The day of tricks and pranks is rich in history, tradition and pop culture

Matt Liasse and Matt Liasse

On Wednesday, April 1, the University shuttle service announced that the buses will only be running every 30 minutes, instead of the usual 15 in order to save on gas and money. Just kidding. The statement above is not only false, but for every reader who was about to run out to catch the bus before they missed it, or for whoever was dreading the next 30 minute wait in Bowling Green’s blustery wind was just subject to an April Fool’s Day joke, brainstormed by freshman Doug Walton. ‘[They’re] a fun way of teasing your friends,’ Walton said. ‘It’s fun to see it happen when it’s all in good fun and the victim takes it well.’ Walton’s love for pranks is evident, but he is most definitely not the only one. Prank enthusiast Alyssa Zuccaro had planned to celebrate the holiday last Wednesday in style. She had been planning to tape fishing line across a friend’s dorm doorway. ‘When she wakes up very early for weight lifting half-zombied, she trips,’ Zuccaro said. It seems pranks follow our everyday lives constantly. They are a big part of our American culture. But why? Where did the idea of April Fool’s Day come about? According to, the origin ‘remains shrouded in mystery.’ According to, the most popular theory comes from France, and it stems from back when the western world used to have the Julian calendar, which started the years beginning on March 25. Festivals would be thrown on April 1 to celebrate the new year, because March 25 fell during Holy Week. After the adoption of the Gregorian calendar during the 1500s, and the new year began to be celebrated on January 1, some people would still be tricked into believing that April 1 was still the start of the year. They called these gullible people, ‘April fools.’ Even though the day may have come from France, America still seems to love a good prank. If this country wasn’t so in love with a good prank, then there wouldn’t be the number of television shows about hidden cameras catching a prank being played on unexpected people, and one in particular ends with the phrase, ‘Smile; you’re on candid camera!’ One of the most popular television prank shows on MTV, ‘Punk’d,’ actor’ Ashton Kutcher’ played some of the best pranks on celebrities. In the first episode, Justin Timberlake was told that all of his stuff had to be repossessed, and he was forced to sit and watch all of his belongings get filed into boxes, all for America’s enjoyment. Other prank shows include another MTV show, ‘Boiling Points,’ the current ‘Howie Do It’ and ‘Girls Behaving Badly.’ On Wednesday, CBS aired yet another celebrity prank show called, ‘I Get That a Lot,’ which puts celebrities in strange situations while a hidden camera catches all the fun. In the show, model Heidi Klum poses as a pizza chef trying to convince customers she is just a look-a-like, and singer, Jessica Simpson poses as a computer repair technician. For every person that plays a prank, there is always the person on the other end. Freshman Jamie Kile, recalls a number of times that she has fallen for a good prank. She said she has fallen for them so many times that she now sets an alarm telling herself it’s April Fool’s Day, even though she still ends up falling for something during the day. ‘Every year in high school, my siblings would always wake me up and tell me there wasn’t any school and I would believe them,’ Kile said. ‘Then they would tell me like 10 minutes before we left that it was an April Fool’s joke, so I wouldn’t have time to get ready.’ Kile also recalls a time where she found her mailbox filled with shaving cream and her house covered in toilet paper. She said she was mad because she had to clean it up, but thought it was funny all at the same time.