Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Wacky Prank Holiday Jamboree

I said I'd be back, and here I am, blogging for you on April Fool's Day at Illuminati gunpoint. Don't ask how that ended up happening, let's just say that if you ever run into a talking potato pancake on a street corner, ignore it and keep on walking.

Given the nature of the holiday today, many are playing all kinds of pranks all across the internet. (While others are stepping up the spread of viruses, worms, and all sorts of malware.) You can rest easy knowing that I would never lower myself to that sort of behavior.

The infamous Julian Calendar, who existed in a time when all people were still made of stone. And also had no irises or pupils.April Fool's Day - otherwise known by the even better name, ALL FOOLS' DAY - was founded before the invention of time itself by Gregorian Calendar. Of course, Gregorian stole the idea from his brother, Julian Calendar. This very act of thought larceny can be seen as the original "April Fool." (In truth the very first prank played on April 1st a year prior to the holiday's founding by Bob Heartburn, who would later go on to notoriety for founding something people tend to enjoy far less than this holiday. The Calendar brothers were, ultimately, little more than thieving whores, but you might be surprised by how many in human history were in reality little more than just that.)

Let's take a look at other famous pranks in human history:

- In 1938, Orson Welles and the Columbia Broadcasting System pranked America through the broadcast of a radio adaptation of H.G. Wells' "The War of the Worlds." This prompted a widespread national panic as the result of which Amelia Earhart suddenly "blipped" (That's the scientific term for it) out of existence a year prior. Many who were alive during the original broadcast insist today that there was nowhere near the scale of shocked response to the radio show that the media insisted there was. Qualified revisionist historians believe these oldsters to be liars.

- In 2005, cult comedian Mitch Hedberg faked his own death in order to flee America and pursue his greatest aspiration: to dress up in a Smaquis the frog costume and educate the children of France about forest fires.

- Thomas Edison, in fact, did not exist at all. He was a character created by Nikola Tesla when he realized nobody liked him enough to properly credit him for his inventions. The character of Edison amounted to little more than Tesla wearing a pair of those fake glasses with a nose and mustache - humans at the time were easily fooled, and ultimately burned Tesla at the stake upon thinking he'd killed Edison when his "face" abruptly fell off in the middle of a demonstration of his time machine. Unfortunately, the time machine itself has been lost in the archives of human history - as far as you know.

- April Fool's pranks aren't restricted to human culture, either. A couple of years after the Calendar brothers got the trend going - which at the time frequently amounted to acts of wanton violence and the spreading of disease, because that's about as far as humor had gotten at that point in the development of human civilization - the dinosaurs decided it was time to get in on that action. Specifically, they decided it was time to screw over the humans who'd come to depend on them for hard labor by all evolving into birds at once. This was later documented in the popular primetime animated documentary series, The Flintstones. (The live action rubber costume-based sitcom "Dinosaurs" presented an alternative take on this prank.)

- Believe it or not, every other major website or blog (Even the meaningless ones like this) is obligated to pull some sort of April Fool's prank every year. In fact, the internet has come to celebrate the holiday to the point at which trolling has become the internet world's favorite past time, with the existence of the internet itself being perceptible these days as some elaborate prank. (By Al Gore, no less. Did you see that coming!?)

- NASA would like us to believe that Spirit and Opportunity, our inspirationally-named Mars Exploration Rovers (Pronounce "MERRRRR"), landed on the surface of Mars back in January 2004. For a while, they had a lot of people going with that one. But once they started releasing color photos of the surface of Mars, it became apparent that they were pulling one of the best pranks in recent scientific memory. Presently, Spirit and Opportunity are believed to be roaming somewhere in the Arizona desert.

You see this Mars sunset? THIS IS A LIE.
As you can see, human creativity is boundless. (Except where fannypacks are involved. What were they thinking?) At times, it may seem like all the good pranks are taken. This is not the case. As such, I'd like to end this jovial holiday blog post with some suggestions of April Fool's pranks you might consider trying. If you can pull them off, you certainly won't be forgotten.

