Today is officially the day when pranks and pranksters abound. Be alert!

An April fool is the victim of a joke or trick played on April 1st hence the name April Fools’ Day or All Fools’ Day.

A little aside here, finding a grammatically correct meme wasn’t easy. The day is April Fools’ Day. There are multiple fools in the world. This is their holiday hence the s apostrophe.

Although dictionaries show both fools’ and fool’s, the plural possessive makes the best logical sense to me.

Whichever way you spell it, playing jokes and tricking people has been around for centuries, but no one knows its origins for sure.

My favorite theory is April Fools’ Day is of French origin and dates to 1582 when the Council of Trent required the French to switch from the Julian calendar to the Gregorian calendar.

Those who embraced the new calendar started to mock the reluctant ones, offering false presents, and playing tricks on them. Those tricked or fooled are called April fools or Poisson d’avril (April Fish).

Eventually, the fish name-calling tradition evolved into the exchange of fish-shaped cakes and then paper fish associated with jokes and hoaxes.

School-aged children in France design paper fish to stick on the backs of unsuspecting people.

Much like children in the US create kick me signs.

April Fools’ Day is a popular, widespread day but not an official public holiday in any of the countries where it’s recognized.

No one seems to want to grant formal recognition to a day that allows attaching paper fish or playing pranks on unsuspecting folks.

Wherever April Fools’ Day originated, it’s a perfect day to enjoy some laughter with family, friends, and coworkers.

Smiles and laughs are important for a balanced life, don’t you think?