A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006.

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“To make me happy: Make me coffee, bring me coffee, be coffee….coffee” (3/24)
“Coffee! Coffee! It’s our drink! If we don’t get it, we can’t think!” (3/24)
“Coffee: because hating your job should be done with enthusiasm” (3/24)
“Want to hear a really dark joke?…Decaf” (3/24)
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Entry from January 12, 2011
“Trouble is only opportunity in work clothes”

Henry J. Kaiser (1882-1967) was an American industrialist who founded the companies Kaiser Aluminum and Kaiser Steel and the healthcare organization Kaiser Permanente. The columnist Drew Pearson wrote the syndicated “Washington Merry-Go-Round,” but Kaiser substituted for him in August 1946 and wrote: “Trouble is only opportunity in work clothes.” Kaiser changed the line slightly in 1955 when he wrote: “‘A problem is an opportunity in work clothes,’ my father often said.”

“A problem is an opportunity in work clothes” has been a popular saying in government and in business.


Wikipedia: Henry J. Kaiser
Henry John Kaiser (May 9, 1882 – August 24, 1967) was an American industrialist who became known as the father of modern American shipbuilding. He established the Kaiser Shipyard which built Liberty ships during World War II, after which he formed Kaiser Aluminum and Kaiser Steel. Kaiser organized Kaiser Permanente health care for his workers and their families. He led Kaiser-Frazer followed by Kaiser Motors, automobile companies known for the safety of their designs. Kaiser was involved in large construction projects such as civic centers and dams, and invested in real estate. With his acquired wealth, he initiated the Kaiser Family Foundation, a charitable organization.

29 August 1946, Chester (PA) Times, pg. 6, cols. 3-4:
Merry-Go-Round
(Ed. Note—While Drew Pearson is on a brief vacation, his column will be written by several distinguished guest columnists—today, by Henry J. Kaiser, the famous West Coast industrialist.)
By HENRY J. KAISER
(...)
Trouble is only opportunity in work clothes. Take an example from our own experience. The West has always needed a steel industry. In 1942 we built Fontana Steel Mill in the face of obstacles which, in terms of tomorrow, couldn’t be overcome. But it was built for war production with the money we were forced to borrow because no one else would build it. When the war ended the West needed the continued operation of that mill. We were told Fontana was hopeless—a steel industry in California would be a “dead duck.” Competitively it couldn’t be done. We couldn’t continue to operate. Our fixed charges would eat us up. (...) It couldn’t be done...but it’s being done.

16 March 1955, Dallas (TX) Morning News, pt. 1, pg. 1:
Busy Industrial Leader Uses Prayer
As Blueprint for Constructing His Life

By HENRY J. KAISER Jr.
Businessman and Industrialist
(...) (Pg. 4, col. 1—ed.)
Nor have I known a more deeply religious man than my father. Although he didn’t talk much about it, the spirit of is faith permeated everything he did. It conditioned him—and his family—mentally, to shrug off defeats and mistakes and go on to the next bigger thing.

“A problem is an opportunity in work clothes,” my father often said.

I liked this motto—and had good cause to remember it and use it at the end of Worl War II.

18 March 1955, Aberdeen (SD) Daily News, “Today’s Chuckle,” pg. 3, col. 3:
Problem—An opportunity in work clothes.

2 April 1959, Ada (OK) Weekly News, pg. 2, col. 8:
A problem is an opportunity in work clothes.
-- Henry J. Kaiser

12 December 1963, St. Albans (VT) Daily Messenger, pg. 4, col. 1:
“Trouble is only opportunity in work clothes.”
-- Henry J. Kaiser.

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityGovernment/Law/Politics/Military • (0) Comments • Wednesday, January 12, 2011 • Permalink