I have not written about the Ultimate April Fools Day Prank that was pulled off on April 1, 2008 because up until now I could not talk about it without becoming so angry at my sister that I would begin shaking and spitting out vile language like a sailor. I just didn’t feel that was healthy, so forgive the delayed blog.
Now that I am past that stage, however, I feel the need to share what I am willing to bet is one of the top 5 best April Fools Day jokes in history. Before I tell you about it, you’re going to need some background on my sister, affectionately referred to in this posting as The Lying Jack Ass (LJA). The LJA is, like me, in her early 20s. But that is really about the only similarity there. She’s single – I’m married. She’s carefree – I just signed a living will last month. She’s trendy – I wear a cardigan every other day. She was her sorority president in college – I cried through rush and never pledged. Got the picture?
(The Lying Jack Ass at Christmas. Classy.)
More necessary background to know is that she works in PR for a company in Atlanta and has been talking about how some of her clients are going through major restructuring. Many of her clients are international. Okay, I think that’s it for background.
So, April 1, The LJA sends out the following email to our parents and me. The title of the email is: BIG NEWS: Family Discussion Needed ASAP:
I just got off a call with *HER BOSS* regarding the reorganization of the *** account which we’ve been working on for awhile. She is in London this week and asked that I call her from her office so we could have a private and confidential discussion around ** and the new global consumer practice. I want to put all of this background information in a note to you all so we can discuss later today — I have some big decisions to make.
*HER BOSS* mentioned about a week ago that the main growth area for both ** & ** will be in Asia over the next 3-5 years. She had off the cuff asked me how I felt about moving to London and Shanghai over the past few weeks — all of which I said I was open to in order to further my career and as long as it was under the right conditions.
*HER BOSS* just offered me a tremendous opportunity working as the Asia laison for both ** and **. They have decided to base both of these practices out of London, instead of the US because of the exchange rates and ideal time zone locations in doing business globally. I would be based in Shanghai and split much of my other time between London and NY. This would give me an opportunity to carve out my own career instead of going with the traditional PR track — and the money is incredible. It’s equivilent to about *A LOT OF MONEY* and still with full benefits. They would also pay all moving expenses.
I know this is a lot of information to throw at you in an email but I wanted to tell all of you at once and let you sit on it for a minute. Tonight I’ll call you guys so we can weigh our options. The tricky part is that I have until Friday to make a decision. They would want me to be moved and settled by May 1st in order to jump start the new fiscal on July 1st.
I’m really, really, really excited about this opportunity. Its a huge kudos to me and sounds like a tremendous opportunity. I’m anxious for your feedback tonight.
So, I get this email while I am sitting at my desk at work. I was so upset that I could feel myself starting to cry, so I call Chris who is walking home from a class and I asked him to come get me from my office. He comes and sits in my office a while to talk me off the ledge, so to speak. As I’m trying to regain my composure, my boss walks in and I tell him that I think my sister is moving to China and he sits down to talk it through with us for a while.
After I get myself together, Chris and I head out for a long lunch. I am so upset at this point, I can’t even drive somewhere. The whole time I’m saying, “She can’t move to China! She doesn’t even know how to file her taxes!” (NOTE: She filed her taxes this year and claimed her two roommates as dependents…). Chris and I are frantically trying to come up with a way to talk her out of this without pushing her to run to China (she tends to rebel against advice she doesn’t want to hear – Sorry to say it, Gin.). We had tickets to Cirque du Soliel that night and had decided that we weren’t going to go so that I could stay home and talk to her about it.
At this same point in time, my poor mother is reading this email in Jacksonville, Florida. She, too, bursts into tears and has to leave her office. On her way out to her car, she runs into a co-worker who stops her because she is, clearly, devastated. My mom and her friend sit down for an hour coming up with how to talk her out of moving to China. My mom thanks her friend, and gets up to go outside to clear her head.
While she is outside, she calls my dad, who has not had access to his email at this point. My mom reads him the email from The LJA and before she can even finish the email, he hangs up the phone and no one can get a hold of him all afternoon. We assume he is driving to Atlanta to knock some sense into The LJA.
Also at this point in time, my BFF
, who I forwarded my sister’s email to just after I received it, has forwarded the email to her boyfriend who also works on international accounts. My BFF tells her BF that she thinks they should begin to think more globally for their futures. Her BF disagrees. They start fighting.
As this is all taking place, Chris and I have found ourselves in a Subway parking lot. My cell phone rings. Its The LJA. She says, “Did you get my email?” “Uh, yeah,” I say, trying to be upbeat and not sniffle too loudly into the phone. Inside I’m screaming, ‘YOU’LL NEVER SEE YOUR NIECES AND NEPHEWS!!!!!’ and ‘YOU CAN’T EVEN FILE YOUR TAXES!!!!!!!!!!’ The LJA kind of laughs and says, “Yeah, but did you get the second email?” Huh? “APRIL FOOLS!” she yells. I immediately hang up the phone.
She kept my parents going for a little while longer, but not too much longer once she found out how upset we all were. My Mom still isn’t speaking to her, I don’t think. And my poor Dad was MIA for half the day. My BFF and her BF are still fighting, I think.
If you think about it, its really the perfect April Fools joke. Just believable enough for us to buy it, but just far fetched enough to send us over the edge. And when you add in the fact that no one other than middle school kids ever remember April Fools Day, its the perfect joke.
Too bad I’ll never be able to speak to The LJA again. She’s kind of a fun kid.