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Happy April Fools Day! No Kidding…

Tom McLaughlin on April Fool (L) wins the Bet Shanghai Masters Tennis – Betdaq Handicap at Kempton Park.

Before you start reading this, — your shoe’s untied. OK I guess maybe it’s not. Historically that’s one of the oldest April Fools pranks. Adam would have probably pulled it on Eve if they had shoes. I guess he might have to resort to, “Hey Eve, Your fig leaf’s gone.” Every year we pull a few funnies on our friends and family but like you I was curious about how this whole April Fools Day stuff started.

History of April Fools Day

As with most historical dates there are conflicting stories about how April Fools Day became a yearly event. The most common story deals with two calendars.  When the world used the Julian calendar the New Year began on March 25th because that was the first day of spring. But, due to Easter occurring at the same time, the New Year celebration took place on April 1st.

When the Gregorian calendar came along the New Year festivities were celebrated on January 1st and those who still celebrated the date in April were deemed April Fools.

Another theory is that during the spring, as winter leaves and spring begins, Mother Nature often plays tricks on farmers who plant too early by providing erratic weather. And as we all know, “It’s not nice to fool Mother Nature.”

Some April 1st Trivia

  • A Canadian radio station caused an uproar when they fooled listeners into believing that it was the last day that the Canadian $2.00 bill would be honored by the Treasury. They also had people scrambling to find $2.00 coins that had been mistakenly minted from gold.
  • One of the best April Fools Jokes on the American public happened in 1985. George Plimpton wrote an article for Sports Illustrated about a baseball phenom headed for the NY Mets baseball team named Sidd Finch.
    It was reported that Finch grew up in a Tibetan Monastery and could throw a 168 mph fastball with pinpoint accuracy. NY Mets fans were elated to learn about this from such a prestigious source as Sports Illustrated. However they failed to pick up on the clue Plimpton left in a subhead in the article. He wrote,  “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.” The first letter of each of these words, taken together, spells “H-a-p-p-y A-p-r-i-l F-o-o-l-s D-a-y, A-h F-i-b.” Sports Illustrated fessed up on April 15th after receiving over 2,000 letters for one of the most popular stories in their history.
  • Check out the Top 100 April Fools Hoaxes of all time. Click Here.

Some Final Thoughts

Wear slip on shoes today, check your back frequently in the mirror and don’t believe anything anyone tells you about anything. With all that’s going on in the world we could probably all use a little levity. So enjoy the day, enjoy yourself, and see if you can fool your friends or family — in a good way of course.

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