A practical joke, or prank, is a mischievous trick played on someone, generally causing the victim to experience embarrassment, perplexity, confusion, or discomfort. A person who performs a practical joke is called a “practical joker”….with other terms for practical jokes include gag, jape, or shenanigan.
Practical jokes differ from confidence tricks or hoaxes in that the victim finds out….or is let in on the joke….rather than being talked into handing over money or other valuables. Practical jokes are generally lighthearted and without lasting impact….as they aim to make the victim feel humbled or foolish….but not victimized or humiliated….thus most practical jokes are affectionate gestures of humor and designed to encourage laughter.
Some countries in Western culture traditionally emphasize the carrying out of practical jokes on April Fools’ Day….but in professional sports, practical jokes go on all the time….especially in the MLB clubhouse….as seen in this video herewith….for the fellas at the Unofficial Baseball Handbook capture the world of the practical joke in baseball as described on page 49 of the handbook.