Taylorized Eating

June 24, 2009
Posted by Jay Livingston

The 1954 musical The Pajama Game makes fun of “scientific management” and efficiency experts. The comic foil in the show is Hinesy, the time-study man. (See my post of last December on Taylorism.)

In the song “Think of the Time I Save,” Hinesy tells the female workers in the pajama factory of how his personal life is devoted to saving time. He even eats so as to maximize efficiency. The song includes this verse:

At breakfast time, I grab a bowl.
And in the bowl I drop an egg,
And add some juice.
A poor excuse for what I crave.

And then I add some oatmeal too,

And it comes out tasting just like glue,

But think of the time I save.

Parody, right? Could never happen, right? Maybe not, but as Mike at Pragmatic Realists Idealists reports, one fast food chain, BBQ Chicken, is coming close.


SocProf said...

Of course, you remember this, right?

mike3550 said...

The song and the TV clip are both interesting and scary.

I was thinking that there might be a market in this if you could fit them to strollers and fill them with Frappacinos and biscotti instead of soda and fried chicken. I think that I've been living in Park Slope for too long.

P.S. One minor correction -- our blog is called Pragmatic Idealists; though I must admit of late, the dissertation process has turned me into much more of a Pragmatic Realist than I would like to admit.