YESTERDAY was 1 April and I was keeping a sharp lookout for April Fools stories in the press, TV and even radio.
Also known as All Fools Day, April Fools are those of us who fall victim to practical japes and jokes on 1 April.
I have been caught out repeatedly so my watchword was be wary!
Classics from yesteryear include the BBC and their straight-faced presentation of the Pasta Tree. The story was related in all seriousness by a presenter employing the very best plummy received pronunciation English discussing the habits of the pasta tree. Of course, it only flourished in Italy, he spoke for a good five minutes on TV and with convincing pictures. The whole country more or less fell for that one, hook, line and sinker.
Schoolboy pranks included getting a rumour going that all non-metric houses would have to be demolished. Permits and proofs would be required; resulting in deputations of frantic householders mobbing the local council.
Sportsmen love a good prank and rarely need All Fools Day to try and pull some act of mayhem and no I am not referring to Australia and sandpaper.
I am recalling a moment of apparent chaos in the studio when a fight broke out while Des Lynam the BBC sports commentator was doing his stuff direct to camera. Over his shoulder, in the studio, his highly professional colleagues were coming to blows. Caused consternation at the time.
This year even the EU got in the act with the story put about that all EU Passports are to change colour to Brexit Blue.
Fresh for 2018 was Prince Harry having Stag party in a yurt in Wales, where else?
Last year, he had married, in secret of course.
That’s the point with pranks, they do need to be almost true or at the very least believable. Elvis is back again is not.
Stories like you get a free dog when yours is at the vet if you insure with this or that insurance company, seem credible at least at first.
A totally true April Fool story – China banned April Fool as it was considered to be un-Chinese.
So cautious as ever I went into town to do some shopping, suddenly I started to laugh.
The shops had started the next season SUMMER TIME was emblazoned in banners across shop front after shop front as the rain continued to hammer down.