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My own general

I keep hearing that song in my head; the one from the Anna-
Banana-Fe-Fi-Fo-Fanna, ANNA! album – the song titled “I, My Own Grandpa”. It had to do with some sort of cutsie, child-sized sophistry in which a child is his own grandfather by virtue of some sort of re-marrying. I never did get the point, but I’m thinking of the song because I’m acting as “I, my own General”. Contractor, that is.

I have new respect for general contractors. I used to think of them mainly as depositories for doughnuts and wads of cash, but now I see that they’re more like matchmakers, and even whilst they stand around eating comfort food and cashing checks, they’re actually performing vital functions; finding the right match between the jobs that need to be done and the people available, willing and/or capable (don’t we wish?) of doing that job. And making that match requires not only understanding the job and what it takes to get it done, but knowing who in the community of subcontractors is the right one for the job, and cultivating relationships with all of them, so that when you need for someone to choose between disappointing you or the other slob, they choose the other slob.

Frankie the drunken well-driller is a case in point. As I get my General Contractor legs, I’m learning that Frankie can do a good job, despite appearances (Oh, by the way, I had an unintelligible message on my cell phone that I presume was from Frankie, in his cups. See, he even ventures into the world of the ‘follow-up call.’ I think.).  And I’m learning that I don’t always have to be the slob that gets disappointed! I was sooooo proud of myself the other day when Tori, the well-driller who finally came through called to say he’d be by the next day to size up the joint and get a move on, and then ten minutes later he called back to say that, well, there was this other customer, who was flying in from somewhere, and couldn’t I wait a week so that the other slob could get his well in first?

No. I said no. Those of you who know me will be proud. I said I had to get the well in before anything, and he said – amazingly – O.K. The other slob will have to wait! Ach, I feel like a Nazi and a Trickle-Down-Republican and a tycoon! Those of you who are not the youngest child  can never know how gratifying it is to, for once in your life, not be the one wearing the hand-me-downs. Wait, wait, let me get a doughnut!

So, Tori came out yesterday and there won’t be a problem putting in the well as far as he can see, except that the (miraculous) road is just about 4 feet too narrow at one spot, since he will have to park two semis side by side when the well-drilling commences, so I -once again – had to scramble to find earth-moving equipment. If I didn’t get it, the out-of-towners flying in might win, and I couldn’t let that happen, could I?

Not only did I get it done, I have back-up plans for further earth-moving, should today’s efforts be deemed insufficient. You can be darn-tootin’ sure that I’m NOT letting this well-driller go until I’m thoroughly drilled (sorry if you don’t like -or don’t get – quadruple entendres). Nobody’s cutting in front of me in line, buster.

Unless, of course, the winter storm warning turns into an actual winter storm event. They’re calling for snow tonight, which isn’t unusual for Neihart in the springtime, but I did sort of kind of lie to Tori about it. He asked if it had snowed, and I truthfully said it hadn’t, but I neglected to mention that it was supposed to snow tonight. I’ll let you know.

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