The web and "social networking sites" will be full of tales of successful pranks today, as well as ideas and tips for pranks you might pull off in celebration of April Fool's Day. I'm going to be a little different and instead offer a few things you should NEVER do on April Fool's Day. (Some of these have been personally tested. Seriously. Don't do any of them, or you'll regret it.)
* Don't have your car break down or seriously injure yourself. Your friends won't believe you, and they won't come to you aid, even if you are weeping and begging for help or gurgling as you choke on your own blood.
* Don't call the nearest Iranian Consulate and tell them that you are the Twelfth Imam Returned and you'd like to give Mahmoud Ahmadenjiad a call to let him know when the Apocalypse will begin but you've misplaced his phone number. Those bastards have Caller ID.
* Don't call Buckingham Palace and tell them that you're Prince Charles' secret gay lover and that you're about to spill the beans to the Star. Yeah... they also have Caller ID. And MI-5 does not spend nearly enough of their budget on good tea.
* If you have anything do with your company's payroll department, or otherwise distribute live checks to Luddites who don't use Direct Deposit (or if you're working for a drug cartel or in some central African nation), don't suggest that it's best if they hold onto the check until Monday. And don't follow it up by saying, "The check's good. It really is! But money's a little tight right now, so management has asked that we all just wait a couple of days before we cash our checks." No one will hear you say "April's Fool" over the angry calls for the workers to unite and overthrow the exploiters and choruses of "Internationale".
* Don't get a Chinese word tattooed anywhere on your body if you're not absolutely, perfectly literate in the particular script. And never, ever get it in a hard-to-see place. Crank calls and trips to secret torture dungeons are fleeting, but ink that says "Buttwind" is forever.
Do you have cautions to offer would-be April Pranksters (or those who might open themselves up to one)? Please leave a comment below.
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