Matt Weinstock, June 29, 1959
June 29, 2009 | 4:00 pm
Those Plastic Bags
There are times when public servants feel they aren't getting through to the public they're trying to serve.
Not long ago George M. Uhl, city health officer, warned of the dangers of permitting children to play with plastic bags, from which three children in his area have died. They use them as helmets in playing spaceman. Infants elsewhere in the nation have been suffocated by plastic coverings on mattress pads.
In his warning Dr. Uhl said the plastic material apparently set up an electrostatic charge, causing it to cling to the face.
A housewife phoned a few days later and said she used the bags to store fruit and vegetables, first scrubbing them out with hot, soapy water. What she wanted to know was would this kill the dangerous germs from outer space the health department had warned about.
"What was that again?" a startled health man asked.
"You should know!" the irate woman said, "you warned us to watch out for static germs from outer space in plastic bags!"
You can't win them all.
AS HE prepared to depart on a trip for New York a business executive had a violent quarrel with his wife. So, to let her know she couldn't push him around, he took out $125,000 in accident insurance at the airport naming himself as beneficiary and mailed it to her.
Gals appear in summer frocks,
The mercury is rising.
Vacation time! Good-by to clocks
And hard-sell advertising.
--JOSEPH P. KRENGEL
THE ULTIMATE ignominy has come to a proud small car owner. He drove into a downtown hotel parking lot, accepted the receipt from the attendant and went to his appointment. When he returned to retrieve his tiny Metropolitan he noticed that the attendant had written opposite "Make of car" the word "Bug."
SANTA MONICANS may be interested to learn that North Young has traced the origin of a classic slang expression to the loading dock of the Bay City Mask Co. HalO'Ween, the firm's president, confided to him recently that one of his shipping clerks, U. Snow Hooks, had been shouting this expression a decade before it became popular.
As Hooks was said to clam up around the idly curious, North borrowed the company's Mask No. 99 and, posing as a time-study engineer, stationed himself on the loading dock. Soon some chickens from a neighboring poultry shop flew up onto the platform and began pecking holes in the cardboard boxes awaiting shipment. Hooks rushed out and shouted toward the poultry shop, "Keep your carton-pecking hens out of here!"
A WHILE BACK Bill Sanella, Burbank auto dealer, called attention here to the unfairness of the state sales tax on autos. For instance, suppose you are allowed $2,000 on the car you turn in on a $3,000 car. Only $1,000 cash is involved, but you must pay sales tax on the full $3,000.
Since, readers have been pointing out that when the car is resold each new buyer must pay sales tax on the full purchase price. The refrain: "Where did they get that name -- Board of Equalization?"
AT RANDOM -- Every time a new Explorer satellite is sent aloft Tom Cracraft has a countdown of his own -- only he enumerates them differently: Expenditure III, Expenditure IV, Expenditure V ... Helen Hall, the real estate lady, asked for a compass in a dime store and the clerk replied, "We have compasses for drawing circles but not for going places." Fortunately, she was not going anywhere ... A man at a sidewalk stand declined mustard on his hot dog. "Ulcer," he explained. When the lady handed it to him he said brightly, "As soon as I divorce her I can have mustard again" ... When she doesn't feel up to par a lady addicted to adult westerns says, "I feel like just another notch in a killer's gun."