Once again, we find ourselves at a time of year when everyone obsesses for weeks on end over a single day and spends loads and loads of money on extravaganc- es while ignoring the historical and ideo- logical underpinnings of that particular holiday. I’m talking, of course, about April Fools’ Day.
Many may be surprised to learn that, like Thanksgiving and St. Valentine’s Day, April Fools’ memorializes wholesale slaughter— specifically, the slaughter of good taste and actual humor. It has its origins in the 11th century when 10,000 villagers from a coun- try without a Wikipedia page were sen- tenced to death for smacking their loved ones in the face with what was then known as “pye”—a main dish or dessert consisting of a pastry case filled with meat, berries, potatoes or whatever else was lying around, a precursor to our modern “pie.”The rul- ing faction at the time found this practical joke to be overkill, since the laws on the books defined strict guidelines for keeping humor and satire subtle and specific. This absurdity could not be tolerated.
So who would want to commemorate this horrific act of oppression of free peach cobbler, or valorize the inanity of 11th cen- tury peasants? Just because they had the right to pie each other doesn’t mean it’s funny or sophisticated or worth laughing at (although to clarify, they did not have the right to pie each other. This was strictly forbidden by royal decree).
For this reason, I and everyone I know should absolutely keep their phones turned off until the point in the day when they’re awake enough to spot a practical joke when they hear one. Maybe just keep it off all day so when your brother, aunt, best friend, worst friend or brother disguised as a robo- caller calls you to ask if your refrigerator is running, you won’t panic and start running after it only to hear them say, “Good, that means it’s plugged in, and all your perish- ables are safe.” Just to name one possible example.
Another protection from the scourge of practical jokes is to avoid the communal bathroom in your dorm all day, just in case one of your next-door neighbors, across the hall neighbors, upstairs neighbors, downstairs neighbors or friends from an- other house knows how terrified you are of snakes and decides it’s funny to put even the most crude recreation of one in every shower and bathroom stall so that you be- come paralyzed and can’t even leave the bathroom to escape the fakes because you can’t breathe, and your hamstrings have cramped out of terror. To name another general possibility for a prank.
The point is, we don’t need to prank each other. We can just let each other live like it’s a normal day and be just as happy as any other normal day.
There’s no need for snakes, hidden VCards, pie in the face, fake news articles, fake histories in Misc articles or any other tomfoolery. Just respect each other, like we always do, and we’ll be fine.
On an entirely separate and unrelated note, if anyone is good at picking locks or has a key to Editor-In-Chief Leah Cates’ room, I have a…present for her I’d like to deliver on April 1…for no particular reason at all.