Life’s Like That


Reader's Digest Asia Pacific - - Humour -


Shortly be­fore sail­ing for the Nether­lands, I stopped at a chemist in New York to buy some bub­ble gum. It was still scarce at the time and I bought all their small stock.

“Go­ing to have a party?” asked the as­sis­tant.

“No,” I said, “I’m tak­ing it to my friends’ chil­dren in Hol­land. It’s still un­known there.”

As I turned to leave I over­heard the as­sis­tant re­mark to an­other, “See that guy? He’s tak­ing bub­ble gum to Hol­land; he’s go­ing to civilise Europe!”

F.K. WILLEKES-MAC­DON­ALD, RD NOVEM­BER 1947 Need­ing some clothes cleaned in a hurry, I searched the small town in which I was vis­it­ing un­til I found a sign which read: “Clean­ing and Press­ing, 24-Hour-Ser­vice.” Af­ter ex­plain­ing my needs I said, “I’ll be back for my suit to­mor­row.”

“Won’t be ready till Satur­day,” replied the pro­pri­etor.

“But I thought you had 24-hours­er­vice,” I protested.

“We do, son,” he said re­proach­fully. “But we only work eight hours a day. To­day’s Thurs­day – eight hours to­day, eight hours Fri­day and eight on Satur­day. That’s 24-hour ser­vice.”

That’s the way it was, too.

FRANK D. MCSHERRY JR, RD FE­BRU­ARY 1949 It was rush hour on the rail­way, but I had man­aged to get a seat and was ab­sorbed in con­ver­sa­tion with my boyfriend, who stood in front of me.

Sud­denly the woman be­side me cut in: “Miss, would you mind chang­ing the sub­ject and talk about the weather or some other un­in­ter­est­ing topic?”

I stared at her with amaze­ment, but be­fore I could say any­thing she con­tin­ued, “You see, I get up early, stand up all day, rush home to cook din­ner and then do the dishes. The only chance I get for a nap is on the way home, and your con­ver­sa­tion is so in­ter­est­ing it’s keep­ing me awake.”

I changed the sub­ject.


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