You got to have fun at work, right? When I was younger not everyone’s definition of fun at work was the same as mine. You know the routine, I think I’m funny, blah, blah, blah. I’ve done some questionable things at work because I thought it was funny. Like when I was selling used cars and the lot person, who happened to be the General Manager’s son, became a pain in the you-know-what. So, I sent him to a paint store for striped paint, blue and yellow. I convinced him that striped paint was a thing.

Christmas Tree Lights  

One year when I was assistant manager at a Volkswagen dealership I had fun during the Christmas holiday. The  Christmas tree lights suddenly stopped working one day. I later discovered someone had inadvertently turned off the  switch to the plug where the tree was connected. This was 20 years before the movie Christmas Vacation.

One day when one of the salespeople walked by the tree, I flipped the fuse switch and turned off the lights. They looked and then started checking light bulbs. After a few minutes, I grabbed another salesperson, filled him in, and told him to go to the tree, look at it, twist one bulb, and I’d turn on the lights back on. He did. The other salesperson could only stare. We continued this for nearly a month.

In the early ’70s, I managed a Thom McCann shoe store. I had worked in marketing in their home office in Worcester, Mass, for three years. While there I’d read a survey about how people disliked shoe shopping. The people surveyed mentioned the store not having their size, shoes that didn’t fit comfortably, or they couldn’t find a salesperson. Fifty years ago, there was no self-service shoe buying. Not only were customers waited on, but they sat in chairs as store clerks took off their shoes, measured their feet with Braddock devices, and “tried” the new shoes on them.

 A Fun at Work Experience

I decided we’d make the shoe experience in our store fun. I hired young people with a good sense of humor. We threw shoeboxes across the store to each other while we cracked jokes. I put together a business plan for a fun shoe store and tried to secure funding but to no avail. I’ve wondered if the founders of Shoe Carnival read the same survey. However, we did become one of the district’s most successful and profitable stores.

I remember one time I came out of the back room, and two African American young ladies asked me where their shoes were when the young man waiting on them, both of us were blond, came out with their shoes. They apologized, and I said not to worry. We all look alike. Thank goodness they laughed. Yep, I think I’m funny.

And there’s a book of humor

Want to read a collection of humor pieces? Writing I Think I’m Funny: and it gets me in trouble all the time has been a labor of love. Of the 47 stories in this book, more than 30 are true tales from my days on this planet. Most of those make it clear how my warped sense of humor gets me in trouble.