Hoax Museum Blog: April Fools Day

Family Pranks for April 1st — FamilyFun has a list of thirteen pranks that can be played on family members on April Fools Day. The list includes:Wake the kids up at 3am and tell them it's time for schoolSew shut the fly on Dad's underwearCreate a fake coffee spill (includes a recipe for doing this: mix together equal parts white glue and brown puff paint and let the mixture dry on wax paper... I have no idea what 'puff paint' is)Fasten a rubber band around the spray attachment on the kitchen sink
Posted: Sun Mar 27, 2005.   Comments (27)

20th Annual April Fool’s Day Parade — Joey Skaggs has announced details of NEW YORK CITY'S 20th ANNUAL APRIL FOOLS' DAY PARADE (he's got that page very oddly formatted in a single long column, but you can also read the news release in pdf format). A few details: This year's parade, "Divided We Stand", will memorialize the efforts made by people around the world to maintain their power, whether political, religious or personal, at the cost of the greater common good. The Parade Grand Marshall will be Ex CBS Anchor, Dan…
Posted: Wed Mar 23, 2005.   Comments (3)

Top 10 WORST April Fools Ever — To complement my list of the Top 100 Best April Fool's Day hoaxes of all time, I've now created a list of the Top 10 WORST April Fool's Day hoaxes ever. These aren't jokes that are just lame or old. These are (at least in my opinion) attempts at humor that are profoundly awful. But they're so bad that a few of them are kind of funny, in a dark, twisted way. Enjoy.
Posted: Tue Mar 22, 2005.   Comments (16)

Catfish Licking, Part Two — About a week ago I linked to an article that discussed how Gulf Coast teenagers have been going around licking catfish, in the hope that it'll make them high. Now a follow-up article reveals the source of this strange behavior. It all started out as an April Fool's Day joke published in Sport Fishing magazine five years ago: OK, listen up catfish lickers. You've been punked. There's no hallucinogen in the slime. A Florida magazine editor said he made the story up five years ago for an…
Posted: Sun Feb 06, 2005.   Comments (3)

Horse and Hound Humor — According to Horse & Hound magazine, British health authorities have decided to make it the law that all children must wear face masks and rubber gloves while doing yard work or grooming horses. Health and Safety spokeswoman Lirap Ducek is quoted as saying, "Childhood asthma has increased three-fold in the last 10 years, and we want to ensure that children are protected against picking up bugs which can have long-term health implications." But before you send your kid out in a rubber…
Posted: Wed May 19, 2004.   Comments (5)

Best and Worst April Fools, 2004 — After having had a few days to consider this year's crop of April Fool's Day hoaxes, I've picked a personal favorite, which would be NPR's news story about the "portable zip codes" program. This program, inspired by the new FCC ruling that lets you take your phone number with you when you move, would supposedly allow people to take their zip code with them when they move. I like the story because, unlike most of the hoaxes this year, it's actually semi-believable. Absurd, of course, but…
Posted: Tue Apr 06, 2004.   Comments (2)

Stories that sound like jokes, but aren’t — Every year on April 1 reporters test our wits by mixing in a few joke stories with the real ones. But then there are also the stories that are real, but sound like jokes. These stories challenge us to keep our skepticism under control. This year, the biggest example of that was Google's Gmail announcement that had many people swearing it must be a joke. Then we also had an article released by the British National Archives describing a bizarre WWII plan to place chickens inside of…
Posted: Fri Apr 02, 2004.   Comments (3)

April Fool’s Day Roundup — Apple Announces iPod V Portable Video Player from iPodLounge (would have been cool if true). The iShave: An attachment to turn your iPod into an electric razor. (iPod jokes seem popular this year). DeadJournal: The alternative to LiveJournal. Bob Carroll, creator of the Skeptic's Dictionary, announces he's seen the light and abandoned skepticism. L-plates for yum cha carts (But what's a yum cha cart?) Kids Fly Free on RyanAir (for as long as they can hold on) Theatre-goers weighed…
Posted: Thu Apr 01, 2004.   Comments (4)

Oprah Becomes 4th Member of Holy Trinity — The major Christian denominations have jointly agreed to make Oprah Winfrey the fourth member of the Holy Trinity, thereby broadening its appeal and making it less gender-biased. "Along with the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, the popular talk show host will be recognized as one person in the sacred and indivisible unity of the Godhead--or Quadhead, as the updated Trinity will now be called."
Posted: Thu Apr 01, 2004.   Comments (2)

