Getting even is what counts in the merry world of pranks


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lori clinchBy Lori Clinch

I’m sure that when Terrie signed up for working with me in our antique shop, she already knew I was somewhat of a practical joker.

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In fact, I’m positive of that because Terrie has helped me with more than a prank or two. She helped me set up and stage a toilet in our friends’ yard when they were out of town, and she was involved when we filled another friend’s front yard with tacky looking plastic flowers. They didn’t exactly win yard of the week, but what it lacked in taste, it made up for with love.

Therefore, Terrie can’t be all that surprised when I pull a prank or two on her. Still, she was less than amused with me when I presented her with a fake, but realistic looking, rattlesnake in a shoebox.

Although she laughed about it later, she was a little mad on the morning that I left a fake animal on an antique table, and I suppose I went too far with the rubber rat that I staged next to a mousetrap.

But I have to tell you that scaring her is simply part of the antiquing fun. I suppose I should have felt bad for getting my little niece and nephew involved and having them jump out from behind a dresser wearing Halloween masks, but I didn’t.

You see, there is a lot of work that goes into pulling a good prank. You can’t limit yourself to simply jumping out of a corner and yelling, “Boo!”

Take for instance the morning that Terrie came to work and entered what she thought was going to be an empty room and instead saw me standing in a full Ghilly suit, an ensemble that makes one look like a grass covered swamp man.

That didn’t just happen.

No sir, I had to put some time into getting the Ghilly out of my son’s closet, plan in advance and time the morning just right.

Paybacks can be the worst and I know full well that I had mine coming. With her boy home on leave, Terrie had the perfect wing man.

Little did I know that Gregg was not at home like she said he was. Instead he was standing behind a pile of boxes, waiting for me to enter a dark hallway.

He had to suffer a bit for his prank because I did not enter the hallway as quickly as he would have liked. Instead I gave Terrie a warm hello, presented her with a gift for her birthday and took the time to trim a cuticle.

Then I sent out a few text messages, made a nice phone call to the insurance company and checked my hair in the bathroom mirror.

I’m sure poor Gregg was standing in his hideout thinking that I would never come around that corner and I’d like to tell you that I feel bad for making him wait so long, but I don’t. In fact, I wish I had taken the time to complete our taxes and perhaps write a novel.

Being totally oblivious to what was about to happen to me, I finally rounded that stupid corner and when Gregg jumped out at me, I gave him and his wretched mother just the response they had hoped for.

As I let out a blood-curdling scream, I was thinking that somehow Terrie had gotten in front of me and that she was the villain.

When I saw the face of a man instead of my dear friend, I screamed again. Not just a cute little shriek, mind you, but a full-fledged blood-curdling scream.

It was a real double whammy. My, but how they laughed. And then they laughed some more.

As near as I know, they are still guffawing over the whole incident and I personally hope they laugh themselves sick.

One would think that after suffering such a horrible experience, I would be done with my pranking days, but I’m not. My mind is racing, I’m doing research and I have to be honest with you — I can’t help but ponder my next escapade at her expense. Paybacks are the worst.

Lori Clinch is the mother of four sons and the author of the book “Are We There Yet?” You can reach her by sending an email to

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