Today after picking up two fresh blocks of business cards, 1 one with Uruguay phone number and one without, I returned to the my desk and the printer unfortunately sitting on it. Below: one business card, phone numberless variant, email obscured because spammers will eat anything:
Then I printed. The printer started smoking as consumer laser printers tend to do, and then I printed some more. I packed my backback with two document envelopes. On contained all of my correspondence with the other party this month printed. The other contained a copy of the contract, my receipt from filing the police report, archive.is printous where the non-performant advertise tier III facilities, and the narrative I brought to the local seccional de policía which the police did not keep. I further packed a new USB drive with .mbox files. One .mbox file contains all of the non-performant's2 incoming communications to me this month. The other contains all of my outgoing communications to them.
The .mbox files are because I am no ready yet to print all of the full emails with headers. Thanks to the 2016 DNC fuckup, non-repudiability of DKIM is common knowledge.3 Introducing that and any other techinical fact may take expensive experts in court, but having that fact on hand now during the maximum pressure phase is free. Having a pile of English language correspondence demonstratng other than good faith is free now, but to enter court will require expensive translation by a licensed translator. I leave for the meeting with the knowledge that going to court will be expensive for all parties, the other side's maximum upside is capped and my maximum upside is unknown. Potential costs also uncapped at this time, but damning the damned for the principle of the matter is... the principle of the thing.
I begin the journey there by boarding a surprise, pleasantly depopulated 145 bus. It got here before the 104 or other options headed the same direction. By the time it arrives at Ciudadela I am the only remaining passenger. Along the way I do see some Urban campers with children being moved by the police. It was unclear if their problem was the location or doing the urban camping thing with children in tow during the final days before the election.
I arrive in the Old City with plenty of time to spare. I leisurely walk, take in some sights and make my way over.
Thusly as an interlude I present, not the lawyer's building. Instead this has to be the saddest arrangement of balconies I have ever seen. Circling around and going under they seem to be metal or plastic tubs with a central seam occupied by some sort of foam tape. Yes, drips fell from the seam. In a very Art Deco city that undervalues maintenance, this building is an outlier and an eyesore.
On To The Meeting
I arrive early, and lead to a room where I am offered coffee and water as is the local custom for this sort of office. I take water and begin unpacking and organizing the papers.
The partner I am scheduled to meet with arrives, we exchange greeting in Spanish. He asks about my problem, I describe my problem, explain the layout of papers I have, and offer him the contract for a grilling. He expresses familiarity with the damned. His speed at reaching relevant parts of the contract suggests experience in reading this contract in particular. I am grilled on provisions of the contract which could be used to escape or contain liability. I give answers based in the Civil Code and correspendence in front of me on how those provisions don't correspond to the facts of the case in my reading. He suggests Force Majure may be in play on both the connectivity and cooling problems. I explain internet weather is anything but Force Majure and the absence of demonstrated good faith on the part of the provider eliminates defense under "causas extrañas" per article 1342 of the local civil code.
At some point ~20 minutes in, per the lawyer's suggestion, we switched to English as the discussion turned to the technologies involved.
We go over the different forms of court the case could get docketed into including a consumer's rights court, but we agree that exerting maximum pressure up front for a settlement is the ideal course of action. I offered my observations concerning the signs of illness in the adversary. We arrived at a few avenues for increasing pressure, but the next step is a certified telegram with demands. The billing rate, if I recall correctly is 120 USD for the hour and 50 USD for the telegram. Sending a note for clarification after compiling this report on the pricing. He confirmed my suspicions that if things make it into the courts the expenses will build fast.
The biggest open question is damages. The local laws allow seeking damages because well, my clients all left to other countries and other hosting solutions leaving me without Uruguay income. Shipping and outbound Aduanas dispatchers to return client equipment are other grounds for damages. The equipment cooking in the unheated basement closet, the pretty please insure your equipment clause of the contract may hold and everything up to fraud for not being an actual datacenter with standards as advertised is ready to be pressed.
I do let him know that I have other consultations with counsel scheduled and moving fast is a priority. I stated that I strongly suspect the consultoria I've been going to for my local taxes provides counsel for the enemy and I've been looking for a new one anyways. He offered to gather some referrals.
He asked about my future plans, and I honestly stated that I will be conducting an international job search, though if I find a way to make Uruguay work out its a fine country. I would just rather never live or do business in a common law jurisdiction ever again. After mentioning which part of the US I'm from, he mentioned he was recently in Chicago and it surprised him how poor the US is. We spent a bit of time comparing our projections for the US and Uruguay, and how uniquely worthless a datacenter contract that isn't getting renewed is. He asked about my legal background and I explained that through the unbounded complexity of US law, being able to live in a place where the entire criminal code can be read in a couple hours is a relief.4 I brought up Uruguay's agricultural world leadership in rice and general excellence, and my small sadness that the countryside's performance can rarely be found here in the city.
We parted ways and I walked back to the desk.
Having walked 18 de Julio before, the new sight that got my finger on the camera was the early stages of the nightly pichi camp forming. It's not that I haven't seen it at other times. I've never seen it at this hour before it fills. They've tried preventing the daily buildup with night fencing and other measures, still won't stop the daytime loitering. That big awning... pure public nuissance in the current environment.
Next audition is Wednesday afternoon. I feel better than I have since shortly after I landed. The contrast between my Spanish language ability on arrival versus now, versus even a few months ago. The grim reasons motiviting my activity give me no pleasure. The actual action of doing the activity. The clarity of purpose. The clear mission. I feel alive. My future after the Pizarro cleanup is still uncertain, but the despondence present after the immediate collapse hasn't mounted a return. My punch list is long and it keeps being interrupted, but I want to keep something like this level of activity going well after the cleanup's done. The international datacenter tech job search sounds like the right thing to do, but if none of the fish bite and I'm camped in Uruguay for a while... I'm going to have to do something. I'm fine with that as long as I get to stay active.5
- I gave them the information and a free hand to design. They used sans serif derpy fonts. I told them serif on everything but the keyid. For the keyid monospace. Unfortunately their website doesn't work on human browsers, but if you happen to pass through Pocitos in need of printing... Pixel Imprenta works fast. [↩]
- Not named under the doctrine of damning their memory [↩]
- Yes, spammers were the first to embrace DKIM despite the non-repudiability because doing DKIM got more of their shit through. Yet another fiatist complexity that ends up taking more flesh out of their own asses than anyone else's. [↩]
- This is not any sort of boast about my reading ability. I do read a lot, but the criminal code here is actually short. [↩]
- This last paragraph exists because my blog's primary utility is to me. When I inevitably re-read this entery into my incidently public notebook, this 'state of myself' note is almost certainly going to be useful further into the future than the details of this rather clear case. The damned sucks, sucks to be them. I know today why I feel alive isn't because the damned sucks. It's because I'm doing, and I will beat myself with that fact until morale improves. [↩]