April Fool’s Day is Traditionally a Harmless Day to Celebrate All Things Goofy. But Just How Did This Day Come About and What Are the Greatest Pranks Ever?
April Fool’s Day is the annual celebration for pranks of all shapes and sizes. It is a special day filled with jokes and hoaxes which are created using a range of wit and completed with varying degrees of success. Some pranksters spend weeks conceiving of the perfect joke, while others spend the whole day dreading their chance at becoming the unlucky target of a prank, the “April Fool” itself.
April Fool’s Day Rooted in the Ancient World
Though there are many theories concerning the origins of April Fool’s Day, none can be slated as it’s absolute starting point in history. Some hypothesize that this day of foolery was borne out of the switch from the Julian calendar to the Gregorian calendar in 1582, which changed New Year’s Day from April 1 to January 1. It is believed that many people either refused to honor the new Gregorian calendar, or did not know that a new calendar system was in effect, so of course these individuals were mocked mercilessly for continuing to celebrate the traditional New Year on April 1.
A more practical theory suggests that it is the turn of the seasons, the end of harsh winter and birth of glorious spring, which accounts for the surge in lighthearted pranks. If this is the case, than at some point the date of April 1 was decided as the annual day to celebrate the new season and the hijinx it inspires.
April Fool’s Day Across the Globe
April Fool’s Day is celebrated in many countries of the world on April 1, but in some countries the pranks have a cut-off time. Countries such as Australia, the United Kingdom and South Africa only traditionally partake in exchanging jokes and hoaxes until noon on the day, and any trickster who continues the pranks after this time is referred to as the “April Fool.”
Pranksters Revel, Gullible Beware
It would be pretty difficult to get through an entire April Fool’s Day and neither be the prankster or the prankee at some point. Anyone can play a joke on someone just as anyone can be the target of the intended joke. What makes April Fool’s Day so great is the lighthearted nature of the day. For anyone who is searching for the ultimate prank to play, check out the Top 100 April Fool’s Day Hoaxes of All Time, care of the Museum of Hoaxes, for inspiration. Keep in mind, however, that the perfect prank needs a personal touch from the mind that whips it up, or for the target which it is destined.
Overall, celebrating April Fool’s Day is certainly a marvelous way to banish any lingering winter blues and energetically embrace spring fever. For those who generally find themselves on the receiving end of an extreme joke, seize the day and practice extreme caution…or better yet, sweet revenge.