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#1 Posted by vdortizo (274 posts) -

So, there's this person that I really dislike in the office and every time I see them I think that a practical joke would be hilarious (I'll probably never do it, because of HR and whatnot).

But that lead me to wonder, have any of you duders ever pulled a prank on a co-worker? How about you share some of your best stories!

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#3 Posted by Zelyre (1897 posts) -

There's the mundane stuff like putting tape under people's mice.

We'd also invert mouse controls on the desktop, make the speed super slow or fast, reverse the buttons...

We'd take a screen shot of someone's desktop, move all their icons into a folder, and then chuckle as someone's PC "locks up".

My most elaborate one took place decades ago. During holiday break, we'd be absolutely dead. However, we had folks who loitered on site, and they were here 365 days a year. Since it was just a handful, we knew pretty much all of them.

One day, a coworker is in the bathroom when one of the loiterers runs into the stall next to him. He described it as a panicked grab for toilet paper and whimpering. Instead of asking if the guy was ok, or needed help, he ducked out of the bathroom and came back to the office where he was quite concerned for this man's well being. He was concerned that the man might have been wounded.

This was the day before we all left for our own holiday breaks and he never went back to check on him. So, during break, I went onto our local newspaper's website, looked up crime scene stories, took their HTML/image assets for our area, and created a news story in pretty much the exact same writing style about how a man was found dead at our workplace the evening my coworker ran into him in the bathroom. That the coroner said it was unfortunate because the man bled out and would have lived if someone had noticed and called for medical assistance.

I then took that, modified the header so that it pointed to some fake url. When we went back to work, I went to print it out to make sure it looked right before I'd hand it to the guy (Who would have known it was a joke if I handed it to him.) However, we print to a communal printer. On my way to get it, someone else intercepted the print out.

Since it wasn't uncommon for folks to print out important local news, the guy that intercepted the print out starts reading it. Out loud. I walk into the communal printer area just as the bathroom guy walks in. He overhears this "news" story get read out loud and goes white as a ghost. He felt so guilty and was kicking himself so hard. I felt so bad, I had to admit that I went through a ton of effort to fake this story. It was the pinnacle of my workplace pranks and I felt so bad that I never pulled another prank again.

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#5 Posted by superslidetail (411 posts) -

@zelyre Good story...so what actually happened to the guy? Just some bad stomach issues? Lol

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#6 Posted by TopCat88 (367 posts) -

Aren't practical jokes supposed to be fun for both parties. If you don't like the person, doesn't this just become practical bullying!

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#7 Posted by deactivated-5ba16609964d9 (3361 posts) -


@topcat88 said:

Aren't practical jokes supposed to be fun for both parties. If you don't like the person, doesn't this just become practical bullying!

That reminds me that Jim Halpert from The Office was a bully.

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#8 Posted by OpusOfTheMagnum (647 posts) -

Oh yeah. Name tag shenanigans, hand sanitizer on beverage containers, etc. Only ever messed with folks I was on good terms with.

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#10 Posted by hermes (2575 posts) -

No, although I have been the subject of some, like changing my desktop image, sending flirtatious emails to other co-workers from my account, or having nCage installed on my browser. They are never malicious or born out of dislike, though, and they are mostly considered in good fun.

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#11 Posted by Ben_H (4168 posts) -

180 degree screen rotation was always a good one. We did that a few times.

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#12 Posted by htr10 (1018 posts) -


Yeah, I totally agree with this. You pull practical jokes on your friends, not your enemies. Your enemies you crush without comedy.

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#13 Edited by Archer88 (403 posts) -

Shared office space with multiple desks. Co-worked had a habit of going to conference rooms to work in silence so we would do things to his desk.

- Changed his desk name tag to "Part Timer"

- Turned his desk into a produce stand

- Put all of his personal belongings in a box and told him the boss wanted to see him

- Replaced photos of his girlfriend with pictures of us

- Rearranged contents of his desk drawers

- Changed his voicemail greeting (got in trouble for that one)

Right now another manager and I have a running joke where we work firing/insulting each other into meetings that we run, just nonchalantly mentioning it. We both get a kick out of it. Yesterday he sent out a report titled "May KPI Summary: Proof that Archer88 is Useless". Stuff like that.

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#14 Posted by vdortizo (274 posts) -

@zelyre: boy, that escalated quickly...

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#15 Posted by nutter (1754 posts) -

God, tons...

Flipped old CRT monitor display 90 degrees. The owner didn’t know how to fix it so he flipped it on its side.

