But now I’ll never know which politician that alien backs for the next election


It has been reported that everybody's favorite mock tabloid The Weekly World News is ceasing publication. Seeing as this is The Weekly World News we're talking about, I'm not sure how much of this I'm going to believe, but people seem to be taking it at face value.

I remember seeing a WWN article clipped out and posted on the door to a geology professor's office at XYZ college. The article's title was something like "Dinosaurs alive and well—on the moon!"* It was illustrated with a drawing of happy dinosaurs wandering around a tropical lunar paradise, and the article quoted "An XYZ geology professor" as having seen the dinosaurs through a telescope. (What's a geologist doing looking at the moon through a telescope?) This was a small college, so the professor figured he must have been the one.

Nitpicker's corner

*This story is from memory. I may have gotten details wrong. For example, the dinosaurs may have been on Mars, not the moon. The name of the college was probably not XYZ.

Comments (13)
  1. Nathan says:

    Washpost (may need to register) has the picture in question

    picture: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/photo/2007/07/25/PH2007072501705.html

    article: http://blog.washingtonpost.com/offbeat/2007/07/weekly_world_news_goes_online.html

    And Ray, no mention of the ever WWN-famous Bat-Boy ?

  2. isho says:

    i might have been in that school

  3. Josh says:

    @Nathan: That’s surprisingly one of the most dignified pictures of Bush I’ve seen in a long time. It seems like he’s always shown making some sort of odd expression.

  4. MikeC says:

    We have a similar paper in the UK, and this reminds me of a story they ran some years ago, shortly after they started…

    "World War 2 Bomber Found on Moon!!"

    followed the next week by:

    "Someone’s Stolen Our World War 2 Bomber From The Moon!!"

    (following numerous astronomers saying "erm, no, there isn’t a WW2 bomber on the moon at all…")

  5. John says:

    Now if the "real" tabloids would just follow suit the world might be a better place.  On the other hand, the idiots who buy that garbage would still be with us and someone else would step up to fill the void.  Sigh.  The heat death cannot come soon enough.

  6. Cody says:

    "the idiots who buy that garbage"

    WWN is actually really entertaining.  It’s chock full of super-short-story fiction.

  7. Mike says:

    My favorite was the headline reporting that Heaven was full, no more room for souls. A couple of weeks later it was reported that they were wrong – there was in fact room for 28,317 (or some such absurd number) additional souls in Heaven. Either way, I figure I’m now out of luck on the Pearly Gates deal.

    RIP WWN!

  8. Rick C says:

    I remember both the WW2 bomber on the moon and the heaven is full stories from WWN.  The former ran an article months later asserting that aliens hid it because "we knew too much."  What about?  Who knows.

    My personal favorite was an article at least 18 years ago claiming that vampires were going trick-or-treating on Halloween because they were afraid of catching AIDS.  There’s just so much wrong with the idea.

  9. Cheong says:

    Although I’ve not read WWN before, from the headlines posted here I think it is very entertaining… suitable to good laugh before work.

  10. Michael Kelley says:

    I think my all time favorite WWN headline was (I’m not making this up): "Gay Vampires Spread AIDS, Scientists Say"

  11. manyirons says:

    Why wouldn’t a geologist look at the moon through a telescope?  Or Mars?  Would it be okay for a geologist to look at a rock through a microscope?  The only difference is the matter of scale.  

    Plenty of geologists look at the pictures of rocks sent back by Mars rovers.  It kind of begs the question of whether a microscope attached to a planetary probe is actually a telescope, doesn’t it?

    Frankly, the whole search for life on other planets seems like entertainment to me, very very expensive entertainment, so I can’t fault WWN for wanting to get in on the act.

  12. CDarklock says:

    I would pay a significant amount of money for a CD- or DVD-ROM collection of every WWN issue ever printed.

    About fifteen years ago, they reported that a family on North Shore Drive in Vienna, Virginia, was the subject of a lawsuit by neighbors for using a goat to cut their lawn. Can you imagine?! A goat!

    Since I happened to live on North Shore Drive, I examined the photo closely and determined the address of the house. I went to the address, which was not the same house, and asked if they owned a goat. They didn’t. I gave them the paper, and went off to call and annoy the WWN offices.

    You have weird ideas of fun when you’re in your early twenties.

    After spending some time on hold, I finally got through to someone who listened to my tale of going to the address and disproving their story. I was placed back on hold. After about  half hour, the phone was picked up by someone who listened to my account once more. And that’s when they earned my eternal respect and admiration.

    "We make this stuff up," he said. "Can’t you tell?"

    We proceeded to laugh for an hour or so about other stories they’d published, and things he’d read in reader mail. It was a big phone bill, but I’ve loved the WWN ever since.

  13. The other government conspiracy.

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