Vassar Today

The Joke's On Us: Vassar April Fool's

By Lindsay Dawson ‘05

Despite their normally studious sensibilities, Vassar students have constructed elaborate April Fool’s Day pranks with the energy and gusto normally reserved for a senior thesis.

On April 1 of this year, students awoke, stumbled to the bathroom before class, and realized that their shower curtains were missing. In fact, all the shower curtains, in every bathroom in each dorm on campus, were missing. Ray Parker, associate dean of the college, quickly responded with a campuswide email, acknowledging the prank and requesting that the shower curtains be restored to their proper places that day. In exchange for the curtains’ swift return, those responsible for the mischief were offered amnesty.

Later that day, an anonymous email sent campuswide advised students that actress Lisa Kudrow ’85 would be visiting campus to hire interns for her production company. Interested parties were directed to appear in the Villard Room at an appointed time, rÈsumÈ in hand. Needless to say, Ms. Kudrow was not on campus, and interns were not hired.

Yet, the jokes cut both ways. In 2004, Parker himself emailed students with an announcement titled “Legal drinking age lowered.” His message stated that New York Governor George Pataki and the New York State legislature passed a midnight resolution that changed the legal age for consumption of alcoholic beverages to 18. In honor of the decision, the VSA had decided to cancel classes for the day. Even though Parker ended his note with a prominent “APRIL FOOL’S!” disclaimer, he reported receiving replies from students asking if classes were indeed canceled for the day. One barely awake student called his office asking to confirm the information. Even though Vassar students seem ingenious in their April Fool’s pranks, they can still be fooled themselves.

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