13 December 2008

And 365 Days later...

This is sad, it has been apparently exactly a year since I posted.
I will try and fix this over the next couple of weeks. Not that anything exciting has happened in the last year.

I got engaged. I got married. We had a child. Stephanie changed jobs. Stephanie got laid off. We started another major construction project. So that's 5 major undertakings in one year. Three of them once or twice in a life time major events. Not that this has anything to do with the lack of posting or anything.

13 December 2007

End Game with Kitchen Connection

At long last, everything that has to do with the Kitchen Connection is finished except haggling over final payment.

In Summary:

The contract said 42 working days, which was May 15th more or less.
After a number of delays, due largely to mistakes make by the Kitchen Connection, a hard completion date of June 1st was promised. I did not have working sinks until the start of June 22nd, which I had to organize myself. The granite counter tops were not installed to the original plan specifications until the end of August, and not finished until mid-September (delaying the installation of the range and hood until September 15th). This caused me to incur additional installation expense and the aggravation of a number of other parties, who had to cancel scheduled installation appointments and store the goods while waiting for the counters to be completed.

Thus, I did not have a working kitchen for four and a half months longer than the original estimate, and four months after the revised estimate you gave me (June 1st). Since there was not a working kitchen, it was not saleable or rentable, and I was forced to cancel a number of major social events including a wedding reception.

Additionally, during the entire three month period, I had to product manage the process, requiring many phone calls to either the Kitchen Connection or its subcontractors every week, my being on site for most of the work done during this period due to mistakes made in previous construction, extensive negotiating with Kitchen Connection’s subcontractors, all of which totaled many hours of my time, not to mention domestic aggravation.

01 December 2007


Stephanie and I got married 19 November in St. Lucia, the West Indies.

Obviously we have been busy - more on this soon...

07 August 2007

Tahoe, Kitchen at last ?

We had a wonderful weekend in Tahoe, staying at the cabin of friends, playing with their children, zooming around the lake on their boat. We discovered that if there is some chop on the water, it is a lot bumpier in a speed boat than in a sailboat. We had a wonderful lunch on the South Shore, overlooking the beach - it was a lot like San Diego, but with trees.

Getting out on Friday was difficult, it seemed like there was a great deal of traffic. I read Stephanie Harry Potter on the drive up and it made it seem like it was a very short drive to me, I missed Auburn entirely.

I sent the fax to the Kitchen Connection (may the fleas of a thousand camels infest their armpits) telling them that I was calling bullshit on their insistence that I had not bought enough granite, as the contract shows that I bought 70 sq feet, and a generous measurement allows that there was plenty of granite in that 70 sq feet to build as designed. Plus, I worked out that two median sized granite slabs could be cut to fit the design (only if they used two of the smallest slabs sizes would there be the hint of a problem). So I told them that I had scheduled the granite to be installed on Thursday, and if I did not hear back, I would assume that they would pay for it (and then left voice mail to make sure they go the fax).

So I should have the counters on Friday and the range installed next week. Electrical should happen shortly after that.

Am now gathering photos and documents for www.kitchenconnetionsucks.com

23 July 2007

A fun weekend

We had rather a wonderful weekend. Friday Stephanie discovered that Palo Alto was having some kind of music festival and movies shown out-of-doors so we decided to go have dinner outside - seeing as the weather was particularly fine. I called a couple we had long planned to have dinner with (who live near by) and they met us and we had a wonderful dinner out in the middle of University at La Strada, watching the legion of Harry Potter garbed go by, in addition to all the other people walking around Palo Alto on a weekend night. The food was very good.

Saturday we took Stephanie's mentee and his grandmother sailing (she had never been) as we had promised before she headed back to El Salvador. We took out the Merit 25, and it was blowing, we think about 20-25 knots. We reefed the mainsail and did not bother to put up the jib - so as not to scare the grandmother. We did not make a lot of distance, but everyone had fun.

03 July 2007

The Kitchen Connection Sucks

When we finally got around to getting to my house we discovered that the dishwasher no longer fits under the cabinet.

After much banging around (gently) we determined that there were three four solutions. 1. Rip out the cabinets. 2. Rip out the floor 3. Get rid of the nearly new dishwasher and buy the one or two models that were 1/2 inch shorter. 4. Sell the house and let the real estate agent and the lawyers deal with it. For some reason the drains on the kitchen sink were also not hooked up.

At the moment, I'm seriously considering option 4.

And then registering www.kitchenconnectionsucks.com and paradiseflooringsucks.com. I have lost all hope of getting this project done by Ski Season and at the moment, if I did not have cat living there, would simply abandon the house for three months until the fear of getting within 20 miles of it has passed.

So far today, the plumber has not called back (so far he is still on my good list since he has done great work so far) the Kitchen Connection did not call, so I called, and they are "trying to get the $1,400 price down for me". If it is much over $500 cost me a dime, I'm really going to have to think about finding a hungry lawyer, or seeing if I can declare them in breach and not pay them anymore. We are a month behind the contracted time.

02 July 2007

Yet more kitchen, and Saling

As usual thing have been busy, so some catching up is in order:

Wednesday's meeting with the granite people (Romarts) was unsatisfying, they want $1,400 to fix the "well most of our customers don't want to spend any extra money, so (for your convenience) we paid no attention to what you wanted when it would have cost $500 to do it right the first time. A rather agitated call to the Kitchen Connection (play Imperial doom music here) got, a day later, the response that there was probably something that could be done, they would get back to me on Monday.

In more fun news, we had a great day of sailing on the Bay. Stephanie's Yacht club has Merit 25s and we took one out. I
t was pretty windy, and we got pretty wet from the waves kicking over the bow and splashing into the cockpit. There was another couple on the boat who had never really been sailing before. (This was a $30 two hour weekend evening cruse - mostly to see if it was worth upgrading Stephanie's membership so we could take these boats out anytime.)