LowComDom Performances Presents
The Crapolla According to Fek'Lar
You Know You're DOOMED When...
your V.P. lays off all the people with unique knowledge, and then your new manager starts asking how we do those special tasks.
You've stumbled onto another issue of The Crapolla, a journal written for software professionals. No not the managers; I mean the people who do the work.
This Crapolla is sponsored by...
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In This Issue...
The "Suck Factor" has been very high lately.
Take a Letter
Newbie in Cube 84 writes ...
What's is Foot and Mouth Disease?
It's really called Hoof and Mouth disease (Anthrax). This affects livestock when sudden widespread lameness appears with vesicles or blisters on the snout, tongue and tops of the claws. (Sounds like a staff meeting.)
I have also heard of Foot in Mouth disease where journalists know so little about what they write about that they can't even get the name right. Lazier reporters quote the Journalists who got the name wrong, and now everyone is using the wrong phrase. If they can't get a simple name right, how can you trust them with the results of an election in Florida?
I've been having a bout of really bad Karma lately. I thought it was just hardware Karma. It started in late December when I dropped my digital camera about seventeen inches and whacked out the lens. (Funny, it didn't land on the lens.) This camera is a rugged as that big mountain of ice cream they have in hell. I took the camera to a local shop for an estimate. Weeks later they didn't know anything about the camera. I continued to bug them. Finally, they estimated $110.00, a bargain I thought. Months passed by and no camera. There was a reason, they underestimated. Now they were looking for a way out. But in California a written estimate is an obligation. I pressed them to it and finally got my camera.
I thought all was well until my firewall fried a few circuits. I'm no electrical engineer, but I thought by process of swapping boards around that I had diagnosed the fault to one NIC. I sent the card to the manufacturer for warranty repair. They lost it for ten days. About a month later I received a card marked "Refurbished". That didn't really bother me. I popped it back into its PCI slot and fired up the firewall. No good Charlie, it still froze the machine when packets were routed to the outside world. I decided to buy another card of the same design and it, too, was DOA. I returned the card and ended up buying a new box to run the firewall. There was much rejoicing.
I thought everything was going to be smooth sailing. Then LowComDom's ISP announced they were going out of business. This means there's a mad scramble to find a new place to park the website and the mailing lists. What was it, six months ago we did this? Okay we know the drill, it's just a matter of finding an ISP that doesn't insist that we use a NT box. (Believe it or not it is getting harder to find ISPs who have UNIX boxes and will sell you a shell account.) I figured, it was going to be busy for the next three weeks, but not impossible.
Tuesday the 24th of April was a black day. WTHAIS announced a lay off. The Brigadier lost his job along with the Rude Guy and the lady who owns the house with five toilets. Twenty-five percent of my group got the axe. I kept my job, but didn't feel any better for it. It's so depressing to see good people get RIF'ed. The Brigadier is on my very short list of managers I would work for again. (This makes a grand total of three names.)
As I said, the Karma hasn't been good. Sunday I woke up to a horrible scratchy sound coming from my server room. My SGI Iris box had a hard drive spazzing out. I flipped on the monitor to see what the state of the kernel was. The monitor's power passes through the main power supply. That was just enough to over load the machine and cause a complete failure of the main power bus. Shit! I had software on that box that processed the schedules of several satellite TV stations into an easy to read tome. I hadn't moved it to a box that was regularly backed up!
Every once in a while the universe kicks you in the ass. For the last four months it's been one kick after another. I grant you some kicks are worse than others. It's at times like this that you have to start looking forward and building contingencies.
No one at WTHAIS is feeling the warmth of job security right now, including me. In the past two months the job market has been sinking faster and faster for people in tech. A friend from Titanic Software just got laid off, the Brigadier, Rude Guy, and lady with all the toilets are out of work. Other people I know are forming "Lay Off Club". It's a group of geeks who are burned out and laid off getting together to hang out and do nothing. (A bunch of these guys have realized that they really need the time off, and nothing is exactly what they need.)
I and probably everyone else at WTHAIS have updated their resumes and shipped it off to the head hunters. But since there are so many people looking right now, I might have to do something that isn't in tech for a while. Now you are going to think I'm joking about this, but I figured that if I worked full time at In-N-Out burger as a french fry slinger, (or a Diet Coke Engineer) I could just barely make my part of the house payment. Just about everything else I do that costs money would need to stop, but I could just barely make it. What's the point of this as opposed to collecting my unemployment? Simple, for the sake of my psychological well being, I need to do something everyday that is a positive step in making my life better. My plan is to take any job if I'm laid off because when I go home, I'll be able to face myself in the mirror, and in the end that's all that is important.
As for all the equipment breaking, and the website possibly going down, or rolling blackouts all summer - these are simple blips in the road if you can face yourself in the mirror. That's my simple plan and I'm sticking to it.
SHIT! I just stubbed my toe!
George W. Revealed Imprisoned Space Alien!
Earth is Prison for Xenamorphs With Nose Candy Habit
Let's play, "Who said this?"
Heard in the halls of various software companies.
"At least your vagueness is consistent."
"He doesn't want your car. It doesn't ride right. He wants that yacht-like feel as it goes whoosh down the road!"
"The 'Full of Shit" theory just kicked in."
"That's a shot in ass. How's that feel to you?"
"You know what amateur means, don't you? We're not going to pay you."
"Even a moron chimp like me can figure this out."
"You must be smoking crack!"
I need to find out why my fridge is dancing in the middle of the kitchen.
(Inventor of Chocolate Cheesy Bunny - Morale Officer - The Last Honest Geek)
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