Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Baudelaire's Choice

And the now the time has come to obsess.

To over-analyze.

To parse, if you know I mean.

Such a fine word. Such a delightful concept.
I'm down to two. Two contractors who promise to get my home ready to sell.

The home I don't want to sell. Wouldn't sell, if it weren't time. But it's time.

Both contractors have promised to paint, repair, spruce up, neutralize, as the realtors say. All I have to do is accept one, and reject another.

And holy crap, but it never occurred to me that this process had to end with me saying "thanks, but no thanks" to someone.

I hate saying "thanks, but no thanks."

I hate saying "no."

Almost as much as I hate being said "no" to.
As I sat pondering the two freakishly detailed bids before me earlier this evening, I actually found myself trying to find a way to justify hiring both contractors: one to do some of the work, one to do the rest. Just so I wouldn't have to tell either of them that they didn't get the job.

This is madness.

I know, I know.
They're both very nice, and have excellent crews at their disposal. They both spent time and effort to determine what I needed and how much it would cost.

One is a bit more expensive.

One will provide slightly more comprehensive services.

One specializes in getting houses ready to sell.

One was able to give me to give me detailed estimates of what my house might sell for once it's fixed up.

One seemed to really understand what needs to be done and the best way to get there.

One was more responsive and quick to turn around a bid.

Unfortunately, neither one was all of these things.

Which means I must choose.

If only it were this easy. (FAST FTW)
And then I must tell the runner-up "thanks, but no thanks."

This is awful.

I'm honestly tempted to choose the one who I think would take rejection harder, just to spare their feelings.

WTF is wrong with me?

The only way I'm going to be remotely comfortable with my decision is if I think it to death.

That means putting all the numbers into a spreadsheet, relentlessly striking line items to stay within budget, rearranging tasks, replaying all the subtle nuances of past discussions in my head, trying to find the little voice inside me that knows the right answer, giving up, starting over, checking the math ad nauseam, racking my brain for overlooked insights...

...and then making decision and having to tell some "no."

By the way, I've promised to make this expensive and life-altering decision by the end of the week.

Because I'm insane.

Anyone got a coin I can flip?


  1. My recommendation? Flip a coin - and if you're in any way disappointed with the result, then you have your true answer. Hang in there.

  2. I wish I could offer help, but if you're happy with the decision after you've made it you're ahead of me. I continue thinking things to death long after the question has ceased to be relevant.

  3. It would help if you made columns (cheap and comprehensive FTW, but I doubt that those two went together). You can use the estimate that the one gave you to guess about the result of the other's plan... But I can empathise -- decisions are hard, but when people's livelihoods are involved, it's worse.

  4. Based on your list of who offers what I would think the best bet would be the one who was responsive. Because in my experience, most contractors aren't that responsive.


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