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The Great
AndyKaufmanLives.com
Enrique - Claire Chanel - Stephen Maddox
"Andy Kaufman - Dead or Alive?"
Hoax/Mystery FAQ Page

Begrudgingly and Painstakingly compiled
by Brad Friedman

>>> Last Updated: 10/27/2004 11:16 AM <<<

About this page...
   What the hell this page is all about.

Some Background on the actual "Andy Dead or Alive" Controversy...
And how a new controversy grew out of it...

   Featuring links to all the original BRAD BLOG articles that got me into this mess.

AndyKaufmanLives.com
   "Enrique" (aka "Eric", aka "Enrique Presley", aka "Enrique Proust") starts it all off...
   · "Stephen Maddox"
   · The "Invisible" Keywords

Claire Chanel's Message Board
   · The "Claire Chanel"-"Stephen Maddox" IP Connection
   · "Jenny"
   · Unanswered Questions for "Claire Chanel"
   · "Claire" "visits" "Stephen Maddox"

Odds 'n' Ends...
   · The Houdini Postcard & AndyKaufmanLives.com/VIP
   ·
Identical Keywords on three "unrelated" sites
   · "Claire" is outted as "Julie H" back in January 
   · A Researched History of "Stephen Maddox" (Added 6/21/04)

   ·
Other Stuff I forgot...

What to make of all this...
   Brad's theories on what the hell could be going on here.

Sources...
   · Sources generally regarded as Hoaxes
   · Sources generally regarded as Credible
   · Depends what you mean by Hoax and/or Credible

 

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About this page...

As the 20th Anniversary of Andy Kaufman's death approached, Andy's co-writer and best friend, Bob Zmuda announced a tribute event at the Hollywood House of Blues called "Andy Kaufman - Dead or Alive?" Speculation gained momentum during that time about whether Andy Kaufman really did die on May 16th, 1984, or whether he faked his own death with plans to return in 20 years to reveal his greatest stunt/hoax of all time.

Fueled additionally at the same time by some newspaper and blog articles and some interesting websites, momentum and speculation continued to grow as the 20th anniversary approached, and afterwards in the weeks beyond. The debate/investigation into Andy's "death" rages on.

This page, however, is NOT an investigation into the death (fake or otherwise) of Andy Kaufman, though there will be many pointers and evidence for and against it that are provided in the following stuff, as well as in the "Sources" section at the bottom.

This page, is dedicated instead to a compilation of information raging around a website or two that seem to be at the very epicenter of another possible hoax. That hoax (or those hoaxes) would seem to be meant to out-hoax the folks looking into the original possible hoax of Andy Kaufman still being alive.

At the core of these possible hoaxes (let's just call them "mysteries" for now) are at least two websites. One is AndyKaufmanLives.com, purported to be run by someone who calls themselves "Enrique", and the other is a Message Board run by someone who calls herself "Claire Chanel" which was purportedly set up to discuss the AndyKaufmanLives.com website itself.

That message board, unfortunately, has a maximum capacity of only 300 messages. After which, old messages are forever scrolled off and disappeared into the ether. So it has been difficult to collect information and refer back to it later as newer information evolved or revealed itself.

I hope then, to try and catalog some of the essential information from that message board here, and I welcome your help in the process. If you find information you feel may be relevant to this investigation on that message board (or elsewhere), please COPY, PASTE and SAVE the information on your computer. Then send it here to me so that I can store it here for others to peruse in a format that won't disappear over time. While I do my best to keep up with "Claire's" board, it's impossible to catch everything, particularly since it's possible for folks who either enjoy being destructive, or just want to make things tough, from time to time to spam that board, and quickly kill much of the information. So share what you have whenever you can. I can't promise a response, but I'll do my best to investigate and/or post it here if it seems relevant to the mystery of "Enrique", "Claire" and someone you'll soon know as "Stephen Maddox", so that others may also investigate and/or put the pieces together as they see fit.

Where else this thing goes? Only time will tell...Andy is undoubtedly laughing either inside or outside of his grave.

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Some Background on the actual "Andy Dead or Alive" Controversy...
And how a new controversy grew out of it...

I was sucked into the vortex of this controversy by happenstance after having read an article in the LA Weekly on Bob Zmuda's "Andy Kaufman - Dead or Alive?" 20th anniversary event. The star of the night was to have been either Tony Clifton (a Vegas lounge-lizard character original played by Andy, but since embodied by Zmuda) or the re-emergence from "death" of Andy Kaufman, who - legend has it - had told a number of people he wanted to fake his own death, and then return in 20 years.

I was further sucked in when, on the night of the event, some folks from "Claire's" Message Board who had created a chat room to await word on what happened at the event grew impatient after midnight pacific time, and there was still no word coming from the folks we knew were at the event. I live a few blocks from the House of Blues and was harangued by the chatters into driving down there to see what was going on and if it had gotten out yet or not.

On my Blog, I covered these events in a series of articles. From the first to the last, these are those articles. They will also give you a good background on Andy's "death", the evidence for and against it having been faked, some useful links to articles and websites, and first person details on what actually happened at the 20th Anniversary Event itself:

Andy Kaufman Articles written for THE BRAD BLOG:
A good primer for folks just jumping into this mess...

