April 1 is celebrated as a day of pranks and tricks in many countries around the world. Its origins are unclear, but there are references to it as far back as Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales (ca 1400). In the United Kingdom, Australia and Canada, the jokes only last until noon and anyone who plays a prank after that is known as an “April fool.”
In France and French-speaking Canada April 1 includes poisson d’avril (literally "April's fish"), in which people attempt to attach a paper fish to the victim's back without being noticed. In Scotland, April Fools' Day is called Hunt-the-Gowk Day ("gowk" is Scottish for a cuckoo or a foolish person).
What’s the best April Fools’ Day prank you have heard about? Let us know.
A Reminder: Celebrate National Library Week April 12 – 18, 2009.
Read-a-thon April 14, noon – 2 p.m. Tysons Corner Center
Preschoolers and families can join Mr. Knick Knack, children’s author Janet Stoeke, Providence District Supervisor Linda Smyth and other special guests, including a firefighter and police officer, as they read from their favorite picture books. Attendees will enjoy a visit from a storybook character and fun activities for all. For more information, call 703-324-8428 or check the library’s Web site. The Read-a-thon is cosponsored by the Fairfax Library Foundation, Tysons Corner Center and Barnes & Noble —Tysons.
Library Appreciation Day, April 18
Stop by your nearest library branch to express your appreciation for library services and staff. There will be a special area at each branch where library users can leave their comments.