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Old 16th June 2011, 04:26 PM   #1
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Default Office Pranks

after reading the EDN Eulogy on Jim Williams. I read the linked articles on pranks. In which Williams features prominently as well.

Pranking bosses, friends, and competitors. - Anablog | Blog on EDN

Super read. Here is a sample.

"It is much safer to do fun pranks like Analog Devices engineer Sandoe Thomsen did to a co-worker who was constantly bragging about the great mileage his VW Beetle was getting. Thomsen started adding gas to the tank. IDT analog IC designer Paul Brokaw worked with Thomsen at this unamed previous company at the time. Brokaw reminisces. “It was back in the 1950s when Beetles were rare. Sandoe began tracking this guy’s mileage and adding gas to his tank. Remember the old Beetle had no gas gauge, making this occasional fill-up pretty hard to notice. I don’t recall that they got it to 100mpg, but it was a big number. And then Thomsen cut him off, cold turkey. The guy went nuts and took the car in to get the mileage fixed. The VW mechanics confirmed to him that he was nuts."

Please list your office pranks.
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Old 16th June 2011, 04:31 PM   #2
SY is offline SY  United States
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Cyanoacrylate only takes a microquantity to be effective. We glued down everything in one engineer's office. It looked absolutely normal, but every pen, pencil, paper clip, piece of paper, keyboard, mouse, desk drawer, EVERYTHING was glued down tight. Many laffs.

Not as creative as JW, but really, who could be?
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Old 16th June 2011, 04:54 PM   #3
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A loooong time ago just out of college I was working in an automotive emissions development lab where a couple of the techs had a running-escalating prankfest going. As these things often do a point too far was reached when one of the techs took the other's roll around mechanics tool chest, drilled and tapped the side panel at the top, installed a zerk (grease) fitting and proceeded to pump in grease until it started oozing out the openings. Talk about a nasty clean-up job! Fortunately a hot vapor trichlorethane degreasing tank was nearby.
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Old 16th June 2011, 04:55 PM   #4
sonidos is offline sonidos  United States
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We have a foosball table in the break room that is popular with the software developers. They take good care of it, always buying replacement parts for it out of their own pockets.

One day, our Studio team ( we create training videos, among other things) sneaked in one morning and swapped the table out for this hideous thing that had been in their storage shed for years. Full of mildew, cracked, and broken parts. The CEO was in on the prank and they hid the good one in his office.

The developers were stunned to see the old table and went directly to the office manager, who told them that due to our tight budget, the CEO sold it for several hundred dollars and found a good cheap replacement.

There was talk of mutiny and furrowed brows. This was funny to us as the developers see themselves as the calm intellectuals of the company.

After a couple of hours, they were told the truth and our studio people did not show themselves for a solid week!
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Old 16th June 2011, 07:26 PM   #5
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I recall a couple of good pranks from when I worked in the service dept of the David Hafler Co.

Once I butt-soldered a couple of inches of buss wire to the end of a technician's solder roll, and watched in delight as he tried to get that solder to melt. Soon enough he was one the floor underneath his bench checking line voltage, but we finally revealed the prank when he started to disassemble his soldering iron!

Another one we did all the time was to connect a 2-ohm, 1/2-watt resistor to our big 8-ohm load boxes, but hidden under the binding posts. When the technician would put the amplifier under load, that 1/2-watt resistor would start pouring out smoke! We never got tired of that one!
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Old 16th June 2011, 07:46 PM   #6
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I always enjoyed moving the keys around the keyboard.
Swapping the O and P seemed to create the most confusion.

Only works for the Hunt-n-peckers.
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Old 16th June 2011, 09:02 PM   #7
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About 6 years ago the department I worked in all sent our resignation letters to our managers email on April Fools Day. The first one worried him, the second one had him scared. Once he saw that the other two in the department had sent emails also, he figured things out. It was still fun when he came into the cleanroom later that morning!

The other one was played on me. One of the other guys in the department came in early (6am). I got there around 7am. In the time between the two, he sprayed the bottom of both of my cleanroom shoes with Super 77. For some reason the shoes were hard to get off the rack that morning. It took me almost an hour of scrubbing the bottom of the shoes with alcohol to get all of the adhesive off. Before that walking was a little more work!

Peace,

Dave
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Old 16th June 2011, 09:16 PM   #8
SY is offline SY  United States
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That reminds me of another prank at the same company. We had a CEO who had a certain style of communication. If you saw an envelope on your desk marked "Personal/Confidential," it was invariably a note from him calling your future in the company into question. He had a distinct business school style of writing, and I will modestly claim that I could do his signature better than he could.

We composed a letter to one of the engineers, a rather happy-go-lucky and casual sort, explaining to him that several complaints about loose remarks from him of a sexual nature had been received. The letter quoted the appropriate sections of the Employee Manual (as the CEO would do) and "requested" that the engineer meet with the CEO and the VP of Human Resources at 8:00 am to discuss "necessary company actions to avoid further liability." We put it on letterhead, I forged the CEO's signature, then we sealed it in a company envelope marked with the engineer's name and "Personal/Confidential" and left it on his desk.

We all waited at our desks trying to look casual. Engineer strolled in, saw the envelope, stared at it for at least two minutes. We tried very hard to keep our faces straight. He finally opened it, read the letter and turned three shades of white. He carefully refolded the letter, placed it back in the envelope, tucked it in his top drawer, and walked stiffly out the door looking totally stricken. I think he had gotten about ten feet down the hall before he heard the explosive laughter.

It's amazing that, after all these years, he still talks to me!
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Old 16th June 2011, 09:25 PM   #9
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Having worked at a computer manufacturer in the purchasing department, we had ready access to computer components.

Our head of purchasing took a much needed vacation and right before he was due back, we got to work. We went and scrounged for extended length cables. Since each of us had 3 different systems in our cubicles, there was always a huge rat's nest of cables, all in beige or gray.

We mixed up keyboard cables, monitor cables, and even ran a printer cable from his main system to the printer in the next cube.

He sometimes was pretty hot-headed. Man, he cussed us up and down when he realized what we had done. He was unsnaking cable for a few hours.
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Old 29th June 2011, 01:02 AM   #10
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this guy pranks TV stations -

K-strass The Yo-yo Man On Kqtv In St Joseph, Missouri

Last edited by tomtt; 29th June 2011 at 01:03 AM. Reason: 183
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