By Diane Forrest
Today is a friend of mine's favorite holiday...he love to play jokes and pranks. He spends weeks planning the perfect gag to play on friends and co-workers. Last year, I hadn't spoken to him for a while, and he called. I didn't notice the date, I was just happy to hear from him...then he told me he had gotten engaged, and was getting married. Well you could have knocked me over with a feather! This guy had gone through a rather bad divorce a few years ago, and swore off women entirely! I was shocked to say the least. Well he continued on for a few more minutes until he finally blurted out “April fools!!!" and I had to confess that I had been fooled. Growing up I couldn't get away with any practical jokes. The people around me were always on the look out for such things. I tried a few minor things, like loosening the cap on the saltshaker or covering the toilet lid with plastic wrap, or putting Vaseline on doorknobs. But was always found out before the trick played out.
The origins of April Fools' Day are obscure. The most commonly cited theory holds that it dates from 1582, the year France adopted the Gregorian Calendar, which shifted the observance of New Year's Day from the end of March (around the time of the vernal equinox) to the first of January.
According to popular lore some folks, out of ignorance, stubbornness, or both, continued to ring in the New Year on April 1 and were made the butt of jokes and pranks on account of their foolishness. This became an annual tradition, according to this version of events, which ultimately spread throughout Europe. Thus began the centuries old tradition of playing tricks on April 1st.
Some notable pranks in recent history include a spaghetti harvest in 1957, Taco Bell's purchases of the Liberty Bell and renaming it the Taco Liberty Bell in 1996, and in 1998 Burger King introduced the left handed whopper for just one day.
Buzzfeed.com had a list of some practical jokes that you could try at home with your own friends and families that were mostly harmless. They include:
· Print out a fake parking ticket
· print out an unsolvable word search game, you can print one from here: http://www.buzzfeed.com/alannaokun/april-fools-day-pranks-you-can-easily-make-yourself
· Pour jello in a cup with a straw for an "undrinkable" drink.
· Fill the shower with toast
· Mix soy sauce with sprite and put in a coke bottle for a yucky drink
· duct tape an air horn on the back of a door so when the door opens the horn blasts
· Make caramel "apples" out of onions
· Fill donuts with mayonaise
· Paint clear nail polish on soap
· Make a "milk spill" using dried elmer's glue
· Make a fake spill with dried nail polish.
Use your imagination and creativity and come up with something wonderful! And have a great time but be safe!