· 5/8/04: "Andy Kaufman Returns"
The groundwork is laid. An excellent primer for how all of this began.
· 5/14/04: "A Few Updates"
A once in a lifetime chance gets blown. Brad fails to get tickets to the "event" at the House of Blues. But it wouldn't yet be over...
· 5/14/04: "More on Uncle Andy's Funhouse..."
The conspiracy widens. Big time. As "Enrique" and "Steve" begin to come into the picture.
· 5/16/04:
"More Andy..."
Curiouser and curiouser. Just minutes into the 20th Anniversary of his "death" an interesting piece of "evidence" is pieced together on the "Claire Chanel" board based on info reported in the above article.
· 5/17/04: "Andy Kaufman is Still Dead!"
A BRAD BLOG EYE-WITNESS EXCLUSIVE UPDATE! Milk and cookies. Wrestling and hookers. Brad's first hand report on the Sunday Event and it's after-hours oddities.
· 5/19/04: "Brad at Tony Clifton / Andy Kaufman Event"
PHOTO UPDATE: Evidence found on the web that at least Brad is alive and not a part of the conspiracy and was indeed with Tony Clifton that night.

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AndyKaufmanLives.com

I chanced upon this site after my blog started receiving a lot of hits from folks seeking Andy Kaufman info. So I started looking around myself. This site seems to be at the very crux of whatever hoax/mystery is going on surrounding the idea of "Andy Kaufman - Dead or Alive".

Ostensibly AndyKaufmanLives.com is a site created by a guy who calls himself "Enrique", so that's what we'll call him. On the site, he poses questions about the improbability of Andy having faked his death, and then goes on to answer with explanations on how it actually could have occurred. He suggests he believes that Andy is still alive, but has no particular proof of it, just explains how it could be so on one single page: www.AndyKaufmanLives.com/Enrique.

Since there is no discussion about the points raised on that site, "Claire Chanel" claims that she created her Message Board to link to "Enrique's" site, ostensibly for discussion of the ideas "Enrique" raises. See the section below this one for much more information on "Claire" and that Message Board.

"Stephen Maddox"

At some point, in the middle of "Enrique's" questions and answers on his page, we suddenly see the following entry posted in a different font color - theoretically - to stand out from the "actual posts" of "Enrique":

9/16/03

**********Message from the owner of the URL**********

Hello, my name is Steve. I am the owner of Jetelectro productions which owns this URL.

I have received many requests for info on Enrique and this web site. Many have asked who he is, where does he live, and how can we reach him. The answer to all of your questions is, I have no idea. I will explain briefly how this came about and why I am no help in getting you answers. 

Awhile back I received a letter from someone who identified himself as Enrique. He said he had gotten  my name from a friend of a friend in the animation business, although he never said who. He asked how much I would charge to buy the URL, set it up with a hosting service, then type periodic updates for roughly 1 year. A few days later I received a money order with no return address. So I bought andykaufmanlives.com. About a week after that I received a CD, no return address, containing the original HTML document to put up on the site. It came with typed instructions that I would be getting faxes every once in awhile, and that I should add them to the document exactly as typed. 

So once again, I have no idea how you can reach him. I don't even know if he will be reading this (although I assume he does to make sure I copied his faxes correctly). I don't know why he wishes to stay anonymous, although I assume it is to avoid criticism over his views. I have received a few of those kinds of e-mails also.

...And then we see the next post from "Enrique":

9/19/03

No mystery, I have someone else do this for me for 2 reasons. First, I'm not that internet savvy. Second, you never know who may try and sue you for having an opinion so I would rather lay low. Now, back to business.

How would Enrique fake his death?

...A question which "Enrique" then answers by pointing, for the first time, to a post on the "Claire Chanel" message board. A post which is no longer there since that message board kills all items beyond it's 300 messages max capacity. So we don't know what "Enrique's" plan to fake his own death would be (if anyone has a copy of that post archived, please send it!)

"Enrique" later on the page gives a link to the main page of "Claire's" message board.

I tried to find any information on the internet concerning this "JetElectro Cartoons" outfit, but came up blank in both Yahoo and Google searches.

And then I did an Internet WHOIS search for the owner of the AndyKaufmanLives.com domain, and it came back with the following:

Domain Name.......... andykaufmanlives.com
 Creation Date........ 2003-08-28
 Registration Date.... 2003-08-28
 Expiry Date.......... 2004-08-28
 Organisation Name.... Stephen Maddox
 Organisation Address. 1187 Emerald Lakes Dr
 Organisation Address.
 Organisation Address. Greenwood
 Organisation Address. 46143
 Organisation Address. IN
 Organisation Address. UNITED STATES

 Admin Name........... Stephen Maddox
 Admin Address........ 1187 Emerald Lakes Dr
 Admin Address........
 Admin Address........ Greenwood
 Admin Address........ 46143
 Admin Address........ IN
 Admin Address........ UNITED STATES
 Admin Email.......... stephen_d_maddox@hotmail.com
 Admin Phone.......... +1.3178851608
 Admin Fax............

After reporting this information about "Stephen Maddox" in a blog item, someone posted the following on "Claire's" Message Board, (The original post was scrolled off, so I forget who came up with this, and am simply paraphrasing the post as I recall it):

The name Stephen Maddox has been ringing a bell in my head, but I haven't been able to figure out from where. Finally, I gave in and did an Internet search, and I find that "Stephen Maddox" is actually a character from a moving called The Running Man. He was an insurance agent chasing down someone who had faked their own death to receive insurance money.

Wow...I checked the net as well, and sure enough, there's a 1963 movie called "The Running Man" and it features a character named "Stephen Maddox" chasing down someone for having faked his own death.

The conspiracy broke wide open at that point! But what exactly was the conspiracy?

There would be many more revelations about "Enrique" and "Stephen Maddox" and AndyKaufmanLives.com, but for that, see the section below discussing the "Claire Chanel Message Board".

The "Invisible" Keywords on the page...

