paper fish on someone's back
Many of my peers could give Impractical Jokers a run for their money. Photo: Dreamstime/Stock
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I thought I was dying

As April 1 descends on campus, students of the University of Ottawa should be a little on edge about the shenanigans that are sure to ensue on April Fools’ Day. April Fools is a time for all kinds of jokes, pranks, and mischief — all in the name of good fun. This April Fools’ Day, we asked our own U of O students about their experiences. 

Now, fair warning: my own prank record is not quite up to par. However, I will never forget the time I was scrolling through Instagram and found a fan account for a Korean pop star. I would have just moved on… but they just so happened to have their email listed in the bio. And so, of course, I could not resist the urge of shooting them an email pretending to be said star and professing my unconditional love for them. Alas, I got no reply. 

Although my efforts may have been a bust, it seems many of my peers could give the Impractical Jokers a run for their money. 

Duck tape bandit

Our first prankster is a U of O alumni who reminisces about their days living in Marchand residence as a first-year student.

“Years ago, when I was actually living in Marchand, it was someone’s birthday on the floor and we just duck-taped his entire door — like his door frame and all that — and he walked out in the morning to a face full of duck tape”.

It sounds like, for those in residence, even their own dorms provide no protection against the shenanigans of first-year students. 

Life is like a box of chocolates

Other students and peers are not the only victims of U of O pranksters. These students chose to target their parents or in turn be targetted by them. Perhaps blood is not thicker than water. 

“Once, our father brought us chocolates to put in our lunch box and two were chocolate and some were Brussel sprouts covered in potato skin. You would be like “oh, chocolate,” and open the other one and realize, “no, that’s not chocolate.”

Brussel sprouts are gross already on their own, however, wrapped in potato skins seems like a true recipe for disaster. Their friend cleverly adds that it’s “kind of like if bean boozled made chocolates.”  In that case, U of O students, get ready to be “bean boozled” if anyone decides to send you a sweet treat. 

The Red Scare (literally)

“I’ve put red dye in my dad’s toothpaste so he thought he was dying when he brushed his teeth. He didn’t tell anyone and when I told him he said ‘I thought I was dying, I was going to go to the doctor.”

Watch out University of Ottawa students, it could be your own flesh and blood ready to slight you this April Fool’s day. 

Something seems a little fishy

Amongst some of our Francophone U of O students, paper fish are a pillar to a good April Fools prank. 

“Every time we see someone, we stick a paper fish on their back. And even if they notice, they can’t take it off. They have to keep it the whole day”

Others note: “I used to stick fish on cars instead of people. Many — like eight fishes on one car and the owner would get tired of removing fish.”

Maybe it’s time to walk around campus with some really trustworthy friends who are ready to take paper fishes off your back. Just make sure that they don’t end up being the ones to put them there. 

The CIA recruiter 

This final prank truly shook me to my core. The precision, the planning, the execution — all truly menacing in this particular student’s prank.

“One time in high school, I wrote a letter to my friend from the CIA. I put it in a fancy envelope and I even added the seal of the CIA and the signature of the director at the time. Basically, the letter was to recruit him to the CIA. I brought it to my school’s front desk and asked them to call my friend to the front desk. They did and my friend got the letter. He didn’t fall for it, but it was funny to see his reaction.” 

No matter how appealing it may sound, trust me on this one: the CIA is not trying to recruit you this April Fools’ Day. 

Whether it’s putting Brussel sprouts in a box of chocolates or convincing your friends they’re being recruited for the CIA, it is clear that the students of the University of Ottawa have a couple of tricks up their sleeves. I hope that these fun pranks foster some creative ideas for all students this first of April. Finally, a friendly reminder to stay safe, have fun, and watch your back — you never know when a friend could become a foe this April Fools’ Day.