No Fooling

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In celebration of April Fool’s Day, here’s an article that made me realize how much things really have not changed in over 100 years of advertising.

Victorian shysters. Source: The Chipley Banner, 1894.

Victorian shysters. Source: The Chipley Banner, 1894.

You can be sure that Emmett had a pretty good sense of humor. He used to tell jokes to the reporters on occasion when he was being interviewed. For instance:

Emmett should probably stick to his day job. Source: Flint  Journal, 1913.

Emmett should probably stick to his day job. Source: Flint Journal, 1913.

I’ve found a few other examples of his sense of humor. He was also a bit of a prankster — fairly innocent stuff. He probably would have enjoyed an April Fool’s trick or two in his time.

A favorite April Fool’s prank I used to pull is to give a colleague in the office one of those pink “While You Were Out” telephone message notes with the following on it:

"Hello. May I please speak to Mr. G. Raffe?" Source: nationalzoo.si.edu

“Hello. May I please speak to Mr. G. Raffe?” Source: nationalzoo.si.edu

“Please return call to Mr. G. Raffe at (202) 633-4888.

The unwitting colleague calls the number, which belongs to the National Zoo. This could be pulled off much easier before cell phones.

I always feel a bit sorry for the switchboard operator at the Zoo on April Fool’s Day.

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