No fool like an April fool

I read the Times somewhat more attentively than usual on the train this morning to try to spot an April Fool, but was unsuccessful.

The story "Pressure grows on Mosley to stand down" was unfortunately not an April Fool. I write "unfortunately" not because of whether or not Max (son of Oswald) Mosley should resign from Formula One for indulging in Nazi-themed sex with prostitutes, but because Bernie Ecclestone, head of Formula One, is quoted as saying "If Max was in bed with two hookers, they'd say "good for you" or something like that." Er, no, Mr Ecclestone, "they" would not. (Maybe in his world they would, but not anyone else's world.)

Thankfully, the self-evident story "Diana death 'conspiracy' thrown out by coroner" was not an April Fool. (Diana coroner blasts lies and gold-digging by Paul Burrell, Diana's butler.)

The fact that every person in the UK will receive free health checks once they reach the age of 40 is apparently not an April Fool either, although it is a non-story as anyone can go to their GP and get a "free health check" by asking for one.

A whole page on the scruffiness despite recent haircut of Boris Johnson, Conservative party candidate for Mayor of London, was sadly not an April Fool, though shows one the depths to which the Times has sunk.

Kevin Spacey's justified comments about the BBC giving endless free advertising to Andrew Lloyd Webber's west end shows was not an April Fool. (I'd do anything for my theatre to get a plug like this from the BBC.) Good on you, Kevin. And good on you, Times theatre critic Benedict Nightingale, for your opinion on the matter, particularly re Graham Norton.

Other non-April Fools appear to be "Woman who invented an evil stalker is spared jail" and "Six dishes that rule mealtimes" (about "an insatiable appetite for TV cookery shows").

My money is on "mobile phone sniffer sees through fibs", especially as it does not seem to be in the online edition of the paper, but honestly, almost any of the stories could be a joke, rendering the point of even having a joke superfluous. The paper features a rather weedy historical round-up of April Fools here. Tomorrow, I'll be back to the quick scan and the jump to the back page (puzzles).

If you'd be interested in a much better round-up of April Fools with a scientific theme, I refer you to the Great Beyond . My favourite is the top ten creationist discoveries, but the new deep-sea communities from whale poo runs it close.

5 thoughts on “No fool like an April fool

  1. Ha ha ha… I would have voted “April Fool” for the majority of your news roundups too. I was fooled after less than an hour being awake today.
    A press release arrived in my mailbox this morning: “Mr & Mrs Smith by Royal Appointment: Buckingham Palace set to become the ultimate British B & B”. The email goes on to say: “In a move that will shock traditionalists, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II today announced that Buckingham Palace, the official residence of the British monarchy since 1837, will open its doors in October this year to paying hotel guests. Mr & Mrs Smith, the London-based boutique-hotel specialists, will handle all bookings.”
    I thought, what a coup for Mr & Mrs Smith… and should have spotted the giveaway “activities available will include corgi-walking in the Palace gardens, a day with the horse guard and cosy tea-and-Q&A sessions with the likes of Princess Anne, Freddie Windsor and Camilla Parker Bowles” but was occupied with thoughts of a royal weekend with corgis and gin.

  2. Surely the item about Nick Clegg Liberal party leader having slept with 30 women must have been an April fool.
    After all he asked his MPs to abstain……
    [from voting on the European referendum.]

  3. Ah, quite, Norm – but I discounted that one as they’d been running with it for a few days. Also, there were just so many stupid articles when I sat down and looked, my typing fingers got tired!
    Lovely idea, Kim — I don’t think I’d be tempted by that one, but opening up the official residence of J K Rowling along similar lines– now that would be lovely, truly.

  4. Happily, no one pulled the wool over my eyes yesterday…but, then, I was home, not out and about or at work.
    My favorite science-oriented prank (dunno if it appeared on April Fool’s Day, though) was the Sokal Hoax. Know that one? Physicist who made a fool of idiot lit. crits who thought they knew something about science but proved how much they didn’t when they published Sokal’s article and then he outed their idiocies.

  5. That one is, in fact, still going, Susan!
    Science magazine had a news story about Bush becoming friends with science — not sure how many people were fooled by that, though — not many scientists I imagine.

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