This year in the workplace brought as more confused cops, lovelorn stickup men, mandatory inter-office dating, Santa deniers and the Great Baghdad Shoe Off. Oh yeah, and the Recession thing. How funny is that?
SHOE ME THE MONEY
Who says George Bush is an ol’ good for nothing? Not the Turkish shoe firm whose size 10s he dodged in Baghdad. Istanbul-based Baydan Shoes says it has had to take on 100 extra staff to cope with a surge in orders after an Iraqi threw shoes at US President Bush.
The folk at Baydan Shoes say they were astonished and overjoyed to watch their shoes take flight in Baghdad and claims it now has tens of thousands of orders from around the world - including the US and Iraq.
The shoe was called Model 271 but has been renamed Bush shoe, the firm said.
GIVE THE PEOPLE WHAT THEY WANT
A Catholic priest has been verbally basted and roasted by parents in northern Italy for telling their children Father Christmas does not really exist. Father Dino Bottino, parish priest of the Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Novara, let the secret out of the sack at a children's mass earlier this month.
The local paper was deluged with letters of complaints from the outraged citizenry but the padre remained unrepentant, calling it his duty to set the record straight.
"I told the children Father Christmas was an invention that had nothing to do with the Christian Christmas story," he said.
"And I would repeat it again, if I had the chance," he added.
The priest said he had never intended to hurt anyone, but it was his duty to distinguish the reality of Jesus from the story of Father Christmas which was a fable just like Cinderella or Snow White.
It may all be ending well, as a follow-up reports that many townsfolk are now volunteering to stuff the good priest’s Christmas stocking.
At a Christmas part in a Soweto shebeen (booze can} the guest DJ grandly announced that he would be playing absolutely no requests that night. As most shebeen sets are at least 50% shouted requests from the floor, the packed house was taken aback but relaxed and figured the guy must be kidding. Two hours into the show and after umpteen requests rejected a number of fans with guns drawn rushed the stage, relieved the offender of his music stash and left the premises, with the DJ and his crew in pursuit. The party reportedly continued unfazed
SCREW THIS JOB
An assembly worker on the UK hid screws in a specially designed hiding place and took up to 7,000 home with him every day. Over a two-year period, he stole more than 1.1 million screws with an estimated value of $155,000, which he then sold over the Internet at discount prices.
A McDonald's employee was arrested, jailed and is facing criminal charges because a police officer got sick after a hamburger he ate was too salty. The employee accidentally spilled salt on some hamburger meat and told her supervisor and co-worker, who "tried to thump the salt off." The employee was charged because she served the burger "without regards to the well-being of anyone who might consume it."
A Taco Bell employee was arrested for impersonating a law enforcement officer and attempting to arrest his managers and co-worker. This must be one hot Taco Bell as the kid got away with passing himself off as an undercover narcotics investigator, going as far as typing fake criminal histories on the general manager, two shift managers and an employee and telling them they were going to be arrested, before anyone even thought to challenge his story
LOVE THIS JOB
You’d never catch a South Beach firefighter doing this, what with the cheesecake calendar contracts and all but firefighters in Central Florida revived several dogs by performing mouth-to-mouth resuscitation after rescuing them from a house fire. There’s absolutely no truth to a report some could be heard barking, “No tongue, no tongue” during the proceedings. Or a subsequent rumor that some of the dogs and firefighters had started dating. The dogs were treated and released from various area hospitals.
A young lady narrowly escaped involuntary mouth-to-mouth after being robbed and nearly dated. After two men robbed a Domino's Pizza delivery woman in NY, one of them called the victim from his cell phone to apologize -- and to ask her out. She passed on the grounds she couldn’t make it back over there in 30 minutes or less.
Two former security employees at an Illinois Neiman Marcus are suing the department store, alleging they were illegally videotaped while having sexual intercourse at work. As if that weren’t rude enough, they were; later fired at a subsequent performance review.The two claim they were secretly videotaped on a hidden video camera and were fired because of their interactions.
While the next bit worked wonders for Paris Hilton, this pair weren’t up for it. The suit alleges a store manager shared the videotape with several others and on a nationwide online database of mall cops. Talk about a captive audience.
An announcer for London's Tube system was fired in November after recording spoof messages and posting them on her Web site. Problem was, they were recordings of the announcements being actually played over the system to real people, some of whom may even have paid attention. Some of the alerts told American tourists they were talking too loudly and warned male passengers to stop staring at female riders.
One man took calling in sick to new extremes after he had his friend shoot him the shoulder so he could miss work. The man told deputies in Pasco, Wash., he was shot in a drive-by while jogging before work. He later revealed that he'd asked a friend to shoot him so he wouldn't have to take a drug test at the office.
This next guy didn’t ask a co-worker to shoot him but …..Two crocodile farm workers in northern Australia were collecting crocodile eggs by a river bank when a croc grabbed one of them by the arm. The second man shot the croc, which caused him to release the victim. Excited at having actually hit something, he cranked off another round This one however missed the croc but hit his buddy in the same arm by which the crocodile had grabbed him. Both man and croc survived.
FAST FOOD FOLLIES
A Vero Beach, Fla., McDonald's restaurant worker received a shock when a drive-thru customer offered to pay for his meal with marijuana. The cashier called police, and incredibly enough the perp was still hanging around, waiting to be arrested for drug possession. Must have been something in the smackburger.
