This is the week when the foolish among us are celebrated with their very own special day, April Fools’ Day.
It’s also the high holiday for wacky radio D.J.’s and television news anchors to prank their audiences with the hilarity of fake news. I’ve taken the liberty of providing them with a few scripts.
“Last night, the Yarmouth Town Council voted 6-1 to go forward with a hostile takeover of North Yarmouth.
“Yarmouth Town Manager Nat Tupper said it’s time for our friends to the ‘North’ to let go of the pretense that they’re a real town (really more of a large tract of farmland) and acknowledge that they want – no, that they need – to be official participants in our annual Clam Festival.
“The lone dissenting vote came from Yarmouth Councilor Andy Kittredge who accused Tupper of wanting to take over North Yarmouth solely because of his insatiable love of Toots Ice Cream. Kittredge then tried to deflect the issue by suggesting South Dakota and North Dakota should merge before he would consider the recoupling of Yarmouth and North Yarmouth.”
In related “news”:
• The World Sensitivity Council named Gov. Paul LePage its Man of the Year. “I’d like to thank my good friends D-Money, Smoothie, and Shifty for helping me to refine my social skills here in Maine,” LePage said. “Also, with Chris Christie and Mr. Orange-Head from New York hogging all the press coverage lately in this category, I’m honored to be recognized for my early head-shaking, state-wrecking and shameless work.”
• In a surprise move calculated to solidify his Draconian immigration policies, Donald Trump had his Yugoslavian-born wife Melania deported last night – with the added indignity of forcing her to fly coach on a commercial flight back to an unpronounceable European city. In a statement printed on gold leaf paper imported from an Amazonian village dependent upon child labor, The Donald claimed, “This was the best deportation ever conducted – the absolute best. Yes, this was a tough decision, right up there with firing Omarosa on the first season of ‘The Apprentice,’ but it’s getting harder and harder to out-crazy Ted Cruz.”
• The board of Proctor & Gamble named Martin Shkreli (a.k.a. “the most hated man in America”) the company’s new CEO. Shkreli is best known as the pharmaceutical executive who raised the price of an AIDS drug 5,556 percent, from $13.50 a tablet to $750. Eager to apply Shkreli’s pricing strategy to their own product line, P&G also announced that Charmin Toilet Paper will now cost $633.99 per roll.
• Toyota Corp. signed an unusual sponsorship deal with U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders. “We’re thrilled to formalize our long-standing relationship with Sen. Sanders,” Toyota Vice President and General Manager Bill Fay said. “As everyone knows, over the last year every single Prius automobile has come equipped with a pre-installed ‘Feel The Bern’ bumper sticker and a recommendation that our Prius drivers travel at highway speeds 10-mph below the posted speed limit at all times. Starting this month, new Prius vehicles will come equipped with dynamic speed sensors that are calibrated to block all other vehicles trying pass on the highway. These special cars will also include tinted windows so our drivers can avoid shameful eye contact – while displaying a special edition ‘Drive The Bern’ graphic package.”
• The Kennebunk Chamber of Commerce will host the 2016 International Zumba Championships in July. Speaking at a press conference, Chamber Executive Director Laura Dolce was defiant in her defense of bringing Zumba back to Kennebunk barely three years after scandal rocked the coastal community. “Yes, those see-through Lululemon yoga pants really rocked our world in 2013, but we need to move on. Hosting the Zumba championships is just one small step and two discreet Lotus poses away from healing this community.”
• The recent explosive growth of craft brewers in Maine has really taken the entire industry by storm. Based upon past trends and future trajectory, the Maine Brewers Association is projecting that by 2018, every street in Maine will have its own brewery.
• After running a successful mayoral campaign in 2015 based upon the promise of a smaller, more efficient city government, Portland Mayor Ethan Strimling wasted no time turning his City Hall office into a palatial retreat and hiring a dedicated assistant to handle the day-to-day grind of governmental leadership. In an unconfirmed comment, former Mayor Michael Brennan said “I tried to tell the residents of Portland that yes, Ethan has a stunningly beautiful head of hair and a Tom Cruise mega-watt smile, but bald guys make better leaders.”
In closing, my favorite quote about fools, written by Aaron Sorkin for an episode of “Newsroom”:
“The greater fool is someone with the perfect blend of self delusion and ego to think that he can succeed where others have failed. This whole country was made by greater fools.”
Happy fools of April.
Steve Woods is from away, but fully here now, living in Yarmouth, working in Falmouth, traveling the world, and trying his best. His column appears every other week. He can also be heard each Saturday at 11 a.m. on WLOB-AM 1310.