Because of the pandemic, people are now accustomed to working from home, which means joining meetings in your pajamas, cooking during your break time, and spending time with your family while trying to meet deadlines from work.
A dream come true, right? Well, here’s another thing you can do when working from home: pranking your co-workers!
And this is what Andrew Eckel, a software engineer and musician living in Cambridge, Massachusetts, just did.
He made his colleagues believe that he was working from her luxurious apartment, but in reality, it was just a backdrop of an expensive-looking room! How genius is that?
Later on, he finally spilled the beans and let them in on the joke. It was just a prank, and everyone in his team could not believe they have been fooled! Andrew also posted this hilarious stunt on his Imgur account and people online went crazy over it.
As it turns out, the guy printed nine pages of a luxury apartment backdrop and pasted them together using tape.
He then placed it as a backdrop that he used while doing a conference call with his co-workers. He did not tell them about the prank up until the last few minutes of the 90-minute conference call.
Before he hung up, he told his co-workers that he wanted to show them what he had come up with over the weekend. That’s when everyone went ballistic!
“I told them that before we all hung up I wanted to show them what I had ‘made’ over the weekend. They said sure, and I said, ‘It’s back here, by the window,’ pointing at the paper backdrop. Then I tapped on the paper and zoomed out the camera,” said Andrew. “They were laughing and laughing, especially when I moved the camera around the room to show them how flimsy the backdrop was that had fooled them all.”
They all cracked up and found his prank totally hilarious!
His co-workers finally understood after Andrew confessed.
“One coworker said she was wondering why I wasn’t using the nice office chair seen behind me, and another said she thought I lived in a Westin,” said Andrew. “The style of the fake room doesn’t really match my aesthetic, and a room with a sleek, curvy window like that wouldn’t be affordable in my area. I had purposely positioned my head to hide that window until late in the call.”
But what drove Andrew to do this prank? In an interview with Bored Panda, Andrew shared that he did not want to show people his messy bedroom and he also thought it would be funny.
“I thought the prank would appeal to a lot of people, but I’ve thought that about many projects in the past that never got much attention, like my music videos and a video effect I made that delays darker parts of the image.”
He also got his inspiration from Pee-Wee’s Playhouse, where he had a phone booth backdrop. Andrew found it really funny and thought that he might make people laugh with it, too!
Just minutes after he posted, Andrew shared that Sarah, a co-founder of Imgur, commented on it which made him think that this one is going to be different from his other posts.
“My favorite comment on Imgur was a suggestion that I make a new backdrop, of a room that looks totally normal but is upside-down. It wouldn’t fool anyone; it would just look really funny. I think I’ll do that,” Andrew shared.
Andrew works in cancer research and while he’s working from home now, he realizes that writing code from home is not too different from doing it in the office. However, he misses being with his co-workers and friends.
“I miss my friends too, and I’m going to try setting up ‘parties’ in Zoom with them. It’s too late to fool them with a backdrop, though. The cat is out of the bag.”
Andrew also noted one comment about his backdrop which led him to correct his initial post. He did not actually print six pages, but nine pages of the apartment. Some people also commented that the apartment did not look as luxurious or expensive.
But a reverse image search actually led it to a building designed by no other than British-Iraqi architect Zaha Hadid. Now, that’s definitely luxe!
This pandemic has triggered a lot of negativity in the world, but after reading this story, we hope you found something to smile about these days, just as Andrew wanted to share.
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