The residents of a tiny Ohio town called the bomb squad when they started discovering "suspicious packages" littered throughout the town on April 1st. It turns out that the packages were the result of an April Fools prank in which five girls from Ravenna, Ohio (a town of approximately 12,000 residents) placed 17 cardboard replications of the iconic Super Mario Brothers power-up cubes throughout town, according to news stories carried in local papers (1, 2).

  1. How friggin' ridiculous is it that a town of 12,000 residents is scared that Osama bin Laden snuck in overnight and placed bombs wrapped in gold wrapping paper in highly-visible public places?
  2. How long until Ravenna Police Chief Randall McCoy makes a run for mayor on the back of his successful defense of the town against teenaged terrorists? McCoy was quoted as saying that the Mario-themed blocks "could be deadly," (according to the Record Courier). His office "will be working with the Portage County Prosecutor's Office regarding possible criminal charges" according to the Beacon Journal.
  3. Why were other fun-lovers throughout the country able to carry off successful versions of the same exact prank without some opportunistic politician-cum-police chief making a bomb scare out of it?

In response to the Record Courier's story, Ohio resident Janice Cochran wrote, "I think these girls are old enough to no [sic] better than to pull a joke like this with all that is going on in the world today. Leaving suspicious packages is enough to scare the dickins [sic] out of anyone."

[Thanks for the tip, Adam]

This article was originally published on Joystiq.

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