Fake celebrity rumors are the id of pop culture, where we act lecherously (naked Miley), think wishfully (pregnant Aniston), and exorcise unspeakably hideous demons (prison raped LiLo). Some fake rumors are better than others. Here are the best.
The best things that did not happen in 2010:
- Kim Kardashian Did Not Have Kanye West's Baby. On the heels of Kanye confirming that a cellphone picture of his giant penis was real, a rumor emerged that his giant penis put a baby inside Kim Kardashan's much-obsessed-over womb. It wasn't true, but it would have been a thing to behold: the most entitled baby in the world.
- Justin Bieber Did Not Have Sex with Kim Kardashian. She tried to set him up with her sister, she did a wet t-shirt photo shoot with him, and she may have cast "erotic spells" on him, but Kim had sex with Justin Bieber only in his dreams. This would also be a good time to note that...
- Justin Bieber Does Not Have Syphilis. This well-timed rumor emerged shortly after the Kim Kardashian rumor. It was a prank.
- Obama Does Not Have a Sex Tape. And if he does, it definitely doesn't depict him with a mistress. And just like that—one quickie article and retraction later—the National Enquirer squandered all the good will it earned during l'Affair John Edwards. Update: I totally forgot the other great Obama rumor this year: That he was in the music video for "Whomp There It Is." Thanks for the reminder, realnamecalvinbroadus.
- Lindsay Lohan Does Not Have HIV. Nor did Michael Lohan tweet that she did. The whole affair was an elaborate prank created when a kamikaze gossip blogger fabricated a screenshot of the sleazy dad in America kicking his hopelessly pathetic daughter in the gut. The fake tweets even tricked Lindsay, who believed her dad had sold her out in the most scathing way possible—a telling revelation for someone who blames "the trauma that my father has caused" for her current state of mental anguish.
- People Who Did Not Die, with the rumor's rationale in parentheses: Mel Gibson (wishful thinking), Aaron Carter (severe shirtless pictures), Aretha Franklin (has cancer), Bill Cosby (random).
- Nobody Knows If David Paterson Is a Cocaine-Addicted Swinger. The coke-fueled governor's mansion orgy rumor emerged to fill a vacuum in the Paterson rumor mill: Everyone knew New York Times was sitting on a "bombshell" about Paterson, but it turned out to be about a sprawling domestic violence case. But that doesn't mean he isn't a swinger. Just look at that man. He is a stud.
- What About All Those Naked Miley Cyrus Pictures? Perez Hilton tweeted two upskirts, and this lookalike may have staged a naked iPhone moment. Since looking at naked teenagers on the internet is risky, these rumors were both catchy (jailtime for Perez!) and nearly impossible to figure out. And so the Miley Cyrus nudity mythos lives on.
Meanwhile, the Search the Lady Gaga's Penis—the Holy Grail of pop culture, the Moby Dick of music mythology—continues. Some say it died in the bathroom of a Berlin sex club. Others say, where one Lady Gaga penis dies, two grow in its place. [Images, top to bottom: Splash, INF, Vanity Fair, AP]