One other item of note for now on "Enrique's" page, as I was highlighting some text from it to copy for that blog item, I noticed that there was hidden text on the page. Words in a white font, on the page's white background that would not otherwise show up to the naked eye. Usually it is just some version of "Andy Kaufman", but sometimes the text is as like this:

"Andy Kaufman, Latka, Andy Kaufman lives, Taxi, Andy Kaufman Lives, Andy Kaufman, Andy Kaufman Lives, Latka, Andy Kaufman, Taxi, Andy Kaufman Lives"

In and of itself, that's not particularly unusual. Frequently Webmasters will hide text on their page that is only meant to be seen by Search Engines that index such pages. The hope is that their page will then make it to the top of any Internet Searches looking for "Andy Kaufman Taxi" for example.

But if one takes "Steve's" message (re-posted above) at face value, that someone named "Enrique" is actually faxing him text that he is to transpose verbatim for the page, well, that wouldn't include hidden "keywords" of the sort that's found on the page.

(4/24/04 Update: Click here for new revelations on these keywords below!)

CONCLUSION: Either "Steve" is not following "Enrique's" instructions for reasons unknown (and unlikely) or "Steve's" story is all a part of "Enrique's" fiction. The latter would seem the most likely. Especially since "Enrique" claims to "not be internet savvy" it seems unlikely that he would have asked "Steve" to include such "keywords" on his page so that he would receive more hits.

So if "Enrique" and "Steve" are either the same person or - at the very least - in cahoots pulling some kind of scam on that page, then why does it seem that "Stephen Maddox" is also "Claire Chanel"? Read on...

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Claire Chanel's Message Board

As previously mentioned, this Message Board was ostensibly set up to discuss issues raised on "Enrique's" AndyKaufmanLives.com page.

It seems to have been created around the time "Enrique's" page came into existence, in September, or so, of 2003. It's a problem because a) It's a "free" message board program, so it only allows for a Max of 300 posts. When that limit is hit, old messages disappear forever. Also b) It seems to get either hacked a lot or it fails a lot. Resulting in a whole bunch of blank anonymous posts that scroll all the useful info off into the ether forever. (though I realize that some think even that occasionally "glitch" is a part of the conspiracy at work here).

The bulk of us reading her board assumed "Claire" was just an interested Andy fan like the rest of us. As time would go on, we'd find out that "Claire" would seem to be much more than just a fan. Apparently, she's someone in on the hoax/mystery/conspiracy somehow...Though she still tries to claim otherwise.

The "Claire Chanel"-"Stephen Maddox" IP Connection...

As mentioned in the section above, a poster on "Claire's" board put together the name "Stephen Maddox" (purportedly the owner of the AndyKaufmanLives.com domain) with the character from The Running Man move, the character who is trying to chase down someone who has faked his own death.

And at some point, a week or so afterwards, another poster posted an Email that she received from this "Stephen Maddox" after she'd sent a note to the Email address listed on his WHOIS info for the domain.

The note came from the Hotmail address that "Maddox" lists, but when examining the header of the Email, it matches the same IP address that "Claire" always posts with on her own message board. Here's the Email:

From: "Stephen Maddox" <stephen_d_maddox@hotmail.com>
To: candycane@comcast.net
Subject: Hello
Date: Wed, 19 May 2004 17:00:49 +0000
Received: from hotmail.com (bay7-f4.bay7.hotmail.com[64.4.11.4](misconfigured sender)) by rwcrmxc16.comcast.net (rwcrmxc16) with ESMTP
id <20040519170049r1600718qbe>;
Wed, 19 May 2004 17:00:49 +0000
X-Originating-IP: [64.4.11.4]
Received: from mail pickup service by hotmail.com with Microsoft SMTPSVC;
Wed, 19 May 2004 10:00:48 -0700
Received: from 68.58.50.182 by by7fd.bay7.hotmail.msn.com with HTTP;
Wed, 19 May 2004 17:00:48 GMT
X-Originating-IP: [68.58.50.182]
X-Originating-Email: [stephen_d_maddox@hotmail.com]
X-Sender: stephen_d_maddox@hotmail.com
From: "Stephen Maddox" <stephen_d_maddox@hotmail.com>
To: candycane@comcast.net
Bcc:

Subject: Hello

Date: Wed, 19 May 2004 12:00:48 -0500
Mime-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain; format=flowed
Message-ID: <BAY7-F4JWTyDTdCYgRW0002adef@hotmail.com>
X-OriginalArrivalTime: 19 May 2004 17:00:48.0807 (UTC) FILETIME=[D57F8370:01C43DC2]

Wow, do you really live in Greenwood? That is just too freaky.
Stephen "Running Man" Maddox

Indeed, the IP address from which the note was "received" matched "Claire Chanel's" IP address.

There is virtually no way that this could happen unless "Claire" and "Stephen" were using the same computer - or at the very least - on the same local network sharing an IP address (for example, in a house that used a shared router). Thus, until anybody could suggest how this could otherwise be, "Claire" and "Stephen" are the same person).

There is another note to Candycane@comcast.net from "Steve" with the same IP address in the header. For the record, the text of that second message was:

I was going to suggest a meetup if you wanted to ask me questions. I saw your post of my e-mail. Probably not a good idea now. Things are getting to hot anyway. 24 addresses in the last 16 years, looks like it's time for a new one. Take care, the running man

Apparently "Candycane" who just happens to live near "Stephen Maddox" - as does "Claire Chanel"! Go figure - was contacting him for more details, explaining that she lived near by - what are the chances? - and that she'd like to meet him in person.

Oh, it was also earlier revealed that the phone number of "Maddox's" WHOIS Domain Record was no longer in service, but a newer phone number was available and a woman answered the phone because "Stephen Maddox" wasn't home. (I don't have that Email saved, but if anyone does, feel free to send it!)

