Sunday, April 01, 2007

Happy April Fool's Day

Top 100 April Fools Day Hoaxes of all Time

In #1 position : The Swiss Spaghetti Harvest

In 1957 the respected BBC news show Panorama announced that thanks to a very mild winter and the virtual elimination of the dreaded spaghetti weevil, Swiss farmers were enjoying a bumper spaghetti crop. It accompanied this announcement with footage of Swiss peasants pulling strands of spaghetti down from trees. Huge numbers of viewers were taken in, and many called up wanting to know how they could grow their own spaghetti trees. To this question, the BBC diplomatically replied that they should "place a sprig of spaghetti in a tin of tomato sauce and hope for the best."

The phobic name for the fear of April Fools' Day is Aphrilophobia.

The April 1 tradition in France includes poisson d'avril (literally "April's fish"), attempting to attach a paper fish to the victim's back without being noticed. This is also widespread in other nations, such as Italy (where the term pesce d'aprile (literally "April's fish") is also used to refer to any jokes done during the day).

"You couldn't fool your mother on the foolingest day of your life if you had an electrified fooling machine" Homer Simpson

Too bad I can't say this of myself..what's with that? Everyone around here knows I am the most gullible and I get picked on the most. (..and then sometimes I feel so wise. Lol Hmm.. o well. : )

History of April Fool's Day

Many of the ancient cultures such as Romans and Hindus and the medieval Europeans used to celebrate New Year's Day on sometime near the vernal equinox that could range from March 20th to April 5th. In the Julian calendar, April 1st was designated as the New Year's Day and was so celebrated till 1582, when Pope Gregory XIII ordered the adoption of the new Gregorian Calendar, which specified January 1st as the New Year's Day. However, due to slow communications and resistance of people to change their traditions, many people continued to celebrate New Year's Day as before on 1st of April. Scottish only adopted the new calendar in 1660, Germans, Danish and Norwegians in 1700 and English in 1752. Many French resisted the change and neoiites dubbed them as fools and played pranks on them. They started sending them on 'fool's errands', sent them the fake invitations for parties and tricked them into believing something false. The victims were called 'Poisson d'Avril' or 'April Fish' as the naïve fish gets caught easily and children would often tag of a fish's picture on someone's back. Thus, April Fool's Day originated and was popularly celebrated in England and in the American colonies. It evolved and was caught on quickly throughout the world to trick each other and have fun.

Other well-known April Fools tricks:

New York City's annual April Fools Day Parade

Alabama Changes the Value of Pi: The April 1998 newsletter of New Mexicans for Science and Reason contained an article claiming that the Alabama legislature had voted to change the value of the mathematical constant pi to the "Biblical value" of 3.0. This claim originally appeared as a news story in the 1961 sci-fi classic Stranger in a Strange Land by Robert A Heinlein.

Metric Time: Repeated several times in various countries, this hoax involves claiming that the time system will be changed to one in which units of time are based on powers of 10.

Smell-O-Vision: In 1965, the BBC purported to conduct a trial of a new technology allowing the transmission of odor over the airwaves to all viewers. Many viewers reportedly contacted the BBC to report the trial's success.

The Tower of Pisa: The Dutch television news reported once in the 1950s that the Tower of Pisa had fallen. Many shocked people contacted the station.

Defying gravity: In 1976, British astronomer Sir Patrick Moore told listeners of BBC Radio 2 that unique alignment of two planets would result in an upward gravitational pull making people lighter at precisely 9:47 a.m. that day. He invited his audience to jump in the air and experience "a strange floating sensation." Dozens of listeners phoned in to say the experiment had worked.

I was reading about ways to celebrate April Fools with kids, some suggestions were wearing silly clothes or wearing clothes backwards, decorating with birthday balloons and a New Years banner with the wrong year, Christmas & Easter &/or Halloween decorations or just decorations that have nothing to do with anything, teddy bears, spatulas, random stuff. Eating and drinking out of unusual things would be good.. eating out of pot lids, drinking out of bowls, eating soup out of cups, etc. Turn everything inside out, upside down, get random, its good for the soul. : )

Happy Valentines!

Pic and info on Kinetic Sculpture Races and silly clothes from

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