2014
2014

Why Doesn't America Read Anymore?

On its Facebook page, NPR News shared a link to an article with the provocative title, Why Doesn't America Read Anymore? The link generated hundreds of comments. Some agreed with the premise. Others disagreed. But what the responses shared in common was that the people who posted them had unwittingly demonstrated the relevance of the question by failing to take the time to click on the link and read the article. If they had, they would have discovered a short paragraph stating,

We sometimes get the sense that some people are commenting on NPR stories that they haven't actually read. If you are reading this, please like this post and do not comment on it. Then let's see what people have to say about this 'story.'

King's College Choir Uses Helium

The renowned King's College Choir is not known for farce. This made it noteworthy when they released a video announcing that complex regulations had made it impractical to continue featuring young boys in the choir, and that they had been forced to find other ways to replicate the high pitch of the boys' preadolescent voices. Because the older choral scholars had vetoed the surgical solution, the choir leaders had finally adopted a suggestion made by a colleague in the Chemistry Department - use helium. The video, demonstrating the use of helium during a performance, generated almost 1 million views on YouTube.

Pregnancy Revealed via Speakerphone

Stephen Barrows, professor of economics at Aquinas College, had a strict rule that if a student's phone rang during class they had to answer it on speakerphone, in front of everyone. So when Taylor Nefcy's phone rang on April 1, he enforced the rule and the entire class proceeded to hear this,

Hi, this is Kevin from the Pregnancy Resource Center. Per your request, I'm calling to inform you that the test results have come back positive. Congratulations!

Barrows' face immediately turned red, and he muttered,

OK, you might want to shut that down.

When the call finally ended, he gravely apologized to her, but she assured him it was okay. She had been expecting the news. In fact, she already had a name picked out for the baby. Its first name would be April, and the middle name Fool. A video of the prank was uploaded to YouTube a few days later and quickly racked up over 25 million views and was featured on multiple national news programs. It's been hailed as the best classroom April Fool prank ever, and at this point it's certainly the most widely shared and celebrated one ever.