Performance Reviews


I am reposting this because I think it is needed, though we may cry rather than laugh when we think of the situation we are in.


This is somewhere out there in the ether but I wanted to put it anyway (some at CarTalk)

The following comments are said to have been included in actual performance reviews (the source seems to vary according):

  • A gross ignoramus — 144 times worse than an ordinary ignoramus.
  • A photographic memory but the lens cap glued on.
  • A prime candidate for natural deselection.
  • Donated his brain to science before he was done using it.
  • Gates are down, the lights are flashing, but the train isn’t running.
  • Got a full six-pack but lacks the plastic thing to hold it all together.
  • Has two brains:  One is lost and the other is out looking for it.
  • He brings a lot of joy when he leaves the room.
  • He certainly takes a long time to make his pointless.
  • He doesn’t have ulcers, but he’s a carrier.
  • He has carried out each and every one of his duties to his entire satisfaction.
  • He has the wisdom of youth, and the energy of old age.
  • Sets low personal standards and then consistently fails to achieve them.
  • He would argue with a signpost.
  • He would be out of his depth in a parking lot puddle.
  • His men would follow him anywhere, but only out of curiosity.
  • I would like to go hunting with him sometime.
  • I would not breed from this officer.
  • If he were any more stupid, he’d have to be watered twice a week.
  • If you give him a penny for his thoughts, you’d get change.
  • If you see two people talking and one looks bored, he’s the other one.
  • If you stand close enough to him, you can hear the ocean.
  • In my opinion this pilot should not be authorized to fly below 250 feet.
  • One neuron short of a synapse
  • Since my last report he has reached rock bottom, and has started to dig.
  • Some drink at the fountain of knowledge; he only gargled.
  • Takes him an hour and a half to watch 60 minutes.
  • Technically sound, but socially impossible.
  • The wheel is turning but the hamster is dead.
  • This employee is depriving a village somewhere of an idiot.
  • Is really not so much of a has been, but more of a definitely won’t be.
  • This employee should go far, and the sooner he starts, the better.
  • This medical officer has used my ship to carry his genitals from port to port, and my officers to carry him from bar to bar.
  • This officer reminds me very much of a gyroscope: always spinning around at a frantic pace, but not really going anywhere.
  • This young lady had delusions of adequacy.
  • When he joined my ship, this officer was something of a granny; since then he has aged considerably.
  • When his I. Q. reaches 50, he should sell.
  • When she opens her mouth, it seems that is only to change feet.
  • Works well when under constant supervision and cornered like a rat in a trap.

What if God used voice mail?


This came to us with a Christmas card this year.  I know there are some variations on this idea but this is the one we received.

Imagine if you will that you started praying and you heard this. . .

“I’m sorry, all of our angles are busy help other saints right now.  However, your prayer is important to us and will be answered in the order in which it was received, so please stay on the line.”

If you would like to speak to:

Gabriel, press 1

Michael, press 2

For a directory of the other angels, press 3

If you’d like to hear King David sing a psalm while you are waiting, please press 4.

To find out if a loved one has been assigned to Heaven, press 5, enter his or her Social Security number, then press the pound key.  (If you get a negative response, try area code 666.)

For reservations at “My Father’s House”, please enter J-O-H-N, followed by 3-1-6.

For answers to nagging questions about dinosaurs, the age of the earth and where Noah’s Ark is, please wait until you arrive here.

Our computers show that you have already prayed once today.  Please hang up and try again tomorrow so that others may have a chance to get through.

This office is closed for the weekend to observe a religious holiday.  Please pay again Monday after 9:30 am.  If you need emergency assistance when this office is closed, contact your local pastor.

JUST IN CASE YOU FORGOT. . .

If God had a refrigerator, your picture would be on it.

If God had a wallet, your photo would be in it.

He sends you flowers every spring and a sunrise every morning.

When you want to talk, He’ll listen.

He could live anywhere in the universe and He chose your heart.

God was showing off the day he made you.

WHY DID THE CHICKEN CROSS THE ROAD?


Plato: For the greater good.

Karl Marx: It was a historical inevitability.

Machiavelli: So that its subjects will view it with admiration, as a chicken which has the daring and courage to boldly cross the road, but also with fear, for whom among them has the strength to contend with such a paragon of avian virtue? In such a manner is the princely chicken’s dominion maintained.

Hippocrates: Because of an excess of light pink gooey stuff in its pancreas.

