Know any college pranks?
October 19, 2005 5:24 AM   Subscribe

Know any good college pranks?

You know the score: maximum hilarity, minimum cost. Stories of pranks you've pulled would be great.

For example: there was a story of a guy who released 3 pigs on campus. He numbered them 1, 2 and 4. They caught the pigs quick enough, but they spent weeks looking for pig number 3.
posted by Acey to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (57 answers total) 10 users marked this as a favorite
This page has some of the best out of MIT. My favorite has always been #6
posted by allen.spaulding at 5:32 AM on October 19, 2005

Go to a bait store and buy 100 crickets. Release them under the door of your target. It'll be weeks before they stop chirping all night.
posted by MrMoonPie at 5:40 AM on October 19, 2005

We used to lock guys in their dorm rooms using stacks of pennies. Kind of lame, but fun to listen to them yell and scream if they're late for a class. The door has to open into the room for this to work.

While the door is closed, push on the bottom of the door with your foot to create a gap between the door and the frame. You can usually get about 3/4 of an inch or so. Once you've got the room, jam a stack of pennies in the gap. This keeps the door from returning to its original position and effectively locks the latch. Do the same with the top of the door and they'll never get out until someone from the outside removes the pennies.

We took this one step further when we figured out that you could unscrew most peepholes from the outside. We'd jam their doors and then blow all kinds of crap (cigar smoke, whole cans of deodorant, etc.) into their room through the peephole (don't knock first, of course, don't want to get anyone in the eye).
posted by richmondparker at 5:46 AM on October 19, 2005

Sounds like you need to track down a copy of If at All Possible, Involve a Cow: The Book of College Pranks by Neil Steinberg. There is an excerpt here detailing the antics of the The University of Wisconsin-Madison's "Pail & Shovel Party," which ushered in the "golden age" of college pranks. (Mystery Science Theater's Jim Mallon was big in the Pail & Shovel Party). Probably their most famous pranks were putting 1000 pink flamingos on campus and building a Statue of Liberty in the ice on Lake Mendota.

There's also a good page on college pranks here.
posted by Otis at 5:46 AM on October 19, 2005

Some favorites:

Take whatever goop you can get your hands on (the runnier, the better) and mix it all up sorta loosely. Creamed corn, syrup, mustard, baked beans, split pea soup, that sort of thing. Grease a large sheet of tinfoil with cooking spray and spread some of your glop on there, making sure it stays relatively thin. Freeze this in your dorm fridge, so that you have a thin disk of frozen nastiness.

The dorm room doors in my old college had about a good inch of space between the bottom of the door and the floor. We'd sneak out at night and slide the frozen mess under people's doors so that it would melt by morning when they woke up.

I don't know if anybody remembers the old AT&T "you will" ad campaign from the mid 1990's. You know, "Have you ever sent a fax from the beach? You will."

Our dorm had some party and ripped off that campaign, plastering flyers all over the damn place with things like, "Have you ever worn a sumo suit? You will," and "Have you ever gone rock climbing indoors? You will."

Damn flyers were everywhere. In the elevators, on people's doors, in the bathrooms...

Roomie and I took it upon ourselves to make guerilla flyers that looked just like theirs. So we grabbed the same font and made a series of progessively more offensive flyers.

"Have you ever done anal? You will," and then of course all the party info below.

...and the like.

They blended in perfectly, and we put them all over. People were talking about them in the halls, the elevators, the cafeteria. It was glorious.
posted by kaseijin at 5:49 AM on October 19, 2005

I heard about this one--a friend's father pulled a prank back in the day at some university. A bunch of folks pooled together as much money as possible and went to the store and bought as much bubble bath as possible. At a certain time during the day (schoolday, of course) they converged at the campus fountain and as quickly as possible dumped gallons and gallons of the stuff into the fountain. It created a ginormous mountain of suds.

