Monday, September 07, 2009

7 SEP 09: Laugh's Labor Lost

(BLOGGER'S NOTE: Happy Labor Day to you! We had holiday issues three times during our LaughLine years, when we wrote for subscribers nationwide. So while we're on a family vacation, we offer some Labor Day humor from years past:)

1 SEP 00: Just in time for Labor Day weekend, a new "Jobs Rated Almanac" ranks the best and worst jobs in the U.S. Among the jobs at the BOTTOM of the list:

+ Cowboys -- ask anyone who's played or coached for Jerry Jones in Dallas.

+ Lumberjacks -- under environmental pressure. After all, how can you tell it's an "old-growth" tree if you don't chop it down and count the rings?

+ The WORST of all - fishing. Every time they go out, they risk a "net loss" - and could hit bottom.

So who has the BEST job, according to the "Jobs Rated Almanac?" The financial planners! They arrange all your money in their companies' mutual funds, take a cut off the top - then go find a better investment, and keep it a secret.

4 SEP 00: Today is Labor Day in the U.S. and Canada. Shouldn't hospitals offer special discounts on this day, for women giving birth?

Labor Day weekend means the annual "Jerry Lewis Muscular Dystrophy Telethon." We're always a little suspicious as we watch this show - because Lewis supposedly has all these fans in France, and they never seem to give a nickel. (Well, OK, a "franc.")

Firefighters in your town may be doing street-corner fundraising for the Muscular Dystrophy Telethon. In our town, you're asked to fill giant boots. We only hope a big fire doesn't break out during the weekend - because one member of the fire crew will have a BIG problem walking.

5 SEP 00: George W. Bush marched in a Labor Day parade near Chicago - while Green Party [Presidential] candidate Ralph Nader merely WATCHED a parade in Detroit. Someone should tell Mr. Nader that "energy conservation" doesn't mean resting his legs, too.

Maybe you had a holiday.... but what would you do to get off work TODAY? Britain's ICM research firm did a survey to find some of the most creative excuses people REALLY used to skip work. Among them:

+ "I forgot I had a job." Yeah, right - and I'll somehow forget to sign your paycheck this Friday.

+ "My dog was on fire." That'll teach you to prepare "Mexican dog chow," with jalapeno peppers mixed in.

+ "My cat was mugged." Wow, these are desperate criminals. Can't they ask the Salvation Army for a fur coat?

The ICM survey even found one man who got off work by arranging for someone to break his fingers! [True/Sky News] Maybe this man needs to find a NEW job - coming up with plots for "The Sopranos."

3 SEP 01: Today is Labor Day in the U.S. and Canada. This one-day celebration must be difficult for people in Britain to understand - since they've had a non-stop "Labour Party" for decades.

A United Nations study was released just in time for Labor Day. It shows U.S. residents work more hours per year than people in any other industrialized country. Did this survey merely count the hours on the time clock - or did it deduct the hours workers play games at their computers?

(The study shows the average U.S. resident worked 1,978 hours last year. That's 38 hours a week, NOT figuring any weeks for vacation. Trouble is, a lot of bosses don't figure in any weeks, either....)

To be fair: many European countries have different work policies from the U.S. Employees overseas often are guaranteed several weeks of vacation per year. Now you know how they find the time to travel to soccer games -- and serve jail terms for trashing town squares.

One of our LaughLine subscribers started a new job a few weeks ago. He told us he worked more than 65 hours in his first week! We have a theory about businesses like this -- and it includes the words "hazing."

The U.S. Congress won't return to work until Wednesday. Lawmakers will have spent about four-and-a-half weeks out of session. Maybe if they stayed away from Washington four MORE weeks, the budget.... would look better.

Alabama's Troy State University played its first major college football game - and actually led Nebraska for a few minutes! The Troy State fans in Lincoln used up their rolls of film before the first quarter ended, taking pictures of the scoreboard.

4 SEP 01: We couldn't believe President Bush's words during a Labor Day speech in Green Bay: He claimed U.S. workers are unique because "they work hard, to support their families." We thought Mister Bush was a COMPASSIONATE conservative - but when he implies workers in other countries are lazy, we start to wonder.

A few union members admitted they were embarrassed by the Labor Day visit from President Bush. The President's probably never paid union dues -- and he's already accused of a few union DON'Ts.

The "Love Network" came through again, with nearly 57 million dollars pledged to the Jerry Lewis Muscular Dystrophy Telethon. We think Ed McMahon could make that total go even higher. All he has to do is persuade one of those big magazine sweepstakes winners....

2 SEP 02: Today is Labor Day in the U.S. and Canada. If you see a major league baseball player, tell them how much you appreciate the hard work and great sacrifice his union made to keep playing on this holiday.

Labor Day has been a U.S. holiday since 1894, created to celebrate the working people. Maybe this is why so many corporate executives committed fraud to take millions of dollars - "Bosses' Day" isn't a national holiday yet.

This holiday may be a danger point for workers these days. The hiring firm "Challenger, Gray and Christmas" reports U.S. corporate downsizing announcements jump 38 percent between Labor Day and year's end. Those holiday gifts must be more expensive than we realize....

AFL-CIO President John Sweeney says recent corporate scandals provide a great opportunity for unions to gain new members. He'd probably gain many more if he actually found some of those laid-off workers jobs.

A few months ago the Labor Department posted leading unions' financial reports on the Internet for the first time. The presidents of the ten largest unions all make at least 100-thousand dollars a year. So?! Imagine how many hours of overtime they work.

Jerry Lewis has staged his Labor Day telethon for 36 years - and you can tell how times have changed. Nowadays, the "Love Network" of stations might refer to an X-rated pay-per-view channel....

(And what about "Jerry's Kids?" No Roman Catholic priest would dare call a group of children his own these days.)

Speaking of Labor Day, did you know the "American Idol" finalists are union members? [Kelly Clarkson and Justin Guarini] joined a musicians' union in Hollywood over the last few weeks -- but for some reason, the runners-up have yet to picket outside Simon Cowell's dressing room.

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