Assorted wind-ups and leg-pulls...

Don't try this at home, kids!

These are the sort of thing that we've traditionally performed on April Fool's Day, or, if we were a little short of laughs at work, on any other day of the year.

If I get a heap of these silly ideas, I'll list them under categories to make them easy to locate.

Silly things to do to your friends...


    Hard-boil all their eggs and put them back in the fridge.

    Replace their cocoa or drinking chocolate with Bisto or other instant gravy.

    Fill their toilet bowl with jelly solution. If you want to go 100%, fill the whole cistern. You'll need about 24 pints, or 10-12 litres.

    Using a syringe, inject garlic puree down the neck of their toothpaste tube.

    Fill their shower head with red food colourant for that 'Psycho' shower effect.

    If you're shopping in a supermarket, be sure to keep an eye out for your friends. If you see anyone you know, it is obligatory to drop unwanted items into their trolley when they're not looking. It must be decided in advance whether you're going for irritation factor or whether you're trying to embarrass them at the check-out. This decision means that you'll be going for either the 100kg sack of Winalot jammed in the trolley, maybe a dozen cans of premium cat food slipped under their cornflakes, or pantie pads or something. If they have a cat, be sure it's dog food.

    When they are expected back from their holidays, cover their windows and doors with brick-pattern wallpaper. A real heart-stopper, this one!

    Smear their car all over with lard. If the occasion demands it, be sure to pay particular attention to any velvety areas where the windows and sun-roof seal.

    A nice variant on the above is to chuck a bucket of soapy water over their car (this wets the car evenly, otherwise the water just beads up) then give it a thorough dusting with a couple of bags of flour. If done well on a hot day, this gives a car a wonderful en croute effect which needs a pizza cutter and a spatula to get off.

    Should you have access to any of your friend's houses while they're away, arm yourself with a packet of mustard and cress seeds and sprinkle liberally over, say, a furry toilet seat cover. Well, those things are naff and thoroughly deserve this treatment. Soak well, and wait until your friends return home to a toilet seat cover that now consists of a couple of square feet of luxuriant turf. Thanks to Brian March for reminding me of this one!

    The next time you are invited to a party (which, coincidentally, will also be the last time) stretch a sheet of cling film over the toilet pan and replace the seat to hide the stretch marks around the rim. This tends not to upset the guys, who will be too shitfaced to hit the pan anyway, but you can be sure that the girls won't be impressed! Thanks to whoever it was who suggested this. I re-formatted my hard disk and lost your name!

    Take a look at the office phones and see if they are easy to open up. If they are, then swap the 1, 2 & 3 buttons with the 7, 8 & 9 buttons. The phone won't look any different to the untrained eye as calculators are arranged this way. However, no-one but you will get a scrap of sense out of this phone ever again and if you have a clever computerised exchange like we do, a lot of numbers will be interpreted as intructions to divert or redirect calls, causing disruption out of all proportion to the simple act you have performed. Just one thing - if you have one of those lockets containing your blood group and other emergency medical details, now is a good time to append a note recording what you've done to the phone. You never know, tomorrow you could be on the floor, blue and twitching, while one of your mates is trying to get an ambulance from the speaking clock and before you know it your kidneys are living in someone else. Now, won't that be funny!

    Trade Shows
    Every now and then, we get to go and visit a Trade Show. Every industry has them; a day of wandering round stands full of exhibits and products from companies keen for business. There's a few freebies to be had, maybe, and, more important, it might not be exactly work, but hell, it pays the same! Not many years ago, I was at Nepcon, an electronic components trade show at the National Exhibition Centre in Birmingham.  Always take a good handful of your boss's business cards to these things! Well, Nepcon was only so much fun, but next door was MeatEx, a Trade Show hosted by major players in the meat and meat products industries. We caught a sniff of some of the roast chickens, so in we went. As we were then employed by GEC Marconi, the defence contractor, it was a small matter to gain entrance as bona fide representatives of that well-known Italian food company, GEC Macaroni. We handed out our bosses business cards liberally, munching our way through the exhibits, and managed to sign our boss up to a year's subscription of Sausage Monthly.

More technical:

Using a camcorder take a five / ten minute video of your toilet pan from the highest point that you can in the room (with no body in the room or in view). Keep the tape safe then when you have a group of guests round and one nips off to the loo just put the tape in the vcr/tv, start playing it and wait for them to come back in to the room. You won't be able to stop laughing and your guest will assume that you have all been watching them in action throughout. Done this a couple of times and it's awsome!  Submitted by Rod Sturdy
    If you're cool with wiring, get a wiring diagram of your friend's car, a length of wire and a couple of Scotch-lock connectors. In five minutes you can hot-wire the brake lights and the horn together. Hey presto! Traffic jams are now absolutely side-splitting! Unfortunately for your friend, probably literally.  (Mind you, when I last looked under a car bonnet I didn't reckon I'd have much chance pulling this one off - way too much stuff under there!)

    If you can get into your friend's car, disconnect the clear plastic pipe from the washer jet pump. Fit one end of a new length of pipe to the pump, and feed it into the passenger compartment. Secure with tape under the speedo and fit a jet to the end. Now spread something gooey onto his windscreen (I suggest baked beans, a fried egg, or both) and wait. If you know Simon Hunt of BAE CS and S, ask him how well this works!

    I have a couple of home-made gadgets that I have found useful over the years. One is a small solar cell and buzzer that blue-tacks inside light fittings and whistles like crazy whenever the office lights are turned on. The other is a 130 decibel siren that goes off at dawn, conveniently housed in a plant-pot with a hook so it can be left on guttering, well out of reach, during the night. I would remind everyone that dawn is around 4:30 am here in the summer! I think I'll put together some constructional details for these wonderful gadgets and post them here soon.

Stuff I haven't tried out yet:

  • With the aid of a tube and some stout lungs, blow a heap of popping corn into the exhaust silencer of someone's car. Be sure to be behind them  in the traffic queue out of work!  I'll be honest, I've never seen it done, but seeing how hot the exhaust back box gets, now we all have catalytic converters, I've got high hopes for this one!

    Here's one I've just received from Lion_63...

    Here's a good one that has been used on one of the members of my friend's volunteer fire department many times. Now mind you that I'm a Yank and I'm not sure if you use another term for shrink wrap (ie., clear or colored plastic wrap used in shipping, that shrinks when heated, to hold things tightly, so that they don't move or shift in transit) in the UK. But anyway. While the unsuspecting victim is away from his or her vehicle, and preferrably with the help of a friend or two, proceed to wrap his or her entire car in this material. I advise to change directions from front-to-back, to over-and-under, at least once or twice during the prank. Make sure you are thorough and get every inch... oops, that's right, you use the metric system over there don't you... anyway... every centimeter, of the car. Now if you use the clear stuff you can get creative and decorate your work with different items. Personally I like to use condoms under a couple of layers for the ultimate embarrassment. Good luck, and happy pranking!

If you have any ideas you want to pass on...

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Author: Martyn Arnold

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