Robert Whiting In search of awesome

Just a Horn


A fable

Mr Cardigan invited the Engineer to his house and said, “I would like you to obtain a horn–just a horn. I want to use it to call my dog and I find the sound far more pleasant than a whistle or clap.”

The Engineer asked questions and sketched up a plan to procure such a device.

He went to the Automotive and asked her if he could purchase just a horn from the assembly line, and she replied, “No. If you don’t have the battery, wiring, and steering wheel to mount it on, it just won’t work right. I’ll have to sell you the car.”

Somewhat perplexed, the Engineer purchased the car. He did not drive it home, the Automotive had insisted that it be shipped to his house. Upon arriving at home, the Engineer found a shipping crate containing all the components of the car.

Not one to complain, he set about building the car, but because he only wanted the horn, he left out the unnecessary bits. So he had a battery, wiring, and steering wheel. In order to keep the steering wheel in place, he attached the frame and wheels. The horn didn’t sound right until he added the computer, and it almost got rained on, so he added the waterproof paneling around the engine compartment–housing only the computer.

He was almost ready to show Mr Cardigan when he saw a note from the Automotive:

“Don’t forget to get signoff from Legal, Training, and Marketing.”

The Engineer tried to justify not calling them, but he decided to explain the situation and hoped their demands would be few.

They were not.

Legal required him to register it as a non road worthy electric vehicle and get the certificates to manufacture such a thing.

Training required him to generate a training manual for how to use the horn–and all other attached devices–including how to use the car computer.

Marketing required him to add the rest of the body of the vehicle, paint it with race stripes, and give it a name. He called it: Just a Horn.

Finally, he delivered the horn to Mr Cardigan. Mr Cardigan heard the tale from the Engineer about all the requirements and changes of plans that happened along the way.

Mr Cardigan got in Just a Horn (the non road worthy electric vehicle) and pushed the horn. His dog came running. It was exactly what he wanted.