Too Smart For Their Own Good

I get about one of these a month, but I want to share last night’s with you because it is just so damn Typically Seattle.

The customer is a coffee shop, actually a chain, probably one you’ve heard of. The customer is remodelling and needs to throw out a large and very solid table top, but their trash container is only 6ft wide by 3ft deep at the opening and is then about 4ft tall.

The customer decides that their best course of action is to use a circular saw to cut the top in a 6ft by 3ft rectalngle and then pile the rest of the top, along with the legs, on top if it.

Here is where the Typically Seattle problem starts: remember when I gave the dimensions fo the box? I only said that the opening is 6×3, the box immediately tapers down to about 2 1/2ft by 5 1/2 at its base. It has been designed like this so that stuff will slide out of it more easily and it is quite obvious to anyone who looks at the box itself.

Well, apparently the customer did NOT notice this because they not only piled heavy stuff on top of the table top, but they seem to have climbed up onto the table top and mashed it down into the box so as to get the rest of the week’s actual coffee shop trash into it.

The driver shows up last night to dump the box and, lo and behold, the table top is now wedged into the box and will not shake out.

The box normally holds about 2 cubic yards of trash, but with the table top in it, it barely holds a half a yard. And the yard or so that is under the table top is composed of paper cups and coffee grounds that is, in no way, heavy enough to push the table top out of the box.

I almost wish I could listen in on that phone call when the customer service person tells them that it will cost them $65 an hour for us to come out and ‘unstick’ the table top (the box is our property, but they are renting it and are responsible for all repairs/damage). Whereupon, the store manager will send two of his PoliSci/English major employees out to ‘unstick’ the table top (and probably injure themselves in the process).

The Moral to this Story: Just because you can read a tape measure, doesn’t mean you know what the hell you’re doing.

Alternate Moral: Measure Twice, Cut Once is not the only rule. Sometimes cutting twice and making the tossable piece smaller by converting it into two or three smaller pieces is the better idea.

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1 Response to Too Smart For Their Own Good

  1. Gerry N. says:

    In my 61 years in this vale of tears, I have dealt with many highly educated people, folks with multiple PhD’s and the like that can outthink me in many fields. The one thing MOST of ’em lack is any semblance of common sense. They tend to be very good in a very, very narrow field of expertise. They don’t have many real world skills or abilities. Things like sharpening a pocket knife, oiling a door hinge, or sewing on a button would stymie any of them.

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