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April 01, 1945 - Image 3

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1945-04-01

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APRIL 1, 1915,

THE MICHIGAN DAILY

P,

APlUL 1, 194~ PA

April Foolishness Started with Zeus, the-
Great Rainmaker; or Was It Charles X?

I

Birthplace of 'The Old Rugged Cross'

THE HEART OF A MAN:
German Officer's Diary Shows
Underlying Desire for Peace

By The Associated Press
Probably you will be an April Fool today but don't be downcast about
it: this risibility routine has been going on for centuries.
There's even a legend that Zeus indulged in some April Foolishness
one dull day-on Olympus when he and Mercury arranged to have a priest
tell the folks it was going to rain-but only fools would get wet. The
downpour drenched everyone, except one philosopher, who had sense'

enough to go indoors.
FightingYanks
List Four Most
Difficualt Battles
Rhine Breakthrough
Easier than Siegfried
By WES GALLAGIIER
Associated Press Correspondent
IN GERMANY-Take it from 121
of the happiest fighting men on thet
front, crossing the Rhine and burst-
ing through German defenses was
ten times as easy as getting through
the Siegfried Line last October. 1
These men from the 117th Infan-
try Regiment of the 30th DivisionI
suddenly were yanked out of battle
east of the Rhine and told they weret
going home on 45-day furloughs. 1
In the Thick of Fighng
They had been in the hck of the
fighting since Normandy. One ser-
geant was the only survivor of an
original company of 150 men. An-
other was one of six left in a com-
pany which started out last June.
They listed in order the toughest
battles fought in Europe
(1) The original breaking of the
Siegfried Line north of Aachen last
September and October.
(2) The bitter fighting around
St. Lo last July when the division
lost a large number of menin an
Allied bombing.
(3) The Battle of the Bulge when
von Rundstedt broke through last
December and January in the Ar-
dennes,
(4)The Mortain Battle when1
the 30th broke up a German at-
tempt to cut off Patton's army
by Iriving to the sea at Avranches.
The Rhine, they agreed, was easy.Z
But the eager doughboys, and
Capt. Victor Salem, 35, former cos-
metics promotion man who was born
in Austria, wanted to talk aboutt
everything except battles.I
Thought They Were Kidding
"I thought they were kidding when
they yanked .me off the tank just}
when we were going to start the
attack and said I was going home,"
said Salem, who won the Silver Star
with two clusters, the Purple Heart1
and the Bronze Star.
"I never saw anything like it,,
though, when we crossed the Rhine,"
he said. "The boys were hot and
they just wanted to keep on goingI
until they got to Berlin-and in al
hurry. Two or three of the boys
would go out on their own and comet
lack with 50 prisoners."t

. Today's April Fool gags are a lot
more gentle than those of yesterday.
In England, in 1860, for example,
hundreds of persons received of-
ficial-looking invitations worded
"Tower of London-admit the bear-
er and friend to view the ceremony
of washing the white lions on Sun-
day, April 1. It is particularly re-
quested that no gratuities be given'
the wardens or their assistants."
Carriages rumbled through the
road to the Tower all day, before
the populace caught on.
Somebody once said that All Fools'
Day is a holiday, not by state enact-
ment, but by state of mind. At any'
rate, it's been celebrated for years in
France, England, Sweden, Portugal
and Scotland-where the ideal fun-
poking is called Gowk, or cuckoo
hunting. Years ago, a gowk needed
plenty of shoe leather, for the gag
was to send him to borrow something
from a neighbor at least two miles
away. The neighbor never had it,
but thought the next guy, down the
road a piece, did. This round robin
was kept up until someone took pity
on the gowk, or maybe until his feet
wore out.
In France, it is said that the
Duke of Lorraine and his wife
onceescapednfrom a prison:gin
Nantes' via an April Fool gag.
They disguised themselves as peas-
ants, and were passing through the
sentry lines when a passerby rec-
ognized them, and shouted their
names. Another, more friendly
onlooker had the presence of mind
to yell "April Fool," and the sen-
tries laughed so hard they never
bothered to investigate the identity
of the two peasants.
April Fool candy-guncotton spiced
with pepper, glazed and appetizing-
ly colored-was on sale in American
shops as early as 1897. Other time-
honored old faithfuls are bags of
memory powder, and pencils with
rubber points.
Most successful April Fooling al-
ways has been done early in the day,
before the victim can be exposed to
other pranksters. That's why sleepy
fathers for years have dipped their
spoons into empty eggshells inverted
in eggcups, and have been confronted
with offspring who insist there's a
hole in their pants, or a button miss-
ing from their shirts. Since the be-
Gustav To Celebrate
Reign With Tennis
STOCKHOLM, March 31- (P) -
King Gustav of Sweden will become
his countr'y's longest-reigning mon-
arch tomorrow-and the chances are
that he will celebrate by playing
tennis.

