Pranking your parents is basically the height of comedy. It’s number one, dad jokes are somewhere in the teens, and your friend’s improv group is last.
A good prank is less about terrifying someone – especially your parents, who are old AF and can’t take that kind of shock – and instead should focus on good-naturedly inconveniencing them. And based on this (completely meaningless) hierarchy and (totally made-up definition) of a good prank, we have a new belt-holder.
Chris Ferry of Linwood, New Jersey is celebrating his 62nd birthday on March 16th, and to commemorate the occasion, his two sons, who live in Florida, decided to spread the love. They rented a billboard on the side of a turnpike in Atlantic City to wish their dad a happy birthday.
But they asked everyone else to wish him one too.
On the billboard is Chris’s smiling face, the phrase “Wish My Dad Happy Birthday – Love, Your Sons” and the copy is followed by Chris Ferry’s phone number. His actual phone number.
“I’m probably up to about 10,000 calls, voicemails and texts,” the birthday boy told KYC News Radio.
He tried to respond to all the messages, but they were coming in too quickly. “I really haven’t been able to use my phone in a normal way,” he told the reporter interviewing him. “There’s a call coming through right now, it’s happened like three times since I’ve been on the phone with you.”
As for his sons, they’re taking their victory lap.
“We wanted it to be a birthday for him to remember,” Chris Ferry, Jr. said. “Yeah, there was a little piece of me that was scared at first, putting his phone number out there, but we thought to ourselves ‘go big or go home.”
Thankfully, Dad is taking it all well, having been prepped by years of his kids’ pranks, including telling waiters it was their dad’s birthday so they’d bring over a cake.
“He’s not, he’s laughing,” said Ferry Jr., “he’s trying to answer as many texts as he can, he’s answering phone calls. He’s actually really getting a kick out of it.”
In fact, he appreciates it. “It’s been really good-natured fun, although at my expense,” said Ferry. Who admits he’s now being called “Billboard Dad.”