Thursday, January 26, 2017

Someone Please Push the Rock off the Cliff!


Illustration from my upcoming book,
"Dealing with General Contractors: A Rehabbers' Guide"

I'm gearing up to start scripting the next season of GUN STORIES WITH JOE MANTEGNA. So far, I am gearing up by sitting in my living room and listening to the dog snore. I also spent an inordinate amount of time searching the Internet for Barnes 55-gr TSX .223 ammunition, which I eventually found at…wait for it…Cabela's. I'm also also thinking about cleaning up my office. This is, I believe, what people refer to when they say, "Procrastination."

My on-site studio construction is now delayed by weather and the undeniable fact that many general contractors should be trussed up and fed into a wood chipper. I am often amazed that more general contractors are not killed and eaten by enraged customers. Back when I lived in NYC — the statute of limitations has long since expired, so don't even think about it — I threatened to beat one to death with a 3-foot wrecking bar unless he finished my bathroom, allowing me to both take a piss and then wash my hands without changing floors. Rehabbing in NYC more closely resembled a sardonic comedy series than anything you see on HGTV. When I watch rehab programs on HGTV, I am amazed that they never are seen bribing any inspectors, nor are their supplies delivered at 3AM by being dumped off the back of a speeding truck. Plus, contractors smile a lot an actually meet the deadlines. Fantasy…nothing but freakin' fantasy!

It's probably too cold to shoot…my tongue would stick to the gun.

Maybe I'll start reading Steve Hunter's new book…or take up knitting...

8 comments:

Miguel GFZ said...

I am often amazed that more general contractors are not killed and eaten by enraged customers.

We have gators in South Florida. :)

Anonymous said...

I don't know how it is in "The Peoples Socialist Republic of Kolorado", but up here in the north, it is the building departments and inspectors that are a BIG problem, not to mention the zoning boards and Nazis on the planning commissions. Detroit is famous, as is our county for their "pay-for-play" schemes. With building departments and inspectors having the legal right (camouflaged as "responsibility") to generate their operating funds from permit AND inspection fees, guess what? "You need a permit for that." and "We will need to comeback for another inspection AFTER you correct what our other inspector says is alright is changed to what I want; at your expense." The horror stories make great talk over some nice adult beverages. But, when you get back to reality, you still get sick AND pissed.

Good Luck!

Life Member

NJ Larry said...

And that MB is why we need Donald Trump to build the WALL. Can you imagine anyone else handling the contractors? By golly this is gonna be fun to watch !

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Curt Itson said...

I have been a bldg. Inspector for 30 years and have never accepted a bribe. You should leave whatever corrupt jurisdiction that you reside in. Not everybody is a crook.

Michael Bane said...

Good on you, Mr. Itson! I rehabbed an apartment in NYC in the 1970s and I passed out $50 bills like popcorn. To be fair, when I attempted to get a permit to POSSESS a handgun in NYC in the timeframe, I eventually came up against an "unofficial cash tax" of $500 — "…and we don't give no f#$%^g receipts, neither!" That was a bribe I was not willing to pay. During the same timeframe I was repeatedly offered firearms for sale still in their NYPD Evidence Bags. Every part of the governmental structure of NYC that I came in contact with was a crook. My experience of trying to to business, but not live in, Chicago generated exactly the same results. So in fact, I took your advice decades ago and moved South, where I rehabbed houses by paying, not bribing, contractors.

I make no apologies for my sliding scale of whom I will and will not bribe. The building codes in NYC back then were absolutely looney tunes…designed for the big building unions and to limit/eliminate small operations and DIY projects. We also found out (the hard way) that parts of the building code often directly contradicted other parts of the building code.


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Anonymous said...

Gentlemen: I am dumbfounded that a 'public servant' in a building dept would admit to being on assistance for 30 years. I would rather admit to paying a bribe.....Soapweed, [near Deer Trail]

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