Autocorrect the to teh. Autocorrect someone’s own name to a misspelling. Also, misspell their name in their signature. This took them about a month to notice.

The old tape under mouse routine. This guy unplugged and layed everything out and was on a call with support.

Misc desktop wallpaper changes, one to Fabio, skantily-clad on the hood of a car. Dude was not happy.

There’s also the classic take-a-screenshot-of-someone's-desktop-and-make-it-their-wallpaper move. Just do that and move all their desktop items. Fun times. This is another I had to fix. The person who got this one was tech support...so that was sad.

Put shutdown.exe -r in startup.

Put a link to My Little Pony Live videos in startup.

We found a pair of pants once and put them in this one guy’s cube with a note that addressed them saying “thanks, here are your pants back.” This drove them crazy when they kept reappearing.

What else...

...this one guy just HATED doing his job. He wanted to do other things, which I get, but his job was essential work. Anyhow, he wouldn’t perform the task upon request so we starting shooting a slingshot pig at him, when it flies through the air it squeals. That was our public way of saying “c’mom, don’t make me ask a third time.”

There are a million others, I’m sure. Those are just a handful off the top of my head.

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#16 Posted by nutter (1754 posts) -

@zelyre: I only half-jokingly wonder if we’ve worked together. I’ve done flavors of all of those.

I’m straight and narrow these days, but put a 20-something in an office and watch the nonsense flow.

Some punk kid will give me my comeuppance soon, I suppose...

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#17 Posted by Rigas (777 posts) -

This should be the most important take away from this thread.

@topcat88 said:

Aren't practical jokes supposed to be fun for both parties. If you don't like the person, doesn't this just become practical bullying!

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#18 Posted by MerxWorx01 (789 posts) -

@vdortizo: Sure, about a week ago I noticed a coworker's car in the parking lot and had the fun idea of finding an image of a police parking ticket, printed it out, cut it to size and attached it to his windshield. Conveniently as he walked pass a window a police suv passed by his vehicle which was parked in a "30 minute" only area which helped the prank's bona fides. The entire day he say "oh no", "that better not be a ticket!", "I always park there, why would they ticket me now!". My more sympathetic side got the better of me and I didn't want him to be late for what ever he had going on after work so I told him I did it before he got out of the building.

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#19 Posted by Asmo917 (819 posts) -

Team of four people, three of us plus our boss. On April Fools Day, our boss convinced two of us to tell the fourth member that we were resigning, but to keep it quiet. All three of us had believable reasons - one guy was going back to his old employer for more money, boss was going back to school for her PhD, etc. I was the last to go, and since we'd all sworn her to secrecy she wasn't spilling the beans to any of us about the others. Thankfully we did it late in the day so as I was leaving her cube our boss walked in and gave up the gig. I believe the prankee's reaction was "I love working with you assholes. You'll all get yours."

Postscript - she was too sweet to really get us back.

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#20 Posted by Sergiy (51 posts) -

Printed up a troll Face, cut it out and taped up the mouse. Done for April fools, without malice :)

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#21 Edited by HellBrendy (1299 posts) -

I filled my bosses Office With 200 filled papercups of water. She came in sick the next day so she just emptied the cups and went home.

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#22 Posted by Franstone (1534 posts) -

Pretty sure when you do it to someone you dislike it's more bullying or some type of harassment. Practical jokes are supposed to be fun for both parties.
But yes, I've covered a co-workers monitor with removable labels which he didn't notice until he sat down and sipped his coffee (YES!). Also took part in covering another co-workers entire cubicle and every item within with tinfoil. Make sure you work in an environment that doesn't frown upon such activities.

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#23 Posted by scrappypixels (207 posts) -

Ehhhhh i work as a developer in a medium size company and to be honest i think about 25% of our time is doing something daft. We never really aim it at one person with any real serious intent.

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#24 Posted by Zelyre (1897 posts) -

@zelyre Good story...so what actually happened to the guy? Just some bad stomach issues? Lol

Not 100% sure as he was a community member. This area was kind of a library-esque area with computers, so it was either stomach issues or something... else.

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#25 Posted by DorkyMohr (262 posts) -

Absolutely, but I've made friends at work and I'm able to tell who would take it in good humor.

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#26 Edited by MonkeyKing1969 (7413 posts) -

We have a woman 'practical joker' in the office... She has almost been fired twice; so she has learned the lesson the hard way.

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#27 Posted by dudeglove (13644 posts) -

Wow some of you people are deranged