AN EDMONTON family built themselves a fine new house outside the city but had a terrible time getting water. They drilled five wells before they had any luck, and it was consequently a great relief when they finally moved in for the woman of the house to find she could turn on the taps and have water gush out just like in town. Well, she was standing there thinking how much she had to be thankful for, while piping-hot water swirled into her dishpan. And as she gazed out the
window in front of her she was astonished to see the family dog fall from the sky, followed by a lawn chair.
Hubby came hustling home from the office at her telephone call but after prowling the grounds from side to side and the house from top to bottom he could find no explanation of the phenomenon. Back in the kitchen he expressed his bafflement to his wife, said he must get back to work, and paused to dunk his cigarette under the tap. And BOOM ! the sink was a bowl of flame.
Now that they know about it they say they don’t mind having their plumbing act as a natural gas pipeline, if only they could figure out how to cash in on it.
On the Grand Cascapedia in Quebec beaver still cause a man trouble today. Several nights in a row the beaver dammed up a channel near a fishing guide’s camp and several nights in a row he reopened the channel so he could pass in his canoe. But he had to concede the match to the beaver, the morning he went down to the river to discover they’d tumbled a tall tree right across his canoe and smashed it good.
Sitting in with a couple of lawyers the other day while they swapped cases, we heard all about the famous battle over salted peanuts. The federal government’s much-debated sales tax applies on all “goods and services”—with numerous exceptions including vegetables. A while back the canny legal advisers of a big peanut firm asked the courts to rule that peanuts are really vegetables. On the stand they put a handsome young Toronto professor of botany who declared the peanut isn’t a nut at all. Nuts grow on trees, he said,
while peanuts grow underground like potatoes.
“Nonsense,” declared government counsel. “A peanut looks like a nut, tastes like a nut, is mixed with other nuts, salted with other nuts and sold as a nut—and to the man in the street it will always remain a nut,” he orated. Then beaming at his own cunning he turned on the witness. “If your wife asked you to go out and buy some vegetables for supper—would you bring her back a bag of peanuts?”
The professor opened his mouth to answer, saw the trap and shut his mouth again. Then he stammered apologetically, “I’m not qualified to answer that question—I’m not married.”
The peanut people had to go on paying, of course, in spite of the fast-thinking bachelor botanist. You can’t beat taxes.
A fellow in Saint John, N.B., says he’s been singing Old Soldiers Never Die for years now but never took if seriously until he found a sign on an upcountry cemetery, “Out of bounds to military personnel.” Sent us a snapshot to prove it.
The northern Ontario druggist also took orders for flowers, there being no local florist. He sent the orders to a Toronto firm and back came the flowers by express. The scheme worked fine until someone placed an out-of-town order—a potted palm for grandmother in the southern Ontario town of Teeswater—to be delivered
direct. That Friday the druggist’s order didn’t arrive at all and soon his customers were queueing up and irately demanding their merchandise.
Finally the poor man telephoned his Toronto supplier—only to discover the entire order had gone to Teeswater. This explains the dumbfounding sight that met grandma’s eyes when the expressman panted up her porch steps in Teeswater bearing ten potted plants, twenty-four dozen cut flowers and half a dozen corsages —a birthday remembrance from the most thoughtful granddaughter in northern Ontario, if not in the world.
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