Today it’s April Fools, a day for pranks, practical jokes and general silliness.
To inspire you in coming up with your own mischievous pranks – or just to give you an idea of what to look out for to avoid being tricked! – we thought we’d bring you our 10 favourite ever April Fools pranks.
Here we go:
Burger King revealed, in 1998, that they had developed the ‘Left-Handed Whopper’. The burger contained all the usual ingredients but they were rotated by 180º!
Thousands of people asked for the new burger, which of course, did not exist!
Richard Branson’s UFO
In 1989, motorists near London saw a huge flying saucer in the air, which landed in a field where police officers were waiting.
The saucer turned out to be a hot-air balloon designed by Richard Branson for an April Fools’ prank. Unfortunately the balloon landed a day early on March 31st so the joke was on him!
In 2002, Tesco announced that they had developed a whistling carrot.
They claimed the specially modified carrot would whistle when fully cooked due to special air holes inside each carrot!
Gravity Takes a Break
In 1976 The British astronomer Patrick Moore announced on the radio 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 lessen the Earth’s own gravity.
Moore told his listeners that if they jumped in the air at the exact moment that this planetary alignment occurred, they would experience a strange floating sensation.
When 9:47 AM arrived, the radio station 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.
Special Iceberg Delivery
An Australian millionaire towed an iceberg from Antarctica to Sydney harbour on 1st April 1978. Understandably, the Australian people were very excited.
However, as the iceberg neared the harbour, it started to rain and the secret was revealed. The ‘iceberg’ was really made from shaving foam!
‘Britain Rules the Skies’ was the headline of the Manchester Guardian in 1981.
It claimed that Britain had developed a machine to control the weather so to look forward to long summers and rain at night!
Penguins Can Fly!
BBC certainly are good when it comes to pranks – here’s another! In 2008 the BBC announced that camera crews filming near the Antarctic for its natural history series Miracles of Evolution had captured footage of Adélie penguins taking to the air.
It even offered a video clip of these flying penguins, which became one of the most viewed videos on the internet.
Presenter Terry Jones explained that, instead of huddling together to endure the Antarctic winter, these penguins took to the air and flew thousands of miles to the rainforests of South America where they “spend the winter basking in the tropical sun.”
A follow-up video explained how the BBC created the special effects of the flying penguins.
Internet Closed for Cleaning
In 1997, an email told people that the Internet was shutting down for cleaning from March 31st until April 2nd.
It said the cleaning was necessary to clear the Internet of ‘electronic flotsam and jetsam’! People were told not to use the Internet during this time.
Big Ben goes Digital
The BBC were involved in another prank in 1980. They announced that Big Ben was going to become digital.
The British people were really angry about losing the clock-face – especially when they heard the clock hands were on sale to the highest bidder!
BBC news show, Panorama, announced a bumper spaghetti harvest in 1957. The programme showed farmers pulling spaghetti from trees.
Viewers wanted to know how to grow their own spaghetti trees. They felt foolish when they discovered spaghetti doesn’t grow on trees!