I was born on the 22nd day of December. People often say to me, “That must really stink to have a birthday right before Christmas.” And when I was a child, I certainly agreed. But now I’m a lot older and a little bit wiser, I actually like it…and I know there could be worse days: The day of Christmas. February 29. Or April Fool’s Day.
My husband was born on the first day of April. While he spares me the details, he does admit it could be pretty painful growing up. It’s pretty painful growing up anyway, but I’m sure it’s even worse when you’re the butt of everyone’s jokes on the very day everyone should really be celebrating the fact that you were born.
He’s a good sport though. And what’s that they say about he who laughs last has the last laugh? Something like that…
Here’s how April Fool’s Day plays out at our house. Starting with his former seminary teacher (yeah–seminary was a long time ago for people our age, but the guy still remembers to call), who usually calls around 5 a.m., the phone rings all day. Family, friends and former students (my husband has taught elementary school for almost 20 years) are really quite unsuspecting when they dial our number. And because they so are intent on wishing Shane a big “Happy Birthday!” they are caught completely unaware when he spins some yarn sooooo big. I’m not bragging when I tell you my husband is usually the guy with the biggest fish and the biggest fish stories, but on this day he really takes the cake (he prefers homemade cheesecake, thanks for asking)–and he has people falling hook, line and sinker.
On the first day of April I’ve birthed 10-lb. babies that weren’t due until August (never mind that gullible callers somehow begin to believe they are talking to him in the hospital when, in fact, they were the ones who dialed us at home). I have had multiple births multiple times. I’ve even given birth to babies we weren’t even expecting yet. Everything from helicopters to elephants have landed on our front lawn (well, I’m never exactly sure how the elephants allegedly arrive). There may have even been tornadoes involved a time or two (Debris! We have debris!). You name it. It happened here first. On April the 1st.
One of the most fun April Fool’s pranks occurs when it’s time to pass out my husband’s birthday presents. Every year the pile of presents somehow magically gets bigger just before we break out into song. I always know I didn’t put them there. Shane always opens the ones from us first before he moves on to the “mystery gifts,” which actually end up being for us from him. The kids love it, and well, I usually come out OK, too.
But the best joke ever was the one we pulled together, long before we were husband and wife. At the end of March the two of us went to a park in Provo, lined ourselves up with a tripod in front of a big tree, and took a photo of ourselves–wearing sunglasses no less. We carefully crafted all the right phrases–”please join in us in celebrating our mirth”…”for time and all hilarity”–before we printed them on parchment paper. Then we mailed out about two dozen fake wedding announcements to family and friends, just in time for April 1st. Many of them fell for it; a few were quite disappointed when they realized it wasn’t for real; only a couple of people got mad. But most of them had a good laugh and all of them forgave us when, two-and-a-half years later– and after I returned from serving a mission–we sent out real invitations.
We hired a professional photographer for the engagement photos this time. But imagine who got the best laugh when, as the photographer set up for a pose at local park, Shane and I both started giggling. We had just realized at the exact same time that we happened to be standing in front of the very same tree…
So, tell me your stories. What’s the best April Fool’s joke you ever fell for? What’s the best one you’ve pulled on someone else? Did you ever pull a prank in which it turned out the joke was on you? What will you do this year to celebrate April Fool’s Day?
Who will have the last laugh…?