By Ike Adams
LAUREL COUNTY, Ky. — Now that the first week of April is upon on us, I’m simply hoping that this wonderful weather is not an April Fools’ joke and this is not April Fools’ Week. Speaking of which, I’m wondering how many of you pulled April Fool’s pranks this year or remember the ones you pulled in your youth.
I, for one, found out the hard way that setting Dad’s alarm clock to go off at 2 a.m. on April 1 was not as funny as I intended it to be, nor was dying a carton of milk blood red with food coloring very funny to Mom.
One time, one or more of my kids sneaked around in the middle of the night and covered the toilet bowl with cling wrap. I was the first one to sit on it the next morning and I was not amused. Suffice to say the gimmick worked to perfection, as it was intended. To this day, nobody has fessed up. Actually it could have been Loretta, for all I know, in which case it backfired on her because she had to do the laundry.
When I was in high school, fourth-period study hall students could work for free lunches by washing serving trays, mopping the cafeteria floor, etc. in exchange for a free lunch. It was a great deal because our high school was blessed with excellent cooks and excellent meals and the chores usually only took a few minutes.
Anyway, all the sinks were equipped with those flexible sprayer gadgets. Invariably someone would tape the buttons down on the spray nozzles and aim them upward. The first person to turn the water on received a shower whether he or she needed one or not.
When I was in college, someone from the campus newspaper staff would polish up a quarter so that it literally dazzled and glue it to the third or fourth step of the administration building which also housed most of the classrooms. Then the prankster would stand across the street with a camera. Invariably a professor’s photograph trying to pick up the coin made the front page of the paper. Lots of photos of girls bent over in mini skirts did not.
One year an immodest shot of a certain female religion professor, well known for her frugality, wound up posted on the student center bulletin board with the caption, “Miss Sandso, shows her donkey for a quarter. “
She offered a $10 reward (substantial bucks in 1968) for information leading to the identity of the photographer but the mystery remained unsolved.
Another college prank involved blackening the center of a quarter with a pencil and telling someone they could have it if they could balance it on the tip of their nose. You’d be amazed at the number of people who would try and then walk around with black noses until they looked in a mirror. It was worth the quarter even when someone succeeded once in a while.
In other, more serious, news. at least Good Friday is comparatively late this year.
My Mom always planted a row or two of halfrunners on Good Friday and they almost always seemed to make it. I’ve never had much luck because a late frost cooks mine most of the time. But, if this weather holds, I may try again this year.
Back in the 1980s Ralph King and I were growing a commercial crop of snow peas. One year, we didn’t get them planted until April 22 and a certain fellow in Letcher County bet us they wouldn’t make a thing because we got them out too late and that he’d help pick them if they did.
My nephew Chris Adams spent most of the month of June in 1988 picking snow peas when we could drag him out of Ralph’s pond.