December 1966 Popular Electronics
Table of Contents
Wax nostalgic about and learn from the history of early electronics. See articles
published October 1954 - April 1985. All copyrights are hereby acknowledged.
Here is installment #3 of
the four sets of reader submissions of inane remarks (ostensibly) uttered by
electronic-challenged nincompoops. One of the funniest - and even believable - is
about 300-ohm twin lead antenna wire flattening out the picture with color
television. If you have funny anecdotes you would like to have published, send them
to me and I'll be glad to add a few seconds to your lifetime allotment of 15 minutes
See also the
Electronics Implausible Remarks
Curbing the tide of entries to our contest on nonsensical
remarks about electronics has the appearance of an impossible task. And why not? Surely
you've heard a wild, implausible, or inane remark about electronics. Send it in and you
may win a soldering gun - so you'll be able to turn the heat on when the next remark
is made in your presence.
Typical remarks have appeared in the July, September, and November issues.
Best of the Lot. Since our last "Sequel," the comment that got the biggest reception
here was one made by a bright-eyed secretary who, when asked (over the telephone) if
a missing carton of capacitors had arrived, replied, "No, but there's a box full of farads."
Talk About TV. About half of the entries received in the past month have been about
TV - installation or repair. As might be expected with such a popular topic, there are
The most common TV tale is about the housewife who sees all of the dust inside the
TV set. Since most wives are unnerved at the sight of such filth, they set forth and
wash out the insides with Soilax - or a similar cleaner - whereupon the husband in question
tightens all loose screws and bolts. As far-fetched as this might sound, it apparently
has happened from coast to coast - many times over.
Confusion about color TV is a dominant topic and we couldn't help laughing at the
recommendation not to use 300-ohm twin lead because it "flattens out the picture." Or
at the story of the housewife who, having moved back into the hills where electric service
was not available, asked the technician to "change her TV over to gas."
Now Come the Puns. Possibly because some of the "real life" remarks are too silly
to be believed, many readers are submitting puns and other jokes. It's impossible to
resist publishing some of them although this was not the original intent of the "No Gun"
The editorial staff particularly liked the letter from a bionic laboratory that asked
for a soldering gun because they "wanted to attach a resistor to the stove - they always
wanted an ohm on the range." And the one about the electronics technician who had been
working late and arrived home to be greeted with, "Oh, Henry, wire you insulate?"
The "classic" pun is so terrible that only engineers will get it; but, as the story
goes, a case of butter was missing from a ham club banquet. The problem was solved when
one member remarked, "After all, what's Butterworth to Chebyshev?"
Winners. This month soldering guns went to Thomas Collins, J. Engel, M. J. Ehrenburg,
Robert MacElvain, Kevin Garrity, Walter F. Smith, and Donald Strachan.
Send as many entries as you wish to "Gun Contest," Popular Electronics, One Park Avenue,
New York, N.Y. 10016. The date of the postmark determines the winner in case of a tie.
Posted May 11, 2018