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GAL FRIDAY: April Fools’ Day under-celebrated

Veoma Ali

GAL FRIDAY: April Fools’ Day under-celebrated

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I was wrong about Mr Wright. I therefore have to apologise to his fiancée, Ann, who also happens to be my cousin. This is what I’ve learnt: some folks may not enjoy April Fools’ Day as much as others, jokes and humour are relative; and relations can matter very little after pranking one’s relatives.

But tell me something, why is April Fools’ Day so under-celebrated? I mean, it is the one day of the year when we have all kinds of liberties – we could say things we don’t mean, we could distract people beyond comprehension and we could even create issues that don’t exist. Yes, I can hear you saying that some elitists in a special class have the luxury of such freedoms on any given day. But listen: for us plebes, such opportunities come but once a year. So we should celebrate, right?

But back to Mr Wright. People always made fun of Ann, telling her things like, “Girl, you can’t even get a date off the calendar, the boys frighten for dat face.”

Some would harshly joke, “Ann? She don’t make onions cry; she does make dem bawl!” In fact, when we attended our first ball as teenagers, Ann cried since she was alone. I don’t know why they teased Ann in this way, since I always thought she was quite pretty. Mind you, never once had I ever insulted or teased Ann. In all the years growing up together, I have always respected and even defended her when the remarks became too much.

So, fast-forward to yesterday. April Fools’ Day, 2015. Ann’s engagement took place on this auspicious day. Some were suspicious but many ladies were actually covetous, because Mr Wright was fabulous. He was handsome. When I tell you, handsome! Not like Hoadie handsome; even better. This was a kind of movie-starrish gorgeousness. He laughed at our jokes, made some witty remarks while giving his speech . . . I mean, he was truly Ann’s knight in shining armour. And best of all, he loved to laugh.

Knowing the types of pranks Ann and I would play when we were children, I fully understood that she would want a man with a great ability to laugh. Little did I know that this ability was only limited to others and did not extend to himself. So, when I planted a box of XXL contraceptives, along with a few bottles of Magnum Tonic Wine from Simone Whittaker, it didn’t go down too well. (Not the wine, the joke.)

You see, when Mr Wright asked Ann about the box with the paraphernalia, I snickered and said, “Cuhdear, Ann – you mean you still have the other fella’s stuff?” Ann slapped the Snickers out of my mouth and chastised me for being so insensitive. Even people who used to hurl insults at Ann like fast bowlers were casting judgemental glances my way. But, I blame society. You see, if we truly recognised April Fools’ Day, then my XXL joke wouldn’t seem like such a big deal.

Veoma Ali is an author, broadcaster, advertising exec and most important, a karaoke lover.