Confessions of a Summer Camp Prankster
The most important rule for the Summer Camp Prankster, "If you want to play the game, you must be willing to be played!" I have been on the receiving end of just as many pranks as I have pulled. The trick is to not let the prankster have the satisfaction of knowing he got you! This is no easy task, but a must if you wish to survive in the prankster world.
Wesleyan Woods Campground, located in beautiful Vassar, Michigan, is as humid as the bathroom after my wife finishes her insanely hot shower in the morning. (Seriously, I don't know how she can enjoy scalding hot water cascading down her body. She looks like a boiled lobster when she emerges from the billowing clouds of steam.) The roads are dirt, and the mosquitoes are thick. As the van full of campers from my little church bumped its way through the scattered buildings to the main hall, I could not hide the wily grin on my face. I was going to get Charlie good this year. His itching powder in my underwear scam last year had not been forgotten. I resisted the urge to scratch. Registration completed, room assignments made, counselor introduced, and I was off to seek out my nemesis. He had better be here!
Every good prankster needs an accomplice- a right hand man if you will. Mark was my partner in prank. He had a disturbing, yet refreshing way of completing my thoughts. I hadn't seen him since last summer and I couldn't wait to tell him about my new ideas.
Here is what you will need to execute these pranks:
- Saran Wrap
- Vaseline (or Icy Hot if you want to spice things up!)
- Minty toothpaste
- Edge or Gillette gel shaving cream (Gillette works best)
- Foaming shaving cream
- Large zip lock bag
- Sand (we had plenty of the stuff at the campground)
- Small squirt gun
- Skunk oil or vinegar
- Hand lotion
The Saran Wrap Prank
- Around 3 am, when most campers are fast asleep, move quietly to the bathroom.
- DO NOT rouse the counselor!
- Lift the seat of each toilet and dry rim of bowl completely. (this is not glamorous, but necessary)
- Carefully stretch a piece of saran wrap about 6-8 inches larger than the bowl over the entire opening. Depending on the size and shape of the bowl, you may need to use more than one piece. If so, be very careful to overlap each piece slightly to avoid lines and any openings
- Put seat back down and prepare for laughs
The life of a prankster requires sacrifice. Sleep is a luxury of which the serious prankster gets very little. In order for a prank to work effectively, it must completely surprise the victim. The beauty of this prank is the sudden impact it has on the victim. If your victim is still slightly asleep and dressed in shorts or briefs, the urine splashing on their bare legs will really wake them up! This is one of my personal favorites and a regular in my repertoire. I was using this one in college as well with excellent results!
If only video cell phone cameras and you tube had been available back then!
Vaseline or Icy Hot Prank
While we are in the bathroom, let's talk about my next favorite. I do not recommend using this prank with the saran wrap prank, but I know a few guys that have tried it.
- If necessary, dry toilet seat completely
- Smear a light film of Vaseline over the entire toilet seat
- If you are trying to really get someone in particular, Icy Hot will really spice things up, but use with caution! Icy Hot will almost always require a response from the victim and it will not be friendly.
The great thing about the icy hot is that the effect is not immediate. And even when the victim tries to wipe off the greasy mess, the ‘warming sensation' will linger.
A Few Tips on Shaving Cream
I've never been to summer camp without expecting a shaving cream fight. Gillette shaving gel is best for this, because the stuff will squirt at least ten feet. There is no foamy shaving cream that will do that. And if you just want to hit an unsuspecting victim with a little foam, this stuff is great. I especially enjoyed hitting a guy in the butt with this stuff when he was trying to impress his girl. The gel doesn't begin to foam until it sits a while or is rubbed.
Another Use for Toothpaste
It seems that every summer I have had an ‘open-mouth' sleeper in my room. This is a perfect opportunity for a little fun. If you can, smear a little minty toothpaste around the lips of the victim. In a few moments, the minty tingle with start to irritate the sleeper. If you can, squirt a small amount in the victim's mouth. Once the bubbles start to form stand back and enjoy the show. If you want the prank to last, you can always nickname your victim the Colgate Kid and pester him all week.
Zip Lock Ambush
This one only works if there is a gap of at least ½ inch under the victim's door. It is not my favorite prank, but it was one of the first I attempted, so I will include it. You can pull this one off one of two ways. There is the barefoot blast or the generic cluster bomb. Here's how it works:
- Fill a large ziplock bag full of foamy shaving cream
- Zip bag closed on both ends, but leave a small section of the center of the ‘zipper' open (about 1 inch wide)
- Place zipper portion of bag as far under the door as possible
- This step varies. If you wish to simply coat the room with the shaving cream, stomp on the back of the bag now and run! If you wish to perform the barefoot blast, knock on the door, wait for unsuspecting camper to get close to the door, then stomp.
In order for the barefoot blast to have maximum impact, pull this prank in the wee hours of the morning to ensure the victim is getting out of bed. He most likely won't have his shoes on.
Sneaky Squirt Gun
- Identify your target. A girl with an exposed neck is best. Make sure she is a few rows up to avoid being prosecuted for the crime.
- Get the coldest water you can find just before you enter the service (water warms rapidly in central Michigan in July)
- Random targets are great, but choose someone who blew you off for greatest satisfaction.
Back in my day, long before the age of the ‘super soaker' we had squirt guns that fit in the palm of your hand. They were perfect for the covert missions we went on at summer camp. The chapel was always muggy in mid-July and there was no air conditioning in the building. Inevitably, the girls with long hair would put their hair up for church. There was nothing more satisfying than hitting the back of their bare necks with a shot of cold water. The sudden squeal was a great way to interrupt any meeting.
For the particularly devious, cold water was substituted with vinegar or skunk oil. Please understand that I never squirted a girl with anything but water. The skunk oil and vinegar was reserved for revenge pranks on my enemies only. And it was best to hit an article of clothing for lasting results.
Hand Lotion Hair-Do
- Squeeze a liberal amount of hand lotion of your choice into the palm of your hand
- Close in quietly on an unsuspecting victim
- With a quick swipe, smear hand cream across the head of victim and run
This prank works best when the victim is courting a girl. It is harmless, yet your victim will be forced to take a shower to get his hair to look right. The great thing about this prank is not even the most conscious veteran counselor will suspect foul play if you have a little hand lotion in your suitcase.
Sleeping Bag Surprise
Sometimes things got a little serious. This is a prank that was played on me by one of my victims. Its result was very effective, though I never let my assailant know he got to me.
- Get two large hand-full's of sand
- Spread sand evenly throughout the inside of the victim's sleeping bag
- Carefully re-zip bag and smooth to eliminate suspicion of tampering
I tried in vain to get all of the sand out of that sleeping bag. I finally had to throw it out.
I will not claim all of these ideas to be originals. Most of them were passed down to me by the older kids in my neighborhood. Unfortunately, I learned of their effectiveness by having them perpetuated against me! Kids, please remember; if you plan to pull a prank you MUST be willing to get a prank played on you. If you are not ok with this prerequisite, then you may just want to be an observer. Trust me on this.