A building contractor was being paid by the week for a job that was likely to stretch over several months. He approached the owner of the property and held up the check he'd been given. "This is two hundred dollars less than we agreed on," he said.
"I know," the owner said, "but last week I overpaid you two hundred dollars, and you never complained."
The contractor said, "Well, I don't mind an occasional mistake. But when it gets to be a habit, I feel I have to call it to your attention."
I've seen plenty of batting slumps," the manager told one of his coaches. "But I've never had a whole lineup in a slump before."
The team had lost 10 of its last 20 games, scoring only eight runs during that whole stretch. The best they'd done was four hits in a game.
"We have to try something different," the manager said to his batting coach.
"What do you have in mind?" the batting coach asked warily.
"I'm going into the batting cage myself," the manager said.
The coach tried to talk him out of it. But the manager was desperate, willing to try anything.
With the whole team watching, the coach swung at the first pitch and missed. He missed the second pitch. Ditto the third, fourth, and fifth. On the sixth pitch, he just nicked the ball, which dribbled back to the pitcher's mound.
The manager slammed his bat to the ground, turned around, and stared at his players. "That's how you guys look at the plate!" he yelled. "Now get up there and HIT the ball!"