ginnings of time, probably thousands
of housewives on the way to market
have stooped to pick up a purse ly-
ing in the street, only to have it
whisked out of their hands by the
string some schoolboy has attached.
With the advent of the telephone
came messages to call Mr. Lamb at a
number which always turns out to be
the butcher. The New York aquar-
ium, which knows its April Fools,
wisely has all calls intercepted by
special telephone operators.
There are some who insist the
first April Fool gag was the cue
that prompted Noah to release the
dove from the ark one day too
soon. But recorded April silli-
ness probably begins in 1564, when
Charles X of France turned the
calendar upside down, and switch-
ed New Year's from April 1 to
January 1. Sticklers for tradition
were upset, and wanted to keep
celebrating the old day. So their
modern neighbors sent them silly
presents and greetings on April 1
-and called them "Poisson D'Avril,"
literally, Fish of April, or a young
one-easily caught. Hence, a suck-
er.

By The Associated Press
WITH THE FIFTH ARMY IN
ITALY-The diary of a Nazi officer
captured in the 10th Mountain Divi-
sion's drive in the Apennines draws
a clear-cut picture of a German sol-
dier wanting peace, but held to war
because of hi6 blood.
The following excerpts between
Feb. 13 and March 2 (the 10th Divi-
sion's attack was launched Feb. 19)
illustrate the brooding thoughts of
a German soldier fighting the tough
war on the Italian front:
Feb. 13th-"One starts to think
about the war, one thinks of the
future. (Do we have any futureat
all?) . . . One starts philosophiz-
in -... But what good is Schopen-
hauer's philosophy, Goethe's Faust,
Nietzsche's superhuman beings,
and Fiehte's well-meant speeches?
We all, whether young or old,
whether officer or enlisted man,
are subject to the laws of this
embittered war. Its iron fist forces
us into the smallest hole when
the splinters start flying around.
When the Yankee pulls the lan-
yard we become animals . . . Does
the war have any meaning?
War is the father of all things.
So wrote and proved a great Ger-
man, Karl von Clausewitz. Is it
really the father? Is it not the basic
evil of all things? Perhaps the steel-
helmet-crowned graves of the dead
of all nations are proof for the truth
in the words of God: 'Peace on earth
and good will toward men who are
of good will.'
"Feb. 25 - All hell has broken
loose. Crashes in every corner .
One regiment is retreating in dis-
order. If they don't start a coun-
terpush on my right soon, things
will go badly. I guess we all might
land score place in Canada or
Kansas. If my .darling only knew

FOR YEARS THE STIRRING HYMN, "The Old Rugged Cross," has
been symbolic of Christian spirit at Eastertime. Here the composer
of the hymn, the Rev. George Bennard (left) of Albion, Mich., tells
three Albion College students how he conceived the idea for the music
and words. The hymn was written in this same room at Albion.

what filth they have us sitting
in here.
"Feb. 26-The night passed qui-
etly. Everybody is still sleeping. I
can't get to sleep . . . I can cry in
the face of all this depressing superi-
ority . . . One cannot show one's self
at all during daylight. That would
be bordering on suicide. One's nerves
have to be of steel. What the Land-
ser' has to stand here borders indeed
on the superhuman. I can hardly
believe in final victory.. It must be
much the same on all the other
fronts. God in Heaven may give
that the end may be at least halfway
bearable for my Germany.
"Feb 27-This war is terrible.
Whoever has not gone through it
as a frontline infantryman cannot
possibly picture it. What human
beings can do to one another
Damned humanity, what insanity
are you committing?"
IDon't Wait,' Le
Said, but She Did
PHILADELPHIA, March 31-(P)-
"Don't wait for me. I'm pretty badly
shot up," Aubrey B. Holland, 24-year-
old soldier of nearby Conshohocken,
Pa., wrote his fiancee from overseas.
But today, using two canes, Hol-
land walked up a church aisle un-
assisted, on artificial legs, for his
wedding to the girl who did wait,
18-year-old Doris Jane Ruth.
Holland, who now works in a war
plant, lay unattended for four days
along the banks of the Rapido River
in Italy, with his left arm shattered,
left leg broken, both feet and one
hand frozen. When rescued, doctors
were forced to amputate both legs.