Jacques Derrida: Any number of contending discourses may be discovered within the act of the chicken crossing the road, and each interpretation is equally valid as the authorial intent can never be discerned, because structuralism is DEAD, DAMMIT, DEAD!

Thomas de Torquemada: Give me ten minutes with the chicken and I’ll find out.

Timothy Leary: Because that’s the only kind of trip the Establishment would let it take.

Douglas Adams: Forty-two.

Nietzsche: Because if you gaze too long across the Road, the Road gazes also across you.

Oliver North: National Security was at stake.

B.F. Skinner: Because the external influences which had pervaded its sensorium from birth had caused it to develop in such a fashion that it would tend to cross roads, even while believing these actions to be of its own free will.

Carl Jung: The confluence of events in the cultural gestalt necessitated that individual chickens cross roads at this historical juncture, and therefore synchronicitously brought such occurrences into being.

Jean-Paul Sartre: In order to act in good faith and be true to itself, the chicken found it necessary to cross the road.

Ludwig Wittgenstein: The possibility of “crossing” was encoded into the objects “chicken” and “road”, and circumstances came into being which caused the actualization of this potential occurrence.

Albert Einstein: Whether the chicken crossed the road or the road crossed the chicken depends upon your frame of reference.

Aristotle: To actualize its potential.

Buddha: If you ask this question, you deny your own chicken-nature.

Howard Cosell: It may very well have been one of the most astonishing events to grace the annals of history. An historic, unprecedented avian biped with the temerity to attempt such a herculean achievement formerly relegated to homo sapien pedestrians is truly a remarkable occurrence.

Salvador Dali: The Fish.

Darwin: It was the logical next step after coming down from the trees.

Emily Dickinson: Because it could not stop for death.

Epicurus: For fun.

Ralph Waldo Emerson: It didn’t cross the road; it transcended it.

Johann von Goethe: The eternal hen-principle made it do it.

Ernest Hemingway: To die. In the rain.

Werner Heisenberg: We are not sure which side of the road the chicken was on, but it was moving very fast.

David Hume: Out of custom and habit.

Jack Nicholson: ‘Cause it (censored) wanted to. That’s the (censored) reason.

Pyrrho the Skeptic: What road?

Ronald Reagan: I forget.

John Sununu: The Air Force was only too happy to provide the transportation, so quite understandably the chicken availed himself of the opportunity.

The Sphinx: You tell me.

Mr. T: If you saw me coming you’d cross the road too!

Henry David Thoreau: To live deliberately … and suck all the marrow out of life.

Mark Twain: The news of its crossing has been greatly exaggerated.

Molly Yard: It was a hen!

Zeno of Elea: To prove it could never reach the other side.

Chaucer: So priketh hem nature in hir corages.

Wordsworth: To wander lonely as a cloud.

The Godfather: I didn’t want its mother to see it like that.

Keats: Philosophy will clip a chicken’s wings.

Blake: To see heaven in a wild fowl.

Othello: Jealousy.

Dr Johnson: Sir, had you known the Chicken for as long as I have, you would not so readily enquire, but feel rather the need to resist such a public Display of your own lamentable and incorrigible Ignorance.

Mrs. Thatcher: This chicken’s not for turning.

Supreme Soviet: There has never been a chicken in this photograph.

Oscar Wilde: Why, indeed? One’s social engagements whilst in town ought never expose one to such barbarous inconvenience – although, perhaps, if one must cross a road, one may do far worse than to cross it as the chicken in question.
Kafka: Hardly the most urgent enquiry to make of a low-grade insurance clerk who woke up that morning as a hen.

Swift: It is, of course, inevitable that such a loathsome, filth-ridden and degraded creature as Man should assume to question the actions of one in all respects his superior.

Macbeth: To have turned back were as tedious as to go o’er.

Whitehead: Clearly, having fallen victim to the fallacy of misplaced concreteness.

Freud: An die andere Seite zu kommen. (Much laughter)

Hamlet: That is not the question.

Donne: It crosseth for thee.

Pope: It was mimicking my Lord Hervey.

Constable: To get a better view.

A Collection of Sayings


The following are a collection of sayings and quotes that I have gathered over the years.  Some are attributed; others I have just picked up and haven’t figured out who said or when it was said.


