Happy April Fool’s Day, 2010!

Happy April Fools! I've been busy working on my book, but April 1st has managed to pull me back to the site.

Last year I posted a brief rant about the origin of April Fool's Day, explaining how every year reporters write articles claiming that the most likely origin of the holiday is the Gregorian calendar reform of the late 16th century. This explanation gets trotted out every year, even though there's just no way it's true. Last year I noted:

I realize it's probably overly optimistic to expect reporters to do much fact checking when they're on a deadline and told to write a story about the origin of April Fool's Day, which is why I expect the calendar-change hypothesis to keep getting rolled out year after year by reporters, well into the future.

This year is already true to form. Yahoo's Buzz Log posted an article about April Fool's Day which not only manages to identify calendar change as the likely origin of the day, but claims that it's a hypothesis I support! Mike Krumboltz, the author of the Buzz Log piece, writes:

There are several theories regarding the origin of April Fools' Day, and none of them are 100% definitive. However, one does stand above the rest: The Museum of Hoaxes explains that in 1564, King Charles IX of France passed a law that changed the beginning of the year from April 1 to January 1. News of the change traveled slowly. Those who were either misinformed or slow to make the adjustments still celebrated the New Year on April 1. As a result, they were mocked and pranks were pulled.

He even links to my article about the origin of April Fool's Day, apparently not realizing that much of my article is spent trying to debunk the calendar-change hypothesis.

Some things never change!

April Fools Day

Posted on Thu Apr 01, 2010


Perhaps it is Krumboltz's version of an April Fool's prank.
Posted by Accipiter  on  Thu Apr 01, 2010  at  05:19 PM
Poor Alex! Well you've educated us so that's a start I suppose. We'll take on the rest of the world one April Fool's Day at a time 😊
Posted by Nettie  on  Thu Apr 01, 2010  at  06:47 PM
Perhaps your attempt to debunk the April Fool's myth has in and of itself *become* an April Fool's joke?
Posted by Tanuki  on  Fri Apr 02, 2010  at  08:09 AM
The guy was in such a hurry, he didn't even make it past the second paragraph!
Posted by mario  on  Fri Apr 02, 2010  at  01:18 PM
Dear Alex,
Dumb people (reporters are kinda people too) are like windmills. You can fight them, but you can never beat them.
Good luck and best wishes,
Posted by Unfairly Balanced  on  Fri Apr 09, 2010  at  09:18 AM
Alex, you expect reporters to be concerned about the truth of anything they write about? News reporting is always a lie. Propaganda at its worst. Reporters work for the Secret Masters after all. Think about it, since when should it take four years of college to learn to ask questions and do simple research? Most of the time in journalism school obviously is brainwashing by the agents of the Masters.

And if you believe any of this, I have a bridge I want to talk to you about.
Posted by Christopher Cole  on  Mon Apr 12, 2010  at  09:13 PM
happy april fools day..heheheh
Posted by Laura Coppinger  on  Fri Apr 30, 2010  at  02:34 AM
I think it is having different stories for origin of April Fool's Day. Every one have their different story.
Posted by micro usb car charger  on  Wed May 19, 2010  at  01:05 AM
There are several theories regarding the origin of April Fools' Day, and none of them are 100% definitive. However, one does stand above the rest: The Museum of Hoaxes explains that in 1564, King Charles IX of France passed a law that changed the beginning of the year.
Posted by Candy Wrapper  on  Fri Jun 04, 2010  at  09:29 AM
April's Fools Day actually started in the mid-sixties. There was a spin-off of the Man From U.N.C.L.E TV show, called The Girl From U.N.C.L.E., and her name was April Dancer. She was a hottie, and had a large following of fans, appropriately called April's Fools. NBC announced that the show's last episode was scheduled, but the series was cancelled before the final show was aired. Millions tuned in, only to be dissapointed to see Art Linkletter and his show Kids Say The Most F-ed Up Things. Bummer
Posted by Hairy Houdini  on  Fri Jun 04, 2010  at  02:42 PM
Harry, I can remember April Fools Day (where does the ' go?) so your comment doesn't hold water. If you had posted it on April 1st, I would have accepted it as an April Fools joke and I might even have played along. However, I'm getting for the National D-Day Rememberance Festival as part of the KIA Appreciation Seance so I can't play along with your joke.
Posted by Christopher Cole  on  Fri Jun 04, 2010  at  06:32 PM
April Fools' Day? Are there multiple fools?
Posted by Mike  on  Sun Jun 13, 2010  at  07:47 PM
I always get fooled on the net every April Fools day. With some fake messages and download links.
Posted by Marbella  on  Tue Jun 22, 2010  at  08:08 PM
happy april fools day... lolz :lol:
Posted by AmilaDG  on  Sat Jul 03, 2010  at  09:38 PM
happy april fools day.
Posted by k  on  Sat Oct 02, 2010  at  08:29 AM
it has different stories for origin of April Fool's Da
Posted by luoshenhua  on  Fri Oct 15, 2010  at  12:22 AM
I was just reading SOME BURIED CEASAR by Rex Stout which published in 1939 and there was a reference April Fool's Day in there. Also in the Webster's Book of Quotations there was a listing referencing Mark Twain's book PUDDENHEAD WILSON'S CALENDAR and there was a reference to April Fools Day in that book as well. So April Fool's Day has been around for a while, maybe just not as popular as recently.
Posted by Christopher Cole  on  Mon Mar 21, 2011  at  11:15 AM
The theory goes like this: In 1564 France reformed its calendar, moving the start of the year from the end of March to January 1. Those who failed to keep up with the change, who stubbornly clung to the old calendar system and continued to celebrate the New Year during the week that fell between March 25th and April 1st, had jokes played on them. Pranksters would surreptitiously stick paper fish to their backs. The victims of this prank were thus called Poisson d
Posted by Herb Mohanram  on  Thu Mar 24, 2011  at  10:39 PM
Every one have their different story... :D
Posted by Blythe  on  Wed Aug 03, 2011  at  05:25 AM
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