CONCLUSION: "Stephen Maddox" is likely the same person as "Claire Chanel". Also, "CandyCane" is probably a friend or somehow otherwise tied in locally (in Indiana presumably?) to the whole hoax.

"Jenny"

It was the post from "Jenny" that then made the entire situation go nuts over on "Claire's" board. As the heat was rising on "Claire" and suspicions turned to her about being behind the entire "Enrique" / "Stephen Maddox" conspiracy, suddenly "Jenny" posted the following:

DON'T FUCK WITH CLAIRE!!!!!

Posted by Jenny on 5/21/2004 at 18:13:22

IP: 64.12.116.10

Ok, now that i got your attention., Hi my name is Jenny. You probably not belive what I am about to say because I wouldn't belive it myself if it haddn't happened to me. As a matter of fact you are proabably going to accuse me of being Claire, that is fine, you will se conspiracy wherever you look if that is what you want. but after watching what is going on I have to say 2 things.

1. Claire started this goddam board and none of us would be here ig He/She hadn't.

2. I dont know who or what claire is but I can tell you this, they are one of the most amazing people that I have never even met. Here is why I say that

I started and e-mail friendship with claire. we talked back and forth for weeks. when the concert got near I just happened to mention that I would cry at night thinking about the concert and how badly I wanted to go ( go ahead laugh). Claire, whoever he/she is bought me a round trip ticket to Los angeles. Put me up at the universl hilton. got me tickets for the tour of universl studios. a towne car picked me up at the airport and took me to my hotel. a town car took me to the house of blues whre an 100 general admission ticket was waiting for me. a towne car took me back to my hotel. then a towne car took me back to the airport monday.

This is all true, i dont give a fucking rats ass if you don't believe me cause i know it is true.

so haveing siad the, maybe you guys are just palying, trying to insight trouble like andy did, but if you relly are bashing on claire then you ar ehte fucking loosers, you are bashing on a most amazing generous wonderful person and that makes you fucking trash. Sorry claire, Im sure you never wanted me to tell that story but goddam those petty fuckers, i just hsd to.

Curiouser and curiouser! So what to make of this note?

If it's real, then "Claire Chanel" is someone with a lot of money to be able to sponsor such a trip to Los Angeles. But since "Claire" had previously claimed to be at the event on Sunday, May 16th - claiming to have flown into town herself just for it - one would think that she would have at least met this "Jenny" person long enough to say hello. According to a followup answer when I asked "Jenny" about that on the board, she said that no, they hadn't met and "I'm not gonna say anymore about it, I already said too much".

If the note was real, it also has been pointed out that it sounds like a very kind gesture, sponsoring a trip of a life time for a sweet young girl -- something "Andy might have done"! :-)

Unlike "Claire" and "Enrique's" writing - which often seem similarly vague and enigmatic - that note seemed to have a different style entirely. Which only means that either "Claire" is terribly clever or there is someone else is on the game (could be "CandyCane" or anybody else, I suppose).

Unanswered Questions for "Claire Chanel"...

If the note above from "Jenny" is simply a new piece of the hoax, and meant to get the heat off of "Claire", it did nothing of the kind. It only brought more attention to her. So I tried to summarize all of the questions up until that date in a post to "Claire" on her message board which she's still yet to answer. I'll post those questions in a second...

But it also came to light that nobody had actually ever met "Claire" despite several people on her board having been at the event. In fact, while I was at the event myself (see this Blog item for details), I had asked Mike (who was transcribing details to the Chat Room as I was describing them via Cell Phone) to post on "Claire's" board to tell her I was there, and to try and find me in a specific area. Apparently, she had previously claimed to have internet access in her hotel room. Her response some time later to that note was "Why? What will it get me?" --- or some such response that struck me as odd. One would think that after they flew across the country for an event that had been discussed for weeks on her own Message Board that she'd want to say hello to one of the frequent posters that was also at the event. She seemed oddly uninterested - not that it means anything in particular. But it was curious to myself and a couple of other folks who had noticed. 

Anyway, back to the questions that Claire has yet to answer...These are them, as I posted them on "her" message board:

+ Why do you and "Stephen Maddox" share the same IP address?

 + Is it merely an *incredible* coincidence that you are both from the same part of Indiana?

 + Do you deny that you have posted (here or elsewhere) in the name of either Enrique or Steven Maddox?

 + Do you deny that you are Lynn Margulies?

 + Do you deny that you are Bob Zmuda?

 + (and just for fun) Do you deny that you are Andy Kaufman? :-)

 + Who is "Jenny"?

 + Did you really sponsor her trip out here to see the show?

 + Would you be willing to give more specific information (privately) about that sponsorship?

 + If you did sponsor her, as she said, why did you not bother to meet her and say hello?

 + Do you have any pictures of yourself at the event? You did, after all, travel along way to get their, are professed to be a huge Andy fan etc., so it seems likely you'd have gotten some pictures, no?

 + Can you show them to us?

 + What hotel did you stay at when you were here?

For "Claire's" part, she wouldn't answer any of the above, choosing instead to discuss a history of the "Burger Chef Murders" which I'll allude to shortly. But the following day, for whatever reason, she decided to answer some questions, but not really any of those I posted above. Here's her note:

Claire_ification
Posted by Claire Chanel on 5/22/2004 at 14:19:06
IP: 68.58.50.182

As I get ready to meet with Dave and Craig to visit Stephen Maddox, something has dawned on me. If people really think I am Steve/Enrique, then what the hell am I wasting my lovely Saturday for? Not to mention risking my neck if any of these 3 turn out to be nutsey coo coo. So I will go ahead and answer some of the questions posed to me in the last 24 hours.

