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Ozzy Airport? Don't be fooled; NUTTY HEADLINES FOR APRIL 1.


ROADS made out of biscuits, penguins by the Thames, Birmingham Airport being renamed Ozzy Osbourne International and Coldplay's Chris Martin writing the new Tory anthem.

It could only happen on April 1.

Outlandish stories abounded in the media yesterday as newspapers and radio went to town with All Fools Day exclusives thinly disguised as real-life news.

The Daily Express provided the strangest offering, filling a page with the photo of workmen steam-rollering Jammie Dodgers and custard creams into a dual carriageway.

The report revealed how 'small amounts of the teatime snack, mixed with more traditional surfacing materials like bitumen, amazingly help to make roads 10% safer and more durable'.

An aptly-named Professor Emilio Garibaldi took the biscuit with his comment: "This may sound ridiculous, but it works."

Meanwhile, The Sun offered a double-whammy. A Jackass penguin had been spotted in the Thames, and readers were treated to a close-up of the creature jogging on the beach. The paper speculated that the penguin could create the same furore as the whale which was sighted in London two months ago.

Then there was the sad story of a footy fan who went to have an England tattoo on his back, only to leave with one extolling the praises of Argentina instead because of a spelling mistake or two.

In the Midlands, BBC Radio WM teamed up with Birmingham Airport in at attempt to convince listeners that the terminals were to be named after Black Sabbath rocker Ozzy Osbourne.

John Morris, the airport's Head of Corporate Affairs, was heard to comment: "Other airports like to talk up their status, or location. They adopt grand and sometimes pompous names, whilst others honour local heroes.

"I can empathise with those who think that Ozzy is a step too far but it is about balance."

Other suggestions ruled out for the new name had included Slade star Noddy Holder, historian Carl Chinn, comedian Tony Hancock, politician Enoch Powell and funnyman Jasper Carrott.

The Daily Mail's red herring had a more political bent - suggesting that the famous front door at 10 Downing Street was to be repainted Socialist red.

In deadpan prose, the report stated that the prime minister had ordered the paint job because he was 'feeling well and truly at home nine years after claiming the keys'.

But design consultant April Fewell moaned that it "sticks out like a sore thumb".

The Times saved its thunder for a small slot on page 12, where the anagramatically-correct Alexi Harpor (April Hoaxer) revealed plans for 'Chip and Sing' cards. Soon, the paper said, we would all be authorising payments by cards belting out snatches of well-known tunes such as Jerusalem and My Way. The system would be commonplace by April 1, 2009.

In the most extravagant trick of the day, the Guardian devoted an entire page to the Tories' new pop anthem penned by Coldplay.

The group's hit Talk was being retitled Talk To David after singer Chris Martin's actress wife Gwyneth Paltrow met David Cameron's other half Samantha at a yoga class.

Martin was quoted as saying that he had agreed to change the lyrics because he was impressed by his political idol's fondness for riding bicycles and wearing fair-trade trainers.

But a peek at the reporter's name gave the game away. It was written by one Olaf Priol.


OUT OF TUNE: Coldplay's Chris Martin and David Cameron' OFF THEIR ROCKERS: Brum's airport and Ozzy Osbourne
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Publication:Sunday Mercury (Birmingham, England)
Date:Apr 2, 2006
Previous Article:Teacher left pupils behind.

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