April Fool's Day, 1977
In 1977, the British newspaper The Guardian published a special seven-page supplement in honor of the tenth anniversary of San Serriffe, a small republic located in the Indian Ocean consisting of several semi-colon-shaped islands. A series of articles affectionately described the geography and culture of this obscure nation. Its two main islands were named Upper Caisse and Lower Caisse. Its capital was Bodoni, and its leader was General Pica.
Adding credibility to the supplement was the fact that many eminent people were quoted in it, referring to their experiences in San Serriffe. Authentic advertisements also accompanied the articles and played into the hoax. For instance, Texaco offered a contest for which the first prize was a two-week trip to Cocobanana Beach in San Serriffe. Kodak also ran an ad in which it said, "If you have a picture of San Serriffe, we'd like to see it."
The Guardian's phones rang all day as readers sought more information about the idyllic holiday spot. Few noticed that everything about the island was named after printer's terminology. The success of this hoax is widely credited with launching the enthusiasm for April Foolery that then gripped the British tabloids in the following decades.
I once stayed in lovely San Seriffe, but upon arrival, I hit my head and slipped into a comma. I remember nothing of my visit there.
While you were underlined, did they remove part of your semi-colon?
No, but after I recovered... Mark and his lovely secretary, Tilde, took me for a ride in his new Toyota Tahoma to a delightful Italic restaurant overlooking Lake Helvetica. There we had a delicious appetizer of Wingdings, washed down with ice cold bottles of Univers 45 Light. Mark, usually a total Nimrod in social settings, then took us to see a play which had a Superscript. You know the play---it was advertized in the Times (New Roman).
I don't caret all for your tone, and you are being too bold in asking me such a question. I must ask you to
Your parens should send you to your room.
I meant to respond to this in the past but I was too tense and had to dash.
Well, I note none of our Antipodean friends have responded but perhaps they are all singing Waltzing-ma-Tilda~. Ohh that one even offended my own sensibilities.
I must asterisk you to please stop.
I opened my new month's supply of food, and shelved it in my pantry. I'm pretty excited about all of the things I love, and need to get "right back on it" tomorrow. I have reached this tenuous place now in my weight, where I have been two or three times in the last few years, and then just quit dieting, only to slowly put all the weight back on over the course of the following year or two. Hate it!
Oh yeah... inside my box o' food were two little teddy bears, one blue one and one red one -- one for reaching the 10-pound loss club, and the other for reaching the 20-pound loss club. Awwwwww.
In the CHASS lab before class, the girl on the computer next to me had three chat windows open on those new wide-screen flat monitors (thanks a lot, Charles!) -- so three side-by-side windows across the screen. She jumped back and forth between windows, laughing, typing furiously, and having a conversation with the guy sitting at the computer on the other side of her.
Then, she makes a cell phone call facing the huge sign on the wall in red letters that says, "Please take your calls in the hall." And I'm thinking, "Especially all that "he said, she said" nonsense.
That is such a major, huge, extreme turn-off to me. People that have to talk that much get on my last nerves. Why, they could be writing that much for God's sake. :-) It reminds me of the quote: "Small minds talk about people, mediocre minds talk about events, great minds talk about ideas."
And, yes, as soon as I get off my high horse, I'm going to run the "People-Event-Idea Counter Program" against my blog, and see just how little my mind is. Touché.
My dear friend Steve made a ticket to David Sedaris available to Robert tonight. What a dear! Robert stopped by after the performance, which he just loved, and gave me a post card that he'd had David sign. It said, "To John: Sorry I missed you. David Sedaris" (or some scribbling that purportedly spells David Sedaris). How absolutely cool! I'm so happy Robert got a chance to see him.