Is your name Claire Chanel? No, that is a spoof on a very large entertainment company.

Gender? Female

Race? Pale white

Age? 37

Employer? None, semi retired a couple years ago.

Why didn’t you meet with anyone in LA? I must defer to my unwritten rule #6

Are the claims that you are Stephen Maddox or Enrique true? No

Why have you not defended these allegations until now? Because it is “F”ing Funny!

How do you explain the proof? I think 98% of the people reading the allegations are laughing with me. It is the 2% that jump in head first without thinking that believe I must be Stephen Maddox. So to the 2% that believe it, let me explain…

Don’t believe everything you read, especially on the Internet! You must realize how easy it is for people to copy and paste text, then alter that text. Someone can make a post or forward an email and make it look very official, but have altered the text to make a convincing argument. I’m not sure why people would go to such lengths, I’m assuming it is because they are so convinced; they have to prove their point. Kind of like evidence tampering to get a conviction.

Where do you really live? Indiana. For those into detail I live in Fishers, a small town on the north east side of Indianapolis. For those exacting individuals that are going to run straight to Map Quest, I live in a condo community at 106th street and Lantern Rd. Fishers, Indiana 46038.

"Claire" evaded the questions that I'd posed twice, and that others had been waiting for her to answer. As well, she tries to explain the IP match between "her" and "Stephen Maddox" as someone setting it all up, by editing those Emails from "Maddox" to include her IP address. That's possible, I suppose, but it's a pretty sophisticated spoof to drop an IP address like that into a header, and seems -- at the very least -- unlikely.

I have no idea what "her" "unwritten rule #6" is.

CONCLUSION: "Claire" still has a good deal of 'splainin to do if she wants anybody at this point to not think that "she" is also "Stephen Maddox". Her "just having fun" explanation is believable, in as much as I'm sure "she" is having fun at this point. But to what end? Other than "her" own satisfaction? I dunno...perhaps there's something in a few of these...

"Claire" "visits" "Stephen Maddox"

As folks on "Claire's" board were discussing calling the phone number of "Stephen Maddox", and before it became clear that "Claire" was a part of the hoax, a few of the folks that (coincidentally?) happened to live close to the given address of "Stephen Maddox" decided they'd drop by his house to see what they could learn.

The visit was planned for Saturday, May 22nd. And I've posted the last note that "Claire" sent before supposedly leaving for this meeting.

"Claire" had reported that when she called the "Stephen Maddox" number, she was told (either on the phone, or via Email, I can't remember - but welcome a reminder if anybody has one)...That...get ready for this one..."Mr. Maddox couldn't speak on the phone due to having lost his voice box to throat cancer some time ago, but his assistant 'Julie' could speak for him on the phone".

Getting ridiculous? Uh, yeah...But "Claire" and/or "friends" are still trying...

Shortly after "her" message about going to meet "Maddox", this was posted on "Claire's" message board:

Important Message for CLaire
Posted by Julie on 5/22/2004 at 15:54:23
IP: 12.223.238.187

Claire please contact me ASAP, we have to cancel for today. Please e-mail either my or Mr. Maddox email account. Again we have to cancel our meeting this afternoon. If anyone know how to contact claire, phone, cell phone, please alert her to this message.

What a stunner! Who'd have thunk it?!

Then came "Claire's" report of the meeting...

I'm back
Posted by Claire Chanel on 5/22/2004 at 22:05:31
IP: 68.58.50.182

As you probably already know mystery man cancelled on us. We did not know this, so we still went. I met with Dave from Noblesville down in Greenwood. Craig from Chicago called my cell this morning to say he was unable to make it. Dave and I went to 1187 Emerald Lakes Dr. and rang the entry buzzer. Julie met us at the door, She is Mr. Maddox's personal assistant. She said she was there to translate sign language for us since that is how Mr. Maddox speaks. As you may or may not have seen in a post by someone from Pennsylvania, Stephen Maddox has lost his voice due to throat cancer. I guess he can hear but not speak. She was kind enough to wait at Mr. Maddox's apartment until we got there to tell us the news. She said he was called away on an important matter, she did not say what. Since we had both traveled fairly far, we asked if it would be ok to shoot some pictures of the apartment so people on the message board would know we went. She contacted Mr. Maddox on his Blackberry and we got permission. The thing that struck me was how stark it was. We were told that we could still come back in the future and speak with him.

No doubt "Claire" will be "visiting" again soon to speak with him. I'll look forward to it!

And now she has finally posted the pictures from her "visit" with "Stephen Maddox". They are posted here on the web (though I've cached them myself in case they too disappear at some point :-)

Ya gotta hand it to her for a good try! The address matches up with the "Stephen Maddox" address, however neither "Stephen" nor the assistant "Julie" appear in the photos. Furthermore, "Claire" still never shows her face. She explained on her board that she doesn't like to be photographed. Oh, and the picture captioned "Julie greets Claire at the door" is a hoot! It shows the back of "Claire" and nobody opening the door for her at all! Too funny. It almost makes you not hate "Claire" for a moment....Whoops...That moment's now gone.

I have no idea who "Dave" is as seen in the photos. But I believe he's supposed to be someone else on the Message Board who drove up from Chicago. As the story goes.  I'll get you details on that if they notably arise.

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Odds 'n' Ends...

Various things have occurred on "Claire's" Message Board in the days since the info posted above. I'll try and keep track of the various notable items here, and will update as necessary and as time allows. As I've said before, feel free to send me any posts or any other info you think may be relevant or should be tracked here. Can't promise a response, but will try to investigate and post it here if it seems useful.

