Pranks, hoaxes, conspiracy theories; I love them all (providing they don’t bring harm to people) and today is the day to celebrate en masse. Happy April Fool’s Day, the first of the month!
I thought I’d re-post this from last year…with a few 2017 updates that have graced my timeline this morning. ‘What is she talking about?‘ I hear you say.
Well, it’s the day when it’s acceptable to play jokes on one another, the more elaborate the better. And this tomfoolery is acknowledged the world over, with similar festivals of mirth dating back thousands of years – the Roman’s had the best name for theirs, it was totes HILARIA!
Now depending on when you read this, it may or may not still be April Fool’s / All Fools’ Day – some areas of our globe think it stops at 12 noon, local time and in my small corner of the rock, after midday, it becomes ‘Legging-up Day’ in which you go around, tripping people up. We’re a strange bunch in these parts…
But who doesn’t like a joke? We know that laughter has numerous health benefits and it does everyone the world of good to relax and be a bit childish now and again. Plus, it bonds us together, a shared moment of amusement.
So here is a collection of some of the better April Fool pranks that have been concocted. Companies, TV shows, celebrities and even government officials get in on the act these days and with the internet at our finger-tips, there’s a much wider audience waiting to be duped!
Let’s get on with the silliness: in no particular order…
POTATO PIZZA: Dominoes new delivery system allows the customer to stay anti-social and prevents them losing precious Netflix or Xbox time by popping the disc of deliciousness straight through the letterbox!
I have to say, that as someone who does use the phone and Xbox apps to order, I would give this a go… even if that meant the topping would land in an unfortunate heap at one side of the box!
WEIGHT-LOSS WEAR: In 2000, it was reported in the Daily Mail that an American inventor had created a sock that would leach the fat out of your body, via your sweat! Want to lose weight? No problem, simply wash the FatSox and the fat is gone forever…
WRONG WAY SYSTEM: In 1991, the London Times reported on a plan to help congestion on the M25, around London. Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, all traffic would have to go clockwise around the circular, Tuesdays and Thursdays, anti-clockwise. BBC radio was duped by the report and broadcast the details, much to listeners’ annoyance.
“Villagers use the motorway to make shopping trips to Orpington. On some days this will be a journey of two miles, and on others a journey of 117 miles. The scheme is lunatic,” said one local resident!
LOVE IT or HATE IT: In an attempt to appeal to those on the wrong side of the Marmite fence, last year the company unveiled their newest edition of the yeasty snack – Clear Marmite…
NEIGH PROBLEM: In 1961, a newspaper in Milan announced that local government had passed a law meaning that horses (still regularly ridden into town from the outlying countryside) could not come into the city unless they had the same safety precautions as motor vehicles. It was apparently mandatory for them to have lights, front and rear, plus a signalling system. Many horse owners actually turned up at mechanics to have the lights fitted to their steeds!
READ ALL ABOUT IT: In 2014, NPR posted this article on their Facebook page. A debate ensued, proving that, just as they thought, many people comment without reading a post (or like without reading, right Blog peeps?!)
However, this was nothing compared to a similar prank that saw the Texan House of Representatives honour a man called Albert DeSalvo stating he was, “…officially recognized by the state of Massachusetts for his noted activities and unconventional techniques involving population control and applied psychology.”
Unfortunately, the information had been submitted as a way to prove politicians don’t read bills / resolutions properly. Albert DeSalvo was the Boston Strangler, guilty of killing 13 women…
DON’T BLOW YOUR TOP: This one took some major pre-planning! In 1974, residents of Sitka, Alaska woke up to the long-dormant volcano, Mount Edgecumbe, smoking! Being naturally perturbed, they spilled out of their homes, thinking it was about to erupt. In fact, it was a local prankster, who had flown hundreds of tyres to the crater, where he’d set them alight. Phew!
A PRANK FROM THE PASTA: In one of the most famous April Fool pranks, BBC’s Panorama (a well-respected, serious news program) reported in 1957 that Swiss farmers were enjoying a record yield of Spaghetti Trees…
Viewers thought they were marvellous and hundreds called in to find out how to grow them at home. The BBC obliged and told them to pop “…some spaghetti in a tin of tomato sauce and hope for the best.” 😉
SCIENT-ERR-IFIC: I do like it when serious institutions and academics show their lighter side, such as this report from CERN (the European Centre for Nuclear Research), who last year confirmed the discovery of The Force – you know, Jedi mind tricks and such!
And in 1976, astronomer Patrick Moore, told the world listening to Radio 2, that a rare, planetary alignment would occur at 9.47 AM that day. Pluto would pass behind Jupiter and cause a temporary displacement in Earth’s gravity. If you jumped at exactly that moment, you could experience a higher jump and weightlessness!
The radio received many calls, some stating they were indeed floating around their living rooms – there’s always one, isn’t there?! Thing is, I can hold my hands up and say that I fell for this. Kind of. You see, this ‘story’ did the rounds again a couple of years ago and whilst I didn’t fully believe it, part of me did think, ‘Why not?’ So I jumped…and managed my typical 10cm off the ground…
HITTING THE HIGH NOTES: In 2014, King’s College Choir, again well-respected and not known for messing about, released a video in which they detail their solution to the new regulations making it problematic to feature younger choir boys. Still needing to hit those tops notes, surgery was suggested (and rejected) then thankfully, the chemistry department came up with a plan. Watch and find out…
The deadpan delivery just made me chuckle!
THESE BESSIE BE GOOD: And finally, even my home town, Hull (City of Culture 2017!), is getting in on the act. Aunt Bessie’s, the company who make proper good Yorkshire puds, have their headquarters in the city and have launched a range of new packaging to celebrate our distinct Hull dialect.
Anyone for some ruhlee purhlee for dessert?
So which were your favourites? And what great pranks have you created / had played on you? Do let me know in the comments, and remember…
Image Credits: lancasteronline.com, hoaxes.org. quotesgram.com, twitter.com and Youtube.