David’s Daily Digital Dollop: Dollop 256 – Dear Ainsley

Download the audio version of today’s Dollop here

“Hi David, please find attached a preliminary site layout plan (scale 1:500@ A3 size0) We would be grateful if you could review this regarding the site compound, parking prevision and site access. Many thanks and we look forward to hearing from you in due course, prior to issuing this formally as part of the tender documentation. Kind regards, Ainsley.”

This is yet another email, which came to me today, intended for the other David Eagle, the unresponsive design consultant from Stoke. I’ve forwarded him loads of emails over the last few months and haven’t received a single “thank you” or acknowledgement back. I have a good mind to reply to this email and pretend to be the David Eagle that he thinks I am. Would I be able to get away with it? When the email states, “We would be grateful if you could review this,” how much information do they require? If by “review” they mean a detailed, considered analysis, then obviously I’d be out of my depth, but if they’re just looking for a simple yes or no, then I could surely easily pull off the pretence.

“Hi Ainsley, thanks for the attached drawings. Good choice of scale by the way, 1:500@ A3 size0 is my personal favourite; you’re a man after my own heart. But hey, you’re probably married, and it’s unprofessional to flirt on the job. Anyway, everything looks tickety-boo (as we say in the trade). No quibbles from my end. But hey, enough about my end; I promised not to flirt, didn’t I? In regards to the site compound, it’s a big fat yes from me; I love it. Parking prevision is more than ample. As for the site access … you’re well and truly barking up the right tree, a tree that no doubt you’ve conscientiously fitted with a ramp, allowing for easy wheelchair access, because that’s the kind of man you are. Normally I’d write extremely lengthy and detailed reviews, full of all sorts of complicated and clever technical design consultancy speak, but in this case there’s no need for any of that, because everything is ship shape (not literally, obviously, because if you’d actually opted to make the site ship shaped, then I’d be telling you in no uncertain terms what a stupid idea that is). Full steam ahead. In fact, I wouldn’t trouble yourself with all that formal tender documentation nonsense you refer to in your email. If I were you, I’d just crack on. No time like the present.

P.S. My bank details have changed. Please send my consultancy fee payment to the following bank account …”

But of course, I didn’t send such a reply; I merely forwarded the email to the correct David Eagle, who will presumably fail to respond, as usual.

“Hi again Ainsley, just to let you know that I have recently been contacted by the cyber police, who have informed me that there is a fraudster who is emailing my clients, pretending to be me. If you should receive an email from david@davidmeagle.co.uk, please delete the email and do not reply. I am warning you in case he should ask you for money. I would hate to think that one of my clients was swindled by this unscrupulous cyber fraud. Many thanks.

P.S. “How many design consultants does it take to change a light bulb?”

Answer: “It is not within a design consultants remit to administer practical installations. A design consultant is qualified to give advice on the most suitable place to install said light bulb. He may also offer advice about the optimum type of light bulb and light fitting, in order to maximise aesthetic value whilst providing a solution that is most energy efficient and cost effective. The design consultant however would not be expected or licensed to offer practical assistance on a site or property, therefore it would not be the responsibility or function of a design consultant to change the light bulb.”

A design consultant friend recently told this joke in a speech for a colleague’s retirement party, and it brought the house down; not literally, obviously, we are building design consultants, and therefore would hardly book an unstable structure to hold one of our parties in. I thought I’d share this joke with my clients, because I know there’s a myth that we design consultants don’t have much of a sense of humour, but as you can see, that’s just nonsense.””

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