 The Houdini Postcard & AndyKaufmanLives.com/VIP

After the show (after "Act 3" actually which took place up in Nevada at the Midnight Bunny Ranch where Tony Clifton bought "a good time" for anybody who made it up there the next evening and presented a ticket stub from the show), some who attended "Act 3" posted some pictures from that night.

They also included a scan of a postcard that they claimed to have picked up in Andy's old apartment ("Act 4" of the House of Blues show actually took place before "Act 3", as Tony walked anyone interested down to Andy's old apartment near by, which had been decked out with old Andy memorabilia by himself and Wally Wangert, a long time Andy fan).

Here's a copy of that mysterious postcard:

Who knows what that's all about. But the address on the card, www.AndyKaufmanLives.com/VIP was an as yet unknown section on "Enrique's" website. What the hell the crap on that page actually means? I'll leave to you. Though you may (or may not) wish to note that "Claire" spent a lot of time giving a history of the "Burger Chef Murders" in Indiana, on her message board, instead of answering the questions that I had posed for her. "Enrique's" VIP Page has a picture of "Burger Chef and Jeff".

Identical Keywords on three "unrelated" sites...

On 5/24/04 it was discovered that "Enrique's" site, "Claire Chanel's" newly discovered site, and AndyKaufman.org all had virtually or completely the same META-TEXT Keywords in the HTML of their pages.

Also, both "Enrique's" page and "Claire's" page used Hidden Keywords, a white font on a white page background, on the pages themselves. I had discussed this occurring on "Enrique's" page in this previous section.  Now we see that - coincidentally! - "Claire" had done the same thing on "her own" web page.

Click here for a comparison of the keywords on those three pages...

"Claire" is outted as "Julie H" back in January...

"Claire Chanel" outted "herself" as someone named "Julie H" -- which is the same name, essentially, as "Stephen Maddox's" assistant (see "Claire" "visits" "Stephen Maddox") -- back in January. Before, I'm guessing, she imagined she'd be the center of so much, apparently needed, attention.

On this page at FindAGrave.com, virtual flowers are left several times back in January by "Claire Chanel". First time:

Happy birthday to the man who once played a character named Andy Kaufman.
- Claire Chanel
Added: 1/17/2004

Clicking on her name at the site, reveals that her Email address at the time was Julie_H_P@hotmail.com and her member name was "Julie H". Send her a note and give her my best!

Two weeks later, the following "flowers" are left again from Julie/Claire. Three times in a row, in fact, and of course, hawking AndyKaufmanLives.com confirming her connection (for anybody who still needs it) to both "Enrique" and "Stephen Maddox":

Descanse en paz uno de los mas grandes artistas que ha dado este mundo.
http://www.andykaufmanlives.com
Eres mi inspiración Andy, te admiro profundamente. Gracias por todo.

- julio he pe
Added: 1/30/2004

...Clicking on that name "Julio he pe" brings one to the same Member Record as does "Claire Chanel". One "Julie H".

I'm sure Julio's "inspiración" is very proud right about now.

(Thanks to Fran P for the initial discovery!)

And thanks to Dani S, for this follow up info:

julie_h_p@hotmail.com was also hitting various guestbooks that seemingly have little to do with AK:

Julie H.
- Wednesday, September 03, 2003 at 07:16:40 (PDT)
"Remember when the slap was the most dangerous moment in television? After the movie we all said "oh, I knew it deep down". This Enrique may be on to something. He is the only one I have seen that is really speaking out. www.andykaufmanlives.com Pass it on if you wish. Julie"
(From http://www.christinelavin.com/guestbook/guestbook.html)

------------------

Julie H < julie_h_p@hotmail.com >
, USA 1/8/2004 9:58:12 AM
"http://www.andykaufmanlives.com is a wonderful link to add to your collection"
(from http://www.eville.net/guestbook/guestbook.ashx)

------------------

Email: julie_h_p@hotmail.com
Date: 01/15/2004
"With the 20th anniversary of Andrews’s death approaching, Enrique's writings seem more relevant than ever. http://www.andykaufmanlives.com If you tell 2 friends and they tell 2 friends that will be like... 7 people, 8 if you count me. Wait, that is lame. Please tell 10 people and ask them to tell 37 each, that should do it. If so inclined, if not thank you anyway."
(From http://www.campusgrapevine.com/guiViewArticleReply.cfm?AdID=78)

------------------

Name: Julie
E-mail address: julie_h_p@hotmail.com
Homepage URL: http://www.andykaufmanlives.com
Favorite Character?: Andy Kaufman
Favorite Strip?: Sunset
Comments: Why did Kate give up on Andy?
May 16th 2004 at the House of Blues in LA. For show info visit:
http://www.comicrelief.org/page3.htm

Friday, April 23rd 2004 - 04:21:31 PM
(from http://books.dreambook.com/katesith/comic.html)

Well done, Dani!

And now an Anonymous source sends in a pointer to this, which would seem to nail "Julie H" as one "Julie Hastin-Ponciff".

Man on the moon
« Thread started on: Feb 11th, 2004, 12:58pm »

With the 20th anniversary of Andrew’s death approaching, Enrique's writings seem more relevant than ever.

http://www.andykaufmanlives.com

If you tell 2 friends and they tell 2 friends that will be like... 7 people, 8 if you count me. Wait, that is lame. Please tell 10 people and ask them to tell 37 each, that should do it. If so inclined, if not thank you anyway.

