Man Erroneously Believes Pet's Death Is April Fool's Joke

New Jersey resident George Planter was dealt what some close to him describe as a "crushing emotional blow" when he discovered yesterday that his pet parrot Harold had expired two days earlier on Thursday, an event that Planter initially chalked up to an April Fool's prank.

Planter, who was on a business trip for a total of two weeks, asked neighbor Jim Thorpe to watch over Harold and ensure his well-being. But after Thorpe, an admitted "pretty heavy stoner", forgot to feed Harold for several days, the bird perished.

"I discovered that Harold was dead on Thursday, and I was just like, 'Whoa, George isn't going to be happy,'" Thorpe said. "I thought maybe that the bird had died of cancer or something, but in retrospect it was probably the 100 hours without food that did it."

Thorpe was quick to add that in his defense, Planter, knowing of his drug habits, "probably should've realized I was going to forget to feed Harold at some point or another."

Although Thorpe did realize Harold's death was likely his fault, he decided to phone Planter and let him know the bad news. But when he attempted to do so, he was surprised to find that Planter refused to believe him.

"He was just like, 'Yeah, very funny, jackass. I know it's April Fool's Day,'" Thorpe recalled. "I was just like, 'George. Harold is dead.'"

But despite Thorpe's straightforwardness, Planter continued to believe Harold's passing was merely a joke, even going so far as to return what he believed to be an equally-lighthearted remark.

"Then he was like, 'Oh yeah, Harold dead, sure. Well, I forgot to tell you, I had sex with your girlfriend before I left for the trip,'" Thorpe said. "I told him that was a good one and everything, but deep down, I was getting worried as to how I would make him realize I wasn't joking."

Eventually giving up on the idea of talking to Planter on the phone about Harold's death, Thorpe decided to wait until he returned home on Friday, so that he could physically see Harold's dead body. But the plan proved to be more complicated than it seemed.

"I showed him Harold's carcass -- which at that point had become pretty stiff -- and said, 'See, George? Harold is dead. I really wasn't kidding you. I'm sorry.' But he just rolled his eyes and said, 'All right, very funny, wiseguy. Now get that fake bird that you made out of plaster out of here and show me Harold.'"

Even when Thorpe smacked Harold on the side of the dinner table, cracking his corpse in half and displaying his decaying insides, Planter continued to believe he was being misled.

"That's a good modeling job you did there on 'Harold's' insides," Planter said, elbowing a dismayed Thorpe. "Too bad I'm too smart for you, trickster!"

Eventually, after realizing that Harold was nowhere in the house and ruling out the possibility of Thorpe driving him to a secret, unknown location, Planter realized that his bird actually had died, at which point he "totally flipped out" on Thorpe.

"Jesus Christ, why didn't you TELL me?" Planter sobbed, attempting to reassemble Harold's body. "Some fucking friend you are!"

In an interview, Planter told The Enduring Vision that now that he has accepted Harold's death as a reality, he can begin to finally move on, and let the healing process begin.

"I still do have a small feeling that it's some kind of ridiculously long April Fool's joke, but I now know that Harold really is dead," he said, pausing to wink at us and point at our cameras for some inexplicable reason. "I really do believe you!"

Planter then added, "Hey, you don't think Jim knew that I wasn't kidding when I said I slept with his girlfriend, do you?"

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