As if the internet wasn’t already full of misinformation, April Fool’s Day in the digital era means an annual flooding of fake news stories and hoax announcements. Some are clearly fabricated, while some . Few are truly funny, but some local spoof articles were a cut above the rest. Here’s a roundup of some notable April foolery from New England:
Bethel, Maine’s Gould Academy fooled at least a few when it announced that it would be building a high-speed chairlift that would take students directly from their dorms to Sunday River ski resort. The story jokingly suggested that there was concern over student “sleep skiing.” Well, they had a solution for that too – a mid-station Starbucks so early-bird skiers could perk up before hitting the slopes. Given the sheer number of Starbucks in the country, that might be the least surprising part of the story.
Boston’s Northeastern University today announced the development of “text-and-walk” lanes in a tongue-in-cheek news release. The lanes would prevent students from bumping into trash cans and other pedestrians while they stare intently at their smartphones. Text-and-walkers who strayed into other lanes would be alerted by volunteers with airhorns and confetti, according to the article. Fortunately for us, the story is a joke and humanity hasn’t quite sunken to that low just yet.
Sports blog Boston Dirt Dogs reported this morning that Red Sox outfielder Jonny Gomes would not join his team in visiting the White House. It called to mind a previous, very real incident in which Bruins goalie Tim Thomas skipped a presidential visit because he believed the Federal government had “grown out of control.” However, according to Boston Dirt Dogs, Gomes had a less political motivation – he was protesting manager John Farrell’s decision to bench him in the team’s Opening Day loss to the Orioles. Unsurprisingly, Gomes did make it to the White House, star-spangled suit jacket and all.
Local indie music blog Allston Pudding got something of a redesign when it made its entire site Scott Stapp-centric for the day. Scott Stapp in the layout. Scott Stapp in the news. A review of Taco Bell written by Stapp himself – not really, but the real writer of the piece waxes Scott Stapp pretty well. Apparently, the former Creed frontman is the guy to make fun of in 2014. Look out, Bieber.
Although they may be just jokes for now, it’s hard to predict what the future will bring. Last year on April 1, BostInno published an April Fool’s Day story that claimed the MBTA would begin operating until 3 a.m. – effective April 1, 2014 (H/T technicolormotorhome). What seemed far-fetched at the time was reality within a single year. April Fool’s indeed.