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Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Whose fault is it if we get burned? Ours of course

If we get burned it's our own faults.

I'm not always the smartest Cap'n. I'll be the first to admit that, as well as not being perfect AND being lazy.

So First Mate and I need some work done on our house, just some general scraping, painting and cosmetic work. We are referred a guy named Bill by our Elderly Widow Neighbor Ruth who says he does good work. We get a business card.

Mate calls Bill: He says he'll come over next week, look at the house and give us an estimate. A week goes by. No Bill.

Mate calls the second number on the card, Bill's Partner?: Not anymore, "I haven't worked with bill in over a year. He's still using that card? Yea, that is weird."

Another call is put into Bill. He says his computer went down. He'll come over on Saturday, 10 am to do the estimate. Saturday arrives, Bill shows up a 6pm.

He gives a great price, but we have to pay 1/2 up front for supplies. We think about it just long enough for Bill to walk out the door and then say yes.

Bill comes over to collect the check. "Hey uh, can you make this check out to me instead of the business? If it goes to the business, it takes 10 days to clear." Mate tells me No because she wants a check made out to a company and not a person.

Message from Bill on the Phone the next day: "Uhhh, I have to come get a new check because the Bank put a stop on the company account because someone stole my checks out of the truck and used them so they closed the account, so it has to go through my personal account. When Bill returns the check we gave him we can see he scratched out the company name and wrote his name on the check. Gee I wonder why the bank didn't take the check?

A week goes by. The check is cashed. No work done yet. 1/2 week goes by. Mate calls Bill: "Oh I'm going to start work tomorrow. I was going to come over because I lost your phone number and tell you that. Also someone borrowed my tall ladder and didn't return it, so I had to buy a new one."

Clearly this man is a liar, and based on my "professional" opinion an alcoholic loser (based on general appearance and speech), BUT it's almost too much hassle to try and get the money back from him (at this time) and look for someone else to do the work. Plus he's probably already bought the materials.

Of course, looking into the future. It's probably less hassle than he potential hassle, but being the lazy man I am, I am choosing to ignore the red flags and hope he does a good job.

I mean, how far off can a elderly, possibly senile old widow be?

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