April Fools

It's that time of year again, when the days in March are numbered and the dream of flowers flowering is almost more than a dream. It's the time of year when the western wind blows warmly, carrying with it the smell of mountain rain. It's almost April, which means it's also that time of year for you to check and make sure your toilet bowl isn't wrapped over invisibly with saran wrap...

Happy April Fools day!

Satirist and author Kurt Vonnegut once said that "if you make people laugh or cry about little black marks on sheets of white paper, what is that but a practical joke? All the great story lines are great practical jokes that people fall for over and over again."

So with that said, can you think of a better place to celebrate April 1st and get inspired for a little tomfoolery yourself than the public library?

If you're in the mood, check out some of these great pranks and pranksters you can find at DPL:

To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
Scout recounts in chapter 27 the hilarity that ensues after all the furniture is taken from inside Misses Tuttie and Fruittie's home and hid in their cellar. In classic prankster form, she denies of course of "having taken any part in such a thing."!

A Midsummer Night's Dream by William Shakespeare
This is one of, if not the, best practical jokes ever played! Puck (aka Robin Goodfellow) not only succeeds in transforming Bottom into an ass, but then gets the Fairy Queen to fall head over heels in love with him afterwards. Classic!

The Adventures of Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain
After being punished for skipping school, Sawyer is charged with white washing his Aunt Polly's fence. But being the master of practical jokes that he is, he's able to get out of the chore by tricking his friends into doing it for him. Brilliant!

The War of the Worlds by Orson Welles
Based on H.G. Wells novel of the same name, this is one of the most notorious large scale pranks in broadcast history. Performed in 1938 as an episode of The Mercury Theatre on Air, Orson Welles suggested to listeners that an actual alien invasion by Martians was currently in progress through a series of news bulletins.

Beverly Hills Cop
Axle Foley is another master prankster. His shenanigans, especially the banana in the tail pipe bit, have become rights of passages for young pranksters everywhere since the movie's release in 1984.

And you can't forget the Merry Band of Pranksters in Magic Trip: Ken Kesey's Search for a Kool Place.
In 1964, Ken Kesey set off on a legendary cross-country road trip to the New York Word's Fair, joined by a renegade group of counterculture truth-seekers.

For a broader survey of the practical jokes, tricks, and outright scams that people have played on each other over the years, be sure not to miss The Museum of Hoaxes: A Collection of Pranks, Stunts, Deceptions, and other Wonderful Stories Contrived for the Public from the Middle Ages to the New Millennium by Alex Boese

Or, you can just watch Maya Angelou punk Stephen King!:

Do you have a favorite prank or practical joke? Mine?:

The moon landing. HA! What a gas!

Written by Zac on March 28, 2013

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