Practical Jokes April Fools

Glenn Howlett's colleagues at London city hall thought they had dreamed up a great gag. They sent him a memo informing him that the really big report he was working on was going to be due early, in just two weeks.

The tip-off was that the memo was dated April 1st. Ha Ha. Except Howlett didn't realize it was a joke.

He received the memo while on vacation and immediately cut his vacation short and phoned the office to tell everyone to start getting busy. But as he contemplated the new deadline he worked himself up into an increasing state of panic, until soon he began to experience heart palpitations.

Finally he collapsed from the stress and had to take leave from work. As he was recovering he realized it just wasn't worth risking his health to finish the report, so he filed for early retirement.

At which point someone told him the early deadline was just a joke. He responded by suing for damages. As a consequence of his lawsuit, city hall banned employees from pulling any more pranks.

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