The bond between fathers and daughters is a very special one. Every relationship between fathers and daughters is different, and they all have their own unique ways of showing their love for each other. Some dads take their daughters to sporting events, some watch movies together, and some engage in prank wars that last years.
That was the case for comedian, actress, and writer Bridie Connell. The young woman and her father have been competitively pranking each other for 15 years. That’s a long time to carry out a tradition like that. And it became even more complicated when Bridie moved to a different country.
In May 2019, Bridie’s dad took their prank war to the next level by involving the crew of an airplane. Bridie was annoyed at her father’s victory but she was also extremely impressed with his hard work. So, she tweeted out her story to her followers and people all over the world fell in love with their game.
The dad joke that just won’t end
Every family is different, but fathers often play an important role in raising their children. There is no set way to be a good father – some dads work hard to provide for their families while others stay at home caring for their kids and doing the housework.
But from the moment that a man sets eyes on his newborn children, a special bond is created. This connection lasts for the rest of the father’s life, but every father and son or daughter has a unique way of showing it. Sometimes, this is done with humor or pranks. After all, there is a whole category of jokes called “Dad jokes.”
According to comedian, actress, and writer Bridie Connell, she and her father are both extremely stubborn and competitive. They both know not to take life too seriously and aren’t afraid to mess with each other. In fact, they show their love for one another through pranks.
Every month, on the first of that month, both of them fight to say, “Pinch and a punch, first day of the month, no returns!” before the other. While this tradition may have started in person, as time went on they expanded the rules so that they could also do it on the phone, in a letter, or any other way they could think of.
15 years strong
This elaborate prank war is nothing new for Bridie and her father. They have been engaged in this “pinch and a punch” battle for 15 years! Even when Bridie moved from her home country of New Zealand to Australia the pair kept the prank war going.
They simply adapted the rules so they could keep playing their game on the first of every month, even when they were in different time zones. The game also had to evolve as Bridie grew up from a little girl into an adult. Bridie and her dad’s strategies changed and they had to keep getting more and more creative in order to surprise the other and win each month.
Getting the principal involved
Bridie and her father have come up with some pretty impressive ways to prank each other over the years. One year, when Bridie was 14-years-old, she was in school and was told to go to the principal’s office. Like any child in that situation, Bridie was really anxious, thinking that she was about to get in trouble.
But when she got to the office, her dad was already there with a “pinch and a punch.” Her principal had no clue what was going on – her dad had scheduled the appointment to discuss Bridie’s grades. She was relieved that she wasn’t in trouble, but her father had certainly raised the bar for their future pranks.
Other great pranks
The list of great pranks doesn’t end there. One time, Bridie got a group of musicians to serenade her dad, singing, “Pinch and a punch.” Another time the family was on vacation so she had a tour guide carry out the prank. Bridie’s father has gotten her own friends to say the words in order to win.
They’re not afraid to take their prank war to the most inappropriate places, either. One year it happened at a live poetry reading. And it even happened at a funeral. Bridie wrote that the game ruins New Year’s Eve every year, because of course both Bridie and her dad can think of nothing else on January first.
Since the rules can get a bit confusing what with the different time zones and all, Bridie and her father have a jury to help them decide who has won each month.
The jury consists of Bridie’s aunts, who Bridie and her dad turn to if they can’t figure out who has won that month. Then, at the end of every year, Bridie and her father tally up the winners to see who has come out on top.
An early flight
On May 1, 2019, Bridie had an early flight from Australia, where she currently lives, to New Zealand for her cousin’s birthday. She was happy to be heading home and that she was flying on her favorite airline, Air New Zealand.
Since it was so early in the morning, she couldn’t call her dad to give him the “pinch and a punch” before she boarded. She would just have to wait until the plane landed, and then she would be able to call him and win.
After she settled into her seat, a flight attendant came over to her to deliver some good news – Bridie was moved to a seat in premium economy. She didn’t know why she had gotten a better seat but she was thrilled.
Now she had more legroom and she even got free chocolate. Bridie felt great, and was sure that it was going to be a good flight. She sat back and waited for the airplane to take off.
A special delivery
Then, an Air New Zealand staff member came over to her. “Are you Bridie?” he asked. She told him that she was. He introduced himself as Beau, and said it was nice to meet her.
Bridie was certain that she was about to be upgraded to first class – something she had been dreaming about for years. But the next words that came out of his mouth confused her. “I have a special delivery for you, Bridie,” said Beau. Is this how the airline tells people they are being upgraded?
With that, Beau handed Bridie a letter. She wasn’t expecting any correspondence during the flight, so she opened it, unsure what to expect. When she saw what was written inside, she let out a silent scream.
