Monday, April 02 2007 @ 07:46 AM MDT
Contributed by: brian
You don't see too many good April Fool's pranks. You really need good timing, the right people and a believable story line to pull it off. My sophomore or junior year of college, everything came together perfectly.
A little background - my fraternity had a bad reputation. We weren't that bad, but we skirted the rules without putting pledges in serious danger. One of the pledge responsibilities was to wait tables during lunch and dinner. When we had announcements, we would send them out of the room. Usually, they were sent to the walk-in freezer on the lower level ("GET IN THE BOX" was the signal), which sounds worse than it was.
One time, however, the foursome waiting tables were taken outside and handcuffed to the fire escape. Don't ask me why - I don't even know if I was there when it happened. No one was hurt. It was all just the product of a brother who was bored and had access to multiple sets of handcuffs.
Again, don't ask me why.
That took place a few days before April Fool's Day. We must have just returned from Spring Break because we were on trimesters and the break between second and third term was usually from around St. Patrick's Day to around April Fool's Day. So I guess the handcuffing was someone getting rid of pent up energy from break.
Anyhow. We had announcements on April Fool's Day at lunch and the pledges were sent to the box. At some point - I don't remember whether it was right away or after the mundane announcements - our president (Bryce) stood up.
Here's where having the right people is important. Bryce was a pretty serious guy, but he looked really pissed when he stood up. He demanded that the guys behind the handcuffing take credit for it because he spent the whole morning in the Dean of Students' office, and we were in deep trouble.
That was believable. We were always teetering on the edge of being in trouble, mainly because we did things like that - something that sounded horrible, but in reality was just a prank. Bryce sold it perfectly.
Here's where the other "right person" came into play. Except he wasn't in on the prank - he took the bait perfectly. Ken was the pledgemaster. Ken was kind of high-strung and took things way too seriously at times. As Bryce went on about responsibility and not getting others in trouble (PA had some pretty serious anti-hazing laws we were always threatened with), Ken stood up.
In tears, he demanded that the people who did it take responsibility because he wasn't going to get in trouble for something he didn't have anything to do with. Ken had a high-pitched voice so that made this even funnier. Admittedly, he might not have been actually crying, but it makes the story better.
Things got real quiet for a minute before Bryce spoke again. He sheepishly looked around the room at the stunned faces and said, "April Fool's." At this point, we attacked him, stripped him naked and threw him in the pond next door. That tradition is another column for another time.
These stories of course become funnier when I point out that Bryce is now a teacher and Ken is global human resources director for a company.