I want to talk about A-ccount-ability. I am not referring to a certain Aristocratic Muppet whose capability is to count prime numbers through fanged teeth,…………..I am speaking about folks being held liable to be answerable,……..accountable. Does anyone fully accept responsibility for their actions anymore or has passing the bedraggled buck become the accepted modus operandi….
I own a house. A house that has a roof. A roof that carries two different dye-lots of shingles splattered about as if it had been Jackson Pollock laying down the tiles in a pattern that screams Jack the Dripper’s handy work. This would have fallen upon deaf ears ( and eyes) had my neighbor ( a roofer by trade) not stopped over and bring this faux -pas to my attention. He said he was tired of staring at the test pattern atop my house while sipping his Starbucks and working on last weeks crossword puzzle. I told him my husband’s in the shoe industry and I haven’t enjoyed watching his ancient Chuck Taylor’s with floppy laces climbing up and down the metal ladder he loads on his truck at 5:00 a.m. every morning either……..
My Roof Aficionado neighbor kindly volunteered his expertise of Tile formation in grave detail. He expounded on the faulty craftsmanship, application, and flawed materials that resulted in a leak over our family room. He set forth with his roofing jargon and concluded with explicit instructions on what steps to take and with whom to take those steps…..
I took his advice as he took my money for the consult and started at the grass roots level. I contacted the Abbott & Costello Team who built this house that we paid a small fortune for, and was met with a trio of pin striped suits on the other end of the phone:
” Who am I speaking with?” , (asks Cindy who is the receptionist for the Builder)…..and What seems to be the issue..and I Don’t Know if we can help you…”.
I reiterated to Cindy-who is the receptionist, the knowledge I was given by my neighbor the roof expert. Cindy forwarded my call to Jack-who is the builder’s nephew, whose job it is to resolve customer problems:
“What we have here, Mrs. G, is a situation with the product used on the house that Jack built. This is not our jurisdiction, you need to contact the company that manufactured the tiles”. Mutters Jack from his boxed in cubicle.
So I contacted the Manufacturer Team and they sent out a representative to fix the small leak under the mis-matched tiles. As this representative did his job atop my pointy roof, we conversed about rooftops using terms that included “workmanship” and “dye-lots”. The Roofing Rep conceded that this was a “bums rush” of a job, however, the folks that did the original job are ” no longer with the company”. And then he left.
He left with two samples of roofing tiles to be examined by Who’s Top Tile scientists, who later got back to me:
“ What we have here, Mrs. G, is a building issue, not a materials issue. I Don’t Know if we can help you”, states the rocket roof tile scientist. ” You need to contact the sub contractor”.
“Who?” I Bat back. “Do they touch base with Who the first contact I spoke with, who directed me to What appears to be the second base of contact for which I Don’t Know if a third party is the answer“…
“Let me get this straight”, I proceeded, “You must know all the players in this business”.
” I certainly do”…he says.
” So..” I ask, “WHO is ultimately responsible for WHAT was placed upon my roof on a house that Jack built?”.
a short pause and then a reply…………
“I Don’t Know”.
spread the humor.