Union Rules: You Go Over There

I enjoy having lunch with an old friend every week. We meet at the cafe, and always have some great stories to share. When he was a young man, fresh out of high school, his dad wanted to help him out. He wanted a job, and dad was able to pull strings.

He got him a job at the NY Daily News, in the press room. In those days, the News was really the major New York strap-hanger’s paper, and they printed nearly two million copies each night.  He reported for duty for his eight-hour shift from 8-2 am, and the manager handed him an oil can.  “I want you to grease every little hole you can find with that oil gun.”

He pointed to one of the holes that had a little red circle surrounding it, making it look much like a tit.

So he set to work with his oil can, and went all the way down that gigantic press that printed the NY Daily News. After about two hours, he returned to his boss and said he was done.   “What do I do now?” he asked.

“Well, you can go over there,” said the manager.  He looked up, seeing only a big giant shelf where rolls of newsprint were stored.  He asked him what he meant by over there.

“Over THERE,” came the reply, getting angry at him for not understanding.  “After you’re done you go over there,” he said again, and the young man headed over in that direction. What he found was a bunch of pillows and his fellow union press men, taking very long naps for the rest of the shift.

He quit the next night, infuriating his father. But most likely making him pleased with the right decision.