“You are a patient, patient man. That is what I fear most about you, Jim.” – Andrew Heaton
OK, readers. Andrew’s room mate Jim back again for the second of four posts to keep you occupied until your dear leader emerges from his Scottish Secret Bunker to dominate the internets with his libertarian humor. Last time you checked in, I promised you more red meat. Your wait is over. (But if you are patient, like I am, more will come.)
Follow Jim on twitter: Follow @bomble
With all of the funny pranks at my expense, I figured that during my reign as ruler of the MightyHeaton.com blog for a week, I should share with you some of the pranks I’ve pulled on Andrew as revenge for his pranks.
When it comes to pranks, Heaton fights the way people did in Old Europe. He expects no unnecessary escalation, but rather, a gentlemanly battle of wits.
As you’ve seen, Heaton kept pulling thoughtful pranks on me, so I started out with some slapstick humor and lulled Heaton into complacency and made him think I left it at that. This was to serve two purposes: (1) Have Heaton think I am not getting back at him tit for tat so he’ll tone down on pranks, which (2) Allows me latitude to break out the PsyOps on him for a prank he’ll never forget.
Check this out:
For my first prank, after a few late night beers, I decided to break out the Nerf dart gun and get Heaton with a headshot while he was up late writing a blog post. Nerf connoisseurs will note I — in one try — got a perfect headshot from the hip while filming it with a flip cam.
My second prank broke into the dirty, dark arts. Depriving Heaton of access to his blog. Not just his blog’s back end, but his blog entirely. I logged into my router and went into the “NetNanny section” and added MightyHeaton.com to the list of banned sites. I also added NPR, the BBC, and Garrison Keillor’s website for good measure.
Side note: Did you know Garrison isn’t his real name? He was born Gary Edward and chose to go by Garrison. Doucher. That’s almost as lame as if you went by Jon Stewart and your real name was Jonathan Stuart Leibowitz.
Heaton noticed that his blog was down, but chalked it up to general internet problems. I did this from time to time, but Heaton rolled with the punches and never realized this was a prank.
The place where I live and Heaton temporarily resides is next to public transportation. Heaton, of course, loves this. The windows are double paned and don’t wake us up. However, I discovered Heaton is hard to wake up.
One day I arrived home early, and Heaton was passed out on the couch. During the day he can’t sleep in beds for some reason, so whenever he wants a daytime nap he covers his face with a shirt and sleeps on the couch. I grabbed my Vuvuzela from Five Below and started filming. It took repeated blows on the Vuvuzela to wake him up, so I guess Heaton won this round.
It did get me thinking, how does he get out of bed in the morning? (Answer: With an English wind up alarm clock, and an iPhone ringer that sounds like Big Ben.)
All of these pranks were low-brow. I needed to step it up to get into the Heaton prank hall of fame. I needed to put some thought into a capstone prank.
I reached out to a swimmer friend of mine and asked how I met acquire one of those Olympic starting buzzers that sound like a test of the emergency broadcast system. He sent me a link to one and they were like $900. I also worried that the loudness of the blast would give Heaton a heart attack and potentially kill him. (Really, I just didn’t want to spend that kind of money and the system was too big to fit into the air conditioning vent.)
Then I considered buying a remote controlled speaker system so I could broadcast things into his room when he was asleep. Surprisingly, no such system readily exists, and I opted for learning about the seismology of nuclear weapon blasts in college instead of electrical engineering. In retrospect, that wasn’t practical, but it makes me sound interesting at cocktail parties.
So I settled on a $14 wireless doorbell, which I installed behind one of his paintings. For three weeks at random hours of the night when I was fairly certain he was in some form of sleep, I’d wake up and ring the doorbell and go back to bed.
One such occasion prompted Heaton to wake up at 4 am and start doing laundry. I felt like a modern day Pavlov.
After a few tests, Heaton broached the topic with me. “Jim, do we have a doorbell I don’t know about?” I told him no, we have a door knocker, but maybe our neighbors might. He nodded and went back to his room confused.
Another instance, he told me the next morning he heard a doorbell in his dream and woke up. It motivated him to do the laundry. I laughed, and said “Heaton, we don’t have a doorbell so I don’t know what’s going on in your upstairs.” Heaton remarked, “Either my iPhone is playing tricks on me, or maybe I’m going crazy.”
Before he left for Scotland, I figured I should let him in on the joke. One early afternoon watching football, I took the button out from my room and rang it.
“I’M NOT CRAZY!” Heaton yelled. “JIM, JIM DID YOU HEAR THAT?”
Heaton walked out from his room.
“Jim, Jim did you hear that?” He looks over.
“Why are you filming this?”
I look at Heaton and clicked the button. The bell rang.
Heaton looked into his bedroom and back at me.
“FUCK YOU. FUCK YOU, JIM!”
After I explained it all to him, Heaton found this hilarious. As he should, I put a lot of thought into this.
Just to be sure you see this, I changed Heaton’s log on information so he can’t take this down until he gets back from Scotland. Until then, MightyHeaton.com is part of the Bomble.com empire.
I think the best part of this prank is that now whenever Heaton hears a doorbell, memories will flood back to him. Painful memories of sleep deprivation. Similarly, every time he goes into a convenience store, he’ll think of me.
Jim Swift is the author of the fictional forthcoming book “What to do when you have a Meerkat for a room mate” — a follow up to his best selling book with a similar title. It will be published on Kindle in the coming weeks. He blogs at Bomble.com. He is also the CEO of Bomble LLC, a firm that specializes in hostile webpage takeovers.
Follow Jim on twitter: Follow @bomble