Julie Hastin-Ponciff
Women Authors International

(from: http://selk.proboards23.com/index.cgi?board=general&action=display&num=1076522291)

I'm afraid our dear Julie Hastin-Ponciff may be the delusional type. So far, despite the above post, and several others like it on the web by her, I find no sign anywhere of a "Women Authors International".

A History of Stephen Maddox

On 6/20/04, the following was posted by "Anonymous" on "Claire's" Message Board:

Facts wanted
Posted by Anonymous on 6/21/2004 at 17:35:14
IP: 69.95.77.180

Stephen Maddox appeares to have “vanished” so I am going to post this outright.

I am looking for anyone that has credible and verifiable information on any of the "goings on" involving Andy Kaufman, Andrew Geoffrey Kaufman, Stephen D. Maddox, Enrique Presley, Claire Chanel, or Julie Hastin-Ponciff.

I have uncovered a great deal of information on these “individuals” and am willing to trade with someone who has done the same. It is simple I will give you a piece of information then you send me a piece of information. If it checks out I will email you more information and so on.

Please email any facts to kaufmanlivesfacts@yahoo.com I will not respond to questions, guesses, thoughts, hunches, or speculation. I want to trade provable facts. Especially with those in the Los Angeles, Orlando, and Indianapolis areas.

I will “go first” and share the following with all of you since mismojo has already started down the path. I have shared this with a few of you via email already, so I do not consider it of lasting value. If you have anything of a similar nature, email it to me and we may strike up a partnership.

A primer for those new to all of this:

Stephen Maddox is a character in a 1963 movie titled “Running Man” about a man who fakes his death and goes into hiding.

The following is all public information I dug up from public sources:

The web address www.andykaufmanlives.com was registered in August of 2003 to a Stephen D. Maddox living in an apartment on Emerald Lakes Drive in Greenwood Indiana.

Our “Running Man” Stephen D. Maddox traces back 19 years and almost 30 addresses to when he first appears on the scene on Troy Ave. in Indianapolis Indiana in 1985.

A gentleman named Sam Maddox had the phone number 786-3152 on Troy Ave. in Indianapolis Indiana from 1969 to 1984.

In 1985 the same address on Troy Ave. and phone number (786-3152) was now listed to a Stephen D. Maddox.

Within months in 1985 Stephen D. Maddox moves his phone service and mail to an apartment on Dunston Drive in Indianapolis.

The Troy Ave. home still owned by Sam Maddox is sold in 1998. Nobody, including Sam Maddox, ever reestablishes phone service at the Troy Ave. address in the 14 years between 1985 and 1998.

Stephen D. Maddox proceeds to continue to forward his apartment telephone service and mail in an unbroken trail of 27 apartments until he ends up at 1187 Emerald Lakes Drive in Greenwood Indiana in 2004.

In May of this year Stephen D. Maddox appears to go underground by moving out of Emerald lakes and forwards his phone and address to a bogus address on Longwoods Ct. then immediately forwards it to a Post office box.

27 different verifiable addresses from 1985 to 2004. When figuring overlap for moving that is an average of probably no more than 6 or 7 months per address over a 19-year period.

24 of the addresses are in Indiana, 1 is in Hollywood California, and 2 are in Florida.

He lists his employment as anything from musician, janitor, children’s entertainer, comedian, animator, truck driver, filmmaker, television producer, self-employed and retired. His recognizable employers range from ABC, NBC, Disney, Universal, and Clear Channel. I would be most interested in speaking to anyone who may have worked with a Stephen D. Maddox.

Other Stuff I forgot...

Well, I forgot it, so it's not here! :-) As I remember stuff, or get reminded, or stuff is updated, I'll update this page as well.

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What to make of all this...

Well, if I could tell you exactly, I wouldn't have had to use so many words up till now.

For now my conclusion, particularly after the IP stuff and the subsequent "Jenny" stuff and presumably faked "meetings" with "Stephen Maddox" is that this entire "Enrique"/"Claire Chanel"/"Stephen Maddox" thing is most definitely a hoax.

So I know it's a hoax, but I still don't actually know what the hoax is. There seems to be a coupla leading theories. I'll list 'em in the order of probability as I see it.

1) It's all a just goof... What started as a fun, mysterious way to pay tribute to Andy at the impending 20th Anniversary of his death, has just now all turned into a way to fuck with fans who were otherwise looking into all of this based on the longstanding notion that Andy might "return" after 20 years. If anybody could have pulled off such a hoax, it would be Andy, and now that the 20th Anniversary has come and gone, and Andy hasn't returned, "Claire" and friends are trying to extend their 15 minutes of attention. It would be nice, however, for those fans who really are looking into the actual "Andy Kaufman Dead or Alive?" question if "Claire" would come clean and thus, get out of the way of those trying to figure out the original question. As the fan I know "she" is, I'd appeal to her to do just that.

2) Guerilla Marketing... It's all the rage nowadays for marketing companies to employ unlikely folks to start a buzz on the Internet, in chat rooms, on message boards etc. In fact, the AndyLives.org website began some years ago as a marketing gimmick for their Andy Kaufman Man on the Moon movie (that site has since been taken over by a group of fans as a fan site, see the "Sources" section below). So perhaps "Claire and Friends" have been hired to do exactly that. Create some kind of buzz about...something. Whether "they" are doing it on their own, or whether they've been hired, they've earned their paycheck.

The only question remaining for this theory is what the hell are they hoping to promote?...A coupla possibilities: the "Andy Walks With Me" screenplay treatment by Wally Wangert (see details on Wally in the "Sources" section below on Wally), the never-made-that-we-know-of "Tony Clifton" script that Kaufman wrote with Zmuda, or the various Tony Clifton and Andy Kaufman DVD's that have been making their way around the net. A recent post (now lost) by "Claire" might suggest that, as she recently posted an item with the subject "INVESTMENT" that seemed to suggest it'd be a good idea to snatch up some of the Tony Clifton DVD's that Lynne Margulies (Andy's girlfriend, see below for details) had put up on Ebay for sale.

