And I Wrote This Book.

Monday, September 7, 2015

Striking a Pose for the Labor Movement!


I'm inspired by Brandon and Bryan's interpretation of Labor Day, so inspired that I dusted off this 'ole post. It's not nearly as entertaining as A Beer for the Shower's, but I'm rushed by a surge of pro-labor adrenaline. Enjoy!~~~~

That’s me on the left of each photo. I was a hell-raiser back in 1998...and once since then. Wink. I helped organize this strike, was a union steward, published a chapter newsletter, and participated in contract negotiations. During one shining moment of said negotiations, the CEO interrupted me, and I abruptly asserted, "I don't appreciate being interrupted." She shut-up.

We were flying high, until we caved two days later. All was not lost. I wrote the warmhearted song to follow. To appreciate this diddy, you should know that: (1) the CEO had an unusual frame, involving big hips and a tiny waist, and (2) she was impeached by her own peers a few years later.

Before the song, a shout-out to laborers everywhere. I remain grateful to workers who gave their lives for the cause of an 8 hour day and 40 hour week.

We Will Survive
aka Ode to a Big-Hipped WomanSung to the Tune of Gloria Gaynor’s I Will Survive

When first we saw her hips, we were mystified.
Kept wonderin,’ “How could anyone with legs so small have hips so wide?”
We spent oh so many months just as polite as we could be.
Now we’re venting our frustrations for all the world to see
That her ego, we’ll stand no more! She’s power tripping, and her tactics we abhor!
-CEO's name- is the one who deceives us with her lies.
Does she think we’re stupid? Does she think we’ll give up all our rights?


VERSION 1, BEFORE FINAL VOTE
No, no, we won’t! We’ve too much pride.
Oh, as long as we put up a fight, we’ve justice on our side.
We’ll show that big-hipped woman that we’re not afraid to strike, and we will fight
Until she does us right.
We’re unified. We are 535! Hey, Hey!

VERSION 2, AFTER FINAL VOTE:
Look what we did; we changed our minds.
We voted for the money and set principles aside.
We showed that big-hipped woman that she can buy us out.
And so we pout, ‘cuz we ain’t got no clout.
We broke our stride, and we got fried
By someone who’s really wide. Hey, Hey!


Happy Labor Day, to those who get the day off. A good new week, to you all! xo

53 comments:

  1. All three were funny.
    Impeached by her own peers? I'm sure there was something sadistically satisfying in that.
    And I've been involved in union negotiations. Never again...

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    1. There really is nothing satisfying about it, Alex, except when you tell the evil CEO to shut-up.

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  2. We're glad to have inspired you! All three parts of that song were fantastic. This all brings back memories of my mom being in a union. The old stereotype about your typical CEO being a selfish, greedy pig really doesn't hit you until you sit in on a union negotiation and listen to someone making $100 million per year ask, "Well, do you REALLY need an extra 25 cents per hour?"

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    1. Exactly, and that person making a ludicrous amount of money is spending their time barking orders at, and demoralizing, the people making a fraction of their salary for doing the grueling work.

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  3. You are hysterical! Loved this post.

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  4. I want decent pay for everyone. I'm especially concerned about servers in restaurants, fast food workers, and Wal-Mart employees. I don't know how the Waltons live with themselves, sitting on their stacks of money while many of their employees can't afford food. You go, girl. Keep up that hell raising.

    Love,
    Janie

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    1. I agree, JJ. We need to also raise the minimum wage. It's ridiculous and families do better to exist off of public benefits.
      Thank you.

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  5. I expect you make a good hell-raising labor union organizer who brings humor to the bargaining table.

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    1. Thanks, Sage. I didn't have much of a sense of humor back then. That's why I was a force to be reckoned with. I did really well in that role. I also maintained the respect of most management, somehow. They were likely envious. They didn't like the CEO either.

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  6. I've participated in strikes three times and have studied labor negotiations. There's always someone who can be 'bought' who sells out. Pity the working man or woman today when contracts have been gutted. Many don't realize what the working man lost when the unions got a little too greedy.

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    1. More often, I believe, it's what the worker lost when Management got a little too arrogant and perhaps abusive. But there are certainly over-zealous union chapters and leaders that give the rest of us/them a bad name.

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  7. I love a good song parody and you did good. And now I have that song in my head, which is a big bowl of okay with me.

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    1. Why thank you, Pickleope Von Pickleope. I'm glad the bowl is big.

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  8. Love your song. And your feistyness.
    And the unions. Yes, some of them have issues, but we need them. Or at least the ordinary person needs them. And if the business owners don't need them, want them, like them, it is yet another affirmation about why the rest of us need them, want them, and sometimes love them.

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    1. That's right. If unions weren't a threat, nobody would be fired or disciplined for trying to start one.

