[posted by Justin Levine]
After several days of thinking about it, I’m ready to eat crow. Throw in the towel. Raise the white flag. Beg for mercy in the court of the blogosphere.
I’m now ready to admit that the Anna Nicole Smith story that I linked to last week is probably bogus.
As I argued at the time, the story was admittedly rich in detail and offered a logical explanation as to why Anna Nicole wrote her will the way she did. It was also plausible in my mind that 9/11 would have allowed her to have a child in secrecy two weeks later.
However, an astute commenter alerted me to the fact that the birth certificate didn’t contain Anna Nicole’s legal name (Vicky Lynn Marshall). That, plus the following facts now make me think that the story is bogus –
The fact that there are no photographs of the father without his sunglasses on.
The fact that the New Times has a history of hoax stories (though admittedly done mostly around April Fools’ Day).
The fact that no legal action has been brought by the father on behalf of his child in order to get a chunk of the Anna Nicole estate.
There is also the fact that most of the other media hasn’t bit (though I haven’t always found that to be a significant indicator one way or the other).
But the bottom line is: You skeptics are probably right. I am probably wrong. Admittedly, I always left open the possibility that the story might not pan out – but I’m not going to hide behind that. A black mark against your humble blogger! Excuse me while I quietly slink into the dungeon for my lashes…
[Update 3-19-07 : It’s official. It’s a hoax.]