Oct 7th
Posted by shambo  as Education, engineers, Jobs


Let me say this about that.

Yes, it’s true.¬† LMSTAT has poked fun at the eccentricities of nearly all professions – doctors, lawyers, politicians, preachers, cops, businessmen, college professors¬†…¬†well, you name it.¬† The one profession that has not been lampooned by LMSTAT¬†is ‘Engineering’.¬† It has been pointed out to me that, being a retired engineer,¬† I would be remiss in my duties as pundit if I did not point out¬†a few¬†flaws of the people¬†who¬†make their living¬†in this noble profession.¬† OK, OK, I hear you, so here goes.

First of all, engineers are a pragmatic lot, and it starts with their education.¬†¬†In college, they¬†choose their course work for the benefit it will¬†provide in their jobs after graduation.¬† Non-technical course work is…¬†¬† a waste of time.¬† An engineer is completely mystified by a liberal arts major who¬†takes a course in “Eastern Eurpoean Poetry’ because he knows that it will be completely useless in¬†his eventual job at “Bob’s Bargain Used Cars”.

Engineers also¬†enjoy a part of life that most folks loath.¬† Take our ‘liberal arts’ grad, working at the used car lot.¬† Give him a bag of pot and a box of cookies and you’ve¬†got a friend for life.¬† An engineer, however, can be brought to near orgasm if you present him with a problem and tell him¬† “…….. nobody has been able to figure this one out yet”.

And speaking of orgasms,¬†engineers¬†enjoy sex as well as anyone, especially when it involves another life form.¬† Regrettably, engineers are not regarded as great lovers.¬† In fact, there was a survey of the students at the all-girl Agnes Scott College in Atlanta a few years ago that asked the ladies to describe their preferred method of birth control.¬† “Date an engineer” placed third behind the ‘pill’ and condoms.

Engineers are not the snappiestof dressers either.  If a basic level of modesty is achieved, with no genitalia hanging out, basic warmth or coolness achieved, then the basic objective has been accomplished and the rest is superfluous. 

Engineers are happiest when they are around other engineers.¬† Nothing terrifies an engineer more than being invited to a cocktail party where some ‘liberal arts’ type tries to make use of his knowledge of “East European Poetry” and then tries to sell him a car.

The various engineering disciplines like to point out to each other why their specific type of engineering is more valuable than others.  Chemical engineers think they are smarter than mechanical engineers, who think they are smarter than the systems engineers, and so forth.  I heard it described this way once by an aeronautical engineer:

“Aeronautical Engineers make jet fighters.¬† Civil Engineers make targets.”

The ability to intently focus on a single issue – to the exclusion of all others – is the secret to the engineer’s superior problem solving skills.¬† This ability is also the reason that several engineers have been prematurely pronounced dead while working on a particularly difficult problem.¬† There is now a law in Nebraska that requires that ‘dead’ engineers be propped-up in front of a TV tuned to the Discovery Channel for twenty-four hours to await resuscitation, simply¬†to prevent unnecessary internment.

Engineers don’t particularly care for accountants.¬† They believe accountants aren’t smart enough to play the game so they are relegated to keeping score.¬† My favorite story involving these two professions goes like this:

Three accountants and three engineers were waiting for a train.  The accountants had purchased three tickets while the engineers had purchased only one.

“How are you all going to be able to travel with only a single ticket”¬† asked one of the accountants? “Just watch us”, replied the engineers.

When they boarded the train, the three engineers¬†crowded into¬†a bathroom and closed the door.¬† Shortly, the conductor knocked on the door and said “ticket please”, whereupon one of the engineers cracked the door open slightly and handed the conductor a ticket.

The accountants were so impressed by this innovation that, on the return trip, they decided to try it themselves and bought only a single ticket.  The engineers bought no tickets.

“How are the three of you going to be able to travel when you have no ticket at all”, asked the accountants.¬† “Just watch us”, replied the engineers.

When the train arrived, the accountants piled into one bathroom while the engineers crowded into another.  As the train left the station, one of the engineers sneaked out of their bathroom, walked over to the accountants bathroom, knocked on the door and said:

“Ticket please.”

And, that’s all I have to say about that.



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