Forty for Forty – #29. The April Fools

“A common mistake that people make when trying to design something completely foolproof is to underestimate the ingenuity of complete fools.”
~ Ancient Proverb, Author Unknown

Time to come clean. April Fools!!!

I’m dying to know who among you completely fell for my latest fool-proof plan. Especially when it’s become something of an annual event around these parts. Let me know in the Comments below or at Facebook.

(NOTE:   If you actually clicked on the link in my original post and read my confession earlier, don’t skip away yet. I’ve added more details below to let you know how I planned this and how it all almost went awry this past Friday.)

First, some background.

It was April 1, 2007 when I first came to the realization that on this day, unlike any other, I possessed the power to coerce and cajole the swiftest and smartest, the nearest and dearest, the most gullible and extremely simple-minded among all my blessed friends and family. And year after year, I would invite them to my website, the one place on this planet where you can always go to see what goes on in your Ed, and completely sucker them and bamboozle their better instincts with yet another in an elaborately orchestrated series of annual pranks.

One year, I had my friends and family utterly convinced that we had found prime real estate in Des Moines, IA and were packing our bags by the end of the month. Another year, I plastered the pristine walls of my family friendly website with a series of tastefully-designed Adults Only web-ads. You know, ’cause I was young and needed the money.

Then there was the year that I decided to interrupt my weekly recap of LOST, a popular feature on the site, by canceling the post and turning the reins over to Sean to begin recapping The Good Wife. And then last year, I ran a trivia contest with Red Sox tix dangled as the prize and on the big day revealed a series of fake films starring my Photoshopped head.

This year, you’ve all been suckered into buying my book.

I came up with the idea in January. In fact, right around New Year’s Eve, I posted on my Facebook Wall that one of my New Year’s Resolutions was to start a long con. You really should have been paying attention.

In late January, I left a cryptic note – telling people that my newly received copyright for ‘The Monkeybar Mafia‘ was attracting attention from a variety of fly-by-night publishers. That was all true. I then hinted that a few solicitations looked interesting. That was false.

In the weeks that followed, I kept leaving additional bread crumbs. One night, I posted an inquiry looking to see if anyone knew of an attorney versed in contract law. Within moments, I had ten of you raising your hands and offering up representation. The fact that so many of you have legal counsel on retainer scares the hell out of me. But, I didn’t need your ambulance chasers. Not when I had roped my buddy Sean O. in to offer up his uncle – my actual attorney. And then we left it at that.

In the weeks that followed, I would sprinkle little teases that something big was coming. Off to the side, I commissioned my buddy Sean Hartter (a great artist and graphic designer) to dream up a book jacket. I wrote up that fake Kirkus review and gave him the title and he went to town. And all the while, we giggled like school girls – little maniacal school girls.

On Friday, I set the table by leaving one more cryptic clue on Facebook and then went to work getting the post ready for publication this morning. That’s when I almost shot myself in the foot.

See – all along I intended to have people read the post, and then click on the hyperlink at the bottom of it that would take them to the supposed Introduction to my book where they would get the full April Fools confession. The fact that so many of you spent the majority of today believing my tall tale tells me none of you clicked that link which means you likely didn’t read my post in the first place. It’s true – PRINT IS DEAD!!! 🙂 Geez – If you can’t be bothered to read one little post, what chance do I ever have of you reading my book? What if I put sexy vampires that hunt each other for sport in the sequel? Now will you read it? Hell, I’ll read that!!! Is somebody writing that?!?!?!?

Anyway, as I was prepping the link, I inadvertently published it early which normally wouldn’t be such a big deal EXCEPT I have subscribers who get an e-mail every time I publish something new MEANING they all received my April Fools confession ahead of the actual joke. And there was no way I could pull it back in. It was out there.

So, instead of panicking, I decided to include them in the joke. After all, it only hit 17 people. I sent them a quick note, asking them to keep the secret – AND – much to my delightful surprise, some of them added to the fiction by posting their own congratulatory remarks. Every super villain needs his minions.

As for today, it went better than could be expected. Sure, I fought some fires this morning, hastily deleting every “April Fools?” post that a few people added as Comment to my link. But I feel confident I nailed a decent number of you. Oh, you silly, naive chumps. How I love you all!!!

That about wraps it up. Same time next year? I’ve got a pyramid scheme I’ve just been dying to get off the ground.

And with all that said, now I weep. I’LL NEVER GET THAT BOOK DEAL!!!

Not after this.