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  9. So much here to laugh at. Funny song rewrite.

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  10. I was a member of SEIU for many years, experienced disappointments enough to make me wary, enough successes to make me enthusiasitic and supportive. It is government by discussion from square one and is irreducible. Without it, no democracy.

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    1. You're an SEIU brother. Why am I not surprised, Geo? Smiles.

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  11. Unions can sure help get back at the greedy arse ceos, but then by the time you win, you already lost a bunch so they still win. A great song indeed. Thanks for the review too, just saw that at my zoo.

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    1. My pleasure, Pat. Sorry it took so long to do that.

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  12. I bet you were (are) a great hell raiser. Principles can only last so long - alas. I understand - you gotta eat too. Great song came out of it. Happy Labor Day ( I did not work today - hooray). Alarm goes off tomorrow - gotta work for The Man. Have a good week

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    1. Yep, even when the Man is a Woman, we gotta work for the Man. And be thankful the Man's there. Smiles.

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  13. So she must have had a big butt if she had big hips. I wish I'd been on your negotiating team, Robyn. I can usually find a way to reason with such women.

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  14. Great lyrics! You are so gifted at doing that kind of stuff! lol I only belonged to a union once, when I worked in TV. It was the electrical workers union. Never went on strike but came close to it.

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    1. Good thing. Strikes are rarely victorious, especially for the laborer. Thanks, JoJo.

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  15. I had the day off.
    I had a beer at the ballgame. It was sweet.
    Not the beer. Not the ballgame, either.
    You know what I mean.

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    1. I do: It was an ordinary day for Mr. Al Penwasser.

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    2. But, I did have a day off. For that, I am grateful.

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  16. You are Norma Rae! Glad the woman got kicked out. Is she a Kardashian? I mean they all look like they have small waists (to match their brains) and huge hips and butts. I wish people would boycott Walmart so these stores would be closed on holidays. I feel bad for the retail employees

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    1. I do too, Birgit. Those are the people that need unions the most.

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  17. Thanks for the smiles. :D You're such a rebel. Hope you have a great week.

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  18. I have no singing voice, but I really wanted to sing that out loud. Loved it, Robyn.

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    1. Oh, you're supposed to have a singing voice to sing, huh? Oops. Glad you loved it, Diane.

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  19. I'm thankful now to get every day off. And I've never even been in labor... well... oh, forget it!

    Sadly, most people can't afford to hold out for what they deserve.

    Great song. I, by the way, DID sing it out loud. I DO have a singing voice; it's not a good singing voice, but I DO have one.

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    1. Awesome, Mitchell. You are too cool for school, and work, apparently, and...Good to see you again!

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  20. Somehow I'm not surprised you were behind this. :) Good for you!! I wish we would be fair and equal with our pay, it kills me to know that I'm doing okay and others are not even close to that.

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    1. And still others have way too much money to burn. There needs to be leveling of the field, so everyone can survive.

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  21. In the top pic you look like you are about to fly around with the sign. "When CEOs are malformed, I am not slow, it's hip-hip-hip and away I go!"

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    1. I know. I look so funny. It was windy out there, but everyone else looks to be holding signs gracefully.
      I love your little tune, CW. Silly man.

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  22. Now I adore you even more! I was AFSCME back then.

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    1. Ah, good for you, my friend, though AFSCME sounds like an explosives company.

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  23. I enjoyed your poem/song although I must confess that I came to your blog hoping for some steamy, sex-filled, double-entendred tribute to Labour Day. See what you've made of me?

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    1. I know, Deb. I really tried for erotica, but I just couldn't sex-up Labour Day. Sorry to disappoint.

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  24. Hi human, Robyn,

    As paw usual and when I can actually manage to get here, I loved your pawst.

    Is "Labor Day" the same as "Labour Day"? Arf! :)

    I have to look up some new American words, I not sure what the first word in the title of your pawst means....

    Pawsitive wishes and doggy kisses,

    Penny xx

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    1. It means this woman is queen of typos, and I'd like to hire Penny to be my editor. Thank you both! xo

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  25. You know I love you, Robyn, right. So in my most sincerest voice I say - keep doing comedy - do not go into the song writing business, yet. Okay?

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    1. Oh Dixie, if you heard me sing, you'd know that you don't even need to suggest that. (I can't sing!) I love you too. Smiles.

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  26. I wonder if she would be flattered or pissed if she heard the song. You should send it to her and ask for feedback. I'm sure that would be another hilarious blog post :)

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  27. 'How could anyone with legs so small have hips so wide' HAHA
    You've got me so curious now. I'd love to see this woman!
    Ah very clever Robyn. I'm not sure if I saw the original post or not but its a classic..

    x0

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