A True Story of Life and Family

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Photo by William Krause on Unsplash

A Matter of Anatomy

During my early years working in the family printing business, I became a Jack of All Trades. Whenever a new piece of equipment was acquired, I was elected to master it and then teach everyone else how to use it. So was the case with the Burroughs Comptometer which was purchased for the bookkeeping department. My mother was the company bookkeeper. She did all the billing and transferred the invoices to a ledger card and the customer statements using the new machine. The Comptometer had two sets of figures going across a wide carriage that would accept the statement on one side and the ledger card on the other. It seemed like a never-ending stream of numbers across the carriage. After a few weeks Mom, being a fast learner, stopped asking questions as she became proficient in the use of the new machine. Towards the end of the month, the billing got heavier and my mom decided to go into work on a Saturday with my father to catch up on posting the invoices. She ran into a crazy problem that flustered her, she immediately called me to help her resolve the issue. She said in a frightful voice, “Moishe, something crazy just happened!” She always called me Moishe when she needed something from me. “The Burroughs machine printed all 1’s across my statement and ledger card. For the life of me, I do not know what I could have done wrong. How can I fix it?” After thinking for a few seconds, I said, “Ma, put the statement and the ledger card back in the machine, then hit the minus key on the upper right corner.” I could hear the machine chugging along over the phone. She returned saying, “You fixed it, how did you know what to do?” I said, “Ma, you are so endowed on top, that when you leaned over to put the statement and ledger card into the machine you inadvertently depressed all the 1’s with your breasts.” She said, in a puzzled laughing way, “How can you see that over the phone?”
— WOLRAD

Written by

WOLRAD the pen name of Mark Darlow, writer, songwriter, poet, invites you to visit his website at www.iwonderdoyou.com

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