"A census taker once tried to test me.
I ate his liver with some fava beans and a nice chianti."
As someone who uses the American censuses regularly, I often think of census takers. What was it like to do that job? The job has always entailed weird and sometimes dangerous situations, but it must have also had it's share of humorous encounters.
The situation of asking perfect strangers questions about their household has always provided comedic fodder for fiction (much of it not politically correct BTW):
- this 2000 SNL "Census Taker" skit,
- the 1940 Three Stooges "No Census, No Feeling,"
- the short play "Taking the Census in Bingville" (published 1911),
- the poem "The Puzzled Census Taker" (published in 1883),
The blog YesterYear Once More found this gem (1830).
The Census Bureau itself posted some humorous examples in the Census in Pop Culture Through the Decades.
© 2014 Copyright, Christine Manczuk, All Rights Reserved.