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article imageWhen spaghetti grew on trees

By Alexander Baron     Mar 31, 2013 in Entertainment
Tomorrow is April 1, so you should not take everything you read in your morning paper at face value. Exactly the same as any other day.
So-called April Fool's Day jokes are not of course limited either to the print medium or to any other. Nor are they necessarily funny. Any idiot can append the name Olaf Pirol or some such to a report, but there are a few that have stood the test of time. Perhaps the most endearing is the 1957 spaghetti tree hoax which was broadcast by the BBC. The Panorama series is still running to this day. Here is another hoax from the BBC which but for the action replay would almost certainly have fooled viewers, though without it the exercise would probably have been pointless. People do sometimes freak out like that. In March 1976, the Times reported the case of a barrister who assaulted three police officers in court. As he was already appearing in court on assault charges at the time, that was probably not the brightest thing to do, especially for a man with a law degree. And quite likely mental health problems; he was remanded in custody for medical and psychiatric reports.
Then there are those hoaxes which are not at all funny. On April 1 two years ago, Portland, Oregon woman Angela Gilbert filed a rape report, though she wasn't laughing when she found herself in court for wasting police time.
Of all genuine April Fool's jokes, probably the longest running is the Loch Ness Monster. Although it may not have been taken or first reported on April 1, the famous (or infamous) surgeon's photograph is still widely believed to be genuine.
The infamous surgeon s photograph of the Loch Ness Monster  one of countless hoaxes that have fooled...
The infamous surgeon's photograph of the Loch Ness Monster, one of countless hoaxes that have fooled the world.
Creative Commons
The history of the Loch Ness Monster goes back way before the 1930s of course, but probably every major lake in the world has its own tradition of a monster, which the gullible, the credulous and the just plain trusting are free to swallow. Just like any other news story, because the truth is often stranger than fiction, though seldom as popular.
More about spaghetti tree hoax, Loch ness monster, surgeon's photograph, rape liar Angela Gilibert
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