bunt sign

Friday, September 13, 2002

This could have been another day like yesterday, but then you wouldn't be reading words here. You'd be seeing something like ba ba ba ba ba. It doesn't mean anything, but it would have been the best I could do after two ba ba days in a row.

What had me mumbling to myself, among other annoyances, was... Oh my, where to start? It all has to do with one client, unsophisticated and snooty-rich. A deadly combination, because they think they know everything and what they think they know is meaningless and what they don't know is everything that's important. So they end up making us jump over hoops instead of through them. It's unproductive and not even esthetically satisfying.

To be fair, I probably shouldn't blame my problems on the fact that the client is snooty-rich, since those are the only people who can afford our valuable customized services. Poor folks like you and me can only look through the holes in the fence.

I thought I'd already put in a full day of work when all the anguish started. We'd billed them over a week ago. They lost the billing, but under some insistent encouragement they found it. Then they needed a lien release before they could pay us. We hadn't filed a lien, so what was there to release? Nevertheless, they faxed me the form to fill out.

It turned out the release form needed to be notarized. It was getting on toward five o'clock, but I knew if I hurried I could make it to my favorite notary and back. I asked the client what to do about the blanks on the form, where you're supposed to fill in the number and filing date of the nonexistent lien. "Leave it blank," he said. If you know notaries like I know notaries, you know they don't like blanks. If their signature goes at the bottom, everything above it better be filled in.

But I left it blank, and my notary didn't blink. Maybe she was as anxious to have her work day end as I was. She did check my driver's license twice, even though I've been in there about a hundred times. I got back home and faxed the notarized release to the client. Then I called the Boss and dumped it in his lap. Let him do the rest of the follow-up, because now when they hear my voice on the phone they zone out. When the Boss calls, nobody says, "You again."

That's how what could have been a satisfying, productive day ended, in a flurry of meaningless activity. At least it was meaningless activity that might get us a big check next week, or one of these weeks. And at least nothing like that happened today, so any mumbling and grumbling I do will have to be for some other reason.

In other words, it's a good thing the Giants beat the Padres tonight.

oak tree

Trunk of the old oak in the late afternoon September sun.

Guess what I have to buy tomorrow. That's right, a new hose. My miracle kink-free flat hose sprung a leak in one of the kinks.

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