Great prank. Gets everyone's attention but harmless. We talked about doing it ourselves but never got around to it.
posted by zardoz at 6:01 AM on October 19, 2005

Back in college, we took a wrench to a friend's car and replaced his driver's seat with a lawn chair. We also removed a different friends toilet from his bathroom and left it outside his front door.
posted by Inkoate at 6:08 AM on October 19, 2005

Disassembly of dorm room furniture was popular in our hall. It is cheap and with a little scotch tape and some chopsticks you can make things appear fairly solid until use. For example, you can detach the bed frame of the top bunch from the outer frame and usually prop it up with chopsticks or pencils in the bolt holes, just make sure you tell the person on the bottom bunk before you do it.
Also gel shaving cream + plastic bottle with a nozzle top + shake = shaving cream gun. Fits through the removed peephole too.
posted by arruns at 6:15 AM on October 19, 2005

You can also do the bubble thing with a box of Tide, zardoz. Although I wasn't the responsible party, I saw it done once and the results are, indeed, impressive.

Here's my contribution: I was wandering around campus one day and noticed all kinds of "Fraternity Rush" posters around... the wheels started turning and I made new "M" and "P" cutout letters which matched the color and lettering of the flyers. From there, I wandered around with my letters and a gluestick and changed a few dozen "Fraternity Rush" posters into "Maternity Push" posters.
posted by ph00dz at 6:15 AM on October 19, 2005

It had been done before, but there is the recently done Harvard Sucks hack. Similar to #7 from the Wired list of MIT hacks, only Yale actually did it themselves.

And while they're not college based, practically anything Improv Everywhere has done could be adapted for college purposes.
posted by Remy at 6:15 AM on October 19, 2005

Great ideas. arruns, could you elaborate on that shaving gel gun? Sounds like an easy one to try...
posted by Acey at 6:23 AM on October 19, 2005

The great pumpkin story.
posted by caddis at 6:29 AM on October 19, 2005

1) As it is nearing the Halloween season, the "poopkin" is always a favorite. Essentially, hollow out a pumpkin. Cut the bottom out. Fill it with poop (this can be tricky, a lot of people have performance anxiety when it comes to actually pooping in a pumpkin). Leave it on the doorstep with the lid on. Ring the doorbell. When the victim goes to pick it up, poop goes everywhere! Seriously, this one is a classic. If you are concerned with communicable human diseases transmitted via fecal matter, you may want to take the dog poop option.

2) Another good one is 'horning' as many cars as possible next to a dorm around 2 or 3 am. You find an unlocked car, jam a stick through the steering wheel so it sets off the horn, lock the door, and run to a good hiding/observation place. Hilarity ensues as groggy students and RAs try to figure out what the hell is going on.

3) Not necessarily a prank, but capture the flag in the library is pretty fun/obnoxious and harmless.

4) Live roosters will start crowing at about 5 am, and if they are indoors, it's really fucking annoying. Trust me.

5) Catfood, milk, limburger cheese and tunafish. Put it in a mason jar full to the top. Put a lid on it (poke a hole, i don't know if it would explode or not). Let it sit in the sun for a few weeks and then put it in a difficult to spot place near or inside a residence of someone, preferably a frat house.

6) Did you know you can order bull semen online? It mixes really well with handsoap, and most people can't tell the difference.
posted by tweak at 6:31 AM on October 19, 2005

I almost forgot! Icy Hot on toilet seats is pretty good. It retains its potency for hours. The smell may be a giveaway for athletes, however.

Whatever you do, be creative and have fun! Try to document your antics in a non-incriminating fashion.
posted by tweak at 6:41 AM on October 19, 2005

Shaving/whipped cream door bomb:

Materials: Whipped cream OR shaving cream. Empty half-gallon paper milk carton OR large manila envelope.

If using the (empty!) milk carton, carefully open the carton up all the way. You want to peel open both "spouts" so you have a square opening at the open end.

Bend both "spouts" outward so it forms a sort of wedge-shaped nozzle with a slit in it.

Fill milk carton (or envelope) with foamy cream stuff. Pack it full.

Slide edge of envelope or wedge-nozzle of milk carton under the gap of dorm room door. Jump on carton or envelope firmly. If the edge of carton or envelope remained under the door, the interior of the dorm room should now be covered in a fine misting of foam. Repeat.

Bonus points for knocking first when you know the resident of the room is home, then jumping on the foam-injection units as they approach the door.
posted by loquacious at 6:45 AM on October 19, 2005

Things I used to do in the dining hall:

Put a bowl of parmesan cheese in the microwave for 10 minutes.

