Today’s humor selection comes from the wild and wacky world of construction. Common in contractor’s on-site job shacks are muddy copies of pithy cartoons and lists displaying aphorisms of the business, and judging by the quality of the copies, these tidbits of wisdom have been around since the days of the mimeograph. As an example, one of the most common is a drawing of John Wayne representing a weary soldier uttering the line “Life’s hard. It’s harder if you’re stupid.”
My all-time favorite to date is a cartoon of a gentleman with handrails attached to his backside where two people are standing. The caption reads “OSHA regulations prevent more than two people at a time from riding my ass without the installation of additional restraints and safety gear. You’re person #3. GET OFF MY ASS!”
Below is a copy of a list I saw in a mechanical contractor’s office that explains the job process from start to finish.
- CONTRACTOR – A gambler who never gets to shuffle, cut. or deal.
- BID OPENING – A poker game in which the losing hand wins.
- BID – A wild guess carried out to two decimal places.
- LOW BIDDER – A contractor who has spent sleepless nights wondering what they have left out.
- ENGINEER’S ESTIMATE – The cost of construction in heaven.
- PROJECT MANAGER – The conductor of an orchestra in which every musician belongs to a different union.
- CRITICAL PATH METHOD – A management technique for losing your shirt under perfect conditions.
- OSHA – A protective coating made by half-baking a mixture of fine print, red tape, split hairs, and baloney – usually applied at random with a shotgun.
- STRIKE – An effort to increase egg production by strangling the chicken.
- DELAYED PAYMENT – A tourniquet applied at the pockets.
- COMPLETION DATE – The underestimated date at which liquidated damages begin.
- LIQUIDATED DAMAGES – A penalty for failing to achieve the impossible.
- AUDITOR – People who go in after the war is lost and bayonet the wounded.
- LAWYERS – People who go in after the auditors and strip the bodies.