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Top 100 April Fool's Day Hoaxes of All Time
Museum of Hoaxes ^ | Museum of Hoaxes

Posted on 03/30/2012 2:10:57 AM PDT by SMGFan

Note from the Curator: I created the first version of this list in the late 1990s. Back then, there was hardly any information collected about April Fool's Day pranks, so I had to do a lot of research in newspaper archives to put this together. Luckily I was in grad school, so I had a lot of spare time on my hands ;-). Over the years I've tweaked the list, rearranging it slightly and adding new entries based on reader feedback and ongoing research, but my top choices have remained pretty much the same. This list is easily the most popular article I've ever posted on the Museum of Hoaxes

(Excerpt) Read more at ...

TOPICS: History; Humor
KEYWORDS: aprilfools
#1: The Swiss Spaghetti Harvest On 1 April 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. Many called the BBC wanting to know how they could grow their own spaghetti tree. To this the BBC diplomatically replied, "place a sprig of spaghetti in a tin of tomato sauce and hope for the best." More→
1 posted on 03/30/2012 2:11:12 AM PDT by SMGFan
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To: SMGFan

#2: On Free Republic, in 2011, the poster known as Lazamataz swore off women forever, proclaiming that he had matured, and will be treating women with respect and honor, no longer viewing them as mere playgrounds for his bizarre and unsettling lusts. Posters on the forum flocked to the thread, to praise his decision to become an adult in his behavior. Soon, however, people began to notice the date — and they realized they had been had. Lazamataz laughed, and immediately began making passes at all the women on the thread.

2 posted on 03/30/2012 2:19:48 AM PDT by Lazamataz (Shut up and drill.)
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To: Lazamataz

That sounds like a fine day.

3 posted on 03/30/2012 3:16:15 AM PDT by EEGator
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To: Lazamataz

Hahahahahah...sounds like a honey pot to me!

4 posted on 03/30/2012 3:34:02 AM PDT by rlmorel (A knife in the chest from a unapologetic liberal is preferable to a knife in the back from a RINO.)
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To: Lazamataz

I was at the store and this ho axes me will I buy her some Skittles...

5 posted on 03/30/2012 4:14:57 AM PDT by humblegunner
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To: Lazamataz

There is still time to repent.

6 posted on 03/30/2012 4:25:19 AM PDT by bmwcyle (I am ready to serve Jesus on Earth because the GOP failed again)
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To: bmwcyle

You misspelled ‘repeat’.

7 posted on 03/30/2012 4:38:59 AM PDT by Lazamataz (Shut up and drill.)
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To: Lazamataz

Yes, if that was my intent.

8 posted on 03/30/2012 4:41:25 AM PDT by bmwcyle (I am ready to serve Jesus on Earth because the GOP failed again)
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To: SMGFan

The 1992 hoax of Rich Little’s being the voice of President Nixon, exclaiming he was going to run again for President. That is just hilarious. The campaign slogan was “I did not do anything wrong, and I won’t do it again.”

9 posted on 03/30/2012 4:46:08 AM PDT by YepYep ((We've just GOT to love Jesus enough to LISTEN to Him, and Do what He Says))
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To: bmwcyle

You misspelled ‘invent’.

10 posted on 03/30/2012 5:10:53 AM PDT by Lazamataz (Shut up and drill.)
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To: Lazamataz

Spelling NAZI

11 posted on 03/30/2012 5:12:47 AM PDT by bmwcyle (I am ready to serve Jesus on Earth because the GOP failed again)
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To: bmwcyle

You misspelled ‘PELOSI’.

12 posted on 03/30/2012 5:22:15 AM PDT by Lazamataz (Shut up and drill.)
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To: EEGator
"That sounds like a fine day"

It wasn't actually,everything about it was just wrong.It was like a rupture in the force,or farce or somethin'

13 posted on 03/30/2012 5:28:20 AM PDT by mitch5501 ("make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these things ye shall never fall")
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To: Lazamataz

You misspelled ‘Gargoyle’.

14 posted on 03/30/2012 5:28:26 AM PDT by reagan_fanatic (2012 isn't an election - it's a restraining order.)
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To: SMGFan

It seems they forgot the biggest one: The saddling of America with Barack Obama.

