MAIN STREET by Roger Allen, publisher

Great new job idea

Roger Allen, publisher. “Rockford is the Humor Capital of the World”

How about hiring real people to answer business phones?

Most big companies have computers answering their phones. Voice prompts may sound like real people, but we all know they aren’t. And when you push a button, you just get a different computer.

Sometimes the computer says, “Our staff is busy with other calls. Please stay on the line and someone will help you soon.” Computers that lie to us should be fired (and real people hired to take their place).

Sometimes the computer at the other end of the phone line refers you to a website. Websites are on computers. It’s a vicious circle.

Not only should companies hire real people to answer phones, they should cast them in their TV commercials. I happen to know that the cartoon characters in ads are generated by (you guessed it) computers.

Replacing computers with real people may sound extreme, but, considering the country’s jobs situation, isn’t it worth a try?

Great advice

I read an article that said the typical symptoms of stress are: eating too much, impulse buying, and driving too fast. Are they kidding? That’s my idea of a perfect day.

February

If you think the holiday season is over, wait till you see February. First, it’s Black History Month. Then we also get Groundhog Day, Chinese New Year, Super Bowl Sunday, Lincoln’s Birthday, Washington’s Birthday, Valentine’s Day, President’s Day, Mardi Gras, and Ash Wednesday. This year February gets an extra day in order to fit everything in.

Fame

A visitor to a certain college paused to admire the new Hemingway Hall that had been built on campus.

“It’s a pleasure to see a building named for Ernest Hemingway,” said the visitor.

“Actually,” said his guide, “it’s named for Joshua Hemingway. No relation.”

The visitor was surprised. “Joshua Hemingway? Was he also a writer?”

“Yes, indeed,” said the guide. “He wrote the check.”

Ferry story

Tom loved living on Staten Island but wasn’t crazy about the ferry. If you missed a ferry late at night you had to spend the next hour or so wandering the deserted streets of lower Manhattan.

So, when he spotted a ferry no more than 15 feet from the dock, he decided he wouldn’t risk an hour’s wait. He made a running leap and landed on his hands and knees—a little bruised maybe, but safe on deck.

He got up, brushed himself off, and announced proudly to a bystander, “Well, I made that one, didn’t I?”

“Sure did,” the bystander said, “but you should have waited a minute or two. This ferry is about to dock.”

This week’s lawyer

Two lawyers were walking along, negotiating a case.

“Look,” said one to the other, “let’s be honest with each other.”

“Okay, you first,” replied the other.

That was the end of the discussion.

Last words

Did you hear about the guy whose whole left side was cut off? He’s all right now.

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