April 1st is just another day, right? Nothing special.
Well yes, except for some, it’s also known as April Fools’ Day.
Apparently, there is some uncertainty as to when, where, and why April 1st became known as April Fools’ Day, but here’s what I found on HowStuffWorks:
[The] most accepted explanation traces April Fools’ Day back to 16th century France. Up until 1564, the accepted calendar was the Julian calendar, which observed the beginning of the New Year around April. According to “The Oxford Companion to the Year,” King Charles IX then declared that France would begin using the Gregorian calendar, which shifted New Year’s Day to January 1.
Not everyone accepted this shifting of dates at the same time. Some believed that the dates should not be shifted, and it was these people who became the butt of some April jokes and were mocked as fools. People sent gifts and invited them to bogus parties. Citizens in the rural parts of France were also victims of these jokes. In those days, news traveled slowly and they might not have known about the shifting of dates for months or years. These people also endured being made fun of for celebrating the new year on the wrong day.
Nowadays, April Fools’ Day has become something of a free-for-all – a chance to play all kinds of pranks and spread various hoaxes to any poor soul who happens to be stupid enough to trust and believe that people are telling the truth.
I hate this.
Yeah, okay, maybe I’m a killjoy. Maybe I’m taking it too seriously. But I just don’t find fake pregnancy announcements or death hoaxes funny. Fake pregnancy announcements are such a horrible thing for people who have experienced miscarriage or infertility, and spreading a rumour online about someone’s apparent death seems really sick to me.
On a more basic level, as someone who struggles to trust people on a good day, April Fools’ Day makes me utterly paranoid. I basically end up hiding for the entire morning (because apparently, it ends at midday?) and that’s if I remember that it’s April Fools’ Day. If I don’t remember and I am caught out by someone’s “joke”, I spend the rest of the day feeling like an absolute idiot and berating myself for falling for the trick.
Basically, I just don’t see the fun in lying to people, then doing a big reveal, all to make them feel stupid and bad about themselves.
It’s not fun, it’s not “just a joke”, and at times it can just be outright cruel.
Maybe I’m just being a complainy-pants. But hey, this is me, telling my truth. I don’t like it and I won’t find your prank funny. In fact, I find it really damaging to my mental health, so please leave me out of it.
What do you think about April Fools’ Day? Let me know in the comments.