(Close Window)
Topic: Ripley's Believe It or Not
Message: Posted by: MagiClyde (May 25, 2008 11:10PM)
Recently, I was reading through one of the Ripley's books and found at least two items that I know have supposedly been debunked as urban legends. Makes me wonder how thoroughly they really do research the "facts" for their books. It would make me very sad and unable to trust their reports if they can't be relied upon. :(

Well, I get to be the first poster in another new forum! :dancing: :pepper: :righton:
Message: Posted by: yachanin (May 25, 2008 11:30PM)
Hi Clynim,

That, then, would be the "or Not" part :)

Regards, Steve
Message: Posted by: Tom Cutts (May 26, 2008 07:56AM)
"supposedly debunked" is the stuff of legends too.
Message: Posted by: Balaram (May 26, 2008 06:39PM)
So what were the two items?
Message: Posted by: stoneunhinged (May 27, 2008 02:15PM)
Something about the great wall of China and a guy named Robert Wholler.
Message: Posted by: MagiClyde (May 28, 2008 05:01AM)
I would have to look for both of them again, but one of them was the story about the boot with the rattlesnake tooth in it that supposedly killed two or three members in a family when they tried the boot on.

One story tauts it as an urban legend. Ripley's went so far as to name names and, I believe, dates.

I'll look for the other story and report back to you.
Message: Posted by: gdw (Jun 2, 2008 12:28AM)
If you've ever been to one of their "museums" like the one in Niagara Falls Canada, you'd see that a LOT of the things they showcase are "fakes," but they aren't exactly claiming them all to be real. It's a glorified "sideshow" museum.
Message: Posted by: magicianinja (Jun 2, 2008 01:06AM)
Ripley's is about ratings and controversy, not about actual fact. FYI.
Message: Posted by: stoneunhinged (Jun 3, 2008 06:21AM)
[quote]
On 2008-06-02 01:28, gdw wrote:
If you've ever been to one of their "museums" like the one in Niagara Falls Canada, you'd see that a LOT of the things they showcase are "fakes," but they aren't exactly claiming them all to be real. It's a glorified "sideshow" museum.
[/quote]

That's right.
Message: Posted by: Police Magician (Jun 5, 2008 10:26PM)
I always thought that Robert Ripley left it up to you to decide if it was true or not, hence his by line "Believe it or Not". Regardless, it makes for interesting conversation.

Glenn
Message: Posted by: Bill Rubie (Jul 23, 2008 03:40PM)
Ripley was another P.T.Barnum
Message: Posted by: Todd Robbins (Jul 29, 2008 10:57PM)
There is a thing in the upcoming Ripley's book about a guy that has eaten more than 4,000 light bulbs! It says that he learned to do it from some sideshow guy and that in one summer season performing in some show in a seaside amusement park or something he ate more than a thousand bulbs. I mean, c'mon. Who is going to believe that?
Message: Posted by: critter (Sep 1, 2008 05:00PM)
Ripley lied??? :(
Message: Posted by: stoneunhinged (Sep 5, 2008 03:14PM)
Todd...uh...just wondering...how many light bulbs have you eaten?
Message: Posted by: Todd Robbins (Dec 4, 2008 04:52PM)
More than 4,000.
Message: Posted by: stoneunhinged (Dec 6, 2008 11:22AM)
Pay attention folks: the answers don't always come quickly, but they DO come!

Thanks, Todd.

I guess I'm gonna have to buy the upcoming Ripley's book.
Message: Posted by: Slartibartfast (Dec 6, 2008 12:42PM)
[quote]
On 2008-06-05 23:26, Police Magician wrote:
I always thought that Robert Ripley left it up to you to decide if it was true or not, hence his by line "Believe it or Not". Regardless, it makes for interesting conversation.

Glenn
[/quote]

