Sideswipe: March 17: Smile, would ya?

A reader writes: “There’s this one man who lives nearby. Every time, without fail, he tells me to smile but not just that. It’s “Oh for goodness sake smile! What’s wrong? It’s a beautiful day. There’s so much to be happy for. Cheer up!” It’s all said in such a patronising way. Drives me mad. I told him my mum had just died and he should think before he speaks. Other solutions include: stick your middle fingers up then use them to push the corners of your mouth up. That or do a crazy Joker-type grin. I know a woman who responds with: ‘I’m thinking, this is my thinking face. Am I not allowed to think?’ There is the option of sarcasm: ‘Thanks for the reminder, I’m glad you’re on the case – there’s a man over there, 50ish, balding, blue top – not smiling at all! You better go and help him now’, or extreme preparedness … ‘I read an article about this and a girl was so certain she would be told to smile that she had a blood capsule in her mouth and chewed it when told to smile. She did smile but had blood in her teeth and dripping down her chin.”

Corporate propaganda

1. Immigrants are “taking” our jobs, instead of employers seeking to pay criminally low wages to people with fewer choices.

2. Unpaid internships – ban these.

3. Logo T-shirts. The consumer literally pays to advertise a brand.

4. The lie, in the US at least, that billionaires and CEOs are self-made men and women. Most wealth in America is inherited and most who claim to be “self-made” were already born into wealthy families.

5. That global warming is the responsibility of the individual and not about 100 corporations.

6. Everything about wedding and engagement rings.

Waterbed mayhem

“On holiday with our three young sons and staying the night using my husband’s aunt’s home,” Anne Murphy. “Kids in their beds and then I get into the waving waterbed. Settled in with my book. Along comes my husband – a big guy, 6ft 7in, who dives into bed. A great wave hit me and I flew over the side of the bed and landed on the floor with a lot of noise. Three boys were suddenly in the room and quickly sized up the comical event and all wanted a turn on my side of the bed. Sorry boys, not our bed.”

Weaponised shoes

In the mid-1950s, Italian shoemakers were selling “defence shoes”, complete with spurs on toes and heels to kick away offensive sex pests.

Possum disposal

The story of the unfortunate possum that no one had the common sense to dispose of reminded Morris of another story from many years ago. “A person in Ponsonby had a pet cat which unfortunately died and its owner had no means of disposing of it. So, a neighbour placed the said moggy in an old suitcase and took it up to Karangahape Rd. The neighbour with suitcase in hand located an antique shop close to a bus stop and pretended to be interested in something in the shop window. He placed the suitcase on the footpath near the entrance to the shop and went inside. After a few minutes of discussion with the antique dealer the neighbour returned to the street to find the suitcase gone. Problem solved!”

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