What is an Out of Season April Fool’s Joke? (Explained)

Multiple studies show that having a good sense of humor is a positive thing, for both you and those around you. So it shouldn’t come as a surprise that most people enjoy a humor-related holiday like April Fool’s. However, what about out of season April Fool’s jokes? What are those exactly?

An out-of-season April Fool’s joke is before or after April 1st (the exception is Scotland with its two days), but really better on April Fool’s Day anyway. But keep in mind, calling something an out-of-season April Fool’s joke is also a way of insulting something that’s disappointing.

Admittedly we all like a good April Fool’s day prank, but unfortunately, they don’t last forever. However, some have tried to extend the holiday like what’s been done with Christmas, but that’s not applicable for April Fool’s. It’s explicitly tied to April 1st.

And as a teacher, this rule is strictly enforced; otherwise chaos ensues!

Below I’ve described what an out-of-season April Fool’s joke is and the problems with out-of-season jokes and pranks, as well as some notable trivia connected.


What is an Out of Season April Fool’s Joke?

So before moving on, we need to make sure we are on the same page with the meaning of an out-of-season April Fool’s joke. So what is it exactly?

An out of season April Fool’s joke is not on April 1st but should be. Whereas most holidays have a ‘season’ of days before/after the actual holiday to celebrate, April Fool’s Day is strictly April 1st. Any April Fool’s joke not on April 1st is out of season. But it can also be used as an insult.

“Off season April’s fool joke” isn’t really a commonly used expression, but it is pretty simple to figure out once you hear it. Since ‘off season’ means not of the current season, you can make the connection that an off season joke isn’t one that makes sense for the present.

Nevertheless, as holidays become more and more commercialized or ‘celebrated’, it’s not unusual for holiday seasons to be extended. This is certainly what we’ve seen happen with Halloween, Christmas, and even St. Valentine’s Day.

My mom in particular has fallen prey to this tactic as she ends up buying holiday decorations, cards, and other such things well in advance, and even gifting them quite early. I know there’s been a time or two when I’ve received Christmas stuff before Thanksgiving!

However, April Fool’s holiday isn’t an easy one to try to extend. In fact, it’s a holiday that hasn’t really been marketed and commercialized like the others.

Now of course there are your prankster gags like whoopee cushions and fake spiders (easily found at Amazon) suitable for April 1st, but you don’t pull these out days before, and you certainly can’t call it ‘April Fool’s’ days if you choose to anyway. Or continue to use them after either for that matter!

Gag pranks like these are designed especially for ‘April Fools’ so using them any other time would be out of season, and not nearly as funny or make sense to the ‘victims.’

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To be clear, the ‘off season’ phrase is used to describe an activity taking place at a time when it shouldn’t be (like a New Year’s Day celebration in July). Yet, some may say it’s okay since there is an event that’s come about in the recent years called ‘Christmas in July’. There are special Christmas in July movies, as well as big sales. One notable one is Amazon’s big July sales event.

But there’s much more to consider when it comes to out-of-season April Fool’s jokes, as this holiday involves pranks and a bit of chaos. One reason it doesn’t usually get out of hand is because people expect it on April 1st. If you start throwing out pranks and jokes all year long, no one really knows what to expect and it can become unsettling.

Usually, people prepare for April 1st and have their minds ready for whatever jokes or pranks may come. At worse, people get a little upset, but they move past it quickly because it’s April Fool’s Day, after all. However, out-of-season April Fool’s jokes are never anticipated.

What’s an out-of-season April Fool’s joke called? Simply a prank!

Because they come on suddenly, people may not take pranks pulled off-season very well. In fact, they probably aren’t going to like it at all. And this is the biggest problem with trying to do an out of season April Fool’s joke/prank.

And depending on the severity of the prank or joke, the prankster could get in trouble with the authorities or offend loved ones.

Caveat: The few times people have used the sentence “Out-of-season April Fool’s joke,” they were referring to movies, games, or products that were a disappointment or seemed like a prank. In other words, it was a way of insulting the ‘thing’.

For instance, if you like me, didn’t enjoy the movie Tenet, released in August 2020, and thought it was a big let down from the hype and movie trailer, you might say, ‘Tenet was an out of season April Fool’s joke!’

The movie Tenet had all the right things like good actors, big budget, and lots of promotion, but it ultimately was awful. Some call it an out of season April Fool’s joke!

When is April Fool’s Day?

Today, we celebrate April 1st by playing practical jokes on each other. Sometimes people make up silly stories to tell friends and family members, or they give them weird gifts. Other times, people prank co-workers and colleagues in the same manner, or something crazy, but job related.

