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April Fool’s Guide – How NOT To Pull A Prank

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There are many ways you can either pull a prank or be pranked on April Fool’s Day. Some are innocent. Some require a combination of thought and physical prowess. And some will turn into an emergency room visit. Take it from a recovering prankster…know the limits of your prank. Just like David Duchovney at an adult video store, I couldn’t get enough of pulling pranks on my friends and coworkers. Then one day, it happened. My last prank. I vowed to never, ever pull another prank as long as I lived. I gave up my membership to the Prank Club. I gave away all of my tools of the trade. Yes, what I did was that bad, I had to reform. Let me explain.

 

I was working in a different city in a different state a few years back. A radio buddy and I had known each other for a very long time, and he too was a practical joker. We’d go back and forth with the amateur stuff. One day my salt shaker would be sitting where it shouldn’t be, so I’d pick it up to move it only to find the cover was loose. I’d get him back with pennies over his office door…things like that. One day (in the deepest cold of winter) he left a sandwich on his desk. Big mistake. I tied a string to it and hung it out the window (from the 3rd floor). About a half an hour later, a sales person came up to him asking why a sandwich was hanging on the front of the building from his office. When he reeled it in, it was frozen solid! I was quite proud of that one. Then, I moved on to another radio station and met Sybil.

Sybil was a good natured sales gal and became a friend of mine…a very SHORT, good friend of mine. I took great pleasure in sticking her keys into the 9-foot high soft panel ceiling…a good 4 feet more than she could reach. There were days maybe her chair would go missing or possibly her car would find its way “for sale” across the street in a new car dealer’s lot.

Sybil decided she’d had enough of my shenanigans and fought back. One early morning I stepped into the studio and reached for my headphones with about 25 seconds left before I had to talk. My mind registered something wasn’t right, but my arms kept pulling my headphones to my ears. Knowing I had seconds to go, on they went…along with the half jar of Vaseline Sybil had gooped on them. As I set there squishing my way through my first break, a plan began to form. Sybil had no idea who she was dealing with.

When I ran into Sybil later that morning, I gave her the props she deserved on pulling a good prank. She had a Cheshire cat grin thinking she had won. If only she knew I’d be all over her like a buzzard on a crap wagon. I let a couple of days go by listening to her gloat. And then I set down at my computer and drafted a letter stating that all sales personnel were getting their sales commissions cut in half beginning on their next paycheck. I printed it off, signed it using the General Manger’s name, and stuck it in her mail slot. Apparently, Sybil went ballistic. I found this out AFTER I recovered…but more on that in a bit. She went into the Sales Manager’s office and chewed her a new one. The poor Sales Manager had no idea what she was talking about, but Sybil didn’t let up. Oh, to have been a fly on the wall for THAT conversation.

The next morning, after checking my headphones, I waited for Sybil to waltz in and tell me how funny I was. Except, the only people I saw were the Sales Manager and another sales person looking very concerned and having a slightly-above-whisper conversation. About ten minutes later, the Sales Manager came in and asked if I knew why Sybil was seen at our competitors building. My God! is all I could think. She thought the letter was real and is going to work elsewhere! I came clean with the Sales Manager and she freaked. Then a phone call came in and it was confirmed…Sybil was quitting and going to work across the street. By now, I was having heart palpitations and told the building I was going to go look for her. I put my jacket on and reached for the door when the Sales Manager asked me to come back in…and the whole office was standing there. “Surprise,” they said. “We got you! That was for Sybil.” The whole thing was staged to teach me a lesson.

I can honestly say I had tears in my eyes. Happy that I wasn’t really the cause of making a co-worker quit because of a prank I pulled…and even happier that I didn’t hurt a good friend of mine for being so callous. A little later, Sybil did stroll in with a smug look on her face. I gave her a hug, apologized over and over for the prank, and crowned her the champion. She wanted to call a truce and I went one step further…telling her I would never pull another prank again.

I think about those “good old days” whenever April Fool’s Day comes around and how much I miss pulling a good practical joke. So to help me feel better without breaking my promise, I’m going to share a different prank each day this week here on the Loon site that YOU can use. If they’re successful for you, write back and tell us. Just don’t blame them on me. Sybil might find out, wherever she might be, and I like the feel of my headphones just the way they are.

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