Managers and Engineers
A man is flying in a hot air balloon and realises he is lost. He reduces height and spots a man down below. He lowers the balloon further and shouts, “Excuse me, can you help me? I promised my friend I would meet him half an hour ago, but I don’t know where I am.”
The man below says, “Yes. You are in a hot air balloon, hovering approximately 30 feet above this field. You are between 40 and 42 degrees N. latitude, and between 58 and 60 degrees W. longitude.”
“You must be an engineer,” says the balloonist.
“I am” replies the man. “How did you know?”
“Well,” says the balloonist, “Everything you have told me is technically correct, but I have no idea what to make of your information, and the fact is I am still lost.”
The man below says, “You must be a manager”.
“I am,” replies the balloonist, “But how did you know?”
“Well,” says the man, “You don’t know where you are, or where you are going. You have made a promise, which you have no idea how to keep, and you expect me to solve your problem. The fact is you are in the exact same position you were in before we met, but now it is somehow my fault.”
- Why do Americans drive on parkways and park on driveways?
- Why is it that when you transport something by car, it’s called a shipment, but when you transport something by ship, it’s called cargo?
- You know that little indestructible black box that is used on planes, why can’t they make the whole plane out of the same substance?
- If nothing ever sticks to TEFLON, how do they make TEFLON stick to the pan?
Cakes and Ale (True story?)
Legend has it that a bright young student at Cambridge University had an unusual request during an exam – he asked the proctor to bring him Cakes and Ale.
The following dialog ensued:
Proctor: I beg your pardon?
Student: Sir, I request that you bring me Cakes and Ale.
Proctor: Sorry, no.
Student: Sir, I really must insist. I request and require that you bring me Cakes and Ale.
At this point, the student produced a copy of the four hundred year old Laws of Cambridge, written in Latin and still nominally in effect, and pointed to the section which read (rough translation from the Latin): “Gentlemen sitting examinations may request and require Cakes and Ale”.
Pepsi and hamburgers were judged the modern equivalent, and the student sat there, writing his examination and happily slurping away.
Three weeks later the student was fined five pounds for not wearing a sword to the examination.