The Joy of April Fools

I admit it…I love a good caper.

Thinking back on past April Fools and the successes of such capers, a few rules must be followed:

Don’t aim to high with your lie. Make your ruse believable enough but sprinkling in something outlandish is mandatory as long as it isn’t abused.

Make sure the person you’re targeting cares about what you’re bull-shitting them on.

Use the wonders of modern technology and particularly the ability to create fake email addresses.

And so, I digress…

My best April Fools occurred in 2000. I worked at a fairly large company that liked to participate in its share of Happy Hours in Midtown Manhattan. One co-worker, Eric, a supple, fun-loving, sloppy drunk that made Irish dock workers watching a Rugby Championship look sober, used to like to brag about hooking up at about a 97% success rate. It could be a Monday night, 2 AM, after a holiday weekend when everyone is hung over with three people in the bar (two being the bartender and manager), and he’ll tell you that he ordered orange juice and pancakes for two the next morning.

So one late March day he comes in and claims that he made out with an 11 on a 1-10 scale at Turtle Bay the evening before. Problem is, he blacked out but remembered giving her his card. From there you know the deal…bits and little pieces can be recalled (not her name, of course) but it’s mostly, well, black.

So what better way to lead up to April Fools than to create a fake email with the typical name of a hot girl (Rule 1A in this regard: Make her last name a guy’s first name…it just makes it sound familiar).

In this case, I went with Kirsten (Rule 1B…all Kirsten’s are generally fetching) Scott (see: 1A). Yes, Kirsten Scott…she can’t possibly be hard on the eyes with a name like that. Must have been a soccer player. Maybe a cheerleader. Did charity car washes in tight t-shirts. She probably looks like Steve-O’s girlfriend Celeste from Season 5 on 90210-ver-the-hill.

Kirstenscott317 emails Eric the next day around 4:30. Of course, if she contacted him in the morning, it’s too soon and therefore appears too needy (despite my writing about this very subject on 7.5 different occasions, there still are those foolish enough to make this mistake). The 317, by the way, is her birthday…and of course she was born on St. Patrick’s Day. She’s hot and she drinks! It’s in her DNA. She’s a living, breathing Maxim girl meets Cameron Diaz in There’s Something About Mary…

From there, with my co-worker Ashley as my editor to flirt it up a little bit without me resorting to starring in the prequel to Brokeback, I wrote my first love note ever to a co-worker.

Fake email

Hi Eric,

Just wanted to drop a note that it was interesting meeting you last night. You were quite happy from all those Black Haus shots you did, but were cute in a helpless way nonetheless J

I normally don’t do this, but I wanted to see if you were up for going to the Yankee game with me when I get back from Vegas for a long weekend with the girls (Rule 1C: Girls that go to Vegas on a female-only jaunts are like Maxim-Girl-meets-Cameron-Diaz-in-There’s-Something-About-Mary…on ecstasy and Rohypnol simultaneously). My Dad has season tickets and you mentioned that you play softball (Rule 1D: make sure your fictional girl has friggin’ Yankee season tickets. It’s better than sharks with friggin’ laser beams on their foreheads. Plus, it shows that Daddy is rich!).

Anyway, I hope this doesn’t appear to be too forward. Then again, compared to the way you acted last night, I guess I get a free pass!



(Rule 1E: Guys never talk about it, but we always love it when chicks sign emails with only the first letter of their first name. Seriously, try it sometime…)

On cue in less than five minutes after hitting send, he’s at my desk WITH THE EMAIL PRINTED OUT. He hands me a copy.

“Dude, this was the girl I was telling you about. Fuckin’ hot and apparently very chill (I get chills when ever hearing a guy use the word “chill”),” he says, almost breathless from jogging to my desk. “We’re going to a Yankee game when she gets back from Vegas.” (team and travel is always a big deal for guys to subconsciously namedrop when competing with each other).

“Good for you…certainly not from a lack of effort since I’ve known you.”

“It’s all a numbers game, Conch. All a numbers game,” he says floating off on Cloud 9 to next poor Bloke forced to read a copy of the email and hear the whole story.

I began to feel guilty for a moment. I mean, shit…this guy really seems to be in love with the idea of her. If I don’t break it to him now, he’ll actually be hurt. While I find him as irritating as wide-legged people on the PATH (See: I can live with them but don’t necessarily want to be next to them for more than five minutes), I didn’t want him to end up like the Jason Alexander character in Shallow Hal…a sub-par guy with an average salary pursuing the Hoboken version of Elizabeth Banks.

As I was about to tell him the truth, my boss calls me into his office like some scene out of a bad sitcom.

“You’re coming with me,” he says definitively.

“To HR?” I joke.

“Heh…no. I have a meeting with a client that I need to hand off to you with Hawkins leaving. You’re almost ready (to handle big clients) but I’d like you to shadow me for a few days.

“OK, are we leaving now?” I ask.

“Yes. In fact, we’re taking a cab. Running late. I’ll brief you on the way over.”

“Uh, okay.”

When I get back fro the office after this painful two-hour affair, Eric is nowhere to be found. There are, however, two emails in my, er, Kirsten’s inbox from the only person in the world who has my/her address.

Hi Kirsten,

It was a pleasure meeting you. You made my throbbing head today worth it!

I would love to go to the Yankee game. Just name the date and time and I’ll be there with my Knoblauch jersey and bells on (Rule 1F: Don’t ever agree to a date that may have a five-night window. Desperation is the world’s worst cologne. Rule 1G: Two people in the history of the world have owned a Knoblauch jersey, and you’re reading about one of them right now, while the other did steroids).

Where are you staying in Vegas? Is this for a Bachelorette party? (Rule 1G: Never, ever ask two questions back to back to a girl, even your sister, in an email).

My number is 917-xxx-xxxx if you get bored out there (Rule 1H: Oh, never mind).

What started as an April Fools Day joke became an April 5th joke instead (he called in sick on Monday) was getting way out of hand. And after receiving a third email from Eric on the morning Kirsten, uh, I got back from Vegas (I actually went to Wayne that weekend, not America’s Playground), I couldn’t take it anymore.

So I called his desk…

“Eric, I met a girl this weekend on my Vegas trip.”

“Yeah, how much did you pay for her?” he asks.

“Nice. No, she’s actually from here and said she knew you. Even had your card…”

“Wait…dude. Dude. Is her name Kirsten?”


“And she’s hot?”

“Actually, she doesn’t even exist.”

He stares at me for a good three seconds that feels like 30. He immediately gets it. All at once, his one and only chance to get the girl he’s dreamed about is gone. Now I finally knew what it was like for a pretty girl to turn down a guy…while it looks like they’re having fun, it actually sucks.

“Sorry dude, I meant it to be a 10-minute joke, but I couldn’t get to you before a last-minute meeting on Friday. You were gone when I came back.”

He then began laughing, almost bent over.

“Dude, you created a false email address?”


I was waiting for either a hook or a roundhouse right…

“And you made up the whole thing. Yankees, Vegas, all of it?”

“Uh, yeah.”

“Greatest thing ever,” he exclaimed. “I’m doing to anyone who ever blacks out in my presence for the rest of my life!”

“You’re a good sport,” I replied, my forehead cold from an internal sweat. “I’ll be happy to share with you the tricks of the trade.”

“Deal (long pause after shaking his head incredulously). You fuckin’ bastard (cue headlock).

So like most April Fools Day jokes, this one ends happily.

Feel free to do this to a friend or enemy today…it has a 99% success rate.

It doesn’t require a blackout night…usually an ex-girlfriend from at least three years ago will suffice in these situations.

Happy AFD.