I Can Haz Lolz?

11 11 2008

From the ARChive’s “Animals In Pants” section:

sina1 sina2

I am one of those people who is endlessly amused by the Stuff On My Cat / Stuff On My Mutt / I Can Has Cheezburger / I Has A Hot Dog / etc sites.  I also love hoaxes.  So, you might imagine how thrilled I was when fellow NYMIAer Jon Hammer found this record as he was cataloging some comedy records.  Called Inside SINA: A Confidential Report on the Activities of the Society for Indecency to Naked Animals, it is a recorded manifesto encouraging the world to clothe domestic animals for the sake of decency.   Apparently, this record is the artifact of a simple but elegant hoax Alan Abel, once described as “the Franz Liszt of put-on artists, the Rembrandt of the ridiculous,” perpetrated on this country between 1959 and 1963.  GELF Magazine explains the Society for Indecency to Naked Animals (SINA) better than I could, so here :

The primary interest of SINA, formed in 1959, was to raise awareness of the indecency of unclothed animals and lobby lawmakers to pass and enforce laws requiring all animals to wear clothing. Its slogan was, “A nude horse is a rude horse.” The SINA operation continued for over four years, during which Abel and his loyal friend Henry—who posed as SINA president G. Clifford Prout—pleaded their case in hundreds of interviews, including appearances on The Tonight Show, The Today Show, and, of course, CBS Evening News with Walter Cronkite. When Time Magazine finally blew the whistle on their hoax in 1963, Abel was hailed as a comic genius, a jokester who had manipulated the burgeoning mass media to have a laugh at everyone else’s expense. While he was certainly laughing about the whole ordeal, Abel remains concerned that many people may have missed the point.

Time Magazine wrote about it in 1963:

The situation seemed grim. For one thing, it was raining. For another, only three of the 80 persons expected to march on Washington from Baltimore showed up. But the picketers hoisted their signs high and circled the White House for seven hours straight. “Mrs. Kennedy,” pleaded the placards, “Won’t You Please Clothe Your Horse for Decency?” SINA was on the march.

The SINA hoax is described in beautiful detail on Abel’s own site here.  Clearly, he is a mad genius in the greatest sense of the word.

Inside SINA: A Confidential Report on the Activities of the Society for Indecency to Naked Animals (Charm, CM-110, LP, c. 1959).  Featuring Bruce Spencer, Executive Vice President, SINA .

NEELY

ps. The horse wearing boxer shorts on the cover is Wings of Destiny, G. Clifford Prout’s own mare.


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