This was updated on 23 February 2016 to add the quote from Robert Kennedy

SAYINGS OF INTEREST

The Vaccination Theory of Education – English is not History and History is not Science and Science is not Art and Art is not Music, and Art and Music are minor subjects and English, History, and Science major subjects, and a subject is something you “take” and, when you have taken it, you have “had” it, and if you have “had” it, you are immune and need not take it again.

“Time is nature’s way of keeping everything from happening at once.”

“A child with a hammer thinks everything looks like a nail.”

“We find our individual freedom by choosing not a destination but a direction.” (Marilyn Ferguson)

“You see things; and say ‘why?’ But I dream of things that never were and say ‘why not?’” (George Bernard Shaw)

“If you found a path with no obstacle, it probably does not lead anywhere.”

“It is necessary to say that poetic spirits are of two kinds; first, those who invent fables, and second, those who are disposed toward believing them.” (Galileo [as translated by Sheldon Glashow])

“If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away.” (David Thoreau)

“In every age there comes a time when leadership suddenly comes forth to meet the needs of the hour. And so there is no man who does not find his time, and there is no hour that does not have its leader.” (The Talmud)

Jawaharlal Nehru, who with Mahatma Gandhi successfully freed India from British colonial rule, once said, “A moment comes, which comes but rarely in history, when we step out from the old to the new, when an age ends, and when the sound of a nation, long suppressed, finds utterance.”

“If a nation expects to be ignorant and free, in a state of civilization, it expects what never was and never will be.” (Thomas Jefferson in a letter to Col. Charles Yancey, January 6, 1816)

“If I am not for myself, who is for me?
But if I am only for myself, what am I?
And if not now, when? (Rabbi Hillel, Sayings of the Fathers, 1: 14)

“It’s a revolution damn it! We’re going to have to offend somebody!” – John Adams, while discussing the massive changes being hacked into the Declaration of Independence in 1776.

“The very powerful and the very stupid have one thing in common: instead of altering their views to fit the facts, they alter the facts to fit their views, which can be very uncomfortable if you happen to be one of the facts that needs altering.” Dr. Who

There is a fine line between being on the leading edge and being in the lunatic fringe.

The significant problems we face cannot be solved at the same level of thinking we were at when we created them. (Albert Einstein)

“Sanity is the playground of the unimaginative mind”.

Programming: The art of debugging a blank sheet of paper (Nick Donaldson, University of Manitoba)

“Foolish is the man who competes for competition’s sake . . . Wise is the man who knows what battles are worth fighting.” – Ancient Chinese proverb.

“It is fortunate that war is so ugly for we could become very fond of it” — attributed to Robert E. Lee following the Battle of Gettysburg.

“War is not healthy for children and other living things.” — Lorraine Schneider, 1969 — www.warisnothealthy.org

Nobody is stupid enough to prefer war to peace. Because in times of peace children bury their parents, whereas, on the contrary, in times of war parents bury their children — Herodotus.

“Men are generally idle, and ready to satisfy themselves, and intimidate the industry of others, by calling that impossible which is only difficult.” — Samuel Johnson

Some people drink from the fountain of knowledge. Others just gargle.” — Robert Anthony, American business professor (my source – Sigma Xi Smartbrief for 21 January 2014)

“There are people in every time and every land who want to stop history in its tracks. They fear the future, mistrust the present, and invoke the security of a comfortable past which, in fact, never existed. It hardly seems necessary to point out in California – of all States — that change, although it involves risks, is the law of life.

Nevertheless, there are those, frustrated by a difficult future, who grab out for the security of the non-existent past. Frustrated by change they condemn the wisdom, the motives, and even the patriotism of those who seek to contend with the realities of the future. (Robert Kennedy, “The Opening To The Future”)


“There’s this desert prison…. with an old prisoner, resigned to his life, and a young one just arrived. The young one talks constantly of escape, and after a few months, he makes a break. He’s gone a week and then he’s brought back by the guards. He’s half dead, crazy with hunger and thirst. He describes how awful it was to the old prisoner. The endless stretches of sand, no oasis, no sign of life anywhere.

The old prisoner listens for a while, then says, `Yep, I know. I tried to escape myself, twenty years ago.’

The young prisoner says, `You did? Why didn’t you tell me, all these months I was planning my escape? Why didn’t you let me know it was impossible?’

And the old prisoner shrugs, and says, `So who publishes negative results?'” (Jeffery Hudson, in “Scientist as Subject: The Psychological Imperative.”)

