I’m honestly not the biggest fan of April Fools Day, largely because I’m not creative enough to come up with any creative/fun/harmless gags.
That said, last year was perhaps the most successful April Fools Day in my life. (I even got angry text messages from my wife, it was that good!)
Since there is little chance of me being able to pull off a good April Fools Day prank two years in a row, I’m not even going to try this year.
What makes a good April Fools Day prank, anyway?
The Key Components of a Good April Fools Day Prank
As far as I can tell, 3 things: surprise, annoyance, and no lasting ramifications.
- Surprise: It has to come completely out of left field. The more blindsided the prankees can be, the better.
- Annoyance Factor: The best pranks are the ones the get under one’s skin, because it’s bound to elicit a genuine reaction.
- No Lasting Ramifications: At the end of the day, the prank can’t cause any serious impact. It needs to SEEM like it’s a big deal at the moment, but when all is said and done it’s really just water under the bridge.
That said, I’ve done some brainstorming and I think I’ve come up with a few ideas for events that could be used in the future.
April Fools Day Running Events I’d Like to Be a Part Of
- The Old Switch-a-Roo: During the pre-race announcements, the race director announces that the distance of the race has been changed to an unannounced distance because of April Fools Day. It could be longer, it could be shorter; who knows! You just have to run until they tell you to stop running! A possible twist on this idea would be to include a false finish line where the race is decided at some point of the course before the marked finish line.
- The Lost Signal: I know I’m not the only runner that is just a little too dependent on my GPS device. I’m getting better, but I still catch myself checking my speed and my distance way more often than I’d like to. For a fun April Fools Day trick, that would definitely piss off some people but wouldn’t hurt anyone, organize a route that runs somewhere where everyone’s watch would lose it’s signal after a mile or so into the race.
- Right Turn Only: This idea really only applies on the track, but it would be awesome if some high school or college meet that happened to be run on April Fools Day announced, on the day of the meet, that all events run that day would be run “backwards” on the track. I’ve never run competitively on the track, but I’ve done enough track workouts (especially in my days working with the MTSU track team) to feel really awkward running the wrong way on the track!
Properly executed, each of these suggestions would definitely fit the criteria of a quality April Fools Day prank!
What Do You Think?
Am I way off base, or do these almost sound fun?
I can see myself in any of these scenarios being legitimately upset in the moment, but after the fact laughing about it with other runners at the finish line.
And, in my mind at least, that would make each of the scenarios a great candidate for future April Fools Day fun.
If you agree, and you’re so motivated, feel free to take whatever idea you resonate with most and run with it!