OUT AMONG THE TREES AND FLOWERS:
Arboretum Is No Place for Love

By PERRY LOGAN
A few days ago I was startled out of my latest sophomoric reverie
(meaning that I was dreaming of that day next fall when I too will become
a sophomore) by Mr. Dixon, Miss Phillips and Mr. Sislin, who burst in
upon me with impassioned pleas that seeing as how today was Sunday,
April 1 (Easter Sunday), I should write a few appropriate paragraphs
because I am just the sort of person April 1 was named for.
Well, personally I can't see what

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especial connection I have with Eas-
er Sunday; but if the senior editors
have some idea that my facial char-
acteristics resemble those of the East-
er Bunny, that's their business. After
all, I'm no fool, you know.
By the time Easter rolls around,
clothing merchants stoutly main-
tain that it is really spring. I
have heard that in the spring a
young man's fancy, and some fel-
lows I know certainly try to be. But
having read Lord Tennyson several
years ago, I know too that in the
spring every young man should be
in love.
Naturally then, I too wanted to be
in love, but up until last week I
didn't have the slightest idea of how
to go about it. Having been reared
in a very secluded environment (my
father was 74 when he married my
mother, a sprightly girl of 23, and he
has often cautioned me also to wait
until I am more mature before
searching for romance, but as I have
pointed out to him, I have not read
the first four chapters of "Married
Love" for nothing), I looked first for
guidance in the comforting counsel
of my roommate. My roommate is
a very alert sort of person, a second
semester junior, who can spot a
woman, a poker party or a beer bust
at 50 paces, so I figured he would
know all about this loving business.
The first thing ,he told me was
that I had to find some pretty girl.
This of course hindered my activity
from the very beginning. It was
only last fall that I left the bosom
of my family (my father was away
at the time on a short business
trip to Ionia) to come to the Uni-
versity to be a man among men. I
have heard that a fellow can also
be a man among women, but being
only 18, I have never had the
chance to find out.
He told me that there are two
types of women: those who are beau-
tiful and have dandy personalities
and those who are just beautiful (my
roomate is a kind soul, but at times
he is a trifle near-sighted). But he
told me that before I started on any
research, I should first get a lesson
or two by observing loving techniques
in the Arboretum.
Personally, not being a nature lov-
er, I didn't see how I could learn
anything about love by watching a
lot of trees and flowers, but he re-
assured me that the Arboretum was
the place to go for that sort of thing.
Being a very industrious lad,
last Tuesday morning I planned to
get up bright and early and get
out to the Arboretum in plenty of
time so that I wouldn't miss any-
thing. So when my alarm rang
at 6 a. m. Tuesday, instead of
muttering a few well-chosen words
about the middle of the night, I
jumped cheerily out of bed singing
about how today I would com-
mune with nature and learn about
love (my roommate's only com-
ment, he who does not have per-
fect pitch, was to throw his slipper
at me and go back to sleep).
On arriving at the Arb, I figured

the best thing to do would be to take
up my vigil on the top of a hill so
that I could have an excellent view
if any of the trees started to do any-
thing, so promptly at 7:30 a. m.
I sat down pencil in hand ready to
take notes on what I saw.
Nothing happened. I waited until
9:30 and still nothing happened. I
thought maybe the trees were bash-
ful because I was watching them, but
by 10:30 a couple of balsam trees
started to touch leaves (they never
went any further.) Toward noon the
wind made two fir trees whistle at
an old pine who was shedding, but
she wouldn't whistle back. After I
ate the lunch that Mrs. Langford had
graciously packed for me, I moved
over to a. birch grove. I figured the
birch tree must do an awful lot of
loving because there were so many
sons of birches around.
But after waiting around until
3:30, 1 got pretty disgusted-both
at the trees and at my roommate

for giving me such a bum steer. I
had waited all day and I hadn't
seen one tiny bit of romance. I was
going to wait until 8:30, but it was
obvious that as soon as the sun
set the trees would all go to sleep,
and so naturally there wouldn't be
anything going on in the Arbor-
etum after dark.
So I went back home, still not
knowing anything about love. I was
going to give the whole thing up,
out through the efforts of my room-
mate a girl in the University High
School has offered to give me some
lessons Saturday night. She told me
that before we go out, I should read
up on the anatomy of the bees and
the flowers, but she can't fool me;
I've had enough of this nature study
to know that that's got nothing to do
with love.
Some kids on the Daily just came
up and asked me if I had written
an April Fool's Day piece like the
senior editors had asked me to. I
guess the laugh's on them, all right;
they actually thought this was
April Fool's Day instead of Easter
Sunday. Anyway my readers know
from what I've written that I am
the last person anybody could call
a fool.

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