Anytime, redefined

Pilot fish takes a new job at a company that pays for IT employees' broadband Internet at home, so they can connect at any time and make system changes.

"I called the local cable company and requested that it be installed and billed to the company," says fish. "No problem -- on Wednesday, it was installed, and I enjoyed it for a few days until Friday, when I came home and it was nonfunctional.

"Of course, you can't reach the small-town cable company until Monday, so I was without Internet over the weekend. It was fixed on Tuesday."

But on Friday, fish comes home to, once more, no Internet.

The week after, it's the same thing. And the week after that.

Then, one Saturday, a server needs a reset -- but fish can't log in to do it, because her Internet is off again.

It takes an hour for her to travel to the data center -- a delay that costs the company plenty.

After that, fish threatens to go find another broadband provider if someone at the cable company can't explain why her connection keeps getting shut off.

"They finally admitted that shutoffs were always done on Fridays," fish says. "I had them check the list and, sure enough, my name was on the list.

"It seems that because my company paid for the broadband, it was decided that they would only approve it for weekdays.

"I guess having Internet supplied only while I was at work and at location was not thought out too well."

This week marks exactly 10 years since Sharky started retelling your true tales of IT life. Hard to believe anybody could spend that much time hanging around a water cooler, huh?

Sharky wants to thank his friends who have helped over the years: Steve, Frank, Sami, Mitch, Paul, Tom, Maryfran, Sharon, Linda, Jamie, Michele and the gang down at Bob's Poolroom. Special thanks goes to all the stalwart pilot fish who have told me their stories but must remain nameless - so they can remain employed.

Want to join them? Send your tale to me at sharky@computerworld.com. I'll file off the identifying marks, and you'll snag a snazzy Shark shirt if I use it. Add your comments below, and read some great old tales in the Sharkives.

Now you can post your own stories of IT ridiculousness at Shark Bait. Join today and vent your IT frustrations to people who've been there, done that.

Copyright © 2009 IDG Communications, Inc.

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