Research has long associated anger and hostility with increased coronary-heart disease risk.
Now, a recent study from cardiologists at the University of Maryland, has shown that
laughter may have a beneficial effect on the heart. Do you know what they discovered?
(To find the answers, hover your mouse over the smiley face following each question.
Answers also appear at the end of the quiz, just in case some joker ran off with the smiles!)
For archived Trivia pages, be sure to visit our Trivia Vault!
Check out these amazing contests, competitions and opportunities announced on April Fools' Day with such lucrative prospects and unique ideas that people could hardly restrain themselves from availing these schemes at the opportune time.
1. An amazing contest in 1984 sparked a huge interest nationwide and received quite an attention from the media including CBS and NBC. The Eldorado Daily Journal based in Illinois announced that the contestants would require to save
2. In April, a Dutch financial website known as iex.nl announced about a new technology company backed up by big guns such Bill Gates, Paul Allen, and George Soros. Shares could be reserved for $18 each by email and were anticipated to soar up to above $80 on the very first day of its filing by the analysts. Investors swarmed in to buy the shares and orders worth over $7 million flooded in. The company was known as
C) F/rite Air
3. Esquire's April 2000 issue had a detailed article by Ted Fishman about a new company called Freewheelz that would provide drivers with
A) new tires for free
B) free minivans
C) free gas for life
D) free auto insurance
4. On the 1st of April 1998, WQSR aired an announcement in the morning that at Baltimore's Inner Harbor, the Constellation Restoration Committee had dug up a box of gold and had decided to spend some of it on the repairs of the old vessel and distribute the rest of it to
A) the 98th caller
B) committee members
C) the first baby born in Baltimore that day
D) the residents of Maryland
5. In 2000, PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) threatened that they would release _____________ into Lake Palestine before the bass fishing tournament in East Texas
A) 3000 bass
B) 500 piranhas
D) 10,000 trout
6. London Times, in 1972, reported that Thomas Cook was celebrating the 100th anniversary of
A) the first round-the-world travel tour
B) the Boston tea party
C) his great-grandparents
D) the birth of the redcoats
Following are some agreements and announcements that sent a wave of uproarious protests and anger through the people and intellectuals only to know that they were actually caught by the infamous April Fools' Day spoofs.
7. An unexpected change in the Boston Morning Globe in 1915 on April Fool's Day surprised both management and the readers, when
A) the price was cut in half
B) the front page was blank
C) the Globe had only one page
D) the news items were all pranks
8. In 1996, citizens of Philadelphia were outraged at the announcement made by the Taco Bell Corporation that it had
A) purchased all MacDonalds restaurants in Philadelphia
B) decided to eliminate tacos from their menu
C) bought the Liberty Bell from the government
D) added hamburgers to their menu
9. Guinness played a similar trick in 1998 by issuing a press release that it had made an agreement with the Old Royal Observatory in Greenwich, England to be the official beer sponsor of the Observatory's millennium celebration. In exchange, the Greenwich Mean Time would be renamed as
A) Greenwich Happy Hour
B) Guinness Mean Time
C) Guinness Beer Time
D) Irish Time
10. In 1999, a Canadian radio station cashed in on the idea of the Y2K threat by announcing that
A) all radios would have to be upgraded in 2000
B) radios would need descramblers in order to be heard after December 31, 1999
C) computers would not be able to transmit music beginning January 1, 2000
D) CD players would not be able to read the old music discs in 2000
Fools' Day' or 'April Fools' Day', people play practical jokes and pranks on
each other, crack jokes on the expense of victims and gift each other gag gifts
and then when the victims are taken in by surprise, all the witnesses shout
'April Fool' at once. The innocent pranks such as prompting somebody that their
shoelaces are undone or that they have something on their faces are quite
common. Children love to use the opportunity to prank their classmates and even
A) are supposed to bring bad luck to the perpetrator
B) are illegal
C) result in revenge by the one pranked
D) permit the one pranked to slap the jokester
12. The victim if an April Fool’s Day prank is advised to endure the tricks with a smile on their face, exhibiting tolerance or amusement or else
A) he/she might lose their temper and fight back
B) they may suffer bad luck
C) they have to buy lunch for the prankster
D) they will be the butt of additional pranks
13. It is said that those fooled by a pretty girl can expect
A) to be teased by their friends
B) bad luck
C) beatings by bullies
14. Men are advised not to marry on this day or
A) they will be unhappy for the rest of their lives
B) they risk bad luck for 7 years
C) their wives will rule them forever
D) the marriage may be annulled within a year
15. Children born on 1st of April are generally considered
A) “Fools’ Revenge”
C) “Turnabout Fair Play”
D) “April Fools Afternoon”
British media, normally considered serious and sober, give in to the excitement and tomfoolery of the day and consider hoaxes on this day as a fair game. They have been quite active for years making their readers, listeners and viewers 'April Fools'. BBC (British Broadcasting Company) has made quite a name for itself for reporting the truth and keeping up the journalistic ethics. However, being unbiased and doing truthful reporting does not mean that you have to lack wit and humor. We have brought a list of some of the most interesting and funny hoaxes broadcasted by BBC.
