This is True
Randy Cassingham

Randy Cassingham’s Blog

Author’s Notes from This is True® — Thought-Provoking
Entertainment Online Since the Internet’s Dark Ages.

Photo Archives

  The iLoo is Flushed

Did a story in This is True ridiculing an announced new product from Microsoft result in its cancellation? Let’s look at the evidence, starting with the story that appeared in True’s 11 May 2003 issue:

Continue reading "The iLoo is Flushed" »

  Got Wheels?

I have a photo of the guy in the wheelchair, still stuck in the truck's grille, from the story in this week's issue. But first, the story:

Continue reading "Got Wheels?" »

  Duct Tape Robber

In last week's issue there was the story of an alleged robber who wrapped his head in duct tape as a disguise. But I forgot that I had photos of this brain surgeon to show you! But first, the story, from the 9 September issue:

Continue reading "Duct Tape Robber" »

  The Big Picture

Sometimes newspaper editors do their work mechanically, not paying any attention whatever to what they're printing -- even on the front page. And we have the photos to prove it. From True's 23 December 2007 issue:

Continue reading "The Big Picture" »

  Kumari Fulbright Mugshot


Prison Time

Stories in True can almost always stand on their own, without illustration. But now and then, a photo really adds to the story. In the case of a so-called "beauty queen" law student who allegedly committed a major crime, it is definitely enhanced by a couple of photos. First, the story, from the 6 January 2008 issue.

(Trust me: Scroll down slowly! Read the story first, then scroll down to see the first picture, and then go down to see the second one. Really -- it's worth it.)

Continue reading "Kumari Fulbright Mugshot" »

  Another Empty Suit

Another fun story that's made even more fun by seeing the photos involved:

Continue reading "Another Empty Suit" »

  Lolita Midsleeper Combi

I thought many readers would like to see the photos that go with a story from the 10 February 2008 issue, and maybe you will have examples of other "inappropriate" products, especially for children. First, the story:

Continue reading "Lolita Midsleeper Combi" »

  Barbecued Biker


Convicted and Fined

A tagline on a story this week is a homage to a popular subtype of humor e-mail I get from friends from time to time: photos of (usually) Chinese people carrying impossibly huge loads on little motorbikes.

First the story from True's 17 February 2008 issue, then some examples of the genre.

Continue reading "Barbecued Biker" »

  A Lingering Image

Another one of those stories that just begs for a photo. From True's 9 March 2008 issue:

Continue reading "A Lingering Image" »

  Beauty and the Beast

Two stories this week have photos: the sexy mayor of Arlington, Ore., and the idiot robber using a bottle of cologne as a weapon.

First, the moron.

Continue reading "Beauty and the Beast" »

  Two Teen Tales

Two stories this week have photos to go with them. First, the dangerous desperado and the dual damsels:

Continue reading "Two Teen Tales" »

  Men and Balloons

What is it with men who want to fly under balloons? I don't mean hot air balloons, I mean toy balloons. This one's a priest -- he just wanted to get closer to God, I guess. From True's 27 April 2008 edition:

Continue reading "Men and Balloons" »

  School Bus Plunge (On Purpose)

I spent most of the day Sunday working at the scene of a school bus that plunged (buses always "plunge"!) over the side of a steep embankment on Ouray County's famous "Million Dollar Highway" below Red Mountain Pass.

Continue reading "School Bus Plunge (On Purpose)" »

  One Strange Fetish

I just had to post this guy's mug shot after a subscriber wrote to say he thought it was odd that the woman so quickly thought the man was suspicious. First, here's the story:

Continue reading "One Strange Fetish" »

  Udderly Ridiculous Photo

Sometimes the photo that goes with a story is funnier than the story. Sometimes the story is pretty good all by itself. This one, from the 19 October 2008 issue, is a toss-up: I'm not sure which part is funnier. First, the story:

Continue reading "Udderly Ridiculous Photo" »

  Zero Tolerance Trick, No Treat

Zero Tolerance is insidious. An abdication of common sense and professional ethics, in schools it seeks to apply one punishment -- suspension, usually leading to expulsion -- to any level of "crime".

Continue reading "Zero Tolerance Trick, No Treat" »

  Mug Shot = 1,000 Words

One of the stories in this week's column is notable for two reasons. One of them is the guy's mug shot.

