The clear and comfortable morning sleep of two of my friends was interrupted by the same piece of news. A friend had had an accident and it was quite serious. But before they could even comprehend what this meant, the voice on the other side shouted, “April fool.” There was a feeling of being fooled, disgusted but finally with a sheepish smile they finally said, “you got me.”
So it’s April 1st and by now everyone has broken the news of how they fooled whom and what fun it was. Finally most people have taken it in their stride as they have been told clearly to “relax wo/man, it’s a joke.” The dust has settled and the lights will soon go off, the laughter dying off into some corner of the street. But the “I fooled ya” part of the narrative fails to die out.
Signs are a way of leading us somewhere. But we also give various meanings to the same signs. What if I told you that the “I fooled ya” part of our lives is not a one day competition that we attend but a 365 day competition that goes on and on. The elections are a part of everyone’s discussions and politicians are in the arc lights of fame for the moment. There are those who are excited to vote, those who are confused whom to vote for and those who don’t know whether they should vote at all. But after all the excitement and the hope, politicians from several political parties who then fail on their promises, will through various signs tell us “I fooled ya.” Some of us will get it and some won’t. But there will always be enough people who will be misled by these signs.
The April fool syndrome is not only a political reality. It is the same for everything that is connected to money. Therefore even religion follows the same path. After taking people on board and filling their coffers, they are left mid-sea with the same April fool slogan. This year, the month of April is important for Christians because the resurrection of Christ (Easter) will be celebrated. This is preceded by the remembering of the crucifixion of Christ and the pain and passion he went through. In a way it is the reverse of the “I fooled ya” philosophy. It was rather making a fool of oneself that Jesus Christ did. Even though he could turn around from the threat of death, he stood for what he believed in. This “making a fool of oneself” philosophy is inherent in all religions. But this is where we disappoint. We are busy making a fool of other people that we forget that it doesn’t contribute to our community and country in any way. So this time I am trying to struggle with the meaning of “I fooled ya” and “I fooled (made a fool of) myself”.