17. In 1957, BBC's famous news show 'Panorama' showed the video footage of Swiss peasants eagerly
A) poking holes in cheese
B) filling in the holes in Swiss cheese
C) pulling strands of spaghetti from trees
D) planting eggs
18. In 1965, BBC TV aired an interview with a professor, claiming that he had invented a device called
A) video radio
19. BBC Radio 3 and the famous naturalist David Attenborough conspired in 1975 and broadcasted about the discovery of a new species of
A) night-singing tree mice
20. In 1973, the comedian Spike Milligan impersonated an elderly academic by the name of Dr. Clothier for BBC Radio. Apparently, this professor went in great details about how Dutch Elm disease can infect people and immunize them against
A) tree mites
B) the common cold
D) chicken pox
21. In 1976, BBC Radio 2 aired an announcement that at 9:47 AM the audience can all experience once-in-a-lifetime astronomical event in which the planet Pluto would pass behind Jupiter and thus, due to the gravitational alignment,
A) the two planets would switch places
B) the Earth would stop rotating for 1 hour
C) the Earth’s gravity would lessen
D) the Earth’s gravity would increase
22. In 1977, Tom Jackson, General Secretary of the British Union of Post Office Workers, was aired voicing his protest against a proposal that the British mail should adopt
A) new stamps costing twice the current rate
B) a new delivery schedule of once a week
C) a tax on postage stamps
D) the German method of addressing envelopes, with the house number after the name of the street.
23. BBC sparked a big protest in 1980 from the people who protested against the announcement that Big Ben was to
A) have a digital readout to keep up with the modern times
B) be replaced
C) be torn down
D) be painted red, white and blue
24. In the last year of the millennium, BBC Radio 4 startled listeners with the decision of the British Parliament to change the British National anthem from "God Save the Queen" to
A) “Good King Wenceslas”
B) a song sung to the tune of “Swanee River”
C) a Euro Anthem sung in German that used extracts from Beethoven's music
D) “England Swings”
While the politicians and famous personalities have always been the most popular butts of jokes, people have also targeted their competitors and rivals on April Fools' Day to play a prank that is profitable to them and may prove to be a pain in the neck for the victim. The incidents narrated below are absolutely true and had evoked such a widespread and immediate reactions that they went down in the history as some of the most popular April Fool hoaxes.
25. In Providence, Rhode Island, Carolyn Fox, a disc jockey along with the management of WHJY announced that 'Providence Labor Action Relations Board Committee' had decided to
A) close the city for the day
B) give all city employees a 10% raise in pay
C) eliminate all parking meters in the city
D) cut the police department in half
26. In 1996, Virgin Cola targeted the newly designed
A) Pepsi cans
B) Coca Cola commercials on TV
C) Sprite bottles
D) 7-up logo
27. In 2001, 'This Morning', the radio program of Canadian Broadcasting Corporation aired the former President Jimmy Carter being interviewed by Michael Enright, the famous host of its Sunday Edition. The audience was shocked when Enright suddenly turned very rude and insulted Carter by calling him
A) “a grumpy old man”
B) “a washed-up peanut farmer from Hicksville”
C) “the worst President in America’s history”
D) “a philanderer”
The tradition of April Fools' Day jokes grew out of resistance to the adoption of the Gregorian calendar in the 16th to18th centuries. For hundreds of years newspapers, and more recently broadcasters, have created fantastical reports to commemorate April 1. Can you spot which of the following stories are classic April fools' gags from the media and which are true stories?
28. Japanese long-distance runner Kimo Nakajimi entered the London Marathon in 1983 but got confused by a translation of the rules and thought he had to run for 26 days, not 26 miles. He was discovered, after the race was well over, out running in the English countryside.
29. The fashion designer Alexander McQueen claims to have written a profanity in pen onto a jacket belonging to Prince Charles when he was working as a Saville Row tailor.
