It's that time of year again when people can't always believe anything they come across.
While the American News isn't participating in any April Fools' Day trickery, here's a list of some recent hoaxes.
The Curious Case of Sidd Finch - Sports Illustrated, 1985
For a few weeks in April 1985, New York Mets fans were drooling over a young prospect. In Sports Illustrated, an article by George Plimpton was published that month describing an incredible rookie baseball player who was training at the Mets camp in St. Petersburg, Fla. He could reportedly pitch a baseball at 168 miles per hour with pinpoint accuracy.
It was said that Finch had never played baseball before. He briefly attended Harvard University before he headed to Tibet, where he learned the teachings of the "great poet-saint Lama Milaraspa" and mastered "siddhi, namely the yogic mastery of mind-body." Through his Tibetan mind-body mastery, Finch had learned the art of the pitch.
Finch showed up at the Mets camp, impressed the manager and was invited to attend training camp. Finch frequently wore a hiking boot on his right foot while pitching, and his left foot was bare. His speed and power were so great that the catcher might be knocked back 2 or 3 feet.
According to Sports Illustrated, the publication received almost 2,000 letters in response to the article. On April 8, the publication declared that Finch had held a press conference where he said he had lost the accuracy needed to throw his fastball and would therefore not be pursuing a career with the Mets. On April 15, Sports Illustrated admitted that the story was a hoax. Plimpton, the author, actually left an obscure hint in his story. The sub-heading of the article read: "He's a pitcher, part yogi and part recluse. Impressively liberated from our opulent life-style, Sidd's deciding about yoga -and his future in baseball." The first letter of each of these words, taken together, spells "H-a-p-p-y A-p-r-i-l F-o-o-l-s D-a-y."
American News (1996)
In 1996, the American News published a column by former sports writer Mike Zimmer on how the Aberdeen Pheasants, a former local amateur baseball team, had landed John Kruk, a three-time Major League Baseball all-star.
The column quoted Pheasants' general manager Keith Kusler and manager Bob Flori who confirmed the addition of Kruk. As readers dove deeper into the column, Kusler and Flori shared insight on Kruk - saying signing him was easier than one would think.
At the end of the column Kusler and Flori give a final statment about signing Kruk - April Fools.
Ikea Australia introduced the Hundstol Highchair for dogs, as part of an effort "to accommodate the growing demand for furniture that reflects today's modern family. The chair was designed with the dog's comfort in mind, with a hole in the back of the chair for the tail and paw grips on the seat for stability. Two inset bowls could be easily removed for washing. The hoax product was listed in Australian newspapers on April 1, 2010.
YouTube flipped its videos upside down on April 1, 2009. The effect displayed for visitors who opened the homepage and then went to a video from there. YouTube wrote that it had introduced the new format because, "Our internal tests have shown that modern computer monitors give a higher quality picture when flipped upside down - kind of like how it's best to rotate your mattress every six months." To see the new format, it advised viewers to either 1) Turn your monitor upside-down; 2) Tilt your head to the side; or 3) Move to Australia.
British supermarket chain Waitrose placed ads in newspapers announcing the availability of a new fruit, the pinana (a combination of pineapple and banana). The text of the ad read: Pinanas. Fresh in today and exclusive to Waitrose. If you find that all Waitrose pinanas have sold out, don't worry, there's 50 percent off our essential Waitrose strawberries."
Squeez Bacon (2009)
Online retailer thinkgeek.com unveiled Squeez Bacon, 100 percent bacon paste that could be squeezed from a tube, on April 1, 2009. It was described it as "the world's most perfect food." Squeez Bacon was said to be fully cooked, 100 percent bacon. Due to the patented electro-mechanical process by which Squeez Bacon is rendered, it requires no preservatives or other additives. Each serving is as healthy as real bacon and equivalent to 4 premium slices of bacon.
$99 Flights to Mars (2009)
Expedia.com announced it was offering flights to Mars for only $99, which it calculated to be a savings of $3 trillion for travelers. "In this economy, you can't afford NOT to go!" it declared. The announcement was made April 1, 2009.