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27 August 2004 @ 11:40 pm
Conversations With Coworkers  


While doing a validation, the QA person told me the following story:

Apparently one of our fine customers was driving along one day while putting his contact lenses in. Darwin tried to step in, and (unsurprisingly) this individual got into a close relationship with a tree. He did, however, fail to remove himself from the gene pool, and therefore missed receiving a Darwin Award.

He wrote in to tell us about his experience, and said that we should have a warning on our boxes that people should not try to put in contact lenses while driving.




As part of the great office move, the SAP contractors were released from their little room and given cubes in the now-free open space. One of them, upon seeing his new desk, commented that it looked like the set for Star Trek: The Next Generation.

"Warp factor 10, Mr. Data," he declared loudly.

This particular contractor has Dragonball Z pics for his computer's desktop. Adding that up with his Star Trek comments reminded me of taeriel's stories of action figure wars with her coworker. I innocently asked this contractor if he collects action figures.

"No," he said. "But that reminds me, I do always pick up an action figure for each new contract. I need to go get one for this job."

The next day he brough in a nifty Trunks action figure that lights up and makes cool power-up sounds.

"This is fun! I think I'll start collecting action figure," he declared.

I smirked.




We have lots of demi-ricers working at my company. One of them drives a red WRX wagon, and I haven't yet figured out if he is a ricer or not. (He's got the watermelon-launcher exhaust, gold rims, and I just noticed that he's recently lowered the car. Sounds suspicious.)

I happened to be walking past this coworker on my way back in from a walk. He commented that he noticed that I had a little Subaru flag (on a stick -- a legacy from Wales) and an Subaru screen saver, and he wondered if I owned a Subaru.

"No," I replied. As I started to explain that I'm a rally fan he said "SWRT -- ah, rally." Turns out he's a rally fan too. He has a copy of the video of Petter in Japan last year (for the Alpine World Rally or whatever that promo thing was called), and offered to loan it to me. I offered some of my spare SWRT posters, which he greeted with about the same glee that I greeted his offer to loan me the Petter vid. (I've been meaning to get it, but I keep either having no money or no Internet connection when I think of it.)

We chatted cars for a while, then wandered off. I'm now plotting trying to get him to an autocross, and then see what I can do about talking him into letting me drive his car on fun runs. This plan may fall through, though, since the official season is over as of this weekend, and slush doesn't start until October. Who knows how long after that any of us will be at that job?



All of that makes me actually like some of my coworkers. What an odd sensation. Heck, it almost makes the job sound bearable.

However...

There was a production problem after hours last night. I didn't get the message immediately, and decided that it was insufficiently important once I did get the message. This morning my boss pulled me off into a corner to "check with me about something."

Turns out that he's decided that the validation person is out to get him/us. She actually knows a fair amount of techincal stuff, and has been asking questions about how our systems work from the programming/database side. She proposed a possible reason why the problem arose when it did, and discussed it with Guillotine Guy. Psycho Freak Boss was offended that she would ask GG for confirmation on anything that PFB said.

(I sympathized with him on this. All too often in my job he won't believe something I say unless he checks with someone more... well, male. Usually it's Fluffy. The person he checks with inevitably knows less about the systems than I do. Gee, I can see where it might be annoying if Validation Person would ask someone else for confirmation all the time!)

The really obnoxious thing is that I decided that it would be easier for me to just feed his paranoia, rather than try to point out that maybe other people in the company have better things to do with their time than plot out how to make us screw up so that they can make us look bad. I didn't exactly agree with his paranoia -- but I did tell him that Validation Person has been bugging me to try and get access to the schema on the test database. I also pointed out the new personality dynamic that's going on around Validation Person. (She's always getting after Tester Boy, and she thinks one of my users who knows just enough to be really, really dangerous is a wonderful person who knows all kinds of useful information about the system. Me, I think he's a bit of a small fish in a big pond pretending to be a big fish. But she thinks he's golden. *shudder*)



That incident really hit me on why I need to get out of this job. It's worn me down to the point where I readily compromise my standards and morals just because it's too much hassle to try and stick to them. I'm beyond tired of the way I have to break my personality in order to continue functioning at this job.