April Fools’ Day jokes are alive and well and living in Denmark
Today is probably the only day of the year when ‘fake news’ is not only permissible but also encouraged in the mainstream media.
Yes, it is April 1 and as usual, the Danish papers and broadcasters have been busy, but so have the press departments attached to a number of ministries.
The Environment and Food Ministry has a press release announcing a ban on the use of raisins in cakes from October 1 as “grapes should be eaten fresh or used to make wine”. To ensure the ban is upheld, a taskforce will visit bakers and institutions. The reason given for this draconian measure is “to free up personnel in childcare institutions and old people’s homes who are spending precious time removing raisins”. The department reckons that around 100,000 working hours could be saved by the new ban.
Getting into the spirit of the Brexit chaos, the Foreign Ministry wants to help Danish fishermen by building a fence to keep herring in Danish waters. In true Trumpian style, the fence, which is big enough to span the North Sea, will be paid for by the British government. “The Brits created this problem, and I am going to make them pay for the fence,” said the fisheries minister, Eva Kjer Hansen.
Whoops! The joke’s on you
Unfortunately for the Ministry for Energy, Utilities and Climate themselves, they’re the ones who have ended up looking foolish. Due to a computer error, they sent out their red herring at 17:05 on March 31, reports TV2 Nyheder.
Under the heading ‘Government to set up climate advisory panel for the elderly’, minister Lars Christian Lilleholt commented: “In my view, an advisory panel for the elderly makes a great deal of sense because it would give a voice to some of the older people who have got us into the mess we’re in today”.
The press release went on to say that the panel, comprising eight ordinary people over the age of 60, would be presented at the Bakkens Hvile cabaret theatre by actress Ghita Nørby while the ’60s folk singer Erik Grip would sing a new version one of his most famous songs
What the papers say
Amongst the newspapers, BT reported that from now on, Tivoli would not only be an amusement park for adults and children but also for dogs. On April 4 a new amusement would be opened specially tailored for ‘man’s best friend’.
Berlingske carried a story that Denmark’s political festival Folkemødet will in 2020 move from its current location in Bornholm to Lindholm with the idea of making the festival “a lot smaller and more exclusive”.
According to Politiken, Denmark’s national bank building in the centre of Copenhagen should be demolished. “The building is an example of the kind of architecture inspired by Bauhaus that is hostile to human beings that has ruined our medieval towns all across the country,” Dansk Folkeparti’s spokesperson for culture, Alex Ahrendtsen, is alleged to have told the newspaper. He would like to see a new building on the site using the plans of the original baroque one from the 1700s that previously stood there.
Video killed the radio star?
Ghita Nørby was again in the news according to Ekstra Bladet, but this time because of a career change.
Trading on her success as a radio star in a recent controversial interview on the satirical radio show radio24syv, it was suggested that DR was thinking of teaming her up with fellow actress Malene Schwartz (Maude in Matador) for a new P1 radio progam entitled ‘Danish Divas’.
To boldly go …
In the field of science, Videnskab.dk could reveal that a new egg and sperm bank was opening that allows customers to choose from a range of well-known researchers.
The new facility would put an end to getting “eggs or sperm from people you have no idea who they are, end the fear that the donor is not necessarily the sharpest knife in the drawer and maybe end the bad academic results in the international PISA test”.
“Our mission is to facilitate the scientific propagation of scientific journalism in Denmark so that more people appreciate science and understand what researchers are doing behind the high walls of their institutions. This initiative takes things a step further and will, hopefully, strengthen the coming generation’s ability to understand research,” said Peter Hyldgård, the head of the website’s Centre for Scientific and Technical Communications.
Hanging up his boots
Sport was also represented with a story and video clip (in Danish below) announcing that the legendary FCK star footballer Dame N’Doye would be stopping his career with immediate effect. He will, however, be kept on at the club and trained up for other duties, including a possible job as a groundsman.