Don’t be an April fool

Brianna Peck, Contributing Writer

April Fools Day is just around the corner, and much to the dismay of supernatural fans , it falls on a Tuesday this year. It is a day dedicated to pulling pranks on friends and acquaintances. But how did this strange tradition of pranks on April 1 originate?

According to National Geographic, the origin of April Fools is a complete mystery, but there are a few theories on how it all began. One such theory, which seems to be the most popular, states that France changed its calendar in the 1500’s so that New Year’s Day was in January instead of the beginning of spring. Some people had not heard this news and continued to celebrate the new year in the spring. These people were called April Fools.

This story, however, is historically inaccurate. National Geographic says that the French actually did celebrate New Year’s on January for as long as anyone can remember, and spring was only the beginning of the legal year. Even then, the beginning of the year legally was Easter, and not specifically April 1.

Another possible explanation for April Fools Day, according to The Museum of Hoaxes, is “renewal festivals’. Renewal festivals are celebrations of the end of winter and the return of spring, and nearly every culture has one. The festivals often involve pranks, disguises, and complete social disorder – with any tension or hostility being diffused with laughter. These renewal festivals sound quite similar to the tradition and spirit of April Fools Day.

Some people plan elaborate pranks for April Fools Day, some pull small pranks, and some just try to avoid becoming a victim. Whatever the case, April Fools can turn nasty if pranks go wrong. Here are some quick tips to keep April Fools’ Day light and fun.

First and foremost, it’s incredibly important that a prank is harmless. Harming people physically is not funny. Harming people emotionally or psychologically is not funny. Elaborate pranks can often get out of hand. Please make absolutely certain that your prank is not hurting anyone.

Choosing a victim is important. Not everyone has a good sense of humor. Some people might get upset over a prank that is completely harmless. As soon as the victim gets upset, the joke is over and nobody is laughing. Choose a target who is good-humored and can take a joke.

Be careful with pranks involving food. Make sure your target doesn’t have any serious food allergies that might be affected by the prank. Also, don’t make your target throw up. He or she won’t find it very funny.

April Fools Day can be a lot of fun, but it’s important not to get too carried away. Just keep safety first, and this April 1 will be light-hearted and fun for all. Just remember, prankster or not, keep vigilante, because you might be someone else’s next victim.