Seven Hilarious Pranks That Astronauts Have Played In Space

No, the Moon landing - or the Moon itself - isn't a prank. Demonika/Shutterstock

Robin Andrews 31 Mar 2018, 09:23

6 – Corned Beef Pioneer

Smuggling stuff into space isn’t easy, and it’s not advised for a variety of technological, health, and safety issues, but that didn’t stop NASA astronaut John Young from bucking the rule. On March 23, 1963, as he was about to be launched on Gemini III, the first crewed flight in the program, he suddenly made a rather madcap revelation to his crewmate Gus Grissom.

The transcript of the conversation speaks for itself.

Grissom: What is it?

Young: Corn beef sandwich.

Grissom: Where did that come from?

Young: I brought it with me. Let's see how it tastes. Smells, doesn't it?

Grissom: Yes, it's breaking up. I'm going to stick it in my pocket.

Young: Is it?

Young: It was a thought, anyways.

Grissom: Yep.

Young: Not a very good one.

Grissom: Pretty good, though, if it would just hold together.

Young: Want some chicken leg?

Grissom: No, you can handle that.

The first corned beef sandwich to make it to space. What a time to be alive.

John Young leaps and salutes on the lunar surface, pictured here on April 21, 1972. NASA/JSC

7 – Neil Armstrong’s Alien Surprise

During the historic, era-defining first moon landing back in July 1969, Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin were bouncing around the considerably low-gravity moon, relaying their discoveries back to the billions watching their antics back on Earth. During one of the periods in which their communications were interrupted, though, Armstrong decided to play a prank on Aldrin.

Donning a plastic Halloween alien mask inside his suit, he snuck up on his fellow lunar lodger and leapt at him, screaming as he did. Aldrin was so taken aback that he tripped and fell over, and a good time was had by all.

Okay, that one was a lie, but hey – it is April Fool’s Day.

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