- Throw a brick through your boss's window with a death threat tied to it. Make sure you're careful not to leave any fingerprints or DNA evidence behind, no matter how fun the idea of shaving your head and giving the brick a wig of human hair might seem. (If you must do this, I suggest using someone else's hair instead.) Sit back and watch the hilarity unfold.

- Try posting a viral video on Youtube full of ironic self-referential humor so dense nobody other than yourself or perhaps your pet (Your only friend, and even then only out of a lack of choice) would understand. What could possibly go wrong? The internet loves this stuff and you'll show them what a great prankster you are in the process!

- Start fires - lots of them. Just be sure to let everyone know you were doing it as an April Fool's joke so you can all have a laugh over it. Otherwise some people might be a little pissed. Whatever you say, just make it clear that it was an April Fool's joke, not a goof.

- Blow up the moon. C'mon, it can't be that hard, and it's only a matter of time until somebody does.

- Spend a few decades studying quantum mechanics and general relativity. Become the world's foremost expert on string theory. Invent the greatest pair of scissors ever conceived. Cut all the eponymous string theory strings. Sit back and fuckin' coast.

- 9/11 again. Nobody would see it coming. I don't think this one needs any further explanation. But you should probably wear a funny hat or something while doing it so everyone knows to laugh otherwise it might get kind of awkward.

See how easy it is?

Well, that's it for this post. This potato pancake's trigger... whatever he's holding the gun with... it's apparently getting kinda itchy. Maybe I should've written this post as a cry for help, but I guess it's too late now. I'm off to sleep with the fishes in a brand new pair of cement shoes, but maybe they'll find enough pieces of me by tomorrow night to get that next Sane Gaming post done as planned. Maybe.


Lux said...

so i have to ask, since it is april fool's day after all... how much of this post is true?

was the calendar actually named after someone(s) named calendar? and is april fools day actually as old as the calendar that it fits into?

Benjamin Fennell said...

Most of it is naturally lies, and some distorted truths. I was referencing the Wikipedia article on the holiday when doing some initial research, and it talked about the holiday's origins and relation to the Gregorian and Julian calendars, and I thought it'd be pretty funny to give people those names in particular.

But April Fool's Day itself dates far back. There doesn't seem to be a specific pinpointed date of origin, but it looks as though it was referenced in the Canterbury Tales back in the 1400s, and in the 18th century it was apparently believed that the holiday dated all the way back to biblical times, many centuries prior. So April Fool's Day has some really interesting and apparently vague cultural origins dating further back than we can pinpoint.

CrazyCris said...

Really funny post! Got some great laughs, thanks I needed them!

You've actually inspired me to write an April Fool's post of my own... I tend to forget what today is since it's not celebrated around here. But I just caught sight of this year's BBC prank and am going to try it out on my family... If you haven't seen it yet:

Oh, and I had heard about the calendar change as being one of the origin stories, at least for France.
Hmmm... Weren't those calendars named after the Popes who implemented them? The Church was pretty much in charge of "keeping time" back in the dark ages... unless "Julian" is roman emperor Julian... just some random thoughts!

Benjamin Fennell said...

I'm glad you enjoyed it! It's been a little while since I last tried one of my surreal comedy posts, so I was wondering if I'd gotten a little rusty. Weird comedy was more of a regular staple in the earlier days of this blog, and I'm hoping to reintegrate it more again, now that I'm finally developing a bit of a regular reading and commenting base. (About which I'm naturally ecstatic.)

I'll definitely check out your April Fool's post. I watched a bit of that BBC video. I'm up too late now, but I'll be sure to watch the rest when I get up later, what I saw was definitely amusing.

Interesting, interesting. Looking at Wikipedia, the Gregorian calendar was indeed adopted by Pope Gregory, and the Julian calendar was the work of Julius Caesar. (Hence my using an image of a Caesar statue with this one.)

CrazyCris said...

ahhhh... so that must have been around the time caesar decided to give himself a month so he'd be remembered for eternity! the man had some serious ego issues! ;o)

I look forward to future weird comedy postings!

Benjamin Fennell said...

Haha indeed, no kidding.

I'll do my best with them! :)