The Difference between Football in the North and the South


I am reposting this tonight (11 January 2016) because of something I posted on Facebook.  I also updated the story about the MIT student and his “science project.”

I heard part of this over the weekend and went looking for the whole list. This is what I found.

CAMPUS DÉCOR

Up North Statues of founding fathers

Down South Statues of Heisman Trophy winners

HEROES

Up North Mario Cuomo

Down South “Bear” Bryant

ALUMNI

Up North Take prospects on sailing trips before they join the law firm.

Down South Take prospects on fishing trip so they don’t leave for the NFL their senior year.

FATHERS

Up North Expect their daughter to understand Sylvia Plath.

Down South Expect their daughters to understand pass interference.

GETTING TICKETS

Up North Five minutes before the game you walk into the ticket office on campus and still purchase tickets.

Down South 5 months before the game you can walk into the ticket office on campus and still be placed on the waiting list for tickets because the all the games have been sold out for months.

PARKING

Up North An hour before game time the University opens the campus for game parking.

Down South On Wednesday and Thursday the RVs sporting their school flags pull into campus and set up for the weekend festivities. The real faithful sometimes start on Tuesday.

GETTING TO THE STADIUM

Up North You ask “Where’s the stadium?” When you find it, you walk right in with no line.

Down South No directions needed. When you’re near it, you’ll hear it. Just follow the crowd of cheering fans toward the most amazing stadiums build by man, singing their school fight song like it is gospel,. As you wait in line to get to the gate you hear the fight songs by both bands battling it out for bragging rights for another 365 days. On game day, it becomes the state’s third largest city.

Please note that the comment about stadium size does not necessarily apply to school in the South; when the University of Nebraska Cornhuskers play football at home, the stadium becomes the state’s third largest city.

STADIUM SIZE

Up North College football stadiums hold 20,000

Down South High School football stadiums hold 20,000

GAME DAY

Up North A few students party in the dorm and watch ESPN on TV.

Down South Every student wakes up, has a beer for breakfast, and rushes over to where ESPN is broadcasting on Game Day “live” to get on camera and wave to their Mom and Dad back home and to the idiots up North who wonder why game day is never broadcast from their campus.

FRIDAY CLASSES AFTER A THURSDAY NIGHT GAME

Up North Students and Teachers are not sure if they are going because they have class on Friday.

Down South Teachers cancel class on Friday because they are going to the Thursday Night game and they don’t want to see the few hung-over students that might actually make it to class on Friday.

TAILGATING

Up North They think a barbecue is putting raw meat on the grill with a few guys standing around drinking a beer with a lime in it, and listening to the local radio station with the back of their truck down.

Down South Thirty-foot custom pig-shaped smoker fires up at dawn. The barbecued smells of ribs and chicken that have been soaking in Pa’s secret sauce for days cover the campus, while you and your closest friends renew friendship and reminisce last years victory over an aged bottle of whiskey and several cases of beer. Cooking is accompanied by a live performance by Jerry Jeff Walker, who comes over during breaks and asks for a hit off your bottle of bourbon.

CONCESSIONS

Up North Drinks served in a paper cup filled to the top with soda.

Down South Drinks served in a plastic cup with the home team’s mascot and is only filled 3/4 of the way to ensure enough room for the right mix of bourbon.

ATTIRE

Up North Male and female alike: woolly sweater or sweatshirt and jeans.

Down South Male – press khakis, oxford shirt, cap with frat logo, Justin Ropers. Female – ankle-length skirt, coordinated cardigan, flat riding boots, oxford shirt.

WOMEN’S ATTIRE

Up North Chapstick in their back pocket and a $20 bill in their front pocket.

Down South Louis Vuitton duffel containing two lipsticks, powder, mascara (waterproof), concealer, and a fifth of bourbon. A wallet is not necessary; that’s what dates are for.

WHEN THE NATIONAL ANTHEM IS PLAYED

Up North Stands are less than half full.

Down South Only a few ticket holders are not in the stadium as 100,000+ fans stand and proudly sing along in perfect 3-part harmony.

WHEN THE PLAYERS TAKE THE FIELD

Up North The only ones cheering are the student section and the announcer (and the announcer is paid).

Down South… the fans scream and cheer so loud the stadium roars and a tear comes to the announcer’s eyes because he’s so proud of his team.

THE SMELL IN THE AIR AFTER THE FIRST SCORE

Up North Nothing Changes!