Steal all the ice cream.

Superglue a full empty place setting to the dining hall tray and send it 'round the tray thinger.

Take a brown salad bowl, some peanut butter and two ice cream cones. Smear the peanut butter on the bottom of the bowl, attach the cones and wear it as a Viking Helmet. Proceed to eat like a viking with all of your friends. Drink from bowls at arm's length, eat whole loaves of bread, try to get a whole flank steak from the meat guy and tear into it with your bare hands.

Banana bombs:
Massage a banana until the insides are mushy, but don't break the skin. Take back to your dorm room and let sit until it turns black. Chuck it out the window at someone.
posted by sciurus at 6:53 AM on October 19, 2005

These fire-and-brimstone campus preachers would periodically set up shop in the middle of my school and spend a couple of hours prosletyzing. One year, my dorm room was directly above the little rise where they liked to work, so I aimed my amp out the window, plugged a mike into it, and debated the guy with the voice of God.

Later that year, a friend of mine one-upped me by dressing up in a suit and walking up to one of the preachers, Bible in hand, and asking if he could preach a while because he was so inspired by what he was hearing. The preacher gladly let him do it, and my friend went up and gave a riviting account of the time he saw Jesus' face on a very painful bowel movement.

Yeah, pretty puerile, but it was ten years ago.
posted by COBRA! at 6:57 AM on October 19, 2005

We had a blast with this one. On a freezing day, we threw open the windows and put about a dozen oscillating fans in our hallmate's room. Then we placed various containers filled with snow throughout the room. Then we simply wrote "Cold Shack" on his bulletin board outside the room.

This was so simple and stupid, but man we had a blast doing it and watching his reaction.
posted by phildog at 7:02 AM on October 19, 2005

This sounds like a good one, though I'm not sure how you could do it in the digital age.
posted by interrobang at 7:06 AM on October 19, 2005

A friend of mine broke into his neighbor's dorm room and ran small wires from the neighbor's stereo speakers out of the room and connected them to his own stereo. While the neighbor was away he played disturbing conversations that could be heard out the window. When the neighbor came back he played the sound of a fly buzzing through the speakers in the middle of the night. As soon as the lights would come on the fly stopped buzzing.

In our dorms powdered laundry detergent was provided in the laundry rooms in large outdoor type garbage pails. We had a small plaza with a large fountain on campus. One day a pail of laundry detergent made its way into the fountain. Suds abounded.

An elevator in a campus building was rewired so that the numbers on the floor buttons no longer corresponded to the correct floors. I believe this won the pranksters several cases of beer.
posted by caddis at 7:15 AM on October 19, 2005

This one takes at least two people and a victim who lives in an upper storey of a multi-storey building. One person (or more) goes out drinking with the victim. You've got to make sure they get really drunk. You can get really drunk too, which is nice.

Meanwhile, the other prankster gains entry to the victim's room and moves all their posessions to a similar bedroom on the ground floor.

When you bring your inebriated friend home, put him to be in his new ground floor room. He won't notice it's not really his room, because you got him so drunk.

Burst in to his room the next morning. Give him ten seconds or so to get his bearings; yes, this is my room. he thinks. Then you all grab hold of him and throw him out the window, which he thinks is many storeys off the ground. There will be a few seconds when he actually thinks he's going to die, right there, at his friend's hands. Lovely stuff.
posted by caek at 7:16 AM on October 19, 2005 [1 favorite]

some office pranks (like these) would probably translate well into dorm room pranks, especially the post-it note and tinfoil prank - cheap, harmless, and funny!
posted by geeky at 7:18 AM on October 19, 2005

oh also... i worked for the campus newspaper for a while. one day, a few people decided to play a prank on the opinion editor - they stole her desk, computer and all. the look on her face when she got to work and had no desk was pretty funny.
posted by geeky at 7:22 AM on October 19, 2005

During fraternity rush, print a bunch of flyers advertising a tremendous keg bash "TONIGHT!" at your fraternity of choice. Distirbute widely among freshman dorms. Send them to sororities with flowers. Invite the faculty.

The higher profile your publicity, the better. If you have a budget, do radio buy on a popular local radio station. Send out campus-wide emails. Spread the word via SMS.

