10 Pranks to Pull on Other People When Your Job Makes You Sick

Let’s face it: no matter how much you love your job, some times work is a drag [especially if a co-worker wants to hit YOU].

And you need a stiff pick me up to get through the day.

Our grandparents might of reached for the martini shaker and our parents the bong, but these days we are much more sophisticated than that.

We pull the juvenile prank.

The Prince of Workplace Pranks

I’ve got this buddy. Chico. Chico Salmon.

Salmon is laid back. Slow when he walks. Thoughtful when he talks. Loud when he dresses. And funny as all get out.

The three or more years that I worked with him he kept me infinitly tickled. His trick bag was bottomless. He was the hinge that turned a slow afternoon into a gut-busting party. The magician with the comedic mojo that made the children giggle.

And he was my office mate [back when I was cubicle bound].

Here are his ten best pranks.

1. Funky Emails

You got to love scrolling through your inbox to see emails like:

  • “My eyes are banana peeled.”
  • “Have peace about it. Until you find inner peace.”
  • “I had a great idea for the magazine that I proposed to [blank]. It’s called Salmon’ Nuggets. Strangely, it was shot down. Don’t know why.” [The subject line: “Puzzled.”]

But nothing beats a wacky, spontaneous rhyme:

While traveling along the road of an article, a particle of inspiration crossed lanes and turned in front of me. So I hit the brakes, for goodness sakes, and smashed right into another rhyming email for my old friend.

Lawyers! Lawyers! Everywhere!
They slip up behind your hair and whisper sweet cares. They work like Nair. If you stand too close, your hair will fall out and you will end up in despair.

But, thank the Lord that we can share a laugh about this now and take a bath (which is common after meeting with a lawyer.)

Oh, what fun you can find out in the backwards backwoods…toothless men with good hearts and large bellies, kind smelly, but still holding a sense of chivalry. A special thanks to those hillbillies for taking care of Angie. We love you guys! (Even if you are uncultured.)

Today, my rhyming feels like miming…a little weird. A bit steered away from the center lane of rhymes. Oh well. My day is gelling. Must now get on the road. And, Lord willing, home.


2. Prank calls/ hang ups

Salmon was notorious for calling me and breathing in my phone, slurring my name or simply hanging up. Yeah, juvenile as all get out, but even at my age they are funny as helicopters.

3. Taking copy to be approved with surprise copy inserted

Since I approved what Salmon wrote, he always had to bring it by my desk. Often somewhere in the copy he would insert something vulgar or ridiculous.

4. Sharing Music

Salmon loves Prince.

So Salmon owns every single album Prince ever created. Salmon shared with me all of these albums, then–and still does–send me YouTube videos of Prince.

There is one particular clip from Under a Cherry Moon. Salmon has sent that clip to me three times. I think he really likes that clip.

5. Galaga + Air hockey lunch breaks

The cafeteria where we worked had a game room. Inside that game room was a foosball table, air hockey table and about a dozen pinball and arcade games.

Salmon and I would make liberal use of Galaga and the air hockey table. We both are competitive and equally matched, so our lunch breaks were great times of competition.

In fact, Salmon still texts me his scores.

6. Listen to Funny CD’s or videos on YouTube

Remember the Jerky Boys? Yeah, when our moods were low and our fists a draggin’ Salmon would pop in my office and we’d listen to one of their prank calls.

The gay model call always made me seize up and stop breathing because it was so funny. “I put a little ballerina dress on the monkey and beat him to oblivion.”

It’s peculiar what a lack of oxygen can do to the brain.

And oh yeah, there was the time I fell off my chair and banged my fist on the floor as we watched an episode of Red Eye Robot Theater.

7. Cutting out the “geico stack of money with eyes” and sticking them in my office

For the longest time I had a pair of Geico “stack of money with eyes” taped to the edge of my bookshelf. I didn’t take much notice of it at first…thought it was cute that somebody was trying to be silly.

Then the eyes started to move.

Not like by themselves. But they would move around my office. They’d be gone from my bookshelf and I’d find them behind the door. Then they would show up on my whiteboard, staring at me while I worked.

I miss those money eyes.

8. Making weird noises outside my office door

Listen: “juvenile” is a great word to describe our behavior.

I don’t say that in a pejorative sense. I say that with a hint of admiration in my voice.

For who, besides someone with a juvenile streak, would stand outside my door and growl, chew, sniff or click their tongue but someone with a juvenile gene streaking through their body?

Chico Salmon would.

9. Turning off the bathroom light when Demian was in there

The bathroom prank you learn to pull when you are four is just as much fun when you are 40. However, using the restroom [whether number 1 or 2] in the dark is not as annoying with the rise of iPhones and apps like Light.

10. Rearrange things in Demian’s office

It never failed to buckle me over. The office that has been turned upside down.

Perhaps my chair has been replaced with a coffee can, my bureau emptied and someone sleeping inside.

The office-rearranging prank to end all office-rearranging pranks was the time I returned after a three day vacation to all my belongings–every single bit of it–piled up outside of my door.

The truly funny bit was that as I approached my OWN office I was thinking how sad it was that someone had all of their stuff evicted from their room. Then I noticed a lamp that looked just like mine…and a pile of books that looked just like mine…and then it hit me:


Needless to say, I laughed the entire time I put everything back.

Your Turn

Do you have any workplace pranks you’d like to share?


  1. says

    Oh man. I can think of so many. This post caused me to reflect.

    Prank calls and hang ups reminded me of a guy I worked with sellotaping the handset of a ‘phone to it’s unit thus causing the eager receiver to clout the side of their head upon answering.

    Another occasion found a confused dialer dialing the right digits in the wrong order. Someone had carefully reversed the number sequence on the touch-pad button-by-button resembling more calculator than ‘phone.

    It didn’t end there. Unplugged mouses and missing office chair wheels. Perhaps the most entertaining for me was someone who found the command to reverse the vertical orientation of folks computer screen. By email.

  2. Jana says

    Once upon a time, the office I work in had ample time for prank-playing–especially on coworkers’ birthdays.

    Office pranks are great, even if the victim is a whiny-baby-OCD-party-pooper. But I won’t say who that was.

    Anywho, one coworker loved birthday attention, so I gave her a cubicle-full of attention…with good ol’ Reynolds Wrap tin foil! Every inch of her cubicle was either covered in foil. It looked like a scene from a cheesy sci-fi flick. I think she might’ve even received radar signals through one of her pens.

    It only took me about 3 hours to completely foil her desk, walls, floor, chair, pens, folders, books, PC, keyword, mouse, plant leaves and Kleenex box.

    I’ve also hidden under people’s desks, left half-eaten food in someone’s cubicle, rearranged someone’s office, and a host of other co-conspired operations.

    But these days, I barely have time (or thought) to lurk behind a corner for an unsuspecting victim. :(

    • says

      Funny, I think I’ve gotten a bit of that half eaten food. I wasn’t supposed to eat it? I thought somebody was just being nice.

      and by the way, you always have time to pull a prank, silly billy.

    • Kacie says

      She does hide under people’s desks. I thought I was going to have a heart attack. It’s not just that she was there…it’s that she waited for a while after I sat down before grabbing my ankles. It was the most beautiful…scariest prank.

  3. Kacie says

    I think the 3-day vacation eviction is being credited to the wrong coworker here. Eh – hem. You’re welcome!