One of the items I sell is custom buttons (badges). Local movie productions sometimes buy them to use as promotional items.
I got an email from a new production company, ordering a set of buttons. They wanted a fairly typical design, with the movie logo and assorted quotes from the movie in production. It’s supposed to be a horror movie.
Price was negotiated, the deposit made through Paypal, and they sent the content in a simple txt file. All arranged through e-mail, all as usual with such an order.
The logo was simple, and worked well on the buttons. But, the content was… off. These might have been typos, they might not. One quote was “Quiet thinking about the dead were living still.”
So, I sent another email.
Me: Do you want me to edit these for grammar and punctuation? I think you might have some typos.
Client: No, they’re the way we want them. Use the text we sent.
I figured it must be something sensible in the context of the movie. So, I selected a drippy “slasher” font, typeset the buttons, and sent them jpg previews.
Me: Here are the previews. Please look them over and make sure they are what you want.
Client: They’re fine. When will they be ready?
Me: If I have the go-ahead, they’ll be ready Friday morning.
Everything was going well, but I was still worried.
On Friday, the client came to my shop. I handed them the box of buttons.
Me: Check these and make sure they’re right.
Client: (glancing in the box) They look good!
They signed off, handed me the check, and left with the buttons.
Monday, I got a phone call. I was braced to defend myself, but the caller (not the same person who picked up the buttons) just asked me in a tired voice how much it would be to redo the order as a rush job for Wednesday. I was actually free to do it without a strain, so I gave them the same price as before, and they agreed.
The client’s boss emailed me the correct text, which was “Quit thinking about the dead. We’re still living.” Also, apparently it wasn’t a horror movie but more of a suspense one, so in a few quick emails, we settled on a less drippy font.
Wednesday, Client’s Boss came for the buttons. I didn’t say anything about the previous person but treated this like a whole new order. Client’s Boss sat at a table with buttons to check each different design and even looked at their backs to see that they were straight. They approved, signed off, handed over the check, and took the box of buttons.
Thank you, Client Boss, for seeing that the idiot in the equation wasn’t me.
I have since had more orders from that same production company, but never saw or heard from the original client again.