Chapter 10: This is why it’s called high tech
Translated by me, edited by Kai.
The originally dismissed meeting, suddenly became as fierce as people in a farmer’s market.
They all can’t believe that this kind of artistic curbstone only costs 60.
All items have their relative price. If the asking price is way below the relative price, then there is only one possibility.
“The 24 court lady statues on Caiyi bridge were all contributed by our department.”
“A stone slate, costs merely 20,000 for just the labour, 20,000 people!”
“The statues on Caiyi bridge, at the time costed 10,000 yuan for each manual cut made. It was unimaginably expensive.” Other vice director uttered: “These couple of pictures, just from how detailed and perfect the ladies are, they must have been carved by an engraving machine.”
“60 yuan a piece is cheap beyond reasoning. However, in this ever changing day and age, is there a possibility of the existence of some high tech engraver that we don’t know of?”
“Won’t we know if we just ask him?” Director Liu Fengjin has a good relationship with Sang Qing privately. He hinted to everyone to quiet down and called Sang Qing’s cell phone.
The call quickly connected and Liu Fengjin pressed the speaker button: “Mr. Sang, I have a couple of questions for you.”
On the other side of the call, Sang Qing’s voice sounds even more pandering than a traitor: “ Director Liu, please, go ahead and ask. Even if you ask for my bank pin, I’ll still tell you with no hesitations.”
Liu Fengjin immediately got to the question at hand: “If court lady carvings, just like those on Caiyi bridge, were to be engraved onto curbstones, then what are the manufacturing costs?”
“Director Liu, that’s not even possible. Engraving machines can only engrave on large stone slabs.”
Sang Qing thought that this is something like another deal, so answered enthusiastically: “The curbstone is only so big, so it’s only possible to carve things like flowers on it. Director Liu, if you need to carve flowers on the curbstone, then I’ll just charge you 200 per. However, you can’t order too many. I only have 5 engravers in the factory. Even if they were to work non-stop, with enough materials and two rotating shifts, then I can at most produce 10,000 pieces in 2 months.”
“Then is there any high tech engraving machine that can carve court lady pictures?”
Sang Qing thought about it then slowly replied: “ There probably are some high precision carving machines with large scale advertisement companies. But the resulting price and wasted time is just too excessive. I probably have to charge at least 1000 a piece.”
Receiving the information he needs, Liu Fengjin without even saying bye, directly hung up.
Then, turned and locked onto Han Youpeng; with looks full of we’re not through with this.
“Xiao Han, you sure you heard it’s 60 and not 600?”
The expression of chief Le Zhengdong right now, was like those old lottery players when they’ve matched all their numbers, but is later told that the numbers were from the previous lottery draw.
During the city chief meeting yesterday, the mayor strongly emphasized that they need to tightly grab onto both the city’s cultural aspects as well as using new technology to improve living standards.
At the beginning the appearance of perfectly preserved drawings of court ladies on Caiyi street by Qiu Yin, is it not Zhongyun’s exclusive cultural feature?
This was never before seen authentic originals. It caused quite the stir with society and the archaeology world. It even made the city of Zhongyun news headlines for over a week, and increased their popularity on the web.
The amount of tourists also suddenly increased by over 10 times on Caiyi street. Zhongyun’s leading leaders also followed in sampling this new view.
Now there are precise carvings, that aren’t inferior to the statues on Caiyi street, and can also cover Zhongyun’s several main streets.
Isn’t this Zhongyun’s new exclusive distinguishing cultural feature?
Using large quantity, low cost artworks that are just that much more expensive than regular curbstones, to fill in multiple streets.
Isn’t this tech savvy living?
This will become a street scenery only unique to Zhongyun.
If this engineering project is finished while he, Le Zhengdong, is in office, then his future……
However now that Zhongyun’s largest masonry factory is clearly telling him that it’s not possible!
This wonderful dream popped like a bubble.
How can chief Le Zhengdong not be angry?
“The boss who made these carvings are downstairs, do you want me to invite him up?” Han Youpeng quietly asked.
“Immediately! At once!” Chief Le Zhengdong firmly commanded.
When Ye Qing arrived at the meeting room, 30 plus minutes had already passed. This is because Ye Qing, after much struggle, carried a piece of marble up from his van.
Before Ye Qing can place the marble down, several directors and vice directors, just like sharks who have smelt blood, swarmed in.
Tangible objects forever provide a better shock and awe value than pictures.
Seeing the vivid and lifelike carving in front of him, chief Le Zhengdong even has the impulse, no matter the cost, to fill in all of the city’s main streets with them.
60 yuan a piece, Ye Qing repeated the price again having already lost count how many time he has repeated.
This price is cheap to the point of having people wonder if they heard it right. Le Zhengdong is also eager to verify if this beautiful dream can be completed.
“You own a masonry?” Liu Fengjin, who boast of possessing much knowledge about masonries, first asked.
“That’s not true.” Ye Qing patiently explained: “I own a mechanical saw manufacturing factory, which specializes in producing all kinds of large scale cutting machines.”
Ye Qing also conveniently gave everyone in the room one of his business cards, which has the address of his factory and it’s products listed.
Among them also includes several stone cutters, this is also the reason why the directors lessened their doubts against him.
But they still can’t believe that, for only 60 yuan, they can buy an artistic curbstone.
“Leaders, see if this works.” Ye Qing of course know of their doubts. To be honest, if it wasn’t because he is the one who made these things, he also wouldn’t believe this kind of cheap work.
“My factory is in the industrial park. Industry and commerce office has our records.”
Ye Qing tossed out a condition that is very favourable for them: “How about this, whenever I deliver a batch of curbstones, you can pay the fees after they have been checked for quality.”
Chief Le Zhengdong still has some uncertainty of this gargantuan convenience the construction office has just received: “Xiao Ye comrade, I believe you also understand that we the city construction office plan to switch out many of the city’s main streets’ curbstones, hence the order for carved curbstones.”
Ye Qing nodded.
“We don’t have much time left, the inspection team will be here in 3 months so all curbstones must be completed in 2 months time. I just heard someone from Jiangshan masonry say, just carving a couple of flowers on the curbstones, 24 hours shifts, they can only produce 10,000 pieces in 2 month.”
“They have 5 CNC engraving mills, how many do you have?”
“Chief, my engraving of these court lady pictures isn’t as simple as drawing some flower using lines.”
Ye Qing smiled confidently: “If according to Jianshan masonry’s calculation with those outdated machines, then I probably have around 480 of them.”
“However chief, flowers made up of a couple of lines, in front of the comprehensiveness of court lady pictures, there exists an extremely large skill gap. This shortfall isn’t something that can be made by just quantity alone.”
“Just don’t disappoint us.” Chief Le Zhengdong laughed. This comparison Ye Qing made made him quite relieved.
When the time comes for the inspection team to visit Zhongyun, he can completely point out to rolls upon rolls of refined curbstones and grandly show off their cultural and technical aspects to the team.
This is science. This is technology that changes lives, that changes the face of cities!