JENNY: Listen, I don't think we can afford the podium after all.

Brian has a confused look on his face as Jenny peels a page full of numbers from her notepad and hands it to him.

JENNY: PM's been very clear about the budget. It's been codified right from the get-go. See, we have to reserve this amount here for a proper underfloor heating system. We can still finish the house within budget if we get rid of the big podium in the meeting room.

Brian looks at the numbers.

BRIAN: There's no way a UFH system is this expensive. There has to be a cheaper solution. We just have to take a moment to analyze... Ensure that we have enough for both the UFH and the podium.

JENNY: You do understand that a full UFH's absolutely essential to have here. A podium's not. Just recently PM urged us to save money wherever possible. He doesn't want to see the costs skyrocket like in the last project. You're going to have to say bye bye podium.

BRIAN: But... But...

Something's missing here. What kind of ending should this story have?

Hint:

Six short clues are hiding in the text. One is missing.

  • Brian has a confused look on her face : Brian is a firstname most often given to boys. Should we assume Brian is female, or is it a typo, or does it not matter ? – Evargalo Oct 11 at 9:57
  • 1
    @Evargalo Fixed, thanks. Just a typo. – jafe Oct 11 at 10:00
up vote 6 down vote accepted

The story should have a ...

... happy ending. Perhaps this one:

BRIAN: But... But... Wait! All this tight budgeting is done via Project Accounting. You know how they have treated us throughout this project. Can't we just gyp PA? Have some of the costs moved to other accounts? Look ...

Brian takes the notepad from Jenny and points out some numbers to her. Jenny frowns as she looks at the numbers thoughtfully.

JENNY: Yes, that might actually work ...

Eh?

The names of six of the seven dwarfs from Walt Disney's Snow White are hidden backwards in the text. The one who is missing is Happy:

JENNY: Listen, I don't think we can afford the podium after all.

Brian has a confused look on his face as JennY PEELS a page full of numbers from her notepad and hands it to him.

JENNY: PM's been very clear about the budget. It's been CODified right from the get-go. See, we have to reserve this amount here for a proper underfloor heating system. We can still finish the house within budget if we get rid of the big podium in the meeting room.

Brian looks at the numbers.

BRIAN: There's no way a UFH system is this expensive. There has to be a cheaper solution. We just have to take a moment to analYZE... ENSure that we have enough for both the UFH and the podium.

JENNY: You do understand that a fulL UFH'S ABsolutely essential to have here. A podium's not. Just recentlY PM URGed us to save money wherever possible. He doesn't want to see the costs skyrocket like in the last project. You're going to have to say bye bYE PODium.

BRIAN: But... But...

Relevant xkcd:

The days of the week are Monday, Arctic, Wellesley, Green, Electra, Synergize, and the Seventh Seal.

(Click image to have it explained.)

  • Nice work! I told you that the clues were short! :P – jafe Oct 12 at 11:08
  • Yuk. Random short term search in full text! How did you get the first one or an inkling on what to search for? I’d possibly looked around UFH first, but else? Well done though! – BmyGuest Oct 13 at 6:32

Perhaps they are discussing

Building a chicken house (coop).

Underfloor heating

would be important and beneficial to the chickens, especially in the colder climates

A podium in the meeting room

may be a place for chickens to roost upon, not essential though. If it were a human meeting room, it would be more important

The PM

may be the project manager or the poultry manager

And

bye bye podium may be a reference to bye bye birdie?

So the end of the story

The chicken coop is built, the birds are warm, the farmer is happy and Brian can try to put a podium in the next one.

Although Jenny suggests at first that they cannot afford to buy a new podium, some details suggest there is already a podium there:

  • She says to "get rid of the big podium"
  • She also tells Brian to say "bye bye" to the podium.

Also, Jenny speaks of a previous project that went over budget.

Could it be that this project is not building a house from the ground up, but refurbishing one built previously? Could the "big" podium referred to be an existing one that was going to be replaced by a new, smaller podium? One reason for this may be that the underfloor heating will raise the floor level and make the existing podium too high.

If this is correct then the story could end with a comprimise of having the "big" podium lowered rather than buying a new one.

Perhaps the PM only wants underfloor heating because he/she gets cold feet when they stand at the podium. Sure, they can't afford the new podium as well as the underfloor heating, but removing the podium would negate the need for the underfloor heating in the first place.

Brian knows this and that is why he is protesting the decision to fit the UFH but not the podium.

Your Answer

 
discard

By clicking "Post Your Answer", you acknowledge that you have read our updated terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy, and that your continued use of the website is subject to these policies.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.