Sunday, 6 May 2012

"I'm not Superman"

I don't know if readers are familiar with the comedy series "Scrubs" featuring a doctor and his surgeon best friend and all kinds of weird and bizarre video sequences are inserted into their thought processes. Hilarious.

The theme song features the words "I'm not Superman".

This week I received an email with the subject: "Save me............. :-)"

I thought, "Ah! One of those "I'm on holiday and was robbed of my passport spam mails." I was so close to chucking it into SPAM when I decided to open it and found that it was NOT one of those SPAM mails.

It was from a man working in a very reputable engineering company in London whose second wedding anniversary falls tomorrow, a bank holiday. He needed a handkerchief embroidered for his lovely wife in double quick time.

I emailed, "I'm not Superman." I had packed away all the equipment that day after having started work at 7.45am or thereabout. I was tired.

But he came back again and because he was obviously desperate and a desperate romantic, I relented. Even if that meant having to download a royalty-free embroidery design from a website, checked that my design was OK by this customer, and drag out all the equipment again.

I was down to the last 200 stitches or so when something went wrong and the handkerchief was ruined. Had to start all over again. It was OK this time. The next day I had to take the order to the Post Office and post it by Special Delivery to make sure it got to the customer in time.

Conclusion: I managed to "save" a life. (Really?)

But a bigger challenge this week was to save some "face" at the Arsenal Football Club. Late last week I was asked to do an "urgent job" for them. I looked at their requirements and replied, "Would really love to do it, but can't. Not enough time. Too complex a design."

Meanwhile I actually came up with something they had not asked for and sent the design to them saying, "perhaps this might be of interest to you, for future reference".

Guess what? They came back and said, how about this instead. I said, "No, still too difficult, and not enough time. I'll send a prototype in two weeks' time."

In the end, instead of 25 hankies I agreed to do six. I made a prototype and sent a photograph. They loved it, please make six like that, and please could you do five more with another design?

Again I struggled with the design, mainly finding the font required. Fortunately I have my graphic designer to call upon for advice. (She did my business logo for which I paid her a handsome sum of money.) It took me a lot of time to clean up the logo given to me and experimented with different fonts, layouts, etc.

Eventually I got the six and five hankies done and put them in the post yesterday. Relieved.

No more custom hankies for a fortnight, I told myself. I must write up those conference papers.

Then a French actress emailed: Could you please do three of these and deliver by next week? I had to email to say, sorry, not this time, and hope she has taken it well.

Being able to help two out of three people is not so bad, I guess.

Still, not quite Superman yet, but glad to know that I can provide a unique service.

Happy wedding anniversary to JT and I hope the First Team at Arsenal are able to enjoy that annual charity ball, and raise lots of money for their charity.

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