Mischief Making: A l-u-v Story
Before I became a M.I.L.F., I was totally a prankster (not/never to be confused with hipster). These two things are related, and I aim to show you how.
Many people believe that the true testimonial to successful Practical Joking is the length in which the jokester is able to keep a straight face. I have to admit; I see their point. For me, though, practical joking is fun for the same reason themed parties and Lamaze classes are: I’m a planner. The events themselves aren’t all that fun, unless they involve supreme doses of sozzling, something my job didn’t usually include, even though it’s taken many a happy hour to move on. No, planning the jokes was pretty much the fun of it for me.
This could be why most of my practical jokes didn’t go down in history, because no one, with the exception of my co-conspirator whose name I can’t mention for fear of repercussion, ever found out about them (see above paragraph). Although, there was that close call with the pink paint in the alley. Late into the game, though, I discovered that planning jokes could be more beneficial when said joke was actually carried out. This, I credit to my husband, whom I soon discovered was one of those gullible types.
When McKnight and I first met, there were numerous reasons for us not to date, none of which I’ll share with you here. (We’re still working those out in therapy.) There were, however, *no* good reasons we could come up with to not be friends. This worked for me in several ways, not the least of which was that I had a new “subject” to “torture,” ala High School rogue flirting methods, circa 1994.
***We interrupt this endearing chronicle with a brief message about life & love. A good way to find out if someone has the same humor as you: play practical jokes on them at work, where they (should?) long to be taken seriously. Now, back to our regularly scheduled manifesto.***
I spent many hours designing my hoaxes-to-be. Much like Ayn Rand’s definition of art, my jokes were meant to lend meaningful existence to an otherwise useless day. My favorite of these was hiding poor McKnight’s sugary breakfast-cereal-of-choice and replacing it with FiberOne. I had done my due diligence by previously instilling in him a Twilight Zone level of paranoia that our cleaning company’s employees couldn’t really be trusted, and he took the joke completely out of my hands by actually believing that I didn’t have his cereal hidden in my desk drawer. I can’t say it didn’t make me jump with glee to find out that even ridiculously obvious tomfoolery could be fun, given the right recipient.
The other important factor for a joke to live past its prime, regardless of originality or creativity, is Audience. For some reason, there was a woman at our work who was obsessed with the “treats” I would leave at McKnight’s desk. She just couldn’t figure out why such a nice looking young man (he reminded her of her son, no doubt!) would have two hot pink surgical gloves full of variously shaped yellow highlighters hanging on his cubicle wall. A disturbing sight, for sure. But so was her helmet hair induced by too much hairspray, which I definitely did not gawk at in the same way.
Practical jokes soon turned into private ones, as we shoved our skeletons back into the closet or, in some cases, watched them grow so big that they no longer really mattered, until, before long, we were the only ones that really got the joke. While he became as fond of me as he’d previously been of just my attention, I learned that the best kinds of surprises aren’t the ones you’ve pre-thought out and way over-analyzed in your head.
In short, we fell for each other, as innocently as one suckered into a senseless prank. I guess we were easy marks: an under-appreciated guy and a sedulously capricious girl, with just enough sense in between them to be bamboozled by love.