This post isn’t about sugar, diabetes, or artificial sweeteners. But this belongs here, because you can help your health, boost your healing, and ease out of your sugar habit by getting guffaws, cracking quips, or generating giggles.
Norman Cousins wrote about the power of humor. So did numerous other authors. So, if you’re kicking (or thinking about stopping) sweets and quickie carbs, stop taking it all so seriously and lighten up.
Besides, bear in mind that if you’re chuckling and chortling, you can’t really put any cookies, candies or other inferior carb in your mouth at the same time!
One fun source for for levity is the Top 100 April Fool’s Day Hoaxes Of All Time, compiled and written by “hoaxpert” (hoax expert) Alex Boese, who founded the Museum of Hoaxes in 1997 as part of his doctoral dissertation. (He’s currently working on his second book, about modern-day hoaxes, to be published spring 2006.)
A History of Outrageous Pranks and Deceptions
“In 1957 the respected BBC news show Panorama announced that thanks to a very mild winter and the virtual elimination of the dreaded spaghetti weevil, Swiss farmers were enjoying a bumper spaghetti crop. It accompanied this announcement with footage of Swiss peasants pulling strands of spaghetti down from trees. Huge numbers of viewers were taken in, and many called up wanting to know how they could grow their own spaghetti trees. To this question, the BBC diplomatically replied that they should `place a sprig of spaghetti in a tin of tomato sauce and hope for the best.’ Check out the actual broadcast archived on the BBC’s website (You need the RealVideo player installed to see it, and it usually loads very slowly).
“#2: Sidd Finch
“In its April 1985 edition, Sports Illustrated published a story about a new rookie pitcher who planned to play for the Mets. His name was Sidd Finch and he could reportedly throw a baseball with startling, pinpoint accuracy at 168 mph (65 mph faster than anyone else has ever been able to throw a ball). Surprisingly, Sidd Finch had never even played the game before. Instead, he had mastered the “art of the pitch” in a Tibetan monastery under the guidance of the “great poet-saint Lama Milaraspa.” Mets fans everywhere celebrated at their teams’s amazing luck at having found such a gifted player, and Sports Illustrated was flooded with requests for more information. But in reality this legendary player only existed in the imagination of the writer of the article, George Plimpton. -More-
“In 1962 there was only one tv channel in Sweden, and it broadcast in black and white. The station’s technical expert, Kjell Stensson, appeared on the news to announce that thanks to a newly developed technology, all viewers could now quickly and easily convert their existing sets to display color reception. All they had to do was pull a nylon stocking over their tv screen, and they would begin to see their favorite shows in color. Stensson then proceeded to demonstrate the process. Reportedly, hundreds of thousands of people, out of the population of seven million, were taken in. Actual color tv transmission only commenced in Sweden on April 1, 1970.
“In 1996 the Taco Bell Corporation announced that it had bought the Liberty Bell from the federal government and was renaming it the Taco Liberty Bell. Hundreds of outraged citizens called up the National Historic Park in Philadelphia where the bell is housed to express their anger. Their nerves were only calmed when Taco Bell revealed that it was all a practical joke a few hours later. The best line inspired by the affair came when White House press secretary Mike McCurry was asked about the sale, and he responded that the Lincoln Memorial had also been sold, though to a different corporation, and would now be known as the Ford Lincoln Mercury Memorial.
Click here to read the list of 100 best hoaxes of all time, at least according to Boese