On April 1st the French give each other chocolate fish called: "Friture." The tradition has it that on the 1st of April children try to stick a homemade paper fish onto people’s backs without the person knowing it, then run away yelling ‘poisson d’avril’, which is like saying, "April Fool". The tagged person is meant to give the trickster fritures, small chocolate fish.
Since Easter is usually around April 1st, the chocolate fish "fritures" are given at Easter as well.
Back in the day, or I should say in the year 1900s give or take another thirty or so, the French mailed Poisson d'Avril cards to one another.
When French Husband first told me about this April's Fool fish thing it was back in 1987.
I had come to France to meet his family. During this time, which happen to be around the first of April he told me that April's Fool was all about a fish tapped or pinned to someone's back...
A few days later it was April first. I had made two small red fish. French Husband and my Belle Mere (Mother in Law) were going to a meeting. Before they left I tapped one fish on French Husband's back and another on my Belle Mere's back.
I was tickled beyond belief at how "French" I felt as they walked out the door to their meeting.
When they came back I asked if anyone had noticed the fish tapped to their backs?
"What fish they asked?"
Their eyes widen as it registered what I was talking about, they quickly looked at each other's backs. I told them I had taped the fish to their backs before they left for their meeting.
Neither of them were very amused.
In fact they looked at me like I was some sort of alien fish. I could feel myself sinking, going down stream. I had made a faux pas on the day were faux pas are expected. Duh.
French Husband questioned, "You put a fish on our backs as we went to a very important meeting with our lawyer?"
"Uh huh. I did. But in my defense I didn't know the meeting was important."
Needless to say they didn't buy me any fritures...chocolates.
I felt such a fool.
After dinner they started to see they humor in it. Maybe the few glasses of wine helped.
Then as most jokes later are retold and told again they found it hilarious.
And eventually congratulated me on such a comic pull.
But still no fritures.
I have never fished anyone again.
Nor have I bought those fritures.
Though the old French "Poisson d'Avril" cards, that is another addiction.
Have you ever played a prank on the first of April? If so tell me about it in the comment section, and or if you have had a prank pulled on you.