Continue reading "Mug Shot = 1,000 Words" »

  Honorary Unsubscribe Choices

Two weeks ago I ran out of time to research and write the Honorary Unsubscribe -- and then forgot to note that in the issue. The H.U. runs the following Monday in the Premium edition, and I had time to research it over the weekend, so there was an H.U. entry that week -- free edition readers just didn't see it. But it's in the archive, if you like to keep track of such things. To catch up see Hans Beck.

Continue reading "Honorary Unsubscribe Choices" »

  Out My Window: a Golden Eagle

I just love my job. Even though I "have to" work Sundays, I really have a gorgeous view out my window, and I sometimes see the most amazing things.

Continue reading "Out My Window: a Golden Eagle" »



See Below

Sundays are writing day around here: it's the day I write This is True each week. This week, I had the usual line-up of stories about stupid people doing stupid things (or, as the case may be, smart people doing stupid things!) when I came across the story of Mark Rimkufski from the weirdest state in the union, which is of course Florida.

Continue reading "Tardwit" »

  Spring Snow

It was a good day to stay inside today. Just because it's well into Spring doesn't mean it doesn't want to snow in Colorado! It came down all day today, sometimes in "whiteout" conditions, piling up about 18" (46 cm) at my house. It stopped about two hours before tonight's newsletter went out, so I just posted an amazing photo of what happens here when it snows:

Continue reading "Spring Snow" »

  Civic Pride

There were several cranky responses to a story in last week's issue. Let's start with the story, from the edition dated 5 July 2009:

Continue reading "Civic Pride" »

  Dude! I Got Trashed Last Night!

Another story that isn't really complete without the photos mentioned. Even before I posted them, a couple of readers thought I was too hard on the guy. Let's start with the story, from True's 19 July 2009 issue.

Continue reading "Dude! I Got Trashed Last Night!" »

  Bear Country

A few comments about this week's lead story. If the location sounds somehow familiar, it's because that's where I live. Ouray County is pretty big (550 square miles), but is otherwise pretty small (around 4,100 people). And since I'm a volunteer with both our EMS agency and (occasionally) the local sheriff's office, I was quite aware of this event while it was happening. (I'm happy to say it wasn't in my response area, so I didn't have to go.)

Continue reading "Bear Country" »

  Bambi Get Your Gun

Another story that begs to be illustrated by the photo mentioned. From True's 13 September 2009 issue:

Continue reading "Bambi Get Your Gun" »

  A Clever Disguise...?

Once again, a picture is worth a thousand words. But I'm not sure that in this case, two pictures are worth two thousand words!

Continue reading "A Clever Disguise...?" »

  A Picture Worth 1,000 Anytime Minutes

...or, The Birth and Death of a Spinoff Web Site

Sure: a picture is "worth 1,000 words." Sometimes it's worth 1,000 minutes on your cell phone plan, as in this case. The story, from True's 27 December 2009 issue:

Continue reading "A Picture Worth 1,000 Anytime Minutes" »

  Patrick Timoney's "Gun"

The "zero tolerance" stories just don't stop, despite court decisions and legislators demanding "common sense." A 2" hunk of plastic isn't a gun, unless you're a hysterical grade school principal who demands that 9-year-olds in your care sign confessions when they bring a toy to school.

Continue reading "Patrick Timoney's "Gun"" »


People often try to tell me California is the weirdest state in the union. No way, I always reply: Florida is. I find more weird stories there than from any other state, even though California (with about 37 million residents) has twice the population as Florida (with about 18.5 million). One of their newspapers even has a recurring feature called "FloriDuh" -- they know the weirdness that permeates the state.

Continue reading "FloriDuh" »

  Independence Day

It's Independence Day weekend in the U.S., and I thought I'd share a couple of photos I took yesterday in the "real" Rural America.

Continue reading "Independence Day" »

  Family Feud

Sometimes there's a story that I "have" to publish, even though I know it just won't make it past the spam filters.

