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Do US Presidents like to Play Pranks?

Someone in a high-powered job like President of the United States needs a stress buster every now and then. One method is to play pranks or practical jokes. President Lyndon B. Johnson was notorious for his practical jokes. He owned an Amphicar ("amphibious car") that could double as a small boat, and wasn't above driving into a pond and faking brake failure in order to terrify his unknowing passengers. They were undoubtedly relieved when the car actually started floating, much to President Johnson's amusement.

President Calvin Coolidge was known for his dry wit. Nicknamed "Silent Cal," he really wasn't much of a talker, but he did like to ring for his bodyguards and then hide from them under his desk. He was apt to wear funny costumes or hats and kept a pet menagerie at the White House, including a raccoon named Rebecca.

Other surprising presidential facts:

  • President Gerald Ford enjoyed cooking his own breakfast and was even known to make his own muffins.

  • President Andrew Jackson owned a foul-mouthed African grey parrot named Poll; the bird notoriously had to be removed from Jackson's funeral for cursing too loudly.

  • President John Quincy Adams enjoyed having an early morning swim in the Potomac River -- completely nude.

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