30. On the North Atlantic island of San Serriffe, the locals hold the festival of the Well Made Play during which they perform the complete works of playwright William Douglas-Home in English, Caslon, and Ki-flong (languages of the island).
31. Burger King introduced a new a "left-handed Whopper" in the US in 1998 designed for the 32 million left-handed Americans. The new burger had the same ingredients as the original but all the condiments were rotated 180 degrees.
32. Telescopes belonging to the Chicago Times discovered a penal colony on the moon in 1876.
33. It emerged earlier this year that elephants have hitherto unheralded powers to mimic sounds, including birds, and nearby traffic.
34. Swiss farmers enjoyed a particularly good spaghetti crop from the country's spaghetti trees in 1957.
35. The German architect Albert Speer designed buildings for the Nazis so that they would leave aesthetically pleasing ruins.
36. The Wisconsin state capitol building was destroyed in 1933 by a series of mysterious explosions. The Madison Capital-Times reported at the time that the explosions were attributed to "large quantities of gas, generated through many weeks of verbose debate in the Senate and Assembly chambers".
37. Aztec Emperor Montezuma had a nephew, Cuitlahac, whose name meant 'plenty of excrement'?
1. A) daylight – contestants were to save the most daylight during the period of specified days in any jar or container of their choice. Light from cloudy days was allowed while light of the dawn and twilight light were not allowed. Saving moonlight was strictly forbidden.
2. C) F/rite Air - (pun on Fried Air or Hot Air). Later the newspapers revealed all of it to be an elaborate April Fool's Day joke but even this could not put a stop on the people calling in to buy the shares.
3. B) free minivans – Reportedly, applicants had to accept many terms and conditions: the people who received the cars would have to place large advertisements outside their vehicle, agree to the streaming of advertisements on the radio in their cars, would have to drive it over 300 miles a week, complete a 600-question survey included probing questions such as their political affiliations and their concern about hair loss and had to submit their family's tax returns, notarized video-store-rental receipts and even a stool sample! Thousands of readers inquired about how to avail the opportunity and CEOs of a number of real Internet companies with similar business plans such as Freecar.com and Autowraps.com were also taken in and were quite shocked by this sudden competition.
4. D) the residents of Maryland - The only paper that was required to gain a free gold coin was a valid Maryland driver's license. Lots of people drove for miles and paid for the parking at the harbor only to know that there had been no such committee for over twenty years.
5. C) tranquilizers – The purpose was to save the bass from being hooked. The newspapers reported the threat and state officials took it seriously. Eventually, PETA admitted that it was just a hoax.
6. A) the first round-the-world travel tour - The first 1000 customers were offered the chance to buy a similar package deal at 1872 prices, i.e., just 210 guineas or US$ 575. The applications had to be addressed to 'Miss Avril Foley.' The responses were almost instantaneous and thousands of people waited in line for hours at Thomas Cook's office. An astronomical number of calls flooded in to the travel agent. Later, when the Times admitted it to be an April Fool's joke, a mass hysteria broke out. The reporter John Carter, the writer of the article, had to be fired, though he was later reinstated.
Agreements & Announcements On April Fools' Day
7. A) the price was cut in half - The management was as much surprised as the readers to note the price printed on the front page as 'one cent' instead of 'two cents per copy'. Well, 60,000 copies had already been sold at the new price by the time it was discovered. Later, it was found to be the mischief of a production worker who had lowered the cost at the last minute. In 1992, the London Times reported that Belgium is going to be dissolved. Its Dutch-speaking north would join the Netherlands and the French-speaking south would join France. The article created such an uproar that the British foreign office minister Tristan Garel-Jones almost went on a TV interview to discuss it and the Belgian embassy received numerous calls from journalists and expatriate Belgians making enquiries about the news. Later, a rival paper later criticized Times for the prank and said that it had hurt the feelings of Belgians.
8. C) bought the Liberty Bell from the government – They also said they were changing their name to Taco Liberty Bell. The mass hysterics could only be controlled a few hours later when it was revealed to be a practical joke. However, the witty White House press secretary Mike McCurry only answered to the question about the sale that the Lincoln Memorial had also been sold and was being renamed as the Ford Lincoln Mercury Memorial.
9. B) Guinness Mean Time – The name was to be in effect until the end of 1999. The Financial Times also fell in for the joke and criticized the move.
