A new job drops into the Klueless Support inbox.
"User is reporting receipt of files containing unwanted data".
I do a little bit of digging around and, sure enough, a data feed we send out each day has some spurious data in it when there should have been none, and has been doing this for a couple of days now.
I check the code and notice a bug, which is quickly fixed.
Well, I think to myself, that’s an easy one. Now, I’ll just email the users and tell them to discard the two files they received in error and the job’s a good ‘un, as we say.
“What are you working on at the moment,” asks the boss, wandering over.
“I’m just going to tell Sea-Mist that they can junk the files we sent them and that we’ve fixed the code so it won’t happen again.”
“Are you going to re-send the files?” he asks.
“No,” I reply, carefully, “I wasn’t actually planning to send them two completely empty text files as replacements, no.”
“I think you should send them the files.” He says.
“But they’ve got no data in them! It would be pointless!” I protest.
“Send them anyway,” he says. “That way, they’ll know we’ve delivered.”
If ever there was a word in the English language that has been abused, it’s the word ‘deliver’. Nothing is ever produced, only delivered. Nothing is sent, it’s delivered. The only thing that isn’t delivered, it seems, is my post of a morning (but that’s another story).
I sigh, fire up notepad, create 2 completely empty text files, name them appropriately and attach them to an email.
Having performed a Random Act of Management, the boss wanders off.
“I’ll send them,” I yell at his departing back, “But I’m sure as hell not encrypting them!”
"Whatever," he says, without even looking round.
Now I cannot let this pass. Before long we'll be deluged with pointless and unfulfilling tasks - more pointless and unfulfilling tasks, I should say.
A bit later, I go over to his desk and plonk his mug down upon it.
“What’s this?” he says.
“Your tea.” I reply. He peers into the mug.
“But there’s nothing in it,”
“Remember that cup of tea I made you the other day that you said you didn’t want…..?”
I haz a sarcasm.