April Fools’ Day is my least favorite holiday, and I use that term loosely, of the year. I’m happy Easter also fell on April 1 because that helped quell some of the idiocy that typically lets loose on the Internet for April Fools’ Day.
People use to engage in clever April Fools’ Day jokes and pranks. A few decades ago there was a radio station, WKGW, that called themselves KG-104. The morning show announced the United States had switched to “Metric Time” and while my clock said 8:45, they announced the time as something idiotic like “it’s 2:75” as they went into a commercial break. The commercials then revolved around this prank, for example, an electronics store announcing you could bring your VCR in for reprogramming to accommodate the new Metric Time standard. It was a clever gag and probably the only time I’ve ever enjoyed an April fools’ Day prank.
In April 1999 Earl and I were working on opening a fast food restaurant in a local mini-mall. I had left my radio career to pursue this venture. We had sunk all of our savings and our blood sweat and tears into this business. I can still vividly remember Earl’s voice as he called me up to tell me, “it’s all burned down. All of it. We lost everything. They think it was faulty wiring.” A few beats later he said, “April Fools’!”.
Hardy har har har.
I don’t know if my resistance to April Fools’ frivolity was amplified by Earl’s joke of 1999 or from the license some took with pranks back when I was in high school: lighting a classmate’s jeans on fire, flushing a nerdy kid’s head in the toilet or pouring water into an Apple IIe to “make it spark”. Maybe I’m just overly sensitive, but in a world where people take great glee in playing stupid pranks to get YouTube revenue I guess I just don’t see the fun in pranking folks and then screaming “April Fools!”.
That being said, I did tweet a geek prank of my own tonight:
I’m excited about Kmart buying Walmart.
No one bought it. I guess I’m not very good at this sort of thing.