If you thought that April Fool’s Day 2013 went by rather peacefully, then you’re fooling yourself. Gone are the days when people used one-liners and made up lies to pull a fast one on you and yelled ‘April Fool’ at the end of it. Instead, April Fool’s Day pranks have almost entirely moved to the social media circuit, especially among youngsters in the city.
Sashi Krishnamoorthy (name changed), an engineer who runs his own business was fairly amused throughout Monday, “My phone didn’t stop ringing!” he says with a sly smile. Sashi had used one of Facebook’s greatest boons to mankind - the birthday reminder - to great pranking effect. Alerted to the fact that he was celebrating his birthday, friends, acquaintances aplenty left standard ‘Happy B’day. Have a Blast’ messages on his wall. “It was hilarous. People kept calling to wish me and most of them were people I knew in school and college. Ironically, there were many who did not have the sense to realize that my birthday had just gone by on March 11, and they had already called to wish me,” he chortles. Many of his disgruntled friends will probably stave off leaving birthday messages on Facebook, especially on April 1, for a long time.
This is a significant change from his usual methods, as Sashi was the person who sent a group-SMS on April 1 a few years ago to his school friends that their principal had passed away and even provided her residence landline number for people to offer their condolences. “Times are a-changing,” he adds, “We get to prank so many more people online now.”
If birthdays are a great way to yank your friends’ chains, then impending weddings are the next best thing. The friend of a popular former-RJ posted a photo of a woman’s finger with a gold ring and proclaimed that they had gotten engaged in secret and were set to tie the know soon. “Comments and congratulations piled up fast and everyone was going I-always-knew-you-guys-had-a-connection, until the guy said APRIL FOOL,” says a friend of the pretty radio jockey. Ironically, most of them congratulated her despite knowing that she had a long-time boyfriend.
So where did people get the idea to pull pranks online from? Probably from celebrities like Veena Malik. The sultry siren from Pakistan who is busy with Bollywood projects like The City That Never Sleeps tweeted that she had tied the knot on March 30 with an Italian, to much public disappointment. Entertainment portals and twitterati went overboard until she revealed that it was her April Fools’ prank. Veena Malik said, “I am really happy to known that people are eagerly waiting to get me married but as of now the truth is I am married, but to my career and my films.”