Intelligent Design

Yesterday, one of my colleagues sidled into my office, muttering that he needed help with “a big problem”+ It seems that he didn’t like my original design and decided to make a few “improvements” on site++ Enter Mr Cock-Up, stage right. Of course, in the traditional manner of dealing with these things, he wants to make it my problem.

“Why did you change the design?”
“We wanted to save money on the project”
“Uh-huh. I’ll bet you feel like an utter tit right now”

This was followed by the mandatory ten minutes of bluster, rationalisation and blame-shifting, but it finally came down to the inevitable:

“What must we do?”
“Okay, you need to do this” [demonstrates with sketch]
“B-b-but that’s going to be expensive
“True, but if you’d stuck to the original design, this wouldn’t be necessary”
“But we don’t have that kind of money left on the budget”
“Ask for more”
“We can’t do that”
“Well, then you do have a big probem”
“Er – ja, how about we do this?” [describes totally lame-ass quick-fix kludge that would make even Heath Robinson shudder]
“No, that won’t work and it’ll cost even more to fix”
“Then what must we do?”
“Okay, you need to do this” [retrieves demonstration sketch]
“B-b-but…”

I love being an engineer.

+ I suggested he try Senakot, but that didn’t go down too well

++ His initiative is commendable, but he neglected to take into account the trivial fact that water never flows uphill on its own. Water is funny that way

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53 thoughts on “Intelligent Design

  1. what is it about people that they’ll hire someone for their expert opinion, and then completely disregard it? Why did you even, in that case, consult them in the first place?

    People are asshats.

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  2. Ah yes. Making changes to the design to save costs. I’m sure the manufacturers of HMS Titanic can relate. Luckily buildings don’t sink, but that’s not always a good thing either [Century City is a case in point]. Byt vas old man, what doesn’t kill, makes one stronger. Apparently.

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  3. Call me Mister Insensitive, but I have found that phrases such as ‘Stuff you clown, you’ll only make it worse’ can not only solve your problem, but motivate people to try harder!

    “Get f*cked, asshat. It’s not my problem” might not be one of those phrases though.

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  4. betenoir: ex’pert n. someone brought in at the last minute to share the blame

    xGW: What can I say? I’m an expert.

    the crutch: Rocket scientist?

    parenthesis: Oh, but buildings do sink. They just do so very, very slowly (although they are a lot less likely to run into icebergs)

    ekke: Enter Mr Insensitive, stage left.

    idlelayabout: Can you give me a quote?

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  5. Suggest to him that because it’s full moon now, that the odds of winning the lottery are looking good.

    Or perhaps he’d like to play your client at blackjack? And hope to God above he wins?

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  6. peas: I don’t think he believed me about the lottery, seeing as it’s still suspended and all.

    xGW: We are clearly talking at cross-purposes here.

    jesus: Don’t take it personally, she does it to me as well.

    xGW (again): Apparently so. He left in a huff.

    ol’ hoss: About a third of the amount it’s going to cost to remediate the problem.

    idle layabout: Good service these days is so rare, but I knew I could count on you.

    Angel: For the sake of sanity, it’s sometimes best not to keep too close a track on these things.

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  7. Mr Cock-up? That could explain the lack of intelligence. All of the blood has gone south and the brain is suffering from a severe lack of oxygen.

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  8. Ah, brilliant. You do the work, they screw it up by going off and trying to ‘think’ on their own then come back to you to make the work ‘right’. Again.

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  9. “Intelligent design”, eh Kyk?
    That’s an oxymoron of note – although the latter part of the phrase seems to be have been more your experience of late. Give the man a sign
    [http://www.snopes.com/humor/jokes/heresign.asp]
    when next you see him … 🙂

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  10. Hey, Kyknoord, are you still alive????
    Worried about you!

    Or … dare I say it? … is it “girlfriend”, keeping you busy? That’s okay then!

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  11. This is a little while ago now but did you hear the story of a <a href=”http://www.rics.org/Builtenvironment/Buildingstandards/Buildingregulations/china_bridge110607.html”blind contractor who was in charge of building a bridge in the Jiangxi Province in China? I think this sort of boneheaded decision is not too uncommon in this day and age. People don’t listen to important advice and carry on regardless because things seem cheaper. They forget quality counts for something. And that blind people shouldn’t have jobs.

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  12. But this is what I was trying to do….

    This is a little while ago now but did you hear the story of a blind contractor who was in charge of building a bridge in the Jiangxi Province in China? I think this sort of boneheaded decision is not too uncommon in this day and age. People don’t listen to important advice and carry on regardless because things seem cheaper. They forget quality counts for something. And that blind people shouldn’t have jobs.

    Like

  13. oh my word… where the fork are you dude?
    is this some kind of a social experiment…?
    ok- either facebook swallowed you or your relationship is going exceptionally well!

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  14. I know you are alive.
    I’m sure you still have your (day) job.
    You couldn’t do your job without a computer.
    If your (work) computer is broken, there would be other machines around.
    It’s impossible that Kyknoord would get tired of writing!
    You are over that bug thingy, are you?!!
    Even new(is) girl-friends get tired of CONSTANT attention.
    So … blog already!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1

    Like

  15. Give him space dudes, Ten Miles came back, after about four months, give or take a few days, so perhaps Kyk is off doing the same, contemplating his navel and doing shit. No reason to panic. Yet.

    Like

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