10. D) CD players would not be able to read the old music discs in 2000 - Hence, people were told they would have to buy hologram stickers at $2 apiece that would enable them to read the old-format discs. Warner Music and Universal Music Group were in on the joke. However, listeners were furious at the stated costs for something as cheap as stickers and demanded that the stickers should be given away for free. The outrage did not subsided easily, even after the radio station revealed that it was just a joke.
Traditions and Customs on April Fool's Day
11. A) are supposed to bring bad luck to the perpetrator
12. B) they may suffer bad luck
13. D) marriage - or at least friendship with her.
14. C) their wives will rule them forever
15. A) lucky
- except in gambling where they will fare badly.
17. C) pulling strands of spaghetti from trees – The report was that they had harvested a bumper crop of spaghetti due to a very mild winter. It was surprising to see the numbers of viewers that were actually fooled by the program and had inquired about the ways to grow their own spaghetti trees. BBC appropriately suggested planting a sprig of spaghetti in a tin of tomato sauce.
18. B) “smell-o-vision” – This device reportedly could transmit the aromas just like the pictures were being transmitted to the homes of the readers. The professor offered a live demonstration by helping to pass the smell of onion and brewing coffee to the viewers. There was no such device and everything was just cooked up in the minds of the writers. People actually called in to confirm that they had experienced the scents at their homes while watching the program!
19. A) night-singing tree mice – The critters were known as Musendrophilus. This species was reported to have been found on a group of islands in the Pacific known as the Sheba Islands and even fake sound recordings of the island's fauna were played for the audience. It was said that the inhabitants of the island used the webbed feet of the animal as reeds for musical instruments. The report sparked quite an interest among people. Later, it was said that the inspiration for such an animal was taken from the tales of Tree Squeaks that are said to live high in the tress of North America and squeak every time the wind blows.
20. B) the common cold - However, it was said that redheads that have a blood count similar to the soil conditions of the trees affected by the disease would have to face a severe side effect of the disease as their red hair can turn yellow and eventually fall out. Thus, they were advised to stay away from the forests, where they may get infected.
21. C) the Earth's gravity would lessen – Consequently, people would be able to jump higher at that very moment and may even have a floating sensation like the astronomers do in the space. Liars and gossip-mongers found it a good opportunity to claim that they indeed had experienced the sensation and one woman even called in to report that at that very moment she was sitting with her eleven friends, when they all rose from their chairs and floated around the room. Liars, liars!
22. D) the German method of addressing envelopes, with the house number after the name of the street - Jackson gave a long speech about the postal employees who would have to unlearn the methods that they have painstakingly learnt to sort the mail and their difficulties and complications that would arise by adopting the new proposed method. He found great support and instant reactions from the audience who called in to join him in his campaign. The only thing was that there was no such proposal and the day on which this was aired was April 1.
23. A) have a digital readout to keep up with the modern times - The BBC Japanese service even announced the sale of the clock hands of Big Ben to the first four listeners to contact them. Among the first people who radioed in the bid immediately to get such an opportunity was a Japanese seaman, who was sailing in the Atlantic Ocean at the time.
24. C) a Euro Anthem sung in German that used extracts from Beethoven's music - Pupils of a German school in London sang the anthem that was aired. It is said that even the royal family was stunned with the announcement and Prince Charles's office telephoned Radio 4 to ask them for a copy of the new anthem. Though, St. James Palace insisted later that it had not been fooled but was only playing along with the prank.
25. A) close the city for the day - People were told to call the given number for more information - the number of course belonged to their rival station, WPRO. Not only WPRO received hundreds of calls that day from people enquiring about the announcement but the City Hall, the police and the offices in the city also had to respond to a number of enquiries that day. Later, WHJY management confessed that they hadn't imagined such a dramatic impact of their joke on the city.
26. A) Pepsi cans – Virgin Cola announce that Pepsi had integrated a new technology related to customer safety into their cans that will turn the color of the cans into bright blue, when the cola reaches the expiry date. Thus, the consumers were requested not to buy any blue cola cans.
27. B) “a washed-up peanut farmer from Hicksville” - Carter seemed stunned too and he hung up, calling Enright a 'rude person'. The controversy caught on as the Globe and Mail reported the interview as fact in their leads the next day. However, Enright had already revealed by then that the interview was fake and the Toronto comedian Ray Landry was impersonating Carter's voice. Many people didn't find the joke funny.
April Fools' Gags
28. April fool!
30. April fool!
31. April fool!
32. April fool!
34. April fool!
36. April fool!
37. It's True! Honest! You just couldn't make this stuff up. Check it out here!