This is a rush violation on multiple levels on virtually every campus, and has the added benefit of mobs of angry freshmen showing up at the house demanding beer, concerned faculty members coming to investigate allegations of wrongdoing, and possibly even police presence.

If you do this right, it will cause utter chaos but no one will really get in trouble (unless, of course, the fraternity is actually serving alcohol to freshmen... duh).

I wonder if this might work even better if the vicitim is a sorority.
posted by mikewas at 7:25 AM on October 19, 2005

Michigan State University. 1988. John C. Holmes West dorm. In connection with some football game (probably U of M), some RAs distributed flyers to every room facing the street, asking them to make sure their light was either on or off at a certain time. If done properly, the lights would spell out the words "GO MSU" or something.

A group of us did not have classes that day, and were bored. We decided that it would be hilarious if the message should be modified to say "GHETTO" (which was the nickname for our floor -- 4 West Holmes). We plotted out which lights had to be on and off, and printed out and distributed flyers that looked exactly like the original ones, but said something like "OOPS -- There was a mistake in our prior flyer, and you now need to make sure your light is (on/off)."

Sure enough, at the appointed time, the front of the six-story dorm was clearly emblazoned with the word "GHETTO." Word got back that the RA who had organized the thing broke out in tears. I felt a little bad (still do, actually). But it was the highlight of my pranking career.
posted by pardonyou? at 7:40 AM on October 19, 2005 [1 favorite]

If you find yourself at a house party hosted by people you don't really like (as you inevitably will, since the promise of beer is a compelling thing), sneak off to the bathroom. Hopefully, the party will be pretty crowded and you'll be able to go mostly unnoticed.
Lock the bathroom door and take the lid off of the toilet tank. Close the lid on the toilet bowl and perch yourself on the toilet with your tucchus over the tank. Drop a big loaf in the tank. Wipe. And replace the lid. Go back to the busy party.
For the next couple days, any time one of the hosts flushes the toilet, the turd that you left in the tank will brown the water that fills the bowl.
The downside of this prank is that it's mostly mean. There's not much humor value to it besides petty revenge or spite. But don't let that stop you. Petty revenge, imo, can be great. The other downside is that you won't get to witness the reaction of the prankee.
posted by Jon-o at 7:51 AM on October 19, 2005

Along with the Wired article linked up top, the obligatory MIT hack links are and the compendium published by MIT Press, Nightwork. This is actually a book, so it's not all on the web, but there's a lot of fun stuff. Not all of these are necessarily cheap or easy.

richmondparker mentioned pennying doors... another variation on that is to tie doorknobs of opposing rooms together, so neither door can open. Leaving them that way would be dumb, though - make sure someone's around to untie them from the outside.
posted by whatzit at 7:54 AM on October 19, 2005

Man, if there was ever a thread to necessitated the use of anonymous commenting, this would be it. Statute of limitations and all.
posted by allen.spaulding at 8:09 AM on October 19, 2005

Get a couple of spools of thread and some thumbtacks and turn the room into a giant spider web, floor to ceiling, wrapping and tying around all the furniture. (I once did this to a particuarly humorless girl on my hall and she was PISSED. It took her hours to get it all down.)
posted by jrossi4r at 8:12 AM on October 19, 2005

Walk up to someone, and when they're not expecting it, punch them.
posted by jon_kill at 8:14 AM on October 19, 2005

free sperm?

also, the book Pranks! changed my life, somehow. It may not be as "college" oriented as you like, but it will definitely get you thinking in this way. And Joey Skaggs is a master of more elaborate pranks/hoaxes.
posted by hellbient at 8:15 AM on October 19, 2005

In addition to Jon-O's upperdecker, a similar prank (which I have never witnessed, thankfully) is the Nuclear Carl. Instead of the top part of the toilet, put the poop in the microwave. Set for an hour. LEAVE.
posted by lovetragedy at 8:24 AM on October 19, 2005

A lot of these are pretty mean-spirited and/or messy. I prefer a nice, simple, surreal moment of confusion, as evidenced by some of the best pranks I saw back in college:

Chris Cocca's dorm room was transformed into Camp Cocca by laying down a tarp on his floor and covering it with mulch. A camping tent was then erected in the middle of the room. This prank was topped the following year by using the same tarp, but putting down sand instead of mulch. Add seashells, starfish, a toy bucket and shovel, and an inflatable palm tree. Cap the whole thing off with a boombox playing a CD of hula music.

