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Matt Weinstock

January 10, 2008 |  7:55 pm

Jan. 10, 1958

Matt_weinstockd The seminar on semantics will come to order.

A reporter phoned the Bureau of Public Works seeking information on the collection of combustible rubbish. He wanted to know whether a refuse truck, when filled, hauled the load to the dump in Toyon Canyon or elsewhere, then returned to the point on its route where it had left off. Or whether another truck moved in and took up the trash load from there.

"Did you say 'dump?' " he was asked.

"Yes," he replied.

"We call them 'land reclamation projects,' " he was told solemnly.

Then there's the phrase that showed up on Dave Rees' business page in a story about the economic slump. Reluctance at the marketplace this semester is known as "consumer hesitancy."

Oh, yes, that truck full of trash deposits its load at its assigned land reclamation project, then returns to where it left off. Makes two trips a day.

ONLY IN L.A. -- Office workers returning from coffee breaks or lunch are finding a phone message on their desks (placed there by playful colleagues) from a Miss Annette, with a NO number.*

When they call back, a sultry-voiced maiden comes on the line and says, "Hi! Gee, it's nice to hear from you." She goes on to say she hasn't been doing much all day, just some modeling and if you like, she'll send you three poses. "And enclose a dollar," she concludes softly, "just to cover me."

The blow is the realization that Annette is a recording.

1958_0110_pro_bowl IN THE EVENT you hadn't heard, Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Beane, a name that is sheer poetry, is no more, or won't be after Feb. 28.

Alpheus C. Beane, a partner in the brokerage firm since 1941, is dropping from the lineup. He'll be replaced by Winthrop H. Smith. No, not Psmith, Smythe or Ithsmay--Smith.

As a test run, someone called the number to find out how the crisis was being handled now that the announcement has been made. The result is inconclusive. All the operator said was, "Merrill Lynch!"

Unless the situation improves, he plans to give more attention to Batten, Barton, Durstine & Osborne and Foot, Cone & Belding.

his auto license renewal fee at his bank, Al Besset of Montebello remarked, "This is my mad money."

"You down to that?" asked the clerk.

"No," replied Al, "it just makes me mad to have to pay it--in addition to the car payment and the gas tax and the insurance and everything else!"

AN EXPECTANT mother named Barbara, a lady with a Machiavellian sense of humor, has been pondering a suitable bon mot for the big moment when her husband, a local M.D., comes in to see her and the baby for the first time. As of now, she plans to say, "Dr. Frankenstein, I presume."

AT RANDOM--Les Wagner overheard this exchange: "Where did winter go--my fruit trees are blooming." "It went to Florida." ... A maintenance supply company has an ad in Sales Executives Bulletin stating, "Please do not scare our salesmen with large orders. Kindly phone them in"... Anyone else struck with the coincidence of a TV station showing "Citizen Kane" the same week Marion Davies donates $1,500,000 to UCLA Medical Center for a children's wing?... A parent dragooned to a Hi-Y installation can't get over the impression created when the boys with flat haircuts bowed for the invocation. They looked like a bunch of Edsels coming down the street abreast.

* Attention young persons: This refers to the ancient practice of using two-letter prefixes with phone numbers.