April 1st is the recognized date for April Fool’s Day globally, with the exception in Scotland, where it’s extended to April 2nd. Keep in mind the unwritten rule for April Fool’s Day jokes and pranks is that it’s done by noon, April 1st. Some recent years’ challenges give other time limits.

Depending on the type of prank or joke you want to perform on April 1st, you may need more or less preparation and organization beforehand.

Jokes that require materials might mean you must shop in person or online in advance. If your prank needs props you might even have to make them. Other jokes might mean you need to concoct a believable storyline, so you might practice ahead of time to make it flow.

Why Does April Fool’s End at 12 pm?

To minimize disruption and maintain some sort of order, it has become an unwritten standard that April Fool’s jokes and pranks end by noon on April 1st. Without this code, you can imagine how crazy and chaotic it could become. Now individual companies may institute other measures, too.

It’s acceptable for people to start celebrating the holiday at midnight on April 1st. This means you might wake up with a prank already in play, depending on how eager your friends, family, and co-workers are.

Then, you could be involved in an April Fool’s joke or prank all the way up til noon that same day.

However, once noon passes, you should be able to let down your guard as pranks and jokes for the holiday should have been accomplished and you shouldn’t expect any more.

Yet, we must acknowledge that not everyone will follow this protocol, especially given the onset of social media nowadays.

This means people are a bit more prone to keep playing (and posting) pranks throughout the day.

So while it’s been part of tradition for pranks to stop by noon, this might not last. I’ve noticed people keeping the gags going much longer throughout the day. And I foresee this change in tradition continuing. People like to be able to post pictures and video of the gags so that takes time, which may contribute to the change.

As a teacher, the April Fool’s Day jokes and pranks pretty much get used by the second bell! Kids, as we all know, aren’t very patient so most of them (especially the younger ones) come into the classroom ready to give their best joke or prank right away. In this sense, it’s good for everyone to have the jokes over and done with, so that we can move on with our day and keep the craziness down. Of course, there’s always that one or two jokes or pranks that might surface later into the day, but for the most part, I was always able to instruct as normal after the first half hour.

Are April Fool’s Jokes Funny?

You can find many ‘timeless’ pranks for April Fool’s Day on YouTube.

Not all April Fools jokes are funny, but there is a chance that you’ll find rib-cracking jokes and pranks on that day. Even if you’re not a fan of pranks, there are plenty of things you can do on April Fool’s Day to make you and others smile.

You can make jokes about friends or even strangers. No matter what type of person you are, you can do something to make everyone laugh.

Some people think that April Fool’s Day is just another excuse to be mean. But that isn’t true. You can use April Fool’s Day to show how much you care about someone without being rude, and of course, that’s the best kind of humor!

Also, some people believe that April Fool’s Day only exists so that businesses can trick customers into buying useless stuff. But that’s not true either. To be honest, April Fool’s holiday is one of the least commercialized or marketed days, making it quite refreshing!

Why Can’t I Make Off-Season April Fool’s Jokes?

You might think it would be nice to pull off an April Fool’s joke every day, but that’s actually not realistic. In fact, always joking or pranking can be aggravating to others, and in that sense, it takes the fun out of it!

For example, if you think pranking your boss that his car was being towed would be funny, you’d probably not want to do it outside of April Fool’s Day or you might risk losing your job. Also, if you wanted to prank your parents with a fake spider, a busy Monday morning is certainly not the right time.

So, why can’t you pull off an April Fool’s joke during out-of-season months? Well, because it doesn’t work like that.

If you play a prank ‘out of season’, that can still be funny, but it also risks being annoying or a nuisance, since it’s totally unexpected. You can certainly play a prank any day of the year, but you can’t call it ‘April Fools.’ And you should be cautious that it won’t be too disruptive. That takes the fun out of funny!

Special Note: However, feel free to call anything disappointing an ‘out of season April Fool’s joke’ as this is just a way to comment on your dissatisfaction with the product, item, etc. But I don’t recommend calling a person ‘an out of season April Fool’s joke’ as that’s really going way too far!

Wrapping Up Out of Season April Fool’s Joke

To wrap it up, April Fool’s jokes and pranks are meant for April 1st. If you pull a prank or joke any other time of year, that’s not an April Fool’s joke. That’s certainly out of season.

However, calling something you’re unhappy with an ‘out of season April Fool’s joke’ is also a way to be insulting. In other words, you’re saying something is a joke, that wasn’t actually meant to be a joke.

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