Although I always look forward to April Fools’ Day, I must admit that I’ve never been very good at it. As a kid, I always came up with elaborate plans in my head, like rigging the refrigerator to spray juice at whoever opened it first. Unfortunately, my engineering abilities weren’t quite on par with my imagination.

I’m pretty sure I successfully pulled off the rubber-band-on-the-kitchen-sink-sprayer trick one time, but that, too, could be a figment of my imagination.

The only time I really hit my stride with April Fools’ jokes was during my tenure as a reporter for my high school newspaper. Every spring, we had an April Fools’ issue in which all of the stories were outrageously fake and outrageously fun to write. Perhaps my proudest moment as a young journalist was a story I cooked up about a contest between two older — er, more experienced — members of the teaching staff.

The headline of the article was “Teachers engage in competitive beard-off.” It went on to describe how the two already-bearded educators had challenged each other to a beard-growing competition in which the winner would be the man whose beard was longer and fuller after a period of two months. Of all my pieces that year, this one was the most widely read and talked-about among my peers.

I thought about doing something similar this year, but with all of the craziness that has been going on in Missoula this week with the whole Grizzly Athletics fiasco, I decided to spare everyone of another jaw-dropper — although UM President Royce Engstrom would have made an excellent subject for a beard-off sequel.

Brooke is a 2010 graduate of The University of Montana, where she ran track and cross country for the Grizzlies. She is currently working as a writer and editor in Missoula.