Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Out the Back Door

Federal communications officials are investigating complaints of obscenity on public radio channels. 

The following transcript is of an exchange on the radio between an airport shuttle driver and his dispatch office.  The driver is experiencing difficulty with the locking mechanism on the back (luggage) door of his bus.

“Dispatch, my back door is broken.”

“Beg pardon?”

“My back door. It’s stuck in the open position.”

Pause.  Pause.

When radio microphone is first keyed, the sound of fluid spraying from a mouth can be heard.  A few seconds later…“Your back door is stuck open?” (sound of barely restrained snickering can be heard in background)

“Yes.  I’ve fiddled with it but it won’t close properly.  I don’t think it’s frozen, it feels like something mechanical has broken inside there.”

Long pause.

“Really? Inside your back door?” Pause.  “Something mechanical you say.  I see.” Long pause.  “And you cannot close it?”

“Well, it will close, but it comes open when I move.  I squirted some WD-40 in there but it hasn’t helped.”

Really long pause.

(Uncontrolled hooting and laughter can be heard in the background during next transmission) “You squirted some lubricant…” Pause. “… in your back door?”

“Yes.  Then, as I was squirting it in, the little straw thingy came off and slipped inside.”

No radio transmissions for thirty seconds.

“I’m sorry for the delay in responding…”  Long pause. “What happened again?”

“When I was squirting lube inside my back door, trying to loosen the mechanism, the little tube thing on the end came off and fell inside.  I can’t get it out.”

Dead silence for approximately one minute.

“Oh dear.” Pause. “That’s unfortunate.” Long pause.  “Have you tried anything else to fix the problem?”

“Well, I went to the car wash and washed it with hot water.  I thought it might loosen things up a little but it didn’t work.”

Very long pause.

“I see.”  Pause. “You washed it with hot water.  Good.  Soap too?”


 “Has anything fallen out of your back door while you’ve had this problem?”

“No, all the passengers were off-loaded when it got stuck, thank goodness.  Nothing has fallen out.”

Long silence.

“Well, try to secure the door in some way and come back to the depot.”

A few minutes later…

“OK – I’ve got my back door secured, using a clamp from the jumper cables.”


“Ah.  And how did that work?”

“Well, I opened up the clamp and squeezed it around one edge of the opening, then tied the other end inside.”

Very long pause.

“I see.”  Silence.  “Are you able to drive now?”

“Yeah – I should be fine.  I can’t pick up any more passengers though.  I mean – what if it flops open unexpectedly again?”

Very long silence.

Finally…”Great job”  Pause.

“Return to base and we’ll have someone take a look at it.”


“Maybe a proct… oh nevermind.”

Transcript ends.

Authors Note: this is an absolutely true story.  I was the driver.  The conversation is fictional, but the action was all too real, and I got the giggles when trying to fix things.  And you wonder where my columns come from...  

1 comment:

Anonymous said... never seem to not crack me up!!!!!!