbelverbrennung, Friday, 12 October 2007 08:10 (fifteen years ago) link

http://www.wired.com/medtech/health/news/2001/06/44245

El Tomboto, Friday, 12 October 2007 10:46 (fifteen years ago) link

in fight club of course this gets played for laughs

El Tomboto, Friday, 12 October 2007 10:48 (fifteen years ago) link


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