A couple with a ready for the register Egyptian revival house that was
irritated that it wasn't Greek revival and so methodically went about
tearing out all the Egyptian elements and replacing them with what THEY
thought was period detail. Oh, and they had a stone mason in their
pocket and tons of cash. The lovely little early 19th c. ice house?
Well, you don't want to know what happened to it.....
How to get out of dealing with such people? Bite the bullet, make the
job design only and send a low bill. Smile when they describe how they
realized their dream with the help of someone else at the next auction
where they are paying three time too much for a....
Those were interesting problems basically describing the height of ignorance
in some people. Thanks for sharing those stories. Now, I feel like some of
my experiences aren't so far off others.
Christ (Hristos) is (he is, se) born (born, third person singular),
according to the Julian calendar, on the 25th of December which ends up
on the 7th of January on hte civil calendar, the Gregorian one. Holiday
is called Bozic' (means "cute little baby God - Bg - day"). Particular
Serbian name, derived from Iranian and Sancrit (peoples are from
adjacent territories in the Near East prior to the third or fourth
centuries) is related, Bogdan, God's gift. Same thing as Theodore in
other languages, Bozhidar in lother languages. Dan also means day in a
number of languages. Night before evening serivce is called Badjak,
which features the Christmas fires, done throughout Romania, Balkans,
northern Greece http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bozic There is a native
softdrink made almost exclusively by Boza makers called Boza which is
fizzy and often served on holidays.
Bozic (kind of pronounced Bohzheech except the ch is slightly different)
is also a common last name in Serbia:
Merry Christmas (number of countries) = Srekjen or Srekjan (Happy) Bozic'
g ---> zh after certain phonetic changes.
Bulatovic is a Montenegrin, but Serbs like to think that Montenegrins
are Serbs: http://whychristmas.com/cultures/serbia.shtml
Fish Soup (Ribja Chorba ) for Christmas Eve (and 11 other dishes) but
Serbs don't own the recipe: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fish_soup
Navistina se rodi. Ego go slavi! (Not what you expected, huh!)
I sang both the old calendar and new calendar Christmas although we
follow the old. So baiscally I did that huge canon vigil and liturgy
twice in slavonic with buncha other people in DC. Son was in Virginia,
shining a laser light on the pavement to keep our wonderful local priest
from stumbling on his way to toss his branchlet in the Badnjak fire.
The woman it took two weeks to realize we'd fired her. She came to us
with a design. We told her it was terrible (in a polite way) and
started over. She kept forcing back to her design. We finally asked us
why she hired architects instead of draftsmen (no offense to Don).
But I think I can come up with worse...
Pair of doctors who used a draftsman, who used obviously flawed measured
drawings for a permit on a century old street building, and then instructed
an incompetant contractor to ignored the permit drawings and build across
both side property lines, and cut existing joists that reached past the
property lines to bear on their neighbors structure in order to fiddle with
the plan in a way that would have contravened exiting provisions in code in
countless ways. They got a 'stop work order. I came in, saved their butts
(negotiated an encroachment agreement with the one neighbor while he was in
China, but had to tear down the other offending wall and rebuild on their
property, and used as much of the aborted construction as possible), got
their tenants a coordinated permit for a 60 seat restaurant (since reviewed
by Alex Kapranos of Franz Ferdinand), did it in 6 weeks beginning to end,
and *they* questioned every decision *I* made, every step of the way, and
complained about how long it took. *I* fired *them*, but continued the work
for the tenant until occupancy, who then stiffed me out of my last (small)
Small fry, I know. Apparently small restauranteurs are reknown for stiffing
everybody. Beware. As for doctors, well,
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/God_complex sometimes applies.
Learned very early to avoid doing work for relatives :-)
I once did a house and depot for a rather feral haulage contractor.
Business was mostly hauling pine logs. His "builder" got the house up
more or less ok, except they messed up the ventilation requirements for
the solid fuel fireplace and back boiler. The Code required fixed air
vents with a cross-sectional area at least equal to the cross-sectional
area of the flue - eg to prevent room occupants blocking all the air
sources and suffocating themselves. So to avoid draughts, the vents were
brought in under-floor to open in front of the fireplace. Only they
terminated them under the fire basket. Fortunately I discovered what
they had done before the whole thing blew up.
He made a big fuss about the portal frames for the vehicle workshop. I
over-specified these because I knew what he was capable of. On one
occasion they rolled one of the semi-trailers and bent the steel framing
of the timber cage. So they put a chain round the cage, hooked it up to
the column of the spf, coupled up a prime mover, and pulled ...
I'd told him the frames weren't designed to carry hoists, and he'd have
to put up separate frames to pull out engines and the like. As soon as
the place was finished, there was a 6 litre turbo-diesel
engine/gearbox/driveshaft swinging on a chain from one of the portals.
There was a planning condition requiring one side of the site to be
landscaped. OMG what the hell could we plant that would survive what
these guys were capable of spilling on the ground. Found an answer to
this one - Lawson Cypress. The species doesn't mind if diesel fuel is
spilled around it - seems to thrive on it ...
After a while he got caught running his road rigs on 'pink' diesel
(excise-free for agricultural purposes only) and went out of business.
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