Self Immolation and the Pits of Hell

We just received an RFQ (Request For Quotation) from a jobber here in the U.S. who supplies products to the military, along with the original U.S. Army RFQ that was sent to them.  It is for one item.  One, very well-known, standard item that has been in manufacture by one company and sold by the thousands to the general public for many years.  We all know what it is, we all know how it works, we all know that it has a model number, and it is not terribly expensive

The Army RFQ is 38 pages long– that’s 38 full, 8.5″ x 11″ pages.

There’s more.  The 38 page RFQ comes with side notes added on (and just so we’re clear; if you were to print it out it would take more than 38 pages).  The RFQ does not give the manufacturer or the model number of the desired product– just a small photo, a vague description and the overall length (which, by the way, does NOT match the length of the model in the supplied product photo).  They just couldn’t pull that off with only 38 pages plus notes, but I (as anyone in the business would) know exactly what they want.

In the side notes, we learn that “Quotes shall be limited to 40 pages”.  I’ll keep that in mind and try to really restrain myself.

Just in case you’re wondering; I am not kidding.

4 thoughts on “Self Immolation and the Pits of Hell

  1. In the Marines, I once was required to sign a document indicating that I had yes, indeed signed another document.

    So, this doesn’t surprise me (although I’m curious to know what requested product is!).

  2. But who is to say that you, yes, indeed signed the second page? Or is the correct question; “How many paper-pushers can we hire today?”

    “Optics weapon gun sight, battery operated”

  3. A friend in the paper industry related a similar story, ‘cept in his case the product in question was, Um, toilet seat protectors (AKA A__ Gaskets).

    This explains (but does not excuse) the $600 hammers made famous a while back.

  4. When son went through Basic, he said the issue bore cleaner was crap compared to what we’d used at home. Seems a few years back it was decided something ‘environmentally friendly and more safe’ was needed, so now the issue product doesn’t work very well.

    God knows how many pages were used to call for/describe the new product.

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