If I recall the story correctly, he started out with a newspaper strip and originally called it "Champs... and Chumps." His editor (I believe) crossed it out and wrote "Believe it or not..." and that's the name that stuck. Believe it or not.
Message: Posted by: ed rhodes (Jan 22, 2009 10:56PM)
You also have to take into account censorship by editing. Charles Shultz (of Peanuts fame) had one of his first pictures published in Ripley's. He drew a picture of his dog (with a note that said; "Drawn by Sparky") stating that the dog ate nails, tacks and screws. Well, someone at Ripley's, fearing that the public might think the word "screws" was a verb and not a noun, changed it to "eats nails, tacks and razor blades."
Message: Posted by: Slim King (Feb 8, 2009 10:52AM)
I will be performing at Ripley's Believe It or Not in St. Augustine on April the 18th. It is the original building that is seen on the TV show.
If you are in the area please stop by.
I will be part of a promotion there so I think that my Performance may be open to the public and possibly free. I will also be on the radio :)
Message: Posted by: puppeterry (Feb 8, 2009 11:21PM)
My baby brother, George the Giant (www.georgethegiant.com), will be performing at Ripley's in Times Square on Valentine's/Presidents Day Weekend (Feb. 14-16). He's not sure what he'll be doing but you know it will be fun and strange, because that's the kind of guy he is!
Message: Posted by: basic_mystifier (Feb 10, 2009 12:02PM)
You have to keep in mind that the original Ripley's was from back in the day.
Message: Posted by: trickymagic (Feb 22, 2009 04:36PM)
Wow! I thought it was reliable as Guiness book of records...
Message: Posted by: Slim King (Apr 13, 2009 07:20PM)
[quote]
On 2009-02-08 11:52, Psychic Samurai wrote:
I will be performing at Ripley's Believe It or Not in St. Augustine on April the 18th. It is the original building that is seen on the TV show.
If you are in the area please stop by.
I will be part of a promotion there so I think that my Performance may be open to the public and possibly free. I will also be on the radio :)
[/quote]

They will be giving away over $25,000.00 in loot that day ... FREE !!!!!

On the radio or online internet radio. No need to be there.
Message: Posted by: sacerdote dpn bpsco (Apr 15, 2009 03:05AM)
Not is an option
Message: Posted by: Slim King (May 3, 2009 06:24PM)
Here's a link to the links ...

http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewtopic.php?topic=310918&forum=15&4

Ripley's was a FANTASTIC place !!!!!!
Message: Posted by: DATMagic (Jan 29, 2010 04:32PM)
Ripley did leave the loop hole of "or not" in his wording that leaves the decision to take the information to heart to the reader, but Guiness on the other hand in 100% bonified, real, and unquestionably legit.
Message: Posted by: StPaulMagician222 (Apr 4, 2010 12:12PM)
I really enjoyed my tour of the Ripley's on the wharf in San Francisco during my last visit. I only wish that it would have been just a bit longer or bigger. It certainly left me wanting more and thinking of how much fun the Curator must have giving his personal tours and how I need to place a visit on my life list to go to Belgium and see it all for myself.

Here in Saint Paul, MN we have a place called 'The Museum of Questionable Medical Devices" that is now in it's permanent home at the New Science Museum building. It is interesting all by itself but even more fun when the Professor is on site and showing how many of these devices were used on the people going through the exhibit.

It seems the placebo effect has been in use for a very long time and I am continually amazed at what people will believe as truth. It certainly makes my job much easier.

k
Message: Posted by: Doug Higley (Apr 7, 2012 01:44AM)
Ripley's Believe It or Not book "Strikingly True" page 220. :) I can vouch for it.
Message: Posted by: Jim Sparx (Apr 15, 2012 01:35PM)
A question for Mr. Higley
Mr. Higley, first off, a compliment, you really do look like Gepetto, one of my grandfatherly heroes when I was a child.
Now the question, there is a roadside attraction not too far from the New Mexico - Arizona border, near Dragoon, Arizona. It is called, The Thing. Is that one of your fabulous discoveries? They must have made millions of dollars with that exhibit because its been around for a lot of years and I always see the parking lot full of tourists.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nizektEOGdc
Message: Posted by: Jim Sparx (Apr 15, 2012 02:04PM)
[quote]
On 2010-04-04 13:12, StPaulMagician222 wrote:
I really enjoyed my tour of the Ripley's on the wharf in San Francisco during my last visit. I only wish that it would have been just a bit longer or bigger. It certainly left me wanting more and thinking of how much fun the Curator must have giving his personal tours and how I need to place a visit on my life list to go to Belgium and see it all for myself.

Here in Saint Paul, MN we have a place called 'The Museum of Questionable Medical Devices" that is now in it's permanent home at the New Science Museum building. It is interesting all by itself but even more fun when the Professor is on site and showing how many of these devices were used on the people going through the exhibit.