TV on your Mobile — In an update of the Instant Color TV prank from 1962, Sweden's largest newspaper, Dagens Nyheter, is reporting that mobile phone users can watch movies on their phone screens, simply by pointing the phones at a tv and punching in the appropriate access code.
Posted: Thu Apr 01, 2004.   Comments (0)

Opening Belch — The Motley Fool reports a mishap at the New York Stock Exchange today. Russ Cooper, CEO of Farmland Enterprise Associates, misread the instructions and thought the invitation to ring the opening bell at the exchange asked him instead to emit the opening belch. He performed as he thought he was required.
Posted: Thu Apr 01, 2004.   Comments (0)

New Atlantic Tunnel — The new Atlantic Tunnel will open in September 2009. It's being built by the Atlantic Tunnel Corporation (who else?). Check out their website to learn all about this amazing feat of engineering. You can even enter a competition to win a trip on the first train through the tunnel. There's a rumor that the London ad agency TBWAGGT is also somehow involved in this.
Posted: Thu Apr 01, 2004.   Comments (9)

ThinkGeek Hunger Eliminator — The folks at ThinkGeek have zeroed in on why people get fat: because they eat too much. Scientifically speaking it's called the ETM (eat too much) Syndrome. Their solution: the Gastron(tm) Remote Controlled Hunger Eliminator. "you can easily control your exact hunger level at any time. Simply swallow the tiny non-digestible Gastron base station and use the remote to adjust your personal hunger level. The base station inflates to fill your stomach, giving you that satisfied full feeling…
Posted: Thu Apr 01, 2004.   Comments (2)

BMW Offers New Way to Cook — BMW has announced a cutting-edge innovation for commuters that allows them to prepare dinner, while driving home in the car. It's called SHEF, which stands for Satellite Hypersensitive Electromagnetic Foodration. Basically all your oven controls are built into the dashboard of your car, and they communicate wirelessly with your actual oven back in your home. You can monitor the progress of your meal via a built-in oven-cam.
Posted: Thu Apr 01, 2004.   Comments (1)

Google Copernicus Center — Google has announced that they're now hiring for their new 'lunar hosting and research center': Copernicus Center. Applicants must be "capable of surviving with limited access to such modern conveniences as soy low-fat lattes, The Sopranos and a steady supply of oxygen."
Posted: Thu Apr 01, 2004.   Comments (2)

Google Launches Gmail — Google has announced a new email service called Gmail, that will give each user one gigabyte of free storage. Strangely, the press release is dated April 1, leading many to speculate that it's an April Fool's Day joke. Maybe it is, but if so it would seem a very odd one. Usually April Fool's Day jokes involve a certain minimum level of wit, and you should feel foolish for believing them once you find out they're a joke. But if someone were to tell me that Gmail is a joke, I wouldn't…
Posted: Thu Apr 01, 2004.   Comments (11)

BBC Ducks the Issue — I just heard about this early April Fool's Day fumble on the part of the BBC. As the Times of London reports: "Declan Curry, the intrepid television hack, broke the embargo on a fascinating British Waterways study that revealed that ducks living on canals weigh, on average, about a pound more than those living on rivers. The slow-moving canal water, so the story went, provides less opportunity for the ducks to swim and as a result they piled on the pounds. Mr Curry and the BBC should…
Posted: Wed Mar 31, 2004.   Comments (2)

More Spam on April 1st — Makers of network security software are warning that there may be an increase in spam leading up to April Fool's Day. "Spammers are expected to use subject lines such as "great joke," "free jokes," "prank," or "April fools" to entice users into opening attachments that carry viruses or objectionable content, potentially putting company networks at risk."
Posted: Tue Mar 30, 2004.   Comments (0)

April Fool’s Day Survey — Survey finds that two-in-ten workers participate in April Fool's Day at the office. The best part of the article are the examples of office pranks it lists: moving someone's office to the front lobby, telling colleagues they can leave early, super-glueing drawers shut, etc. One of the best office pranks that I've heard about occurred at a small company and was played on the human resources manager. One after another every employee went into her office and told her that they were…
Posted: Tue Mar 30, 2004.   Comments (1)

Ice-Cream Potatoes, and other food pranks — Family Fun magazine has quite a few suggestions for April Fool's Day pranks over at its site. I especially like their list of food pranks, such as preparing ice-cream potatoes (shown to the right). That's not potatoes with gravy. It's ice cream with butterscotch sauce. Also check out their recipe for creating green beans out of Jolly Rancher Fruit Chews.
Posted: Fri Mar 19, 2004.   Comments (0)

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