A black bear, not this one, was put in Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe's office. It was also stuffed.National Journal

This article is from the archive of our partner National Journal

Before leaving office, the outgoing president of the United States leaves his successor a note of advice, sealed in a confidential envelope. In Virginia, outgoing governors leave their successors pranks.

Terry McAuliffe has only been the governor of Virginia for a few days, but he's already had his share of scares at the hands of his predecessor, Republican Bob McDonnell.

The first, which was revealed at McAuliffe's first Cabinet meeting on Monday, was an alarm clock hidden in a drawer. He was already up at the time it went off.

"But the first lady was not up yet," he laughed, according to CNN.

But McDonnell wasn't done. He also left a bear. A stuffed black bear, that is.

This isn't the first time the outgoing Virginia governor has pranked his successor.

"The previous governor pulled a rather dastardly ghost trick on me," McDonnell said in October. "Gov. [Tim] Kaine had an interesting trick with cell phones that were hidden in the walls and on top of elevators that would ring late at night. I think that's public now. If not, it is now. It was a great little trick, and it had us spooked for a couple of days before we found the cell phones."

When he left office in 2006, Democrat Mark Warner left a life-size cardboard cutout of himself in Kaine's shower, according to The Washington Post.

It's unclear whether the bear got the best of McAuliffe, but the newly minted governor is probably already thinking of his own pranks in four short years.

This article is from the archive of our partner National Journal.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to letters@theatlantic.com.