Wednesday, February 25, 2009

the prankster's honor code

Perhaps it is a pride issue, but I consider myself something of a prank artist.  I had a decent foundation before college, but it was really escapades with Slippey and Chris which began to build the house.  I have made mistakes along the way which have helped me develop the art.

Every noble prankster knows that there is a certain honor code associated with the art, without which pranking degenerates into painful wars.

The Prankster's Honor Code:

Rule 1.  Do no harm.  It's important that this come first, and be clearly defined.  Pranks should result in no physical injury to the recipient and no permanent damage to material goods.
  • Corollary 1.1:  Messes.  Messes are in most cases acceptable when they are in no way permanent and do not require special means of cleaning.  In general, sticky is mean.  As an example: filling a room with packing peanuts is a decent prank.  Filling a room with cotton candy -- not so much.
  • Corollary 1.2:  Timing.  Timing is critical.  At my university, the first two weeks of a quarter and finals week are the ideal times.  However, special consideration should be given to the specific recipients.  Don't trap someone in her apartment who as an exam at 8am.  This relates directly to Rule 2.
Rule 2.  Know your target.  Some people like pranks, some do not.  It's always better to find out before you prank than after.  Think of it as an extra challenge to discover this information without raising suspicion.

Rule 3.  Have fun on both ends
.  (1) If the act of the prank no longer carries any excitement for you, or (2) if you can't appreciate pranks done to you, get out of the business. 

Rule 4.  Don't get caught.  This requires significant planning, and in some cases practicing a prank to ensure that it is done flawlessly.  The corollaries here are mostly tips, rather than rules.
  • Corollary 4.1:  Contingency Plans.  Always have a plan B.
  • Corollary 4.2:  Escape.  Always have more than one way out.
  • Corollary 4.3:  Silence.  Don't tell anyone more than they absolutely need to know.  Even people who are involved in some aspect of the prank may not need to know every detail.
  • Corollary 4.4:  Red-handed.  In the event that you are caught red-handed, incorporate those who caught you into the plan.


BluePhoenix01 said...

Very interesting. :)
What's even more interesting, is that it shows me a bit more about your personality.
- Felix

Matt Marsh said...

another thing to add, maybe under the first heading, is a respect of personal space or personal things. i am (usually) pretty open to any pranks that follow your guidelines, but this is something i would tack onto that list.

though the end result was entertaining, i have been on the receiving end of some pranks which involved going through some of my belongings or things on my computer and i am not such a fan of that.

inos said...

good addition, Matt. If anyone else has a suggestion, post it in a comment. I'll post an amended version of the code in a few days.