Your Best April Fools' Ever

Fake retweets, bad mixtapes and desktop pranks. 30 jokes that might actually work this time.

In theory, April Fools' Day is a lighthearted, hilarious spring celebration. In reality, it often evolves into either the humiliation following a failed joke—or the tension following a mean prank that worked too well. (There’s nothing worse than having to heal a damaged relationship because you decided it would be awesome to lock your friend/sister/husband/dad/co-worker in a closet for three hours.)

But there are awesome pranks you can do that are both hilarious and (fairly) harmless. Here are 30 to choose from—if you get really creative, you could even make the case that April Fools’ Day should be April Fools’ Month.

The terrible mix tape. Make a mix tape for your significant other, but fill it with songs from an album like Lulu by Lou Reed & Metallica. Because that album is awful.

Make a fake sling, create an awesome story. All you need is a sheet and the ability to say, “It was dark outside, but I think there was a mountain lion.”

Christian Rick Roll. This basically consists of sending a mass email saying, “This video is hilarious!” and having it link to “Thank You” by Ray Boltz.

Fake retweets. Be careful to not be vicious with this one, but you can retweet your target with something like: “RT @friendsname: My number one album of 2011 is Lou Reed & Metallica’s Lulu.”

Screenshot desktop. This classic joke involves taking a screenshot of the victim’s desktop, setting it as their desktop background, and then hiding their icons. Hilarity will ensue, trust us.

Nail polish spill. This one requires some foresight—spill a whole bottle of nail polish on a surface like Contac paper. Allow to dry. Then leave around the house/office to horrify your victims.

Change auto-correct. In Word or Pages, you can change auto-correct. Just go to “Preferences” or to “Tools/Autocorrect Options” and change “the” to “My favorite rapper is Sir Mix-a-Lot” or something else equally grand.

One mouse too many. You can plug in an additional mouse by plugging a mouse into a second USB port. Enjoy your target’s exasperated abuse of their computer.

Home page change. While your co-worker is gone in a meeting, change their homepage to something ridiculous. We suggest

Switch up their ring tone. This will require access to your victim’s phone for a few minutes, but it will be worth it once your friend’s phone starts blaring All 4 One's “I Swear.”

Short-sheet the bed. A classic.

The confused Craigslist buyer. Get some friends together and use a numbermasking app to call a mutual friend and pretend to be buyers who “saw his ad on Craigslist for a panda.”

Fake parking ticket. Make an official-looking parking ticket on your computer. Fill it with so much ridiculous information that your friend will quickly catch on before they panic.

Caramel onion. Make a “caramel apple”—that’s actually an onion inside. 

Oreo surprise. There are multiple variations of this, but they’re all basically the same: Replace the cream in an Oreo with something else, like toothpaste or cream cheese.

Old Facebook updates. Update your Facebook status throughout the day to reflect an event that happened ages ago. Like, “I sure do love Crystal Pepsi!”

Drink your Windex. Put blue Gatorade in a (carefully) washed Windex bottle, and then walk around drinking out of it.

Hide food in a trash can—and then eat it when someone walks by.

Change clothes every hour of the work day. See how long it takes co-workers to notice.

“I have an appointment for WHAT?” Create appointments on your target’s computer for things like “spelunking lessons.”

Put tape on the part of the mouse that interacts with a table.

Remap someone’s keyboard. Just Google how to remap a keyboard, and then go to town.

The frozen pitcher trick. Freeze a pitcher of water or orange juice, and pretend to throw it at someone the next time they come in the room.

Have ridiculous Netflix movies sent to someone who shares your queue. Hint: The entire Bob Ross painting collection is available.

Sign up your loved one for tons of free samples.

“We need to talk about your work habits.” Bring an empty bottle of alcohol or flask to work filled with water. Continually take swigs.

Singing telegram. Look for a local singing-telegram service or hire a mutual friend who is up for the gig. Nothing says “April Fools” like someone singing a crazy song to a loved one.

Send an all-staff email warning of server crash if they type the word “protocol.”

Sign them up for e-newsletters. For instance, did you know Yanni has a fan newsletter?

Magic coffee. Put magnets on the bottom of your coffee cup, attach it to the top of your car, and then drive around as people yell frantically.

Any foolproof April Fools' jokes you want to share? Leave them in the comments below.

Top Comments

Craig Harlacher


Craig Harlacher commented…

I once taped the sprayer on the kitchen sink with clear scotch tape so that when the tap is turned on, the person gets sprayed. My mom did it to herself and agreed to leave it for my dad....and then changed her mind when she did it twice more to herself.

Beth McLennan


Beth McLennan commented…

Giant bubble wrap under the rugs around the house. Gets 'em every time.



Acousticdonk commented…

This might not have been April fools day but, while at college, a friend of mine was a transfer student from a bible college in Wisconsin and he shared his prank with a few of us. Apparently he was mad at this other dude and he wizzed in his shampoo bottle. And From the way he told it, it affected his hair's manageability. So later after a perticularly convicting chapel service and dorm meeting conversation to follow he confessed to his friend about tainting his shampoo. And spontaneously others started confessing to each other, their sins against each other. It's crazy God used a golden shower into this dudes pert plus to start a dorm revival!!


guest commented…

Have someone call your (friend, spouse, etc) and announce that they've won the Publisher's Clearing House Sweepstakes, and that the camera crew will be there with the giant check in about half an hour.


Jimmy commented…

I think it's funny that with so many articles about how too many of us are immature and not adults you egged your readers to do juvenile pranks.


jcx commented…

I was actually at a Christian conference/retreat over the April fool's weekend, and 2 friends and I got up early, went around to all the temporary conference signs with sticky tack on the back (Male dorms, female dorms, bathrooms, showers, meeting hall, workshop sign up sheets etc...) and turned them upside down. Book displays were turned face down etc. Map of the world (ie for missions) turned up upside down. We had a blast!

Elizabeth Hallman


Elizabeth Hallman commented…

His affect on children's reading is gigantic and it's a legacy to be pleased with. His work will be tough to surpass. Dr Seuss died on September 24, 1991 after a protracted life of constructing an excellent contribution to youngsters's literature.
Hyundai CNI

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