Know any good April Fools' Day office pranks?

Qualifications for submission:

*Must be fairly easy to implement
*Must not cause harm or damage to person or property
*Must not piss anyone off excessively
*Originality is a bonus

Oh, crap.

I was going to suggest some standards involving messing with computers. Unplug mouse or keyboard. Put a small post-it over the optical mouse sensor. Switch from QWERTY to the Dvorak keyboard.

Change the word processing default font to Neuland.

My own very best: I had 24 hour access to the building (this helps a lot!) So I snuck in, late at night, and replaced a friend’s office chair with…a toilet.

I give the guy the highest possible honor: he sat at his desk, on that toilet, the whole day. There is a good sport!

The two I’ve heard of are:

  1. install a wireless mouse to secretly infer with the pointer from behind the cubicle wall

  2. Cover everything in plastic wrap or tin foil or replace everything with cardboard replicas

Take all of the toilet paper out of the bathrooms and hide it. Empty the backup supply too.

I’ve always wanted to do this but never got around to it.
If you have a bathroom with 1-3 stalls in it get a few old pairs of shoes and pants and some scrap wood to build short faux pairs of legs. Put one in each stall in front of the toilet then use a small piece of duct tape to keep the doors shut from the inside by reaching over or under the door.
See how long it takes for someone to figure it out.


Changing common words like “the” to other words using Auto correct in Word.

I did something like that (in Word Perfect) by assigning a macro to the letter “q.” Every time the victim pressed that letter, the words “You Dork” would appear, then immediately be backspaced away, and the letter “q” only remained. If you were looking really closely you’d see “You Dork” come and go. Otherwise, it was just a little flicker at the edge of perception. Only when you became suspicious, and leaned hard on the q key was the effect really visible.

There’s the standard one of taking a screenshot of the victim’s computer, making it the background, and then hiding all the actual icons…

I came in once and my entire office was filled floor to ceiling with neatly stacked boxes.

Took me 2 hours to clean it out!

Physical stuff is a bit too much effort for my liking, so I prefer to do mine by e-mail. This year I have a “ready-made” one planned in that we are expecting a baby shortly, so I will announce their early arrival and say I have decided to come into work anyway, and we have named it after the name of the company. Tame, but don’t like too much time to be wasted at what is a busy time of year for us.

Here’s a more general one I did last year - not particularly original in content but it fooled a few people. Similar e-mails are often sent round our office so it was realistic to our situation. Feel free to steal it if you like - the instructions should work for Outlook 2010, except the final part of them does not exist.
"Subject: Save energy, save money

As you know, we are always looking to make small efficiency savings as in the long term, this can save the company a lot of money, which benefits everyone. One thing that recently came to light was the amount of energy a monitor uses to display a white screen is more than a dark screen. Given the amount of computer use we have, we can cut down on our electricity bill by “reversing” our displays, i.e. showing white text on a black background instead of the standard black text on a white background. It sounds strange at first but I have tried it and it is just as easy to read, and could save us as much as £20,000 a year if everyone adopts it.

I suggest you try it in Outlook to start with: go to “File>Options>Advanced” and then scroll down to the “Custom Forms” button – click on this and there should be a checkbox for “Reverse colours”. If you’re having trouble finding it, please click on this link for screenshots of the process.

Please reply to confirm when you have done this, thanks."

Ctrl Alt Left arrow

Better still, drag the taskbar to the side of the screen first

Cut the corner off a bill of any denomination, put a thin line of glue on the cut edge, and stick it under something heavy, like a filing cabinet.

I used to do that at my yesterjob. Just the shoes will do as nobody but Larry Craig would do more than a cursory glance.

My standard was a lost pet flyer:

Have you seen a:
Grey squirrel
Small and has a bushy tail
Likes nuts
Runs away from people
Please call [# of someone you don’t like]

ETA: email works just as well as old school paper flyers.

I guess I should add that this works better on the US East Coast, but apply local fauna.

Back in the day you could pull tops off the keys from IBM keyboards and swap them around. We spelled out APRILFOOLS along the QWERTYUIOP line of our bosses PC. Those were the days.

We have a few big whiteboards up where I work that have vital information.

I’m torn between two ideas.

The first is to take them all home and transliterate everything on them into cyrillic. Problem is that I think I may be the only one who thinks this is funny. Maybe my boss, but probably nobody else.

The second is to take all the names (the boards are animal names and info) and change them to something mildly humorous. This one would require a lot more creativity, but probably get a better result. Hell, maybe I’ll do it and enlist help from the SDMB. It would be just silly puns or synonyms. Like Lucky could be renamed Fortunate and Jersey could be Angus and Peaches could be Nectarine. Stupid stuff like that.