While April 1st, better known as April Fool's Day, is technically not a holiday, it is a favorite day for many a child or child at heart. It is believed that April Fool's Day traces its origins back to 1582, when the Julian calendar system (which said the New Year started in April) was replaced with the Greogorian calendar system that we use today. No matter how it all started, the day can be a lot of fun!
The most amazing part is that it is not just individuals who get into the spirit, but also large corporations. Here are some examples of fun pranks that have had people fooled for days if not years - and the anecdotes go all the way back to World War One.
On April 1, 1915, a French pilot flew over a German camp, dropping what looked like a bomb. Panicked, German soldiers dove for cover. When there was no explosion, they gingerly picked up the "bomb", a football with a note that said, "April Fool!"
In 2005, NASA claimed to have pictures of water on Mars. But don't bother looking for those tin-foil space helmets just yet - For the 'picture' was that of a Mars candy bar with a glass of water on it.
In Copenhagen, Denmark, a local newspaper announced that the Danish parliament had passed a law stating that all dogs must be painted white, to ensure that it was easier to spot them at night!
However the Corporation most notorious for April Fool's jokes, is The British Broadcasting Company, normally known for its very solemn and staid programming,
In 1957, the BBC show Panaroma, reported that Swiss farmers were having a great spaghetti harvest that year, since their biggest pest, the spaghetti weevil, was gone.They showed the Swiss actually picking limp spaghetti from trees! (see video below). Viewers called in to learn how to grow their own spaghetti tree: stick a dry piece in a can of tomato sauce and keep your fingers crossed!
In 1980, they told viewers that Big Ben, the world's largest four-faced chiming clock and a British landmark, was switching to a digital face, to keep up with the 21st Century. They took the joke a step further for the poor Japanese viewers, by telling them that the clock hands would be sold to the first four viewers who called in - As you can imagine, many did!
However, the best one so far was last year, when they filmed, what looked like a real documentary about a new breed of 'flying penguins'. This one even had newspapers fooled for a few days! (http://www.dogonews.com/2008/04/11/can-penguins-fly).
If you can't think of any tricks, here's one. I call it the 'diamond pin prank' and have used it quite successfully to fool my friends and teachers. Stick a dime and a safety pin in a jewelry box. Then, ask your friends if they want to see a 'dime and pin' (as in diamond pin). I guarantee you they will all want to look at it.
Have a great Fool's Day!