It seems the placebo effect has been in use for a very long time and I am continually amazed at what people will believe as truth. It certainly makes my job much easier.

k
[/quote]

I had a radionic instrument that was built by J.G. Gallimore that I sold for $600 about ten years ago. Those "questionable" devices are still being used today. I'm on the U S Psycotronics Assn mailing lists and the have conventions every year and they have dealers who still sell the instruments. google JG Gallimore and the U S Psychotronics for more interesting information.
Do they work? Absolutely....... ;-)
Message: Posted by: Decomposed (Jun 6, 2012 04:43AM)
Love urband legends, thanks!
Message: Posted by: danhughes (Jul 28, 2012 05:12PM)
[quote]
On 2008-05-27 15:15, stoneunhinged wrote:
Something about the great wall of China and a guy named Robert Wholler.
[/quote]
Don't know Wholler, but the Great Wall of China urban legend is that it is the only manmade object on earth than can be seen from the moon.

Totally false - It may be several thousand miles long, but it's only 15 to 20 feet wide! If you could see something 20 feet wide from the moon, you could see just about every man-made building on earth.

An author named Henry Norman published this bit of nonsense in a book in 1904, and it's been circulating as fact since then.
Message: Posted by: danhughes (Jul 28, 2012 05:18PM)
I might add that I wrote all the questions for a central Illinois "College Bowl"-type TV show, in which high school scholastic bowl teams competed. The show (which I also hosted, brag brag) ran for 25 years, and I wrote something like 50,000 questions in that quarter of a century.

And one thing I learned fast is that it is unbelievable how many "quiz" books have wrong information in them. And when a false "fact" appears in one book, it's picked up by other books and just keeps on keeping on. One author who wrote a lot of trivia books (Fred Worth) would put a few false facts in each book he wrote, so he could catch plagiarists.

I had to double-check and sometimes triple-check my questions and answers to be sure I wasn't perpetuating any myths.
Message: Posted by: bigcheese (Nov 3, 2012 08:18AM)
[quote]
On 2012-07-28 18:12, danhughes wrote:
[quote]
On 2008-05-27 15:15, stoneunhinged wrote:
Something about the great wall of China and a guy named Robert Wholler.
[/quote]
Don't know Wholler, but the Great Wall of China urban legend is that it is the only manmade object on earth than can be seen from the moon.

Totally false - It may be several thousand miles long, but it's only 15 to 20 feet wide! If you could see something 20 feet wide from the moon, you could see just about every man-made building on earth.

An author named Henry Norman published this bit of nonsense in a book in 1904, and it's been circulating as fact since then.
[/quote]

I'm man enough to admit that I was told this as a child and have never questioned it. Now it seems so obvious, and I feel more thna a little dumb! As for Ripley's - I loved the museum I visited, it's a must do regardless of how true everything is.
Message: Posted by: scottds80 (Nov 3, 2012 03:27PM)
Internet killed the wonder of it all
Message: Posted by: jugglestruck (Nov 5, 2012 09:00AM)
I think the intertnet has just created new wonders.
Message: Posted by: madelaine (Jan 31, 2013 10:55PM)
The connection between the great wall of China and Robert Whooler (not Wholler as mistakenly noted) - who was of Belgium origin and a bicycle manufacturer, by the way - is that Mr Whooler (also known as 'Coopertwix') was the first European to tricycle the Great Wall BOTH WAYS, in each direction. He did this in 1923-4. It took him 584 days.

'Coopertwix' is today the brand name of a make of European uni-cycle created by his 2nd daughter, Elizabeetha Whooler, to honour her dad; it was the nick-name she gave her father early in her life.

So, that's the story and it can be read about in Elizabeetha Whooler's (1967)autobiography - "Come Bicycling through Belgium with me". Faber, London.
Message: Posted by: hypnoman1 (May 28, 2018 12:18PM)
Ripley made very strong efforts to stay with facts and truth at the beginning of his long career. I believe that his reputation was genuine. I can't speak for what they have done with it today!
Message: Posted by: Wravyn (May 29, 2018 08:33PM)
[quote]On Nov 5, 2012, jugglestruck wrote:
I think the intertnet has just created new wonders. [/quote]

I read it on the internet... It has to be true!
Message: Posted by: DaKine Oregon (Jun 30, 2019 10:30PM)
Bruce Campbell, of Evil Dead and Burn Notice fame is hosting a reboot of Ripley's Believe It Or Not TV show starting tonight on The Travel Channel. (While he does live near me, we've never met and I have no connection with the show or network.)

https://www.travelchannel.com/shows/ripleys-believe-it-or-not
Message: Posted by: WitchDocChris (Jul 1, 2019 02:56PM)
Buddy of mine was on the premier episode, I believe. Dai Andrews. Haven't managed to see it yet, though.