No, Bridie wasn’t being upgraded. Her father had just won the monthly prank war! Beau smiled and shook Bridie’s hand. Then, he delivered the final blow. Beau told Bridie that she couldn’t even call her father because her phone had to be in flight mode.
A long flight
Bridie wrote that she was “SO annoyed but also SO impressed” by her father carrying out the prank. She admired her father and also Beau, the kind flight attendant, for doing such a good job.
However, she also had a three-hour flight ahead of her, during which there was nothing for her to do other than plot her revenge. She was not looking forward to her family dinner later, during which she would have to hear her father retell the story of the prank.
Later on, Bridie found out that the Air New Zealand staff members did feel a little bit bad about helping her dad prank her. That’s why they had upgraded her to premium economy.
She still lost to her dad that month, but the upgrade definitely made it a bit easier to take. When the plane landed, Bridie was sure to take a picture with the letter, and with Beau, so she would have proof of the whole hilarious incident.
Sharing the story
Even though Bridie lost, she knew that the prank was very well done, and that it made an excellent story. So, once she landed in New Zealand, she shared the whole ordeal with her followers on Twitter.
At the end of her thread, she wrote that she had just spent the last three hours thinking of ways to get revenge on both her dad and on Beau. “Submissions welcome,” she wrote at the end. Since it was such a good story, it quickly went viral.
Readers loved Bridie’s story. Many people commented, telling her that the story made their day and left them with a smile on their faces. Others were touched by the great relationship that Bridie and her father clearly have.
She also received some excellent suggestions for ways to get her father back. These included jumping out of a cake, getting a police officer to arrest him and deliver the message, and hiring a marching band to say the words.
Followers share their pranks
Other people who read Bridie’s thread commented about their own prank wars that they have with their family members. Some of them wrote that they also play “pinch and a punch,” with one person writing that his family has played the game for 70 years and four generations.
Others had different variations of the game, such as being the first to say “Rabbits” on the first day of the month. Some people suggested revenge pranks, too, like “a flick and a kick for being so quick.”
Just between them
The prank war between Bridie and her father has been going on for a decade and a half, but the contest has just stayed between them. Bridie wrote that even though she and her dad think it’s hilarious, her mom and brother aren’t so keen on it.
Both her mother and brother think the pranks are “immature,” and that it’s “not even a real game.” On top of that, they say that it “keeps ruining family holidays.” They have a point, but that’s what makes it so much fun.
Air New Zealand
Luckily for Bridie’s father, Air New Zealand thought the prank war was funny too. Not only did the staff members play along when Bridie’s dad asked them to deliver the letter, they also shared Bridie’s thread and commented on her funny posts.
They were happy to participate in the game, and are waiting to see what Bridie does to get back at her dad. It’s certainly one of the funniest things that has happened on one of their airplanes!
Bridie Connell is a bit of a celebrity in Australia. She is an award-winning writer and is also an actress, singer, and a comedian. From writing and performing one act plays to appearing on Australia’s version of Whose Line it is Anyway?, Bridie certainly has an impressive resume.
In 2018, she even won an ARIA Award, or Australian Recording Industry Association, for Best Comedy Release for a parody song she wrote. She stars in the funny music video, too.
The thread about Bridie and her dad’s epic prank war was so good that it went viral, and racked up thousands of likes and an impressive number of retweets. In addition, several news outlets picked up the story, raving about how hilarious, wholesome, and heartwarming Bridie’s posts are.
They also shared her picture of her father’s letter, and her photo with Beau. As the story spreads, more and more people are enjoying reading about Bridie and her dad’s shenanigans, and it’s starting to spread internationally, too.
One day after Bridie shared the story of her dad’s epic prank, she posted an update. She wrote that she can confirm that her father is even more unbearable than ever since going viral.
She went on to say that she greatly enjoyed reading about all of the prank wars that people have going on in their families. She wrote that she was feeling “heartwarmed” by the comments she received. She also said that “dads are the greatest” and that she knows she’s lucky that her’s is so awesome.
More to come
We’re sure there’s more to come of this story, and also more to come from Bridie Connell. Last year, she starred in an Australian comedy show called Tonightly with Tom Ballard. She regularly contributed to the show in the form of filmed segments, interviews, and songs.
Unfortunately, Tonightly only lasted one season before ABC dropped it from its line up, but Bridie seems to have plenty going on anyway. She released another funny parody music video in December 2018.
The prank war continues
For the moment, we’ll have to wait patiently for the first of the month in order to find out how Bridie will finally get back at her father. With a whole month to prepare, she will definitely have some funny tricks up her sleeve.
However, we have no doubt that her father will be more prepared than ever next month, too. We wish them both the best of luck in their continuing prank war, and we find ourselves inspired to start one of our own.