15 posted on 03/30/2012 5:48:59 AM PDT by Harley (Will Rogers never met Harry Reid.)
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To: SMGFan

I like #4 (at the link) where they announced that Taco Bell had purchased the Liberty Bell from the Federal Government and ahd renamed it “The Taco Liberty Bell”. This sparked outrage and many phone calls until it was revealed that it was an April Fool’s Day joke.

#1 THe Federal Govt. does not own the Libert Bell — the City of Philadelphia does.

#2 Taco Bell donated $5000 toward the upkeep of the Liberty Bell afterwards.

16 posted on 03/30/2012 6:07:14 AM PDT by afraidfortherepublic
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To: SMGFan
Hmmmm, #10:

During an interview on BBC Radio 2, on the morning of 1 April 1976, the British astronomer Patrick Moore announced that at 9:47 AM a once-in-a-lifetime astronomical event was going to occur that listeners could experience in their very own homes. The planet Pluto would pass behind Jupiter, temporarily causing a gravitational alignment that would counteract and lessen the Earth's own gravity. Moore told his listeners that if they jumped in the air at the exact moment this planetary alignment occurred, they would experience a strange floating sensation. When 9:47 AM arrived, BBC2 began to receive hundreds of phone calls from listeners claiming to have felt the sensation. One woman even reported that she and her eleven friends had risen from their chairs and floated around the room. Moore's announcement (which, of course, was a joke) was inspired by a pseudoscientific astronomical theory that had recently been promoted in a book called The Jupiter Effect, alleging that a rare alignment of the planets was going to cause massive earthquakes and the destruction of Los Angeles in 1982.

Thinking along those lines, does anyone know for sure what day "Global Warming" was first announced?

17 posted on 03/30/2012 6:08:14 AM PDT by Moltke (Always retaliate first.)
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To: SMGFan

Back in the `90s a radio station in Cincinnati announced that the Space Shuttle had encountered unforeseen problems on a scheduled landing and had to divert to Lunken Airport (the City Municipal Airport on the East Side) and was expected to land in “about an hour”.

The placed got jammed up with people flocking to see the damaged space shuttle try to land at Lunken.


18 posted on 03/30/2012 6:23:37 AM PDT by Buckeye Battle Cry (Not Romney - Not ever!)
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To: SMGFan
Okay, not a "greatest of all time" April Fools joke, but it's pretty amusing to me: most years, I hack into all the HP printers in our office at work, and change the LCD displays to have funny messages on them. Examples:

"Insert coin(s)"

"Out of dilithium"

"Not feelin it today"

"Breakdown imminent"

"Swipe card to begin"

19 posted on 03/30/2012 6:31:30 AM PDT by backwoods-engineer (I will vote against ANY presidential candidate who had non-citizen parents.)
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To: SMGFan

FOr me “The Curious Case of Sidd Finch” will always be the #1 best April Fools joke.

“He’s a pitcher, part yogi and part recluse. Impressively liberated from our opulent life-style, Sidd’s deciding about yoga —and his future in baseball.”

May George Plimpton forever rest in peace, one of the greatest sports writers ever.

20 posted on 03/30/2012 6:34:49 AM PDT by commish (Freedom tastes sweetest to those who have fought to preserve it.)
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To: SMGFan

1957 Swiss Spaghetti Harvest...

21 posted on 03/30/2012 6:47:16 AM PDT by Bonneville
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To: SMGFan
#61: La Fornication Comme Une Acte Culturelle

In 1972 listeners to England's Radio 3 program In Parenthesis were treated to a roundtable discussion of a few cutting-edge new works of social anthropology and musicology. First up was a discussion of La Fornication Comme Une Acte Culturelle by Henri Mensonge (translated as Henry Lie). This book argued that "we live in an age of metaphorical rape" in which "confrontation, assault, intrusion, and exposure are becoming validated transactions, the rites of democracy, of mass society." This sparked a blisteringly incomprehensible debate, which eventually segued into an exploration of the question "Is 'Is' Is?" Finally, the audience heard a rousing deconstruction of the 'arch form' of the sonata's first motif. Listeners seemed to accept the program's discussion as a legitimate exploration of new trends in the arts. Thankfully, it was a parody.

Is this where Clinton got his idea?

