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Five office-friendly pranks for April Fools' Day

Funcoast • May 13, 2015 at 8:37 AM

As Mr. T. says, "I pity the fool!" So do we, but that doesn't mean we're not going to laugh at him first. Since we spend most of our time at work, you can bet that we’re always interested in some office-appropriate pranks to pass the time. With April Fools’ Day coming up, we’ve got a nice little list of things to try.

Kidnapped — Take an item from the victim’s office (something they use a lot, such as a special coffee cup, stapler, pencil cup, etc.). Take a picture of the time and leave it on the victim’s desk (in the same spot where the item was located), along with a “ransom” note.

Where do I go? — This trick works great if you work in an office building that has two entrances. Print up two signs that say “Please Use Other Door.” Put one on each door, with arrows pointing toward the opposite door.

Hold my calls — Coordinate several people to help you play this prank. Have them take turns throughout the day calling the victim and asking for “Larry.” At the end of the day, have someone make the final call and say, “This is Larry. Do you have any messages for me?”

Incorrect — If the victim uses Microsoft Word, go into their computer and change the auto-correct feature so that it misspells or completely replaces common words. Just open Word, choose “AutoCorrect options” from the Tools menu, and have it replace common words like “the” and “and” with wacky words like “eggplant” or “Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious.” Be creative.

Search confusion — Change the settings on your victim’s computer so when they Google something, their search page shows up in a different language. Just sneak onto their computer, go to Google.com, choose “Settings” in the upper right, then “Search settings.” Now change the Interface language to whatever language you prefer. You can even choose Klingon, Pirate, Elmer Fudd, Hacker or Bork, bork, bork! (To fix after the prank, jut click on the “Google.com in English” link below the search box on the main Google page.)

Fun facts about April Fools’ Day

—    In some countries such as New Zealand, the UK, Australia and South Africa, the jokes only last until

        noon — and someone who plays a trick after noon is called an “April Fool.”

—    The earliest recorded association between April 1 and foolishness can be found in Chaucer’s

        “Canterbury Tales” (1392), specifically the “Nun’s Priest’s Tale.”

Some top-notch April Fools’ Day pranks

1.)    Taco Liberty Bell: In 1996, Taco Bell took out a full-page ad in The New York Times announcing they had purchased the Liberty Bell to “reduce the country’s debt” and renamed it the “Taco Liberty Bell.” When asked about the sale, White House press secretary Mike McCurry replied tongue-in-cheek that the Lincoln Memorial had also been sold and would henceforth be known as the Lincoln Mercury Memorial.

2.)    Left-Handed Whoppers: In 1998, Burger King ran an ad in USA Today saying that people could get a Whopper for left-handed people whose condiments were designed to drip out of the right side. Not only did customers order the new burgers, but some specifically requested the “old” right-handed burger.

3.)    Spaghetti trees: The BBC television program Panorama ran a famous hoax in 1957, showing Swiss harvesting spaghetti from trees. They claimed that the despised pest, the spaghetti weevil, had been eradicated. A large number of people contacted the BBC wanting to know how to cultivate their own spaghetti trees. It was, in fact, filmed in St. Albans.

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