Trail Blazers: ‘Between Shifts’ was all in good fun

Image: Trail Historical SocietyImage: Trail Historical Society
Cominco Magazine, “Between Shifts” circa 1941. Image: Trail Historical SocietyCominco Magazine, “Between Shifts” circa 1941. Image: Trail Historical Society

In the early days of Cominco Magazine there was a special feature, usually at the end, called “Between Shifts.”

The feature itself is a collection of jokes, puns, plays on words and other amusing tidbits from staff.

Workers were interviewed for their least offensive wisecracks, mostly one-liners, so they were fit for print.

Trail Blazers has pulled one such feature from 1941 and came up with some highlights to share.

“Fred Bailey’s sole contribution to our quiz [the feature] was the story of a salesman who called on a customer and was greeted at the door by a beauteous blonde. ‘May I speak with your husband,’ says this piccolo peddler. ‘I’m sorry’, she said, ‘But my husband is away for two weeks.’

“The fellow pondered. ‘That’s all right, I’ll wait.’”

One of the other boys was too worried to contribute; but at bridge club that afternoon he had told the ladies that his wife’s cake was ‘one of her best cremations.’ (P.S. He hasn’t gone home yet).

Norman Manson’s mind was still on the job.

He came through with a story of the SO2 plant. It seems Don Spain sent a new man to test the solution. The new man came back making a wry face. ‘It tests awful’ said he.

Young Joe Kobluk (of Columbia Hill Billy fame) wanted us to know if we had heard about the aging burlesque queen who “thought of the good old days and heaved a thigh.”

Between Shifts occurred monthly and is fondly remembered by many as a reason to guffaw.

Or groan. Maybe both.

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