April Fools’ Day

April Fools’ Day

Today is April Fools’ Day (sometimes also known as All Fools’ Day) and in the UK it is traditional to play pranks or stage hoaxes up until midday.

Over the years there have been several famous hoaxes perpetrated by the media. My favourites include the famous BBC prank in 1957, when they broadcast a film on the Panorama current affairs series that supposedly showed Swiss farmers picking freshly-grown spaghetti from spaghetti trees. The BBC was flooded with requests about where to purchase spaghetti trees and had to admit it was a hoax.

Twenty years later The Guardian newspaper produced a very convincing seven-page supplement about the mid-ocean island state of San Serriffe.

April Fools’ Day

I suspect that this hoax will also appeal to other lovers of imagi-nations.

In 1984 the BBC entertainment programme That’s Life had an item about a new animal that had arrived at London Zoo.

The Lirpa Loof (April Fool written backwards) was said to be a hairy biped from the Himalayas, and it was said to have some unusual habits and traits. These included it producing purple droppings due to its diet of rhododendron flowers and a penchant for mimicking anything that it saw being done by its keepers and members of the public.

Finally, many years ago, a magazine (I think that it was Model Boat magazine) published the plans of a Russian ironclad battleship that had never been built. From what I can remember, its name was an anagram of April Fool and the design looked a little like of the Ekaterina II-class battleships, but with a pair of side-by-side turrets at both ends of the ship.

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Autor: Robert (Bob) Cordery / Wargaming Miscellany

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