I love my mother, but she is the most gullible person on the planet.
She is also going to be reading this just moments after I post it, which I love.
Every year on April Fool’s Day, I have gone to great lengths to craft the perfect, simple phone call prank to bestow upon my mother. I love pranks, especially good-natured ones, and my mom being the most gullible person on the planet makes her the best possible target.
Here’s the thing: a good prank will not hurt anyone, it will not cause any damage, it will not break relationships. I am a firm believer in this, and each and every time I have pranked my mother for April Fool’s Day I’ve kept this in mind. I know what is funny to my family, and it might not be funny to your family. That’s okay. But for us, man, this stuff is hilarious. I live for it. We have a family history of it, too, some of which I thought I would share with you here today since I am using my blog as yet another vessel for my annual prank.
When I say this is a family affair, I should be clear: some of my earliest childhood memories involve the weekly ritual of letting my mom check the mail while my dad drove the car a little ways down the road when she tried to get back in. Which we still laugh at today since every time she continued to do it knowing my dad was going to pull off. This wasn’t April fools day, it was just, you know. Mom is gullible. We sometimes have to have some fun.
Like when we spent years moving a gorilla toy to strange locations around our house, like in the shower. I think my parents still have that thing somewhere.
Since I moved away in 2010, my Annual April Fool has had to be a phone call. You might think that this has limited my capabilities, but oh no. It has enhanced them. Each year as the beginning of April looms ever closer I start carefully crafting my phone call. Sometimes it comes to me quite suddenly at the last minute, sometimes I’m ready a week or more in advance.
Relatives have been “going to visit” my parents without warning, sending my mom into a brief frenzy about the cleanliness of the house. She doesn’t use Facebook, so I can claim they posted about it and she will be none the wiser.
I have been stuck somewhere and needed money, for various reasons. Emergencies, stranded on the side of the road, what have you.
Someone has gotten arrested, didn’t she hear?
These are all great, of course, but predictable. I got older, wiser. I had to step up my game.
One year she refused to answer the phone all day because she knew it was coming, but still fell for the joke in the end.
Concerts come up a lot, since my family loves music. A personal favorite was the year I told her we won John Mayer tickets and I needed her to fly here the very next day. I felt a little bad about that one, since she loves John Mayer, but we both laughed about it. My mom doesn’t do anything last minute, and the panic over the short notice vacation triumphed over her desire to see her favorite artist live, and the joke worked.
Once I called and said I saw on Facebook that there was about to be a military jet flyover and she needed to run outside right then if she wanted to see it. She loves jets, and she had perfectly just gotten out of the shower, and I at least got her to the window even if she didn’t run outside.
A few years ago, someone we know won the lottery and I found out on April Fool’s Day, so I decided that year’s prank was telling her this completely factual information and having her doubt me because she knew it was coming.
Harmless, fun, we can all have a good laugh.
This year, I wanted to do something a little different. So I got my dad involved, and I concocted a scheme to get her here to this blog post so she could see how much I love her (and how much I enjoy pranking her year after year.) Even though it’s a minor, innocuous thing, it means a lot to me and it’s fun to have a family tradition we can all participate in, even from a thousand miles away.
I’m still waiting for the year she pulls a joke on me first, but it hasn’t happened yet.
You’ve got a whole year though, mom. I’m sure you’ll come up with something.