Happy April Fool’s Day!

Did you ever wonder the origin of April Fool’s Day?  So did I, so I went to Wikipedia and found more than I really wanted to know!

Sure, we’re all familiar with the practical jokes and hoaxes enacted on this day (for example, Burger King advertised a special left-handed burger so the condiments would drip off the right-hand side of the burger.  Folks actually ordered it, and some even requested the old original right-handed burger whose condiments dripped off the left side!)  Various dates for the origin of the jokester’s day go back to Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales, and even to the days of Noah!

(Hmmmm, after Noah finished the yacht did someone yell, “April Fool!”?)

As an April Fool’s prank, a legislator in Alabama introduced a bill to change the value of pi.  But as a Hoosier (that’s an Indianan to those not familiar with state nicknames) it was most embarrassing to find that the Indiana Legislature actually did try to fiddle with pi in 1897!  “It was one of the most famous attempts to establish scientific truth by legislative fiat,” quoting Wikipedia. The bill was actually claiming a method to square the circle, but contains text that appears to dictate various incorrect values of π, such as 3.2. The bill never became law, thanks to a mathematics professor who happened to be present in the legislature. Now that is what I call a Divine Appointment!

Here is a museum that features the Greatest Hoaxes of All April Fooldom, for your viewing pleasure!

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