Pranks
 
 
Post-it© Notes
9-1-2005 -- Several years ago, Ben came up with a (funny) prank where we would go into someone's apartment and attach Post-it notes to everything in the apartment. On each note we would write the name of the object, or possibly some witty commentary (rather, some possibly witty commentary) about the object. For example, if there is a cup, we'd label it "cup". If there's a chair, we'd label it "chair", and then label each "leg", and possibly the "back", and maybe we'd put "ass" on the seat. And so forth and so on...you get the picture. The only problem is that we needed keys to someone's apartment, and none of our friends trusted us after our other apartment pranks.

Fast forward to 2005. Ben and Arin leave for a 3 week vacation, and they give Ton the keys to Arin's apartment so he can stay there in the interim (Thanks, Ben and Arin!). Clearly, we are going to have to prank their apartment before they return to New York. We spent a week brainstorming pranks, and eventually we settled on the post-it note prank (the irony of pulling Ben's prank on Ben was just too much).

The first task of the prank was to obtain a lot of post-it notes. We tried to raid the supply cabinet at work, but they didn't have nearly enough stickies. The next stop was the Staples down the street. They had a large variety of post-it notes (and fake post-it notes), in a myriad of shapes and colors. We went with the standard 3" x 3" square, canary yellow, "Super Sticky" Post-it notes. The "Super Sticky" notes are the most technologically advanced post-it notes engineered to date. 3M claims that the Super Sticky will stick to anything anywhere. We suspect that they are using barnacle glue, since it is the stickiest substance in the world. All that barnacle harvesting must be expensive because the Super Sticky notes cost a few dollars more than the regular ones. We didn't know how many to get, so we bought 6 packs which is 6000 post-it notes.

A few days before Ben and Arin got back, we all met at Arin's place. The participating pranksters were Ton, Kennyb, Jeremy Soffin, Erin Hyland, and Ally. Armed with a pen and a sticky pad, we spread out in the apartment and labeled everything we could imagine.

Ally got to work in the kitchen. This was no small task. If your kitchen is anything like Arin's kitchen, then you know that there's a lot of stuff in the kitchen. The objects range from toothpicks to refrigerators, and everything in between. Ally strived to label everything. Here she is labeling a colander.

Here is some of her handiwork. All the pots and pans, and all the cooking utensils were labeled. Everything posted on the fridge was labeled too.

Labels on the jars, the lids, and the contents of the jars. The five labels near the edge of the wall show the heights of the pranksters. We'll leave it as an exercise for the reader to match the each of these postits to each of the pranksters.

A close up of the jars on the kitchen shelf.

Labels on all the plants and all the booze. Ally even labeled each of the the glasses correctly (she used to be a bartender).

The front door.

Meanwhile, Ton and Erin Hyland got busy in the living room. Ben moved his stuff to Arin's place before they left for vacation, so there was a lot of stuff in boxes and bags in the living room. That's okay, we didn't mind rummaging through his stuff. Here Ton is labeling the tools in Ben's toolbox, and Erin is labeling the things in his costume box. She is labeling a tiger tail, which Ben owns for some reason.

Labeling each shoe with "left shoe", "right shoe", "left sole", "right sole", "left tongue", "right tongue", "left heel", "right heel", "left insole", "right insole", and "under left insole", and "under right insole".

Labels on the shelves, candles, and leaves.

The supply of post-it notes and pens.

There is a brick wall in their living room and we thought it would be really funny (and quite amazing) if we labeled every single brick on the wall with "brick". Unfortunately, the texture of the brick is not very conducive to sticking things on it, so even the "super sticky" post-it notes stuck only after a lot of pressing and rubbing. Anyway, we labeled as much as we could bear, and it turned out pretty well. Here are some pictures of the labeled brick wall.

Jeremy and Kennyb worked on Arin's room. Ben had moved some of his stuff into the room too, so the room was a complete mess. Literally we could not see the floor. Jeremy started off by writing "mess" on a handful of post-it notes and then threw them around the room.

Labels on all the stuff on the dresser. Arin's underwear drawer was labeled "drawer", and the contents labeled "drawers".

Arin's desk. There was an actual useful post-it somewhere in there. Good thing we labeled it.

More of Arin's room.

Ben in drag (hmm, that's why he has a tiger tail).

Flip and Flop.

Wall.

In only 2 hours, we had managed to stick 2,500 Post-it notes to the apartment. That's over 20 Post-it notes per minute! That's over 143 squared feet of Post-it notes. Placing them end to end, the post-its would span almost 200 yards! That's almost 1 / 2,200,000 of the way to the Moon! Now all that remained was to wait for Ben and Arin to come back from their trip.

a box of pens$16.99
6000 Post-it notes$59.94
3000 returned Post-it notes-$29.97
Showing the world that we still got itPriceless!

Thanks Ben and Arin for being such good sports! Sorry we rummaged through your underwear drawer.

Update 9-04-2005: [By Ben] Holy stink. This was the most amazing thing I've ever walked into. After reading this writeup, I don't think it really captured the magnitude of this prank. Maybe a small sampling will help:

Spoon, Keyboard, Oven Rack, Hot Plate, Bottom Shelf, Middle Shelf, Top Shelf, Trey, Pan, Bowl, Onion, Compact Disk, Leaf, Documents, Couch, Door Frame, Wall, Door Knob, Table, Chair, Pillow Case, Pillow (inside the case), Cactus, Sunblock, Clock, Socket, Tile, Pocket, Mask, Art, Poker Chips, Blanket, Right Back Burner, Left Back Burner, RIght Front Burner, Left Front Burner, Plate, Plate, Plate, Plate, Plate, Glass, Glass, Glass, Glass, Glass, Glass, Candlestick, Speaker, Window, Windowsill, Lock, Outlet, Pot, Pan, Printer, Bed, Radiator, Ceiling, Poster, Bookshelf, Cookbook, Brick, Brick, Brick, Brick, Brick, Brick, Brick, Brick, Can, Box, Vitamins, Doll, Bird, Hamper...

This is exhausting! You starting to get the idea? Ton and Kennyb keep laughing when we say that we found them all. I wonder how serious they are...

Update 9-05-2005: [By Ben] I opened the spice cabinet today. Every single spice was individually labeled. Salt, Pepper, Oregeno, Cinnamon, Thyme, Dill, Cumin, Nutmeg, Jerk Seasoning, Char Crust, Basil... Unbelievable.

Update 9-05-2005: [By Ben] Opened my toolbox. And what do you know? Hammer, Screwdriver, Little Screwdriver, Pliers, Wrench, Saw...

Update 9-16-2005: [By Ben] I hadn't found anything in over a week, so I was sure we had exhausted them all. Then we had a party. Of course all our booze was labeled (Gin, Vodka, Rum, Jack, etc), but it wasn't until we started taking out a stack of plastic cups that I totally lost it: Cup, Cup, Cup, Cup, Cup, Cup, Cup, Cup, Cup, Cup, Cup, Cup, Cup, Cup, Cup, Cup, Cup, Cup, Cup, Cup.

Update 9-21-2005: [By Arin] It's been almost 3 weeks since we walked in on the Post-It Notes. I went out walking in NYC today and got caught in a sudden summer thunderstorm. I opened my umbrella in midtown Manhattan, and guess what I found inside? "Umbrella"

Update 9-22-2005: Added Post-It products to the Store

Update 10-22-2005: Looks like we've been inspiring some other folks around the web.

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