This blog is dedicated to local government officials - whether 'elected or appointed' who have a sense of humor. The humor on this blog was gleaned from years of working with Townships, Villages, School Boards, Cities, Counties as well as those damn special taxing districts and authorities. Hopefully you will find some great gems that will make you smile and maybe you will learn some powerful management lessons. Best Wishes, Gabe Gabrielsen - A Local Government Man
Most local public officials, even under ideal conditions, have trouble:
1) Locating their car keys,
2) Finding a phone number saved on their cell phone,
3) Retrieving a document saved on their home computer, 4) Trying to "pin the tail on the donkey at a colleagues birthday party."
However, every local public official I have ever met has told me they can find and push the snooze button on their alarm clock from 3 feet away, in about 1.4 seconds, with their eyes closed, first time, every time, on the morning of a board or council meeting when a public hearing scheduled.
A young Mayor from a Midwestern city bordering the Great Lakes was appointed to be a representative to a conference in Canada to discuss the ecological concerns with the Great Lakes. Upon arriving in Toronto for his first time, the Mayor hailed a cab, jumped in the back seat, and asked the driver to take him to his hotel.
On the way to his hotel, the cab passed a tall building and the young Mayor asked the driver, "What's that building?"
"That's the Royal York Hotel," replied the cabbie. "The Royal York - wow its pretty big! How long did it take to build it?" asked the Mayor.
"About 5 years, I believe," replied the cabbie.
"5 years? Why in my city we can build a hotel twice as high as that and we can do it in 10 months."
A little while later the cab passed the Metro - Toronto Convention Centre. "What's that?" asked the Mayor.
"That's the Metro-Toronto Convention Centre," replied the cabbie.
"Convention Centre? How long did it take to build it?" asked the Mayor.
"About three years, I think," replied the cabbie.
"Three years? Why in my city we could build a convention center three times as long and four times as wide as that and we could do it in about four months."
Shortly thereafter the cab came upon the CN Tower. "What's that?" asked the Mayor, pointing at the tower.
"Danged if I know," replied the cab driver. "It wasn't there this morning when I drove by."
A group of extremists burst into the Conference Room of the Hilton Hotel where the National Association of County Association (NaCO) was holding its annual conference.
More than 700 County Supervisors, County Commissioners, Parishes Commissioners, Parish Supervisors, Borough Commissioners and Borough Supervisors from across the Country were in attendance.
Several local news media outlets arrived on the scene with their news cameras turned on. Finally, the terrorist leader came out and addressed the media. He announced that unless all their demands were met, they would release one County official every hour.
An elderly gentleman wanted to plant his annual tomato garden but he was old and the ground was hard. Every year, his son, James Jr., dug the garden behind the garage but Junior, his only son, was currently serving time in the county jail for a series of alleged burglaries.
Frustrated by his inability to dig his garden, the old man went in the house and wrote his son a letter.
Hope you are doing well. I am sad today; I am not sure if I will be able to plant my tomatoes this year. I'm old and it's too hard for me to dig the soil behind the garage by myself.
Junior, you were always a good son and dug my plot for me. I know if you weren't in jail, you would dig it for me just like you always did. However, since you are not available, I plan to call your cousin, Billy, to see if he can come over next weekend and dig the plot behind the garage for me.
A few days later the father received a letter from his son, Jimmy, in the county jail.
Please, please, please, whatever you do, don't have Billy dig any dirt behind the garage; that's where I buried the money and the loot from all the burglaries. Love, Jimmy
At 4 a.m. the following morning, a dozen sheriff's deputies arrived at the old man’s home. They had a search warrant and immediately proceeded to the backyard behind the garage. After digging up the entire area behind the garage for several hours, they found nothing. As they left, they apologized to the old man.
Later that afternoon the old man received a collect call from the county jail. It was Junior who said, "Hope you'll be able to plant your tomatoes now Pop. That was the best I could do under the circumstances. Love you! Jimmy