Continue reading "Family Feud" »

  "Stupid" is Written All Over His Face

I just have to tell you the story of David Winkelman. The event that first brought him to my attention occurred in the year 2000, but it was when he sued over what he did that got him featured in This is True — in the 23 June 2002 issue. Here's the story:

Continue reading ""Stupid" is Written All Over His Face" »

  Animals Love Him, Too (Nom Nom Nom)

Last week, quite a few readers wanted to report an "error." Here's the story, from the 10 October (10/10/10!) issue:

Continue reading "Animals Love Him, Too (Nom Nom Nom)" »

  A Picture's Worth a Thousand Laughs

With a title like that, I certainly couldn't run the story without providing the photo! As usual, the story first, from True's 14 November 2010 issue:

Continue reading "A Picture's Worth a Thousand Laughs" »

  Illuminated (Security Camera Video)

Another story that's immeasurably enhanced by its security camera video. From True's 12 December 2010 issue. First, the story:

Continue reading "Illuminated (Security Camera Video)" »

  Let's See If You Can Picture This

There are times that a photo doesn't just add to a story, it makes the story. This is this week's most-suggested True story: from the 24 April 2011 release:

Continue reading "Let's See If You Can Picture This" »

  His Motto

Another classic story that is so nicely served by the photograph referenced in the story. From True's 15 May 2011 issue.

Continue reading "His Motto" »

  Remembrance and Reconciliation

There were a couple of stories I found earlier in the month, but decided to hold until the Memorial Day issue. And they get to be in the blog, since one of them has illustrations you need to see for the complete effect.

Continue reading "Remembrance and Reconciliation" »

  The Old Ball and Chain

Another story that needs the photo to be complete. From True's 31 July 2011 issue:

Continue reading "The Old Ball and Chain" »

  No Parking -- Lithuanian Style

I've had a couple of complaints about a story in the 7 August 2011 issue. Let's start with the story:

Continue reading "No Parking -- Lithuanian Style" »

  Eww Factor

OK, I admit it: I knew the tagline on a story this week would make a lot of readers squirm. I have the story -- and the guy's mug shot -- plus some reader comments. The story is from True's 14 August 2011 issue:

Continue reading "Eww Factor" »

  Seeing Red

Another story where you just have to see the accompanying photo -- an instant classic!

(Warning: It looks a bit intense, but it's fake: the woman is not only not dead, she's not at all injured.)

Continue reading "Seeing Red" »


It's another story that absolutely demands the accompanying illustration — in this case, a mug shot. But trust me: read the story first! It's from True's 20 November 2011 issue:

Continue reading "Fix-a-Flat" »

  Sydney Spies' Yearbook Photo


Spies and Her Mom Both Arrested

You don't really need the photo that the girl submitted to the yearbook to "get" the story in this week's issue (8 January 12), but she did release it to the media, so I'll bring it to you — along with some additional details.

First, the story:

Continue reading "Sydney Spies' Yearbook Photo" »

  Hiding Places

There were two wonderful stories in this week's issue that really go nicely together. And one has a photo that has to be seen to be believed. Let's start with the stories, from True's 15 January 2012 issue:

Continue reading "Hiding Places" »

  Don't Have a Cow, Man

Readers wanted to see the photos that go with this story, about the prisoner-altered State Police car-door decal in Vermont. It ran in True's 12 February 2012 issue:

Continue reading "Don't Have a Cow, Man" »

  Two Tiny Scandals


Sheriff Exonerated

Two stories this week will, I think, generate some comments from readers. One has a zero tolerance theme, and the other is a minor political scandal. They're both from True's 19 February 2012 issue.

Continue reading "Two Tiny Scandals" »

  "I Was Not In an Accident"

Another story that really needs the photo to drive it home (or to work). A reader sent me the story, and I said "Eh, kind of humdrum" — until I saw what the driver said, which made the story worth telling. And then I saw the photo, and knew it was truly True fodder. Read the story first, from True's 13 May 2012 issue, before scrolling down to the photo:

Continue reading ""I Was Not In an Accident"" »

  A Cautionary Tale

I made a little graphic which I posted on Facebook earlier this week, and it seems to have hit a chord with the crowd there:

Continue reading "A Cautionary Tale" »

  Curiosity: the Mars Science Laboratory

My writing time this week was interrupted, even I only started in the late evening, because I had my satellite TV tuned in to the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, where they were monitoring the landing of the latest rover on Mars, Curiosity (the best-named science craft ever); the mission itself is called the Mars Science Laboratory — accurate, if not as inspiring.

