Friday, April 8, 2011
During my teaching career, April Fools' Day was a wonderful opportunity to teach my fifth graders all sorts of handy life skills such as the proper placement of a Whoopie Cushion, the "dollar on a string" trick, and the ever-popular plastic dog poop on the lunch tables. We also worked together to spread the tomfoolery to other classrooms.
One April first, I had about ten of my students come in early. We convinced the custodian (a couple Snickers bars took care of it) to open one of the sixth grade classrooms, and the students and I snuck in and swiped all of the chairs. We left a ransom message on the white board:
IF YOU EVER WANT TO SIT DOWN AGAIN, STAND OUTSIDE ROOM B-7 AND SING THE "I'M A LUMBERJACK AND I'M OKAY" SONG!
Here's the best part. The sixth graders had never heard of the "I'm a Lumberjack and I'm Okay" song. Their teacher, Mr. Linsin, was a good friend of mine and I knew he was a big Monty Python fan. So before his class could come retrieve their chairs, Mr. Linsin had to take about fifteen minutes to teach and rehearse the song. They did a fine job, if we're going to be honest about it. Every last verse. Cracked my class up.
The next year, Linsin exacted his revenge. When my students and I entered our classroom, all the desks had been turned upside down. Even mine. Apparently the custodian was a double agent, his allegiance easily turned by the offer of Snickers and Kit Kats.
Can't blame him, really.
While April Fools' Day is usually filled with good-natured and harmless jocularity, every now and then someone with a tenuous grasp on the concept of "funny" will take things too far.
I'm kidding of course. They finished their donuts, and then responded to the call.
As "24-year old Marlina Flores of Apple Valley" stayed on her cell phone giving the "location" of the "pickup truck" to the dispatcher, deputies patrolled the "area" trying to find the missing "victims." After an hour of searching, the deputies gave up and returned to Dunkin' Donuts for a couple more maple bars.
Ha! I'm just kidding again! Seriously, authorities became suspicious when they couldn't locate the pickup truck and after some investigation, they found "24-year old Marlina Flores of Apple Valley" safe at home with her child. The deputies, following standard San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department procedure, secured the child safely in her crib and returned to the living room where they beat "24-year old Marlina Flores of Apple Valley" senseless with their night sticks and whisked her away to the pokey.
Makes sense, if you think about it. If the authorities go easy on April Felons like this, it would be easy for criminals to "April Fool" their way out of all sorts of crimes. Hell, I'd do it. Every April first, I'd put on a ski mask and waltz right into the local Bank of America and hand the teller a slip of paper saying, "Put a million dollars in this paper bag." One of two things would happen. Either I'd get away with it and you'd never hear from me again or, more likely, a SWAT team would be waiting right outside when I exited the bank with my bag of money. At that point I would of course holler "APRIL FOOL" and we'd all have a good laugh and share a box of Krispy Kremes.
As for "24-year old Marlina Flores of Apple Valley," the first night in jail her cellmate totally got her with the "what's that on your shirt?" gag.