Today is April 1st, which is celebrated in many countries, including Sweden, as April Fool’s Day. On this day, you are allowed to commit pranks and jokes on people – all in good spirit of course. The earliest reference to April Fool’s Day is in Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales from 1392, but nobody really knows the origin of this tradition.
One common place these jokes take place are in the newspapers, and it’s fun to sift through them to see if you can identify what’s real news and what’s a hoax.
Today, a few of the jokes that have been identified in the Swedish press are:
– Banks are going to start charging entrance fees, roughly the same as a cinema ticket
– Princess Madeleine plans to give birth at Västervik’s Hospital in Kalmar. The hospital is currently investing in trendy uniforms in order to appeal to the princess, who is very interested in fashion.
– The three naked beaches in Varberg are going to be closed. Nudity is no longer ok.
– On the island of Gotland, in the Baltic Sea, the local council will introduce parking fees for the entire Island. In this way, the people who live in the countryside are treated the same way as those who live in the main town.
– In Karlstad, a wind turbine has mysteriously disappeared
– In Katrineholm, 300 house owners are being offered fiber broadband for one krona if, today, they fax in their name, address and a motivation in poem form as to why they deserve fibre at such a low price
– An American hamburger chain is launching a perfume in Japan that smells of hamburger. Called ‘Flame Grilled Fragrance’ it will cost 360 kronor.
In Sweden’s largest national paper, Dagens Nyheter (Daily News), I Think I have identified not one, but two, April jokes!
– 700 000 homes are going to lose their TV channels since the Swedish broadband supplier has failed to reach agreement with SBS Disney. Alot of very popular TV programs will be inaccessible from today.
– In a studio in a Stockholm suburb, a designer has developed figure-huggin outfits for female priests. Now her clothes are a global success.
I’m sure there are a lot more out there in the media. What others have you seen?
If you fall for these lies, the expression to say in English is ‘April Fool!!‘
In Sweden it’s ‘April! April! You stupid herring!‘ (Now, that I’m afraid is the truth!)