Another fine prank requires that the prankee's door open inwards, and preferably be recessed in the jamb. Get a lot of newspaper and tape, and create a solid wall of newspaper covering the doorway from floor to ceiling. This is pretty good by itself, but can be improved by filling the space between the door and the newspaper wall with either wadded-up newspaper, in keeping with the theme, or inflated balloons for a more festive approach.
posted by Faint of Butt at 8:34 AM on October 19, 2005

This is pretty good by itself, but can be improved by filling the space between the door and the newspaper wall with either wadded-up newspaper, in keeping with the theme, or inflated balloons for a more festive approach.

When I was an RA, I had some students do this to me and fill the space with popcorn. When I opened my door one morning, I was buried in an avalanche of the stuff.

It was obvious who the students were, so in revenge, when they went to class, I let myself into their rooms (master key, you know) and stuffed this same popcorn between their bedsheets. (By some lucky chance, all of three were bed-makers.)

I thought I handled their prank well, but they were irate at my counter-prank, probably because they had used buttered popcorn, which was rather messy on the sheets. Oops.
posted by jdroth at 8:50 AM on October 19, 2005

This prank was plotted, but never executed. It seems that some roomates of solistrato would stay up until all hours of the night talking and gaming while poor soli would have to go to sleep for work. The noise would keep him up, so invariably soli would burst out of his room to shush his roomates. The roomates planned to find some imitation brick wrapping paper (or paint bricks on newsprint), cover his doorway in it, and add a large speech bubble that read "OH-YEAH!" so that when he burst through the door he would perfom an homage to the late, great Kool-Aid Man and they'd take pictures.

Man, I get a smile just thinking about that. I sure wish it had been executed.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 9:01 AM on October 19, 2005 [1 favorite]

I second jon_kill's prank. If you're going to start a fight, why bother with a bunch of unnecessary steps?

That said, you could teach everyone on your floor to make calcium carbide bombs. Calcium carbide is a rock-like substance that gives off gas when wet. Pour calcium carbide and water into an empty plastic soda bottle. Cap and throw the bottle. Wait for the bottle to make a loud bang. If you teach enough people, you'll hear loud bangs fairly regularly. The whole process is relatively safe. YMMV.

Allegedly you can get calcium carbide from Home Depot.
posted by malp at 9:03 AM on October 19, 2005

The other downside is that you won't get to witness the reaction of the prankee.

That's not a downside, it's a dealbreaker. A clever prankee will simply clean up the mess, then when asked about it feign ignorance. A good prank must have a witness. Some of the others listed in this thread have that problem, too.
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 9:11 AM on October 19, 2005

Go to a party, and shit on the kitchen floor.

Also, key their car on the way out.
posted by jon_kill at 9:17 AM on October 19, 2005

A buddy of mine created the Roomate Removal Service. He made fliers weekly and posted them around campus. He got a surprising number of calls. We had a great time making up ad copy with things like "Need the perfect holiday gift? How about a Columbian Necktie?"

He ended up being called into Housing and Dining and showed up with a tape recorder and demanded permission to record the session. When they refused he walked out. They stopped him, he kept demanding and trying to walk out. They caved.

If you're a chem major, mix up some silver iodide and squirt a tiny amount into your mark's keyhole.

We also tried to make the perfect smoke bomb (fills an area with smoke as quickly as possible without exploding) and tried out our work nearly every weekend. We had one that filled a football field sized area in a minute or so.
posted by plinth at 9:27 AM on October 19, 2005

We did this one several times....

Wait until the room is empty.
Get talcum powder.
Pour copious amonts in the crack under the door.
Get a hair dryer/mini fan.
Blow talcum powder into room.
You'd be surprised how far it carries.

I never did this one...

At a party, get an empty beer can. Pee in it. Give it to someone who is loaded.

