Feeling A Bit Foolish

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Have you heard the latest news? I was so sad after reading that the town’s negotiations with Arizona State University to build a satellite campus here in Payson have officially been called off and now there is absolutely no hope to lure another higher education institution to the Rim Country.

Also, have you heard the latest scoop that due to the severe erosion problem facing Green Valley Park, coupled with declining town revenue, Payson’s Town Council will vote at its next session to drain Green Valley Lake, fill it in and develop the area as the new covered event center grounds?

April Fools’ Day! Yes, it’s that time of the year again when we amuse ourselves by playing pranks and jokes on others. (And sometimes these bits of self-amusement really aren’t too funny.)

Ever wondered how this day of trickery came about in the first place? Well, the history of April Fools’ Day (or All Fools’ Day) is uncertain, but the current thinking is that it began around 1582 in France, with the reform of the calendar under King Charles IX. The Gregorian Calendar was introduced and New Year’s Day was moved from March 25 - April 1 (New Year’s week) to Jan. 1.

Communication traveled slowly in those days and some people were only informed of the change several years later. Still others, who were more rebellious, refused to acknowledge the change and continued to celebrate on the last day of the former celebration, April 1.

These people were labeled “fools” by the general populace, were subject to ridicule and sent on “fool errands,” sent invitations to nonexistent parties and had other practical jokes played upon them. The butts of these pranks became known as a “poisson d’avril” or “April fish” because a young naive fish is easily caught. In addition, one common practice was to hook a paper fish onto the back of someone as a joke.

This harassment evolved over time and the custom of prank-playing became an established practice on the first day of April. This tradition eventually spread elsewhere — to Britain and Scotland in the 18th century and was introduced to the American colonies by the English and the French. Because of this spread to other countries, April Fools’ Day has taken on an international flavor with each country celebrating the holiday in its own way.

Along with “love,” ‘breaking up” and “loneliness,” “foolishness” in music has always been very popular. In my music library alone, I found over 300 songs that have “fool” in the title. Frank Sinatra and the Tommy Dorsey Orchestra’s 1940 “Fools Rush In (Where Angels Fear To Tread)” is my earliest recorded hit.

There were many “fool-hearted” hits in the 1950s, many recorded by the doo-wop groups of the era, such as the Clover’s “Fool, Fool, Fool,” Frankie Lymon’s “Why Do Fool’s Fall In Love?” and the Coasters’ “Just Like A Fool.”

The 1960s saw even more “foolish” songs hit the airwaves, with such notable hits as “Everybody’s Somebody’s Fool” by Connie Francis, “What Kind Of Fool Am I” by Sammy Davis, Jr. and “She’s A Fool” by Leslie Gore visiting the tops of the charts.

This week’s music trivia question is: Can you match the titles of these other 1960s “foolish” hits: A) “Fool On The Hill,” B) “Chain Of Fools,” and C) “Fool #1” with their corresponding artists: 1) Brenda Lee, 2) The Beatles, and 3) Aretha Franklin.

If you’re caller number five this week and have the correct matches, you’ll win a $25 gift certificate to Rim Country Wireless (formerly Verizon Wireless), located in the Safeway Shopping Plaza.

If you’re foolishly fast — you can have your new cell phone, give your best friend a call and play a prank on him or her before April Fools’ Day is over!

Now, let’s see how we did with last week’s music trivia question, which was: Which of this year’s American Idol finalists does NOT reside in California: A) Casey, B) James, C) Thia, or D) Scottie?

Answer: This year’s American Idol finalist group represents eight different states, with California claiming residence of four contestants — Casey, James, Thia and Jacob. The remainder of the Idol-aspirants each live in different states. Last week’s trivia answer, Scottie McCreery, hangs his cowboy hat in Garner, North Carolina.

Congrats to last week’s music trivia winner, Leroy Watson, of Pine, who won a $10 gift certificate to La Sierra Mexican Restaurant in the Swiss Village. Leroy is a fairly regular caller and has won a couple of times in the past.

Leroy told me that he has been watching American Idol since the program debuted nine years ago. His favorite contestant this year is Scottie and predicts that Scottie and Casey will battle it out on final’s night.

Leroy’s all-time favorite Idol is 2005 winner, Carrie Underwood.

Have a great week! No Foolin’!

DJ Craig

Phone: 468-1482

Web site: www.DJCraigInPayson.com

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