September 1, 2000
A few years ago the Scottish comedian Craig Ferguson speculated about what it would be like if, through some twist of linguistics, the word "table" were replaced with the word "scrotum". Then, apparently, old ladies would talk about buying antique scrotums while the rest of us giggled.
I hate to contradict Craig Ferguson, who is so intelligent and funny he’s almost unknown in the United States, but the fact is it’s all a matter of context. If the words "scrotum" and "table" were reversed, those who enjoy such juvenile humor, and those who are mature enough to smile appreciatively at such juvenile humor, then there would be nothing funny about what old ladies were saying. Meanwhile late night cartoon characters would be giggling and saying, "Heh heh, you said ‘table’", and news reporters would deliberately mispronounce the name of the planet "Chippendale".
Maybe it was Mark Twain who put it best. Like many of us, he couldn’t prevent himself from spewing a stream of invective after missing an easy billiard shot. His wife stormed up to him, and calmly and coolly repeated back to him every word he’d just said. Twain replied, "Well, you know the words, now you need to learn how to say them."
Or maybe I was the one who said it best. In high school, one day at lunch, I waved an eating utensil at a friend of mine and said, "Hey, fork you!" A teacher promptly grabbed me by the neck, I yelled, "What the fork?" and was suspended from school for two days. You’d think a history teacher would have appreciated a joke about the Donner party, but I guess it’s all a matter of context
Enjoy this week’s offerings.
Prison Vs. Work
IN PRISON…….You spend the majority of your time in an 8×10 cell.
AT WORK……..You spend most of your time in a 6×8 cubicle.
IN PRISON…….You get three meals a day.
AT WORK……..You get a break for 1 meal and you have to pay for it.
IN PRISON…….You get time off for good behavior.
AT WORK……..You get rewarded for good behavior with more work.
IN PRISON…….A guard locks and unlocks all the doors for you.
AT WORK……..You must carry around a security card and unlock and open all the doors yourself.
IN PRISON……..You can watch TV and play games.
AT WORK………You get fired for watching TV and playing games.
IN PRISON…….You get your own toilet.
AT WORK……..You have to share.
IN PRISON…….They allow your family and friends to visit.
AT WORK……..You cannot even speak to your family and friends.
IN PRISON…….All expenses are paid by taxpayers with no work required.
AT WORK……..You get to pay all the expenses to go to work and then they deduct taxes from you salary to pay for prisoners.
IN PRISON…….You spend most of your life looking through bars from inside wanting to get out.
AT WORK……..You spend most of your time wanting to get out and go inside bars.
IN PRISON……There are wardens who are often sadistic.
AT WORK…….They are called supervisors.
IN PRISON…….You have unlimited time to read e-mail jokes.
AT WORK……..You get fired if you get caught.
NOW GET BACK TO WORK!