The perpetrators called it, The Especiale
posted by UncleHornHead at 9:46 AM on October 19, 2005

*Hurriedly makes notes*
posted by Acey at 10:17 AM on October 19, 2005

Find some short-term parking spaces near a school and park-up, making sure you're there at the time the kids are due to be picked up, look around furtively as if you're worried that a traffic cop is going to book you. You're bound to enrage some local with kids at the school and hilarity will ensue.
posted by biffa at 10:25 AM on October 19, 2005

The shaving cream gun is basically just taking someting like a gatorade or water bottle with the sipper lid, getting one of the little sample cans of edge shaving gel they were handing out on campus at the time and squirting a large amount of the gel into the bottle. Throw the lid back on and hold down the pop top then shake up the gel until it turns into foam (try and get as much foam as you can near the top). When you do it pressurizes the bottle so you just have to point and pop the lid. It shoots a goodly sum of shaving cream.
posted by arruns at 10:55 AM on October 19, 2005

We had a plentiful supply of fireworks when I went to college. Some might say this was a bad thing.

Bottle rockets were the weapon of choice. You could shoot them under just about any door. But the real relevation came when we found out how to hack the fuse to make it longer.

Our dorm was a high rise with elevators. We put one of these long fused bottle rockets in an elevator, had it facing the doors, lit it, hit the button for a few floors above us (after posting a spy on that floor), and it was off.

The timing was perfect. Just as the door opened on the upper floor, it went off and flew into the common area right in front of an RA. The spy went flying downstairs and we wisely ran into our rooms. The RA knew exactly which floor would do such a thing so she came down and found only locked doors with a lot of giggling behind them. So she lectured the doors and went away.

We decided to send the next rocket downstairs to the main lobby. We didn't know that the RA had gone to the lobby. We didn't know that she was sitting directly across from the elevator. But we were told that she managed to say the words "I really hate those guys" just before the rocket flew between her legs and blew up under her seat.
posted by Ber at 10:55 AM on October 19, 2005

The best college prank in which I participated:

A group of us bought cheap (but loud) battery-powered alarm clocks and distributed them in various locations in the main library's shelves (in some hard-to-reach places)... all on one floor and within "ear shot" of the most densely populated study tables.

The first alarm clock was set to go of at 8:00 p.m.; the second at 8:05 p.m., the third at 8:20 p.m., the fourth at 8:25 p.m. and the fifth at 8:45 p.m.

The effect was fascinating to witness (from afar and where we could mask our laughter).

A replay: the first alarm (8:00 p.m.) goes off. Disturbed students scamble for, find and turn-off the alarm clock. Everyone returns to their books. Five minutes later (8:05 p.m.), repeat. Students start to get flustered and wonder if another will go off. Wait, wait, wait. "Seems that another is not likely to go off, since it's been a while." 15-minutes later - another goes off (8:20 p.m.). First wave of pissed-off students packs up and leave. The remaining students are hold-outs and hoping that the prank is over. Next alarm clock (8:25 p.m.) goes off (mirroring the original interval of 5-minutes). Second wave of really, really pissed off students depart. Those who remain are resolute in not letting the alarm clock prank "get to them". 5-minutes pass with no disturbance, 10-minutes pass ("it must be over"), 15-minutes pass ("it's over"); 8:45 p.m. alarm goes off - library floor clears!
posted by ericb at 11:43 AM on October 19, 2005

When I was living in a townhouse dorm, my next-door neighbour and I had an ongoing (friendly) disagreement over politics. A federal election was going on and some canvassers came to the door. I asked for an extra sign. Then I climbed up on the roof below my neighbour's window and posted the sign, which had the name of a very controversial politician (Svend Robinson). Prank over, I thought.

My neighbour thought my roommate had pulled the stunt. Since she always left our door unlocked, the guy sneaked into our unit and into her room. He had thousands of leaflets from Preston Manning, a controversial right-wing politician. He put them her bed, closet, drawers, shoes, luggage...then he continued throughout the apartment. Preston Manning flyers were in our tub, fridge and even my roommate's cereal box!