Two brothers employed at a Maryland restaurant with a long history of tough love between them, took their latest argument to the knife fight level over job duties. One brother reportedly told the other to mop the floor which made him offer to do the job with his brother’s head and they were off.
Both brothers suffered small cuts, but only one was charged with first-degree assault. This was the second call from the restaurant where one worker attacked another with a knife that week.
MAILMAN OF THE YEAR
You don’t want to forget this guy’s Christmas tip. A 66-year-old Florida mailman doing his rounds got fanged by a poisonous snake when he dropped mail inside a mailbox. With fangs embedded in his flesh and the snake dangling form his arm, the plucky dude withdrew his arm from the mailbox and proceeded to smash the snake against his car door until the Eastern diamondback rattler let go. Dude then continued his rounds for the next 30 minutes before seeking help.
UNCLEAR ON THE CONCEPT
An Iowa woman was fired in January for misuse of company time – keeping an electronic diary about how she avoids work at work. Some of the entries detailed her efforts to fool management into believing she was hard at work, usually by furiously typing. The entire 300-page, single-spaced tome was written on the clock with a company computer.
POP GO THE WEASELS
Two employees from the rival companies got into a tiff over shelf space in the aisle of a Wal-Mart in Indiana. The soda war fizzed over when the Pepsi worker allegedly assaulted the Coca-Cola counterpart, hitting him in the face, giving him a black eye and breaking his nose. Police say the two were also accused of trying to run each other over with pallets full of soda bottles.
SOMETIMES A LITTLE'S TOO MUCH...
A Southwest employee asked a young woman in a short skirt to leave the airplane, saying she was dressed too provocatively for the family airline. The young woman was eventually allowed to complete her trip after covering up. On her return flight, she came home with no problem -- in the same outfit, sans cover up.
AND TOO MUCH IS NOT ENOUGH
A carpenter caught hammering nails and sawing wood in the nude says he prefers working in the buff because it's more comfortable and helps keep his clothes clean. A New Hampshire court upheld his right to ply his trade in the raw and dismissed a charge of indecent exposure.
MY HONEY THE PERP
An off-duty jail deputy in Minnesota was pulled over and charged with driving under the influence -- by her husband, a fellow deputy. She supposedly left before he could give her a Breathalyzer test, so he pulled her over again and called for backup. She was placed on administrative leave, which did not include house arrest.
WHEN PRACTICAL EXPERIENCE JUST ISN'T ENOUGH
A Japanese firefighter has been sacked after driving fire engines and ambulances for more than 20 years without a licence. The man, who worked in Takaoka City, was only discovered during a routine inspection of licences last week.
According to his bosses, he appeared reluctant to produce his licence, but when he did the inspector realised the man was using his father's licence. He had tried to hide the photograph with his fingers. The man told his superiors he had attended driving school but failed the written exam. Nonetheless he had driven ambulances more than 300 times, and driven fire engines on almost 100 occasions without incident.
COPS DO THE DARNDEST THINGS
When a 27-foot-long, 11-foot-tall vehicle -- known to most as the Oscar Mayer Wienermobile -- was slowing traffic in a construction zone in Arizona, an officer ran its "YUMMY" license plate to make sure it was street legal. A bad computer entry erroneously showed the Wienermobile as having stolen plates, forcing the officer to pull it over. After further investigation, the officer learned that the entry should have read that license plate had been stolen -- but only if found on any vehicle that isn't a giant hot dog.
Delinquent policemen in Thailand now face an even more frightening punishment than warnings and suspensions.Officers who commit misdemeanors, such as littering, parking in prohibited spaces or coming to work late, must stay in the office all day and sport an armband featuring a smiling Hello Kitty surrounded by hearts.The chief of the Crime Suppression Division said the armband is expected to shame officers into obeying the laws.
YOU WILL DATE THE NEXT CUBICLE.AND LIKE IT.
Troubled by plunging employee morale in its female workforce, Hana Bank in South Korea sent 20 of its single female employees on blind dates to bolster morale and improve their work/life balance. With absolutely no volunteers from the home side, the bank turned to a matchmaking agency which hooked them up chop chop and all headed off to a mountain resort for a weekend of strenuous morale building and stuff.
Troubled by rising employee morale among hookers working Iran’s Gulf Coast, single workers at one of Iran's major state-owned companies were told to marry by September or face being fired
The Pars Special Economic Energy Zone Company employs thousands of people, mostly young men, on Iran's Gulf coast. Being married is a job requirement, a directive from the company is reported as saying. Correspondents say the ruling appears to be an attempt to reduce the number of prostitutes working in the area.
The company controls Iran's large network of gas and petrochemical facilities around the coastal city of Assalouyeh on the Gulf coast and they’re getting testy. A follow-up directive, according to the Etemad newspaper, says that despite requests "some of our colleagues did not fulfil their commitments and are still single". Can shotgun marriages be far behind?
WHEN BAD THINGS HAPPEN TO GOOD SCOTSMEN
In closing, here’s the one office training session I’d have paid to attend. Workers in Scotland lined up to take classes which encouraged flirting to get ahead in their careers.
The “Flirting for Success" sessions instruct students about how to be witty, charming and engaging. As if those weren’t enough to lay low your average Scotsman, the next level included classes on purring like a kitten and dancing like Christina Aguilera and Justin Timberlake. Now there’s an HR department with a sense of humor.
To one and all, within cyberspace and without, have a happy and prosperous 2009
(Culled from sources both hard and soft worldwide and way too numerous to list)