22 posted on 03/30/2012 6:57:12 AM PDT by Miss Maam
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23 posted on 03/30/2012 7:17:23 AM PDT by IYellAtMyTV (Je t'aime, faire du bruit comme le cochon.)
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To: SMGFan

“#47: Internet Spring Cleaning”

Back in the day, is was a BOFH (sysop). There were no PCs or even much in the way of graphic displays - computing mostly entailed dumb terminals hardwired to mainframes.

One April first I replaced the standard system login with a “cookie monster,” a program that after you entered user and password said “Gimme a cookie.” If you tried to abort and continue, it said “Don’t DO that! GIMME A COOKIE!”

Users and faculty thought it was cute. However, I got REAMED by the head of my department, Computing Services, because she couldn’t figure out how to get past the prompt.

I swear, they had a needle stuck in their skulls and half their brains sucked out to qualify for management.

24 posted on 03/30/2012 7:41:26 AM PDT by Peet (Cogito ergo dubito.)
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To: Peet
Howie Mandel had the greatest practical joke while on tour...he deliberately destroyed the new shoes of one of the members....saying it was an accident and to make it up he took the guy to the best shoe store in town...the guy got a very expensive pair of shoes and Howie paid for them....after leaving the store, he went back and bought 3 more pair of the same shoes, each one 1/2 size smaller so he had 3 pair of exactly the same shoe but in 3 different sizes, Every week he replace the shoes of the guy with a pair 1/2 size smaller and within a few weeks the guy couldn't figure out why his shoes didn't fit any longer.....

That was one of the best practical jokes I ever heard...

25 posted on 03/30/2012 5:53:37 PM PDT by goat granny
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To: backwoods-engineer

You must be a hoot to the security folks.

26 posted on 03/30/2012 6:04:02 PM PDT by Delta Dawn (The whole truth.)
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To: SMGFan

Here’s my best one to date:

20+ years ago my company got a new phone system at the main office. We went from 3 lines to 17 lines and received fancy new desk phones. For ten days after everyone in the company received a daily memo from the communications company detailing some new feature the phone and service offered.

The day before April Fools Day I took the phone company letter head and made up a bogus memo that read:

TO: All XYX Company Business Phone Users

From: Joe Blow, Systems Engineer (name changed to protect the guilty)

Please be advised that on 4/1/91 we will be cleaning the business phone lines at your location.

High pressure air will be injected into the fiber optic cables to purge the system of accumulated dust and debris.

We recommend wrapping your phone’s handset in a plastic bag to prevent the expelled dust and debris from settling into your phone’s key punch pad.

The cleaning will begin promptly at 10:00 am and last for approximately 30 seconds.

Please take the necessary precautions to minimize any inconvenience of this required service.

I took three of these memos and put them on the desk of the people who I figured would fall for this, along with a nice waste basket size white plastic bag.

The next morning, April Fools Day, at about 9:30 one of these three people starts to make it her business to find out who in our office does not have a bag for their phone. She starts a panic about some type of phone company test, where “they’re going to blow out the lines!”. Shes running around telling everyone they had better cover up their handset.

At about 9:50am I started walking through the building and EVERYONE had their phone wrapped in plastic. There were people talking with a bag wrapped around the hand set…overhead one saying in a loud voice..”Its some kind of test, they’re blowing out the lines” to the person she was talking to. I’m starting to feel like a kid who through a baseball through his dad’s car windshield and dad is going to find out real soon who did it.

A couple of minutes before 10:00 I go up to the reception area to make a system wide page announcing “April Fools!”. At 10:00 the phones are ringing but no one is answering. I’m holding the phone in my hand to make the page and the company President walks by and says, “PUT THE PHONE DOWN, YOU’RE GOING TO GET SPRAYED IN THE FACE!” By this time I’m laughing so hard I can hardly speak.

I make my announcement “Attention all of you with a bag on your phone, April Fools.” There was Dead Silence. Not a sound. Then I hear murmers and “I’m gonna kill him”, “He’s gonna get it”, etc.

Final count 27 phones bagged. I was a marked man and left to work in a branch office at a neighboring city for two weeks before going back into the main office.

It’s been 20+ years. The company imploded in the 2008 meltdown and all of us who worked together for so long have moved one to different employers. But every time we have a get together someone brings up “the time they blew out the phone lines”.

27 posted on 03/30/2012 6:46:24 PM PDT by Rebelbase
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