Leap-year newspaper raises money and laughs in France

29 February 2024, 15:34

Paris Atmosphere – Liverpool v Real Madrid – UEFA Champions League Final
Paris Atmosphere – Liverpool v Real Madrid – UEFA Champions League Final. Picture: PA

La Bougie du Sapeur floats the idea of dismantling the Eiffel Tower during the Paris Olympics.

A satirical newspaper that is only published on February 29 has gone on sale across France.

La Bougie du Sapeur is a leap year-only publication and is filled with cringe-worthy puns and commentary on events of the past four years.

The 2024 edition includes an article suggesting France does not need schools any more thanks to artificial intelligence.

France Leap Year Newspaper
La Bougie du Sapeur (Michel Euler/AP)

Another floats the idea of dismantling the Eiffel Tower during the Paris Olympics this year to reduce security risks – and having Ikea produce a manual for rebuilding it.

Some friends started the newspaper as a joke in 1980, naming it after a comic book figure who was born on February 29.

The last edition in 2020, as the world went into Covid-19 lockdowns, sold 120,000 copies. Revenue from newsstand sales goes mainly to a charity for people with disabilities.

Its editors are proudly politically incorrect and some articles seem rather dated but that is the point, as well as lifting readers’ spirits.

When the world goes out of whack, reads its once-in-four-years editorial, “sometimes you have to laugh about it”.

By Press Association

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