Down South Fireworks with a twist of bourbon

ANNOUNCERS

Up North Paid

Down South Announcer harmonizes with the crowd in the fight song, with a tear in his eye because he is so proud of his team.

COMMENTARY (MALE)

Up North “Nice Play”

Down South “Dammit you slow sumbitch – tackle him and break his legs!!!”

COMMENTARY (FEMALE)

Up North “My, this is a violent sport.”

Down South “Dammit you slow sumbitch – tackle him and break his legs!!!”

HOMECOMING QUEEN

Up North Also a Physics Major

Down South Also Miss USA

AFTER THE GAME

Up North The stadium is empty before the game ends.

Down South The celebration begins with the bragging rights to going to the victor for another 365 days. Fans from both schools share some home cooked ribs and a fine glass of aged whiskey and plan to start all over for the next home game.

Some stories I have heard and enjoyed:

There’s a story about a MIT student who spent an entire summer going to the Harvard football field every day wearing a black and white striped shirt, walking up and down the field for ten or fifteen minutes throwing birdseed all over the field, blowing a whistle and then walking off the field. At the end of the summer, it came time for the first Harvard home football team, the referee walked onto the field and blew the whistle, and the game had to be delayed for a half hour to wait for the birds to get off of the field. The guy wrote his thesis on this, and graduated.  Note added on 11 January 2016 – apparently this story has the status of an urban legend.  According to the notes in Wikipedia, there is no record of this ever having been done.

After Bear Bryant dies and enters the Pearly Gates, God takes him on a tour. He shows Bear a little two-bedroom house with a faded Alabama banner hanging from the front porch.

“This is your house, coach,” God says happily. “Most people don’t get their own houses up here.”

Bear looks at the house, then turns around and looks at the one sitting on top of the hill. It’s a huge, beautiful two-story mansion with white marble columns and little patios under all the windows. Auburn flags line both sides of the sidewalk and a huge Auburn banner hangs between the marble columns.

“Thanks for the house, God,” Bear says. “But let me ask you a question. I get this little two-bedroom house with a faded banner and Shug gets a mansion with Auburn banners and AU flags flying all over the place. Why is that?”

God looks at him seriously for a moment, then says, “Bear, that’s not Shug’s house. That’s mine.”

A true event (I am not so sure that it is true but it might have been) happened during a football game in the Southeast Conference between the great rivals of Alabama and Auburn back in the days when Bear Bryant was still living and Pat Dye was the coach of Auburn. The first-team quarterback for the Alabama team had been injured, so they were left with the second-team quarterback. Alabama was on Auburn’s twenty-yard line, and had a five point lead in the game. There was two minutes left in the game and Alabama had a first down. Coach Bryant yelled into the ear hole helmet of the second-team quarterback, “Whatever you do, do not pass! Run the ball all four plays. And then if we have to hold them, our defense will get us through and we will win.”

The second-team quarterback ran in full determination. On first down, Auburn crushed the Alabama attack. On second down Auburn once again held the line of scrimmage. On third down, Alabama gained a yard. On fourth down, some how the Alabama handoff was muffled and the quarterback wound up running the ball. Running around the backfield, he looked down field and saw his split end wide open in the endzone, so he threw the football towards him.

What the quarterback failed to see was the fastest man on the field was the fastest man on the field, the free safety for the Auburn Tigers, who broke quickly for the ball. The free safety came in front of the receiver, intercepted the pass and started to race down the sidelines for the endzone. The Alabama quarterback, not very fast himself normally, sprinted down the field, caught the man and tackled him. Alabama won the game.

Coach Dye said later to Coach Bryant, “I read the scouting report on your quarterback, he is suppose to be slow. How is it he caught up with the fastest man on the field?” Coach Bryant replied, “It is very simple. Your man was running for the goal line and a touchdown. My man was running for his life!”

And my favorite

Auburn vs. Alabama, SEC Championship. Fourth Down. One yard to go. 2 seconds left. It was 15-17, ‘Bama leading.

Pat Dye beseeched the Lord. God said, “Pat, go for the touchdown and run right.”

Pat Dye gives the instructions to his players; the play executes, ‘Bama stops Auburn’s offense just short of the goal line, ending the game.

‘Bama won.

Pat Dye was distraught. “Why, Lord?” and God said, “I don’t know. Bear, why did we tell him that?”