To repeat the not so subtle title of the post today, it’s the 1st of April and that means … Happy April Fool’s Day everyone! That being said, I’m sure that most people don’t feel like putting on their clown acts or playing pranks this year because it hasn’t been the greatest start to the new decade if we are being honest. While April Fool’s day may be a heck of a lot of fun for some people, it’s not exactly the best day in the world for other people. Those who loathe practical jokes, or always end up being the victim of pranks is not likely to enjoy this jovial day like everyone else. To make matters worse, especially after reading a bunch of tweets this morning, 2020 doesn’t seem like an appropriate year for an entire day to be dedicated to tricks, practical jokes and giving people scares for a laugh.
However, before I leap into the rest of my blog post, I’m always curious to see where things, and particularly customs like this day, come from. After some research, my sources keep pointing out that the exact origins of the day remain a mystery, even though it has been celebrated on the 1st of April for centuries by different cultures. One speculation of the origin is that it was when France swapped to the Gregorian calendar, where the new year began on the 1st of January rather than with the spring equinox (around April 1st). People were slow to get this update though, and so continued to celebrate the new year at the end of March. They soon became the butt of jokes and hoaxes and were subsequently called “April Fools”. The day’s popularity though came more to the forefront in the 18th century, where people were sent on phony errands and having pranks played on them like the famous “kick me” signs. However, the true splurge and surge in this day, is due to its embrace by the media and major brands, which has essentially ensured the holiday’s long survival.
Nowadays, people go to incredibly lengths to create elaborate pranks and tricks for April Fool’s day and the media are no exception to joining in the fun. Many news stations and websites have participated by reporting ridiculous fictional claims that have left their audience completely fooled. (Let’s not get into the ethics about that … as long as it stays harmless fun without major consequences). Google notoriously hosts an annual prank that has ranged from the truly outrageous to hysterically funny (such as the ability to play Pac Man on Google Maps).
My family has never really been big on April Fool’s Day just because practical jokes can end up being quite mean and my parents’ logic was that siblings are mean enough to each other already. That being said, that didn’t stop us from having a little bit of fun every now and then, and we still had lots of April Fool’s with our friends at school. A popular prank was taping a small piece of paper to the bottom of people’s mouse in computer classes so it seemed as if their mouse wasn’t working. Another was glad wrap around toilet seats, although that got nipped in the bud pretty quickly for reasons that I’m sure you can imagine and I don’t need to actually type up. Personally, I’ve almost never had pranks pulled on me because that’s just not something my friend groups have ever been into, but there was one year at school camp where another cabin pranked ours …
At our school, each grade goes on a school camp every year and this can be for three days to up to a week or more. Due to the fact that we were a co-ed school, that meant that the girls were split between two cabins and the boys were split between a different two cabins and the other girl group decided to play an April Fool’s Prank on us. They offered us a few boxes of Oreos, because they had some left over. What we didn’t know is that they had carefully removed part of the filling and replaced it with incredibly minty white toothpaste. Now, most of us realised that there was something wrong with them straight away but there were one or two girls that just thought they were minty Oreos and scoffed at least a box of these tainted cookies. The result wasn’t pretty … and let’s just say that ever since then, they’ve been a lot more suspicious of delicious treats being offered without any apparent reason.
Now even though I have two brothers, thankfully our siblingship has never resulted in full-out prank wars and I think I can partially thank the large age gap between the three of us for that. If we did take this day seriously, I would most likely have PTSD because my brothers can be creative when it comes to getting their way. So, let me just say I am incredibly grateful they’ve never decided to prank the living daylights out of me. However, just because we don’t do big pranks, doesn’t mean we don’t joke around. All of us, I am not kidding, have varying degrees of arachnophobia. So, as you can imagine, the standard joke for all of us was finding a realistic-looking plastic spider and finding a place to leave it that would give our sibling a small bout of heart palpitations. As scary as those encounters were though, that is the worst that our pranks have ever really got.
This year however, is quite a different situation. As I said earlier, I’ve read some interesting tweets where people are opting for this great day of pranks to be cancelled. According to lots of people, the whole of 2020 already feels like a joke gone wrong and many believe that they can’t deal with the current situation of the world, with the addition of worrying about April Fool’s pranks. The problem with April Fool’s coming at a time like this is it opens up the possibility for people to make jokes and pranks revolving around the coronavirus, which has become an incredibly concerning worldwide pandemic. Another problem is that this year has had so many negatives already, people aren’t really in the mood for jokes and levity. There have been floods, fires, and shootings and the cherry on top is COVID-19, which has brought entire countries to a stop and has the entire world stressing, panicking and isolating. To put it lightly, the year has been a bit of a buzzkill and it’s only April.
I know that today is meant to be joyous and filled with harmless fun. However, given the state of everything and the fact that in many parts of the world people are stuck at home, maybe opt out of doing pranks this year. I’m not saying you can’t, or that you shouldn’t, because that choice is yours and it depends on who you’re living with but if things are tense and people are already stressed, playing a prank on them is unlikely to perk them up or make the situation any better. Instead, why not make today a day to laugh and have fun without the jokes and pranks? Do something that can make you, and your family, laugh hysterically. Play board games together or watch funny movies. Tell each other jokes and do what you can to bring a smile to each other’s faces. Whatever it is, just try to enjoy the day with each other. Anywho, I know my post didn’t have too much to do with pranks and what kinds of jokes you can play on your friends/family members but I still hope that you enjoyed reading the blog. Thank you all so much for your continued support – please don’t forget to hit that like button and subscribe so you don’t miss out on future posts. On a health note, please everyone remember social distancing and I wish you all good health and that we make it through this difficult time. We’re all in this together, and I hope you all have a good, healthy April Fool’s Day.
Lots of Love
Blondey on a Mission xxx