The same neighbour and his roommate one day got the idea that it would be funny if they set off fire crackers on the roof of the townhome. They climbed to the roof, set up a long fuse, and then asked everyone in our building to come watch "something amazing". So we all marched up to the parking lot, not knowing what the "something" was. Then the fire crackers went off. The roof of the townhouse caught fire, but quickly died down. There was a giant black mark on the roof. We all disappeared quickly, not wanting to be blamed. That was the most idiotic prank I've ever seen. Do not attempt that or anything like it. The building could have caught fire, resulting in loss of life and property.
posted by acoutu at 11:44 AM on October 19, 2005

There was one guy in college who had a Hamburgler outfit and would run around campus stealing his friend's things and running away. Usually everything would be returned later, but it was always a good laugh. Once he had a hamburger made for him in the cafeteria and ran away before paying. I hope the cook saw that one coming.
posted by Alison at 11:45 AM on October 19, 2005

A good friend of mine dressed up and went to the first day of an Economics 101 class pretending to be the teaching assistant. The twist: He told students that they were taking Home Economics 101. He had a syllabus printed up and everything. The best part is that even after the real professor showed up and grumpily debunked the whole thing, students wandering in were still coming up to my friend asking for the syllabus, further annoying the professor.

My friend also went to a final exam in his underwear, but that's a different story.
posted by speicus at 1:51 PM on October 19, 2005

apparently one year some kids at my high school redirected all the traffic from a busy local street into the parking lot, which is a dead end. By the time drivers realized what was wrong, there wasn't enough space for them to turn around and every car had to back out one by one. It apparently took more than 6 hours to get all the cars out.
posted by martinX's bellbottoms at 2:45 PM on October 19, 2005

The Dry Docker. It's an easy one. Sneak into a buddy's place and turn the water off in a toilet (at the little hose leading from the wall behind most toilets) and then give it a couple of flushes to empty out all of the water. Next step, poop (I think it's best to throw the TP away somewhere else). Unsubmerged feces are exponentially more fragrant than an average floater. It will be as if a caravan of truckers used his apartment as a bathroom after eating nothing but chiliburgers and stewed cabbage.
posted by spork at 3:44 PM on October 19, 2005

A good prank should be funny. Leaving poop and pee about is not funny. It is just juvenile. Please move beyond age 10.
posted by caddis at 3:51 PM on October 19, 2005

Caddis gets my vote for best answer. Alarm clocks in the library: funny stuff. Taking a shit in a pumpkin: lame.
posted by jdroth at 5:27 PM on October 19, 2005

ping-pong balls smoke mightily when heated. Wrap three tightly in aluminium foil with a 0.25" hole at one end. Tie these with fencing wire to the exhaust (near the catalytic convertor) of victim's car and follow them when they drive off.
posted by polyglot at 6:32 PM on October 19, 2005

Basic, generic prank: Get a bunch of your frat brothers (the bigger the better) and carry Bruce's VW Bug into the house dining room. You may have to remove the sliding glass doors.

Bruce was a great guy. He laughed, and didn't deserve to be pranked, but he was the one who had a Bug.
posted by booth at 7:58 AM on October 20, 2005

planned but not executed, applies to HS or college but graduation only:

1 extra cap & gown
1 umm, let's say, "inflatable girlfriend" doll
1 small helium tank (at the time, there used to be ones the size of a 2-liter soda bottle, but I don't see them anywhere - the new ones are the size of an LP tank, thuis harder to smuggle, but still only 6kg).
3 partners in prank

Smuggle items in separately; partners sit together.
During last round of boring speeches, covertly assemble ingredients. Hold.

At traditional "throw your cap in the air to celebrate spending tens of thousands of dollars on a piece of paper", release your inflatable alumnus.

Large audience, no one gets offended, nothing to clean up.
(Except for an inflatable sex doll in a graduation gown that lands...?)
posted by penciltopper at 10:37 AM on October 20, 2005

Find the schedule/location of all the classes for a certain day/time. Recreate the "This class has been moved" sign and reassign every class to the same obscure room on campus. Watch as hundreds+ students and teachers all try to find building x and then attempt to cram into the classroom.
posted by clgregor at 1:43 PM on October 20, 2005

You need a garden hose for this prank and some prior experimentation. Put a condom in the victim's bed and fill it up with as much water as it would take just before breaking.

Any attempt by the victim to move the condom would probably result in the condom breaking.
posted by Deepspace at 11:05 PM on October 20, 2005

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