Fool Me Not

Forgive, O Lord, my little jokes on Thee.
And I’ll forgive Thy great big one on me.
— Robert Frost

How did April Fool’s Day get established? There are two basic explanations…

One is that April 1st was a celebration of the season’s shift from Winter to Spring. The other was the adoption of a new calendar requested by Pope George VIII to move New Year’s Day from April 1st to January 1st. 

Perhaps our international collective perpetuates the celebration of this day. It supports mischief and playfulness while granting immunity from reprimand by authority.

I remember pulling pranks and tricking others as a kid.  Short sheeting a bed, pushing someones nose to smell the ice cream or relaying a story that was sensationally untrue. These little antics seemed harmless enough… yet now I am not so sure. 

Fool is a word that can be used as both noun and verb. There are 88 other nouns for fool in my Thesaurus. Nitwit, chump, numbskull are just a few. All of them are some variation of derogatory. 

Using the term fool as a verb demonstrates actions taken to deceive, trick, mislead or dupe.  Deluding another, interfering, cheating, pretending, faking and swindling are all fooling activities.  

There’s a memory I have of one kid hurting his back when another pulled his chair away just as he sat down. Or the time when some older kids tricked another into “looking foolish” and how we all laughed at his misery.  Even the kid that was made a fool of laughed.

Nobody really likes to be acknowledged as a person who acts unwisely or is duped.  No one truly enjoys feeling embarrassed or mocked.  These days it seems that the fooling has morphed into a source of harassment or bullying.  

Even the smallest sarcasm used in our every day fooling around can be a form of ridicule or mockery. 

Ultimately in the end the joke is always on us. What we do onto others, we do onto ourselves! 

Today let’s make a decision to bring the fun and playfulness back into our celebration of April Fool’s Day. Let’s agree to be mindful of others feelings and to be conscious of our intention.

Happy April Fool’s Day. 



How could you play an April Fool’s joke that gives someone a loving benefit as a result?