Welcome! To the very first issue of Words of Wistrom. I'm kicking it off with one of my favorite stories about my father - Art Wistrom.
My dad was a branch manager of a Big
Bank (statewide was big in the 1960’s). He always told me stories about his
work. One of the things that he just
loved to talk about was “calling bull-crap” on corporate policies and
procedures. Dad told me that the main
office was always sending him tasks that were useless.
I think it started when he got a
corporate notice that he had to count the electric outlets on the walls of the
bank. Dad being Swedish and being pushed a
bit too far – Dad wrote “BULLCRAP” on the form and sent it back. He didn’t hear about counting outlets
Since it worked for that problem – he
continued. I wish I could remember all the things
that he wrote “BULLCRAP” on – but he had a long list. Anything that he considered useless got his
handwriting on it and shipped back to the main office.
“You need to replace the brochures at the front door every week.” BULLCRAP
“You have to have all employees at the bank and ready for work at least 20
minutes before the bank opens.” BULLCRAP
“Send us a list of your current level of office supplies.” BULLCRAP
One Christmas…. I
was in high school and wanted my dad to have the very best Christmas Present
EVER! SO… I had a “ink stamp” custom made that said
“BULLCRAP” with a pad of red ink. DAD
LOVED IT!!! He took it to the bank and said that he would hit the main office
requests with either ONE, TWO or THREE “BULLCRAP”s.
Dad apparently become quite known for
this at the main office. One day – Dad’s superior – a Vice
President of the bank called my dad and said:
“Art – would you please stop stamping “BULLCRAP” on everything we send you?”
and my dad’s answer?
“Sure – as soon as you stop sending me BULLCRAP requests.”
EPILOGUE – I did something my dad didn’t get to
do – go to college. Both me and my two
older brothers received B.S. degrees in Finance from UCONN’s School of Business. My second job out of college was with Aetna
Life and Casualty in Hartford. That was
at the same time that my dad retired after 44 years with Hartford National
Bank. When he retired – he gave me a
beautifully wrapped box. Inside: The “BULLCRAP” stamp and a fresh pad of ink.