Monday, April 1, 2019

April Fools 2018, A Top 10

Ah...April Fools Day.  The day when people and companies try to determine the best ways to dupe thier friends and customers with usually harmless pranks and practical jokes.  Though the exact origins are unknown, the practice dates back at least to the early 1500s, with a French reference to a canard d'avril and writings of a Flemish nobleman sending his servants on foolish errands on April 1.  Large scale pranks even date back to the late 1600s, with tickets and newspaper headlines to the "annual drying of the lions" at the Tower of London, a practice that did not exist.

In that same spirit, several modern companies get in the game with April Fool's Day pranks of their own.  These are a few of my favorites from this year.

1. Google Maps Snake - Google decided to turn its Maps application into a way to play the classic video game snake.  I'm a huge fan of these type of pranks as they generally end up being the type that stick around and don't harm the functionality of the regular program.  See previous year's entries like Google Pac-Man.

2. Amazon's Tiny Food Delivery - perfect petite less-than-bite-sized portions delivered to your door, thanks to Amazon, all with free delivery.  This is another good one, as it came with a real promo for free delivery on Amazon restaurants.

4. Mr. Avo Head - Move over Mister Potato Head, there's a new vegetable in town.  Since avocados are so popular, Hasbro offered a new twist on the classic toy.
5. Tom Brady announced his retirement - Tom Brady joins twitter and announces his retirement.  Many hoping this wasn't a practical joke, maybe?
7. Thinkgeek's Mighty Mjolnir Mailbox - a mailbox made to look like Thor's Hammer.  What's not to love?  Thinkgeek always comes out with the best fake products and this year is no exception.  They'll take the next few entries.

8. Thinkgeek's Captain Marvel Universal Pager - a steal at only $0.99 if you sign up for a two-year contract.  Who needs a pager now, though?

9. Thinkgeek's Bicycle Horn of Gondor - perfect for riding into battle against Orcs and Uru-khai, as well as just a great addition to any bike.  I might want this one to become real.

9. Miceage and the Disneyland Instant Virtual Passport - an all streaming, virtual-reality way to enjoy Disneyland?  No lines, just the rides and shows.  Al Lutz is back to bring his warped versions of how the Disney company could proceed.

10. Burger King's Impossible Whopper - a prank with an actual payoff.  Burger King in St. Louis area restaurants, tricked some of its customers by swapping out their regular Whopper for a Whopper made with an Impossible veggie burger patty, a plant based patty with 0 grams of cholesterol and 17 grams of protein.  In the filmed instances, it was only after the company revealed the switch that anyone could tell the difference.  Potentially good news for dieters and vegetarians, especially if the Impossible Whopper is expanded.

What have been your favorite April Fools Day pranks?


Yes, I know the date is wrong in the title.  There are several other intentional goofs and mistakes in the entry.  Like there are only 9 entries in the Top Ten List.  Number 3 is missing.  As is number 6.  And there's two number 9s.  Plus, you might want to check me on those facts in the top paragraph.  Enjoy the day!

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