Negative delay

Project managers usually keep track of pessimistic things like delay, critical paths, and occasionally in an optimistic (usually fleeting) moment might contemplate “slack,” which is how much freedom a given task has to start early or late without affecting the overall outcome of the project. Something so rare that its name is stupid actually happened to the kitchen project today: negative delay. Negative delay is when something fails so badly to be late that it happens early.

(Which reminds me of a witty violist’s comment that our particularly bad conductor was so confused he was liable to start telling us we were rushing too slow and dragging too fast. [Yes, there are some witty violists. At least two, maybe three. Don’t believe everything you read on the internet.])

Yes, that’s right, something started early.

Granite Guys were supposed to come tomorrow (Wednesday), as were Range Delivery Guys, which as it was already had Jon and George hustling yesterday (Monday) to prep the way, but they had a cancellation, so they were coming this morning at 9:30. George and I learned this at 9, when we returned from dropping George’s ailing car at the garage down the hill. George and Jon then whipped into a flurry of activity to clear the decks for Granite Guys. I tried to help, but after hauling some cardboard down to the recycling bin, it became clear to me that the best way to help was to get out of the way and go back in my office to work.

Granite Guys didn’t actually show up until noon. Were they lost? Doing some emergency quick installation somewhere? Taking a long morning coffee break? Who knows. We don’t ask these things.

Anyway, once Granite Guys set to work hauling obscenely heavy slabs of granite (so heavy that the bar-top, which is not glued down yet, feels glued down) up the stairs and fitting them into place, George took up a position at the diamond wetsaw outside, cutting 16 inch slate tiles into quarters and diagonally-cut half quarters (for the backsplash), Jon ran off to buy the under-cabinet flourescent lights, and I ordered pizza and got back to work at my day job as a project manager. At 1:30, George, Jon, Tara (George’s Airedale), and I took our pizza break. By 4pm, Granite Guys (three Romanian boys who barely looked old enough to drive the truck, much less do a multi-thousand-dollar granite installation) had put all the kitchen slabs in place, done the cutout for the kitchen sink, and glued those two slabs down. The bar, sill, and other slabs are just sitting in position. Tomorrow they’re coming back around 9am (“Or later. Depends,” said Blonde Granite Guy) to do the bar sink cutout, fit the sill slab cutout, glue everything down, and then affix the fireplace slabs. It turns out there’s enough to do the hearth and face (yay!).