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March 6, 2007

I'm good enough, I'm smart enough, and doggone it, people like me

I found the hvac guy for our job. An old salt he was.

Our new home has hvac issues. I've had a gang of hvac professionals in to make suggestions and give quotes on fixes. All I know I've read on hvac-talk and I'm not handy and don't understand much of the required calculations. So, we're currently pondering about 4 proposals and don't know how to choose.

Yesterday's guy seemed to be the winner. I'm just glad we didn't come to blows. I think I blew the first impression. I met him at the door and in my frenetic weekday routine of doing a chore, getting dinner ready and walking the dog, I forgot to introduce myself and shake his hand. I think I made his shit list immediately. I quickly straightened up, introduced myself and shook the man's hand. Too late. Strike 1 and we're off.

I asked him about some reducting work we needed. We started to walk around the house and I pointed out the location of the new registers. We then proceeded to the basement where he quickly went into a tirade about how the runs weren't sized properly. "Just stop yelling at me. I just moved in here and I'm trying to fix some problems!" I said in a distressed tone. He backed down and said "Friend, (his odd nickname for me) I'm just telling you what I'm seeing, I'm not yelling at you."

He was, trust me.

We went on for about another hour talking about details of the job. I accidentally told him we had problems with the previous owners and he told me, rather authoritatively, "If you think you're getting a penny from them, we're being naive". After I resisted my urge to kick him out of my house (because I kind of knew he was right), I told him he was rude to call me naive. He didn't give a shit.

He then packed up and said he'd do some calculations and come back with a plan and quote (and reminded me he didn't yell at me - he did). Despite the intermittent conflicts, oddly, I think this guy is the one for the job. He was an old timer but seemed to know his stuff and was passionate - about ducting!. If I can get by the personal stuff, I think we'll be in business. I will be taking the plans proposed to an engineer first - someone who's not selling me stuff - to confirm if it's a good solution. We'll see.

He did yell at me.

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