April fools pranks

It has been roughly one week since the cancellation of school for the next few weeks, and with this self-quarantine comes a not-so-new challenge for students: dealing with their families. More specifically, dealing with their families while everyone is cooped up at home and slowly going stir-crazy. And really, sometimes the only logical response to your father telling you to lay off the caffeine is to spike his own coffee with salt. So, without further ado, here is a list of some of the best (and worst) pranks to play on your families while this quarantine is still going strong.

With the Coronavirus recently deemed a pandemic, it only makes sense to play a germ-related prank on your family members, so here is a good one: the “fake sneeze on the back of the neck” gag. 

The instructions are really quite simple: with an air freshener in hand, make sure your victim has their back turned before fake sneezing on the back of their neck, spraying them at the same time. It is a simple prank, but still fairly effective. As always with these sorts of tricks, it is good to have a victim who will not instantly panic at the feeling of spray on the back of their neck (or, depending on your level of malevolence, it might be better to have a victim who will panic). 

“I was surprised,” parent Lee Nicholson said. “It was sticky. I was physically surprised, but not surprised that [my daughter] did it to me.”

The only downside to this joke is that you may not want to waste the precious supply of air freshener that you have for the coming weeks…especially if you have a select family member who smells. 

It is also important to note that you should not spray air freshener directly in someone’s face, because as poison.org notes, air freshener in the eyes can cause redness and irritation, and problems with coughing if inhaled directly. 

Another prank possibility is the classic “cups full of water outside an unsuspecting family member’s door” trick. Once again, this one is still fairly simple: you only have to grab a dozen cups or more, fill them with water, and place them outside the door of a pre-occupied family member. 

The goal is that they will be trapped wherever they are, unable to move lest they spill water all over (it is definitely more convenient to use disposable cups for this). While this trick is great for confusing your parents, it is not necessarily the best if you want to conserve the disposable supplies in your house. Or, if you are willing to use regular, washable cups…you will more likely than not be the one cleaning them afterwards.

“I could hear clanking outside my door, and when I came out, there were all these cups of water there,” parent Sue Nicholson said. “I was confused. I liked the air freshener joke better.”

There are several other possibilities for pranks: sticking plastic forks into your front lawn, stuffing old clothes with newspaper and pretending it is a dead body, or even sticking just a little bit of food coloring in your sink faucet to turn the water red. These all may seem effective, but the bottom line is that you cannot pull a good prank without being willing to sacrifice a few essential items for a quarantine, while keeping safety in mind. And, of course, you must be willing to completely drive your parents up a wall.