I first heard this story in August of 1980, while attending boot camp in Great Lakes, Illinois. A black sailor was telling the story, but it doesn’t have to be a “black joke.” I have deracialized it.
The story goes that a guy who has no education or training applies early at a computerized job location service and, upon entering his qualifications into a computer, he asks, “Who will I be working for?” To which the computer prints: BIMM.
He figures he will be working for the BIMM Corporation. He then asks, “Where will I be working?” To which the computer prints: HY
The young man says, “Great! That means I’ll be working in Hawaii!” He then asks what he’ll be doing. The computer prints out: BART.
Delighted, he says, “Wonderful! I’ll be a bartender!” He asks what he will be paid. The computer replies: PCT.
When the guy who runs the computer shows up, the applicant is just about dancing with joy, declaring, “I want the job!”
The operator says, “What job?”
The man says, “The job with the BIMM Corporation in Hawaii as a bartender where I get a percentage.”
The operator looks at the printout and says, “Sorry, but I have bad news. “
The guy says, “Well, then what does all of this mean?”
The operator tells him: “Be In Memphis Monday. Have Your. Big Ass Ready To. Pick Cotton Tuesday.”
The moral of the story is to get a good education, or you might be working for the BIMM Corporation.