Wednesday, December 04, 2013

Craftsmanship is Dead

Sorry in advance for the negativity but I just encountered something that has really pissed me off. Also, apologies in advance for salty language, but what I'm about to show you doesn't deserve professionalism. Again: WARNING, FOUL LANGUAGE FOLLOWS.

I complain about software developers misunderstanding their job as "easy" mostly because they're lazy bums that don't want to do a complete job. But developers aren't the only half-assing bastards out there.

I'm still living in my first home and I am regularly appalled at the shortcuts I've seen the builders take in making this house. There are places where the most fundamental of building constructs, the 90 DEGREE RIGHT ANGLE, was built incorrectly. Good grief, how stupid do you have to be to mess up a right angle?

When I look in the attic, it's just a head-smacking collection of hacks and patches. And I paid money for this?

Yesterday I replaced a garbage disposal unit that went bad after 14 years. This Whirlaway 191 1/3 horsepower unit is not what pissed me off. It was dirty but 14 years in a day when everything is disposable is not bad, and really it was just one of the blades that went bad, the rest of the unit probably could have soldiered on a couple more years.

But the part that got me was when I went to remove the existing power cable so I could transition it to a replacement Whirlaway 291. The power cable's ground wire had not been fastened to the ground screw on the old unit. Wow. Really? The guy that installed this was that lazy? He just cut the ground wire so it wouldn't be in the way, connected the other two wires, and plugged it in. Not a care in the world about any possible power surge or electrocution. Fucking asshole!

And it gets better! When I took a look at the plug to verify the larger prong so I could trace it back to the exposed wire and connect it to the proper wire PER INSTRUCTIONS, this is what I find:

Yep. Take a close look at those prongs. Just look at them. Yes, that's right, the lazy fucker filed them down so he wouldn't have to worry about whether he had the right wires connected. FUCK ME. I thought this kind of bullshit was supposed to exist only in the realm of Tim Allen jokes.

Yeah, I know, there are dozens of professional electricians out there that will say, "Oh, you're making too much of a big deal about it. This is low voltage bullshit that won't hurt anyone."

Except...THIS ISN'T ABOUT VOLTAGE. This is about doing a COMPLETE, THOROUGH and CORRECT job! This is about the simple task of following instructions handed down by the professionals that made the garbage disposal unit. Was it really that hard that the contractors couldn't do it right? Would it really have taken that much longer to do it to specifications? To be, oh, I don't know...SAFE?

Here's the kicker...the guy that did this is not just lazy, he's stupid too. Because he didn't file down the ground prong, filing down the other prongs doesn't make a difference...the ground prong forces you to put the plug into the socket correctly. So I'm left to think this guy filed down the prongs out of habit.

It turns out the wires were connected correctly, but the evidence points to this being a stroke of luck rather than the product of professionalism and preparedness.

Holy shit. I paid for this shit. This entire thing is just fucking embarrassing. It brings me such comfort to know this house was at least partially built by zombies.

You know, in the past I've withheld names to protect the not-so-innocent. But I can't take it anymore. The only thing that will make me feel better is the truth. I bought this house from PULTE, owned by BILL PULTE, a so-called MASTER BUILDER. The fact is that Bill Pulte never touched my house, it was one of the thousands of contractors he's got working for him that he's never even met (decision-consequence gap, bitches!). So there you go. When you're looking at houses, remember what I told you. But I wouldn't be surprised if other builders were cutting corners too.


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