Friday 30 September 2016

April Fools fuelled by Clarkson

Published 01/04/2015 | 08:06

Jeremy Clarkson - new sympathy for environmental issues?
Jeremy Clarkson - new sympathy for environmental issues?

Flicking through a newspaper or surfing the web today will probably lead to reading something questionable, surprising or downright barmy.

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But it is all for fun as April 1 is a day when too-good-to-be-true tales appear in the spirit of April Fools.

Newspapers and the internet have again relied on the artistic licence that comes with the date - and a good dose of Photoshop wizardry - to pepper their pages with the unlikely.

The Guardian was among those to embrace the tradition - and used disgraced Top Gear presenter Jeremy Clarkson to do so.

The paper said the renowned petrolhead had become the latest celebrity to support its campaign for fossil fuel divestment.

Written by a reporter named Polli Faro, it said the outspoken broadcaster "had new-found sympathy for environmental issues, interfaith dialogue, and intersectional feminism".

The Sun called on another key figure in British pop culture - music mogul Simon Cowell - for its tall tale.

The tabloid said Cowell had agreed for his face to adorn a limited edition £5 note, dubbed a "Siver".

The Telegraph has news of a welcome product designed to stop readers falling asleep while buried in a good book - the device reportedly going on sale today.

It says the boo!mark is an electronic device that monitors the reader's breathing and sounds a gentle alarm if they doze off.

A number of newspapers carried a story which said a leading supermarket would introduce trampolines in the aisles to help shorter customers reach the top shelf.

Quoting spokeswoman Daisy O'Farllop - an anagram of April Fools' Day - the store said it was a practical and fun way to help customers.

On any other day of the year, the Swindon Advertiser might have been credited with claiming a worldwide showbiz exclusive with its story about an Oasis reunion.

The paper said the Britpop pioneers, who were apparently named after the Wiltshire town's Oasis centre, were due to reform and play a homecoming gig.

In an article littered with Oasis puns and lyrics, it quoted one local music producer who said: "A mate of a mate of a mate told me he (frontman Liam Gallagher) loves Swindon and doesn't stop talking about the food at Eggelicious."

Meanwhile, Mumsnet announced its intention to launch a new political party - the MNP - in time to field candidates in several key swing seats in the General Election.

The group joked that one of the key policies would be universal free childcare for children aged 0-16.

In a hairy April Fools, financial services company SunLife announced the launch of a new beard insurance product to cater to the growing number of bearded men in the UK who want to protect their facial hair and personal identity.

Coffee shop Costa said it was trialling a new service that lets customers nod off for a power nap when they hit an afternoon slump.

Japanese-inspired ostrich pillows will turn tables into relaxation zones and give customers a chance to book a 15-minute snooze, Costa said.

Pizza Hut said it was showcasing the latest addition in its menu - the Scratch and Sniff - which allows customers to order food by selecting their favourite smell.

BBC Radio 4's flagship Today programme joined in the fun, no doubt having a few football fans spluttering into their breakfast with an item about plans to make goals six inches higher and wider.

Astonishingly, the idea was at one time seriously floated by Fifa general secretary Sepp Blatter before being quickly shelved amid a storm of protest from federations and players.

Ukip MEP James Carver received some coverage for announcing he was calling for the EU to rename German measles as English measles, adding: "It is about time we stopped blaming the Germans for everything."

Press Association

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