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Well, I thought it was funny

Posted 12-16-2010 at 14:51 by Bill Powell
Updated 12-17-2010 at 06:47 by Bill Powell

More accurately, I, we, or he thought it was funny.

The first one is a case of "he thought it was funny", and it was done by my co-worker and fairly good buddy named Ron Hope. Before I met him he worked for North American Rockwell.

The Boeing 747 wing spars were being built in the mid-west and were being shipped by rail to the Boing plant. Someone suggested they might fit in a 747 cargo plane, and Ron was assigned the task of doing a study of the subject. He was given eighth scale drawings of the 747 cargo bay and the wing spar. He determined that it would work using laser guidance past a couple of obstructions.

They held a party of celebration and furnished bubbly, as well as a bunch of finger food with French sounding names. The president of North American was standing by Ron's table with a benevolent smile, Talking to Ron like he considered him a regular person.

Ron looked up at him and said he only encountered one small problem. When asked what it was he said he could not make the spar fit staying with eighth scale, so he had to make the wing spar tenth scale.

He got un-fired when they found he was kidding, but he did have to listen to an hour lecture on how unfunny they thought it was.

Ron was still giggling about it years later.


One I thought was funny. I was buying a car after I got out of the military in '63. We were fill out the loan application, and for some reason it called for religious preference. It said Catholic-Protestant-or Other. Her pen was hovering between the first two, and I said Athiest. While she was trying to figure out how to spell Athiest I said, "Yep, I was born an Athiest, I'll live an Athiest, and God Willing, I'll die an Athiest." I got the feeling she'd never, ever gotten that answer. I thought it was funny.

One we thought was funny was a thing my friend Wesley Myers and I did. (Or was it Joe Bea......) Anyway, Wesley had '29 Model A sedan and we pulled a stunt downtown, during rush hour traffic. Rush hour meaning there were eight or nine cars at the red light.

To set this up I had built a wooden box under the steering column, right in front of the firewall. It had a cord running to a trapdoor on the box. The box was full of broken engine parts, a couple of pistons a broken Cam, stuff like that. You can make a Model A Ford backfire at will with the manual timing advance.

The light was changing and that Model A made a terrible explosion. When the explosion occured I yanked on the cord and dumped engine parts on the ground. While he is re-starting the car I jump out, raise the hood and dum the engine parts back in the box. I close the hood, kick the tire, and he turn on the ignition, and way we go.

When we turned off the main road only a couple of those cars had moved.

We both thought that was funny.


One that everyone thought was funny, except for my sister. She and my brother were driving in Ice House Canyon, on the east end of Globe, Ariz. There was an old windmill that had probably been there for a hundred years. They built a brand new, state of the art windmill across the road from the old one, and in due course tore the old one down. My sister noticed it missing and asked why they would do that.

My brother told her the Dept of the Interior had run a survey and determined there was not enough wind in the canyon to blow two windmills, forcing them to tear the one down.

She went straight home and shared that bit of info with her husband.

One I thought was funny.

When I was first married my new wife ran the acid test on me. She knew I like old cars and guns, so she asked me what if She made me choose between her and the things I liked.

I complimented her. I told her I gave her credit for enought intelligence to never make a dumb assed request like that.

She could have shown more appreciation for the compliment.
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