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April 2, 2007
9:45 AM -- The Denver Post Website shares its Top 10 April Fool's media pranks of all time. Its No. 1? "The Swiss Spaghetti Harvest":
Panorama, a respected BBC News show announced in 1957 that a mild winter and the eradication of the destructive spaghetti weevil had led to a bumper spagtti [sic]crop for Swiss farmers. Video showed peasants pulling strands of spaghetti down from trees. The BBC was deluged by calls from viewers wanting to know how to grow their own spaghetti trees. The BBC actually gave out instructions: "place a sprig of spaghetti in a tin of tomato sauce and hope for the best."
Aaargh, it only works if you talk to it like a pirate.
No.7 is noteworthy: "Alabama Changes the Value of Pi":
A newsletter published in 1998 by the New Mexicans for Science and Reason claimed that the Alabama state legislature had voted to change the value of the mathematical constant pi from 3.14159 to the 'Biblical value' of 3.0. Before long the article had made its way onto the Internet, and was forwarded by e-mail around the world. The Alabama legislature received hundreds of calls from people protesting the legislation. A physicist named Mark Boslough was revealed as the author of the article, which he intended as a parody of legislative attempts to limit the teaching of evolution.
There's been an enduring urban (or rural) myth that Tennessee (or Kansas or Oklahoma) did just that, back in the day. They didn't. But in 1897 the Indiana House of Representatives voted unanimously to simplify pi, though the impetus was mere mathematical lunacy, not religion. The measure was tabled by the Indiana Senate. It's an amusing story.
— Larry, Attack Monkey, Light Reading
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