Queen Elizabeth walking her Corgie dogs to a betting shop on page 3 of the 01 April, 2004 edition of the London Daily Mail.


From television revealing that spaghetti grows on trees to advertisements for the left-handed burger, the tradition of April Fool's Day stories in the media has a weird and wonderful history.
Here are several of the top ten April Fool's Day pranks ever pulled off, as judged by the US website of Museum of Hoaxes for their notoriety, absurdity, and number of people duped.
Swiss spaghetti harvest tops the hoax list. In 1957, a BBC television show announced that thanks to a mild winter and the virtual elimination of the spaghetti weevil, Swiss farmers were enjoying a bumper spaghetti crop.Footageof Swiss farmers pulling strands of spaghetti from trees prompted abarrageof calls from people wanting to know how to grow their own spaghetti at home.
Instant color TV sets in Sweden comes as the third. Sweden in 1962 had only one television channel, which broadcast in black and white. The station's technical expert appeared on the news to announce that thanks to a newly developed technology, viewers could convert their existing sets to receive color pictures by pulling a nylon stocking over the screen.
US ex-president Nixon's comeback is placed at sixth. In 1992, US National Public Radio announced that Richard Nixon was running for president again. His new campaign slogan was, "I didn't do anything wrong, and I won't do it again." They even had clips of Nixon announcing his candidacy. Listeners flooded the show with calls expressing their outrage. Nixon's voice actually turned out to be that of impersonator Rich Little.
In 1998, a newsletter titled New Mexicans for Science and Reason carried an article that the state of Alabama had voted to change the value of pi from 3.14159 to the "Biblical value" of 3.0.
Burger King, an American fast-food chain, published a full-page advertisement in USA Today in 1998 announcing the introduction of the "Left-Handed Whopper," specially designed for the 32 million left-handed Americans. According to the advertisement, the new burger included the same ingredients as the original, but the condiments were rotated 180 degrees. The chain said it received thousands of requests for the new burger, as well as orders for the original "right-handed" version.
Discover Magazine announced in 1995 that a highly respected biologist, Aprile Pazzo (Italian for April Fool), had discovered a new species in Antarctica: the hotheaded naked ice borer. The creatures were described as having bony plates on their heads that became burning hot, allowing the animals to bore through ice at high speed.
Noted British astronomer Patrick Moore announced on the radio in 1976 that at 9:47 am, a once-in-a-lifetime astronomical event, in which Pluto would pass behind Jupiter, would cause a gravitational alignment that would reduce the Earth's gravity. Moore told listeners that if they jumped in the air at the exact moment of the planetary alignment, they would experience a floating sensation. Hundreds of people called in to report feeling the sensation.
(AFP)

从种植意大利面的电视新闻到左撇子汉堡的广告,媒体在愚人节制造的各种稀奇古怪的恶搞新闻也有一段“光辉”历史了。
日前,美国“恶作剧博物馆”网站根据恶作剧的知名度、荒诞性及被愚弄的人数,评选出了媒体所制造的愚人节“十大经典恶搞新闻”。其中的几个如下:
第一大恶搞新闻是1957年愚人节的瑞士意大利面大丰收。当天,英国广播公司在一个新闻节目中报道,由于受暖冬影响,再加上危害意大利面“种植”的象鼻虫已被彻底消灭,瑞士的农民们获得意大利面大丰收,电视台还特别配上了瑞士农民从树上摘下一缕缕意大利面的镜头。节目播出后,很多人打电话去电台询问如何在家种植意大利面。
第三大恶搞新闻是1962年的瑞典“瞬变彩色电视机"。当时,瑞典只有一个电视频道,而且是黑白的。愚人节那天,电视台技术人员在新闻中宣布,由于最新技术的开发成功,观众们只需将一只尼龙长统袜撑开盖在电视屏幕上,就能使黑白画面立刻变成彩色。
美国前总统尼克森的复出被评为第六大经典假新闻。1992年,美国国家公共广播电台宣布,理查德?尼克森将再度竞选总统。他的最新竞选口号是,”我没做错什么,我不会重蹈覆辙。“新闻中还配有尼克松宣布竞选的录音剪辑。这一消息发布之后,听众们纷纷打电话去电台表示愤怒。实际上,尼克森的声音是由一位名叫里奇?利特尔的演员模仿的。
1998年愚人节,新墨西哥人科学与推理组织的通讯上刊登的一篇文章中称,美国阿拉巴马州已投票决定,将圆周率值3.14159改为"圣经值"3.0。
1998年愚人节当天,美国汉堡王快餐连锁店在《今日美国》上发布了一则长达一页的广告,介绍一款专为美国3200万个“左撇子”设计的“左撇子汉堡”。该广告中称,新汉堡的配料和普通汉堡没什么区别,但其中所夹的调味品都被旋转了180度放置。连锁店称,广告登出后,他们接到数千份订单,还收到了很多老式("右撇子")汉堡的订单。
1995年愚人节,《发现》杂志公布,一位德高望重的、名叫Aprile Pazzo(意大利语:愚人节)的生物学家在南极洲发现了一种名叫热裸体钻冰虫的新物种。据介绍,这种生物头部的骨头能变得滚烫,所以可以高速的钻冰。
1976年愚人节,英国著名天文学家帕特里克?摩尔通过电台宣布,当天早上9时47分会出现一个百年一遇的天文现象,冥王星将从木星后面经过,由此而形成的引力组合将使地球的引力减弱。摩尔告诉听众,如果他们在经过的那一时刻跳起来,会有一种飘浮感。当时,数百人打电话去电台,称他们确实感到了那种“飘浮感”。

Vocabulary: 
      

footage:镜头

barrage:an overwhelming, concentrated outpouring(连续的;接二连三的;例如:a barrage of critism 接二连三的批评)

 
媒体愚人节“十大经典恶搞新闻”: http://insuns.com/article/548-1.html