Continue reading "Curiosity: the Mars Science Laboratory" »

  Someone Has to Live Here

Last week my wife and I went driving to see the fall colors. I thought you'd like to see what the trees look like in the Colorado mountains at about the time the first snow dusts the top of the San Juan mountains.

Continue reading "Someone Has to Live Here" »

  What Nightmares Are Made Of

The first and last stories from this week's issue (7 October 12) are posted here: the first because you've got to shudder at the thought of the poor kid trying to escape a kidnap attempt ...when you see the guy's mug shot. And the last because I want to talk about how the tagline came about -- and give you a place to politely discuss the story, if you wish.

Continue reading "What Nightmares Are Made Of" »

  There Are Still Adventures

It's 2012. There are no more adventures. Been there, done that, seen it, ho hum, right?


There are still adventures to be had in this world, and several of them happened this past week.

Continue reading "There Are Still Adventures" »

  Keep Your Head Up

On Sunday I saw my wife had posted something on Facebook that really struck me. It was a "Share" of another friend's "meme" graphic, and here it is:

Continue reading "Keep Your Head Up" »

  Winter Wildlife

One of the things I like about being on the rural side of Colorado is the frequent wildlife sightings. Bunnies and jackrabbits are common. On our property, we've also seen coyotes, deer, elk, a badger(!), a bear (alas, only my wife saw that one), prairie dogs, eagles (both Golden and Bald), vultures, foxes, and while we didn't see the animal, we've found mountain lion tracks here.

Continue reading "Winter Wildlife" »

  "They're Landing On My Car!"

Well, that's the way it felt, anyway! For a brief moment.

Last fall I talked about helping a helicopter to land — in the middle of the highway in the middle of the night. Just got back from doing it again, except this time it was the middle of the day ...and I had my camera ready.

Continue reading ""They're Landing On My Car!"" »


There was a magazine I read back in the 80s that I enjoyed: The Journal of Irreproducible Results, or JIR. A lot of the nerdy folks at NASA liked it (and there are a lot of nerdy folks at NASA!): it is, according to its tagline, "The Science Humor Magazine".

Continue reading "Irreproducible" »

  Band of Brothers

A story in this week’s True absolutely demands that I include the video mentioned in the story, so it’s being published here (with the video) rather than in the newsletter. From True’s 29 September 2013 issue:

Continue reading "Band of Brothers" »

  "At Some Point Doesn't Common Sense Prevail?"

Another story that really needs the photo to be complete. First, the story, from True's 15 December 2013 issue:

Continue reading ""At Some Point Doesn't Common Sense Prevail?"" »

  Shopped Sleeves

Sometimes a story needs the photos discussed to be complete. Let's start with the story, from True's 8 June 2014 issue:

Continue reading "Shopped Sleeves" »

  Shooters Grill

A reader seemed a bit dubious about the lead story last week (6 July 2014, Issue 1047). So let’s start with the story, and then the comment by John in the U.K.:

Continue reading "Shooters Grill" »

  Stick It to Evil

Now this is a weird story! First the story, from True's 30 November 2014 issue, and then the photo that goes with it.

Continue reading "Stick It to Evil" »


Two related stories that finish out this week’s issue may be a bit controversial, so I thought I would post them here to allow discussion among readers. They’re from the 7 December 2014 issue:

Continue reading "Transpositions" »

  Knowing Is Half the Battle

True contributor Mike Straw, who as you might remember is a fairly recently retired career U.S. Air Force officer, had more to say about one of the stories he wrote this week. We’ll start first with the story, from the 7 August 2016 issue:

Continue reading "Knowing Is Half the Battle" »

  Fashion Accessory

The story just isn’t enough: you want to see the photo Ashley Glawe (“glah-WE”) posted on Facebook from the emergency room. But first the story, from True’s 5 February 2017 issue:

Continue reading "Fashion Accessory" »

  This Can't Go In the Newsletter

I Wanted to Cover a Story, but I knew there was no way I could put it in the newsletter: it would cause the issue to be trapped by about 90 percent of readers’ spam filters.

Continue reading "This Can't Go In the Newsletter" »

How to sponsor this site