This machine allows anyone to work for minimum wage for as long as they like. Turning the crank on the side releases one penny every 4.97 seconds, for a total of $7.25 per hour. This corresponds to minimum wage for a person in New York. This piece is brilliant on multiple levels, particularly as social commentary. Without a doubt, most people who started operating the machine for fun would quickly grow disheartened and stop when realizing just how little they’re earning by turning this mindless crank. A person would then conceivably realize that this is what nearly two million people in the United States do every day…at much harder jobs than turning a crank. This turns the piece into a simple, yet effective argument for raising the minimum wage.
- (I am working a morning shift at a cafe. We are serving breakfast. A little boy and his mother enter the cafe.)
- Me: “So, what will it be?”
- Child: “I WISH TO DEVOUR THE UNBORN.”
- (There is a sudden silence and everyone turns to look. The mother looks very embarrassed.)
- Mother: “Eggs… he would like some eggs…”
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- When my Kid was 2, the pediatrician asked what kinds of food he liked to eat. I listed the usual stuff, then he looked at her, started flapping his arms like wings & declared " I EAT DEAD BIRDS!"
- (Of course, he meant chicken)