3) Andy is Alive!... And behind all of this in preparation for his big return. For various reasons, based in part on information I've gleaned directly or indirectly from Bob Zmuda and Lynne Margulies, I find this theory rather unlikely. But I suppose the fun in this whole affair all hinges around that highly unlikely, but wonderfully fun possibility.

While Theory (3) is the least likely in my opinion, it is that theory, and the fact that Andy kept us all guessing -- from the time I originally saw him as the enigmatic "Foreign Man" on Dick Van Dyke's short-lived variety show back in the 70's (the character that would eventually become Latke on "Taxi") right up through today, a full 20 years after he mysteriously died -- is what made him so much the genius back then. A genius which has had a rich and predictably unexpected long, odd and hysterically twisted legacy.

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Sources...

...So you can play along at home!...As it keeps happening!

Sources generally regarded as Hoaxes...

· The Original Hoax Press Release - Released, and run on Yahoo! the day after the 20th Anniversary. Remarkably, it's still there!

· The Hoax Press Released revealed as Hoax in a second Press Release! - This one is not necessarily believed to be a hoax, but the name revealed in it -- "Enrique Proust" obviously raises some eyebrows if you've been paying attention up till now. It was released on PRWeb.com - but guess what? I can't find it there anymore in their archives! So the version linked above is one that I had previously archived locally.

· Fake Lynne Margulies Blog - This site appeared a day or two later. Lynne was Andy's girlfriend and still good friend of Bob Zmuda's. We've spoken via Email, and this Blog is a fake.

Sources generally regarded as Credible...

· THE BRAD BLOG (www.BradBlog.com) - Of course! The Compendium of BRAD BLOG Andy Kaufman articles is here or see the "Background" section above.

· The Andy Kaufman Home Page (andykaufman.jvlnet.com) -
Lots of Andy info, links, pictures, audio, books, DVD's etc.

· Andy Lives (www.AndyLives.org)
- Previously created and used by Universal Pictures as a guerilla marketing site for the Man on the Moon movie. After the domain lapsed, it was taken over by folks who now run it as "An Andy Kaufman and Tony Clifton site with a focus on faking death".

· AndyKaufman.org -
Nobody is really sure yet what this site is all about. It's still "Under Construction" though has been supplying a number of Andy audio and rare video clips of late. One animated graphic sometimes visible says "A Bob Zmuda Production", though like everything in this world, take it with a grain of salt.

· Tony Clifton Website (www.TonyClifton.net)
- The official site for Tony Clifton related stuff, tour dates, etc. A fairly new site that was set up in time to announce the 20th Anniversary show at the House of Blues, and Tony's re-appearance after many years unseen or heard from.

· FindaDeath.com's Info on Andy Kaufman's Death
- Including photos of his Death Certificate, Grave Site and more. Also, flowers left on Andy's page several times by "Claire Chanel" and "Julio he pe" which both reveal that this persons member name is "Julie H" - the same as "Stephen Maddox's" purported assistant.

· Wally Wingert's Website (www.WallyOnTheWeb.com) -
As mentioned above, he's a huge longtime Andy fan, and was responsible for arranging the Andy memorabilia for "Act 4" of the 20th Anniversary event, late-night in an old apartment of Andy's. He has photos of that evening at this site (including one - accidentally - of yours truly! As reposted here on my blog if you're curious).

· Lynn Margulies' REAL website -
The website of Andy's girlfriend, and good friend of Bob Zmuda. We've spoken via Email, and she's a lovely (though perhaps a tad mischievous) person. I don't think she's actually involved in all of this stuff. I don't think Zmuda is either. But who knows what's real anymore?

· Gumpo's Message Board
- Much of the above being catalogued and conversation, investigation, discussion and rumination continue - on a Message Board that, unlike "Claire's" doesn't drop messages over time.

· 20th Anniversary Event Chat Room Transcript  - As it happened that night. With Brad on cell phone reporting back to Mike (or "ks76r" as he was known in the room then) who transcribed the whole affair. 

Depends what you mean by Hoax and/or Credible...

· Andy Kaufman Lives (www.AndyKaufmanLives.com) - "Enrique's" site, discussed in all too much detail on this page.

· Claire Chanel's Message Board  - Similarly discussed in far too much detail above!

· Photos from Claire Chanel's visit to Stephen Maddox  - As posted on the web and captioned, presumably, by "Claire".

· Claire Chanel's web page  - "Discovered" on 5/24/04. asking "Is Andy Kaufman Alive?" with pointers to "Enrique's" page, her Message Board and copy of Andy's death certificate. Most notably, it has the exact same hidden "keywords" as "Enrique's" page and as AndyKaufman.org.

· Stephen Maddox reviews on Amazon.com - Strange reviews for "Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind" and "Comedian" which would seem to confirm both that “he” is from Indiana, and that he’s shilling for AndyKaufmanLives.com

· Archive of Claire Chanel's Message Board posts  - From 2/29/04 through 5/11/04 as cached at GOOGLE, then captured and saved as HTML by "Dani S" who was kind enough to send 'em over. Who knows what you might find in them. She warns that some links are broken in these archives, but they should generally work to get you around if you keep coming back to the main page.

Thanks to Mike, Ryan, Raaawb and Dani S from "Claire's" message board for providing various source material that I had missed!

Have other sources, links or info that I missed or needs correction or clarification? Email me and let me know!

 

 

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