Communion Of Dreams

“Never underestimate . . .
August 4, 2010, 3:09 pm
Filed under: Bipolar, Book Conservation, Depression

. . . the power of human stupidity.

Gah. A bit of a rant.

Some people do not listen to a single word you say.

Last week one evening, as we were eating dinner, we got a call on our landline. I answered it.

It was a client, calling to see if her family bible was finished. Why was she calling me on my home phone, instead of at my business number? Well, she had lost my business card, see . . .

We chatted. I told her I had been waiting to hear back from her on whether she wanted the work we discussed done or not.

She insisted she had.

I knew she hadn’t.

See, she had left the book with me at the beginning of the summer – she was leaving to go on vacation, and the book actually belonged to her mom, from whom she would need approval to have the work done. (This woman was at least my age, likely older.) Furthermore, for new clients I always require a 50% deposit on work before I start on it. A deposit which I had not received. And that once I had a deposit, I would schedule the work to be done – but that usually takes 4 – 6 months before I can get to it.

So I knew she hadn’t given me the green light to proceed.

But I also knew that I was nearing the bottom of a mild depressive cycle, with minimal tolerance for people. With that self-awareness, I figured that telling her she could come by and pick up her damned book and shove it up her butt was probably not the best thing. I asked her to give me a week to get the work done, and that I would call her.

This afternoon early I finished the work on the book. I called the client, explained that I was finishing up the work, and that the book would be dry from the final procedure and ready to pick up anytime this evening or the rest of the week, at her convenience. I asked her to let me know when she was coming by, so that I could make sure to be here (not running errands or something.) All of this is standard for me, and the way I have conducted business for 6 years.

Well, guess who just showed up a few minutes ago. Right. No, she didn’t call first. Of course not. I’m reasonably sure had I asked her, she would have told me that I said she should come right over and get the book. Because she didn’t listen to what I told her, at all.


Jim Downey


4 Comments so far
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Your job would be so nice if it wasn’t for the effing clients. Ha!

Comment by Sarah Catlin-Dupuy

And did she try to pay by credit card, too?

Comment by ML

Heh – no, that would have been classic, though.

Comment by James Downey

I just got back from vacation. I left detailed instructions for the cat sitter, as I always do. I’ve been using the same cat sitter for several years, and she generally does a good job.

So, first day of vacation, I get a call from the cat sitter, with a question. Her question was answered, in bold, in the very first line of the instructions. Grrr. Why do I bother?

Comment by Karen

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