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Task And Ye Shall Grieve

| Working | May 10, 2012

(This takes place at a US government agency. We’ve released an RFQ for a major computer purchase: one new large mainframe system replacing two smaller and much older systems. I’m the sysadmin for all three. It’s currently October of 1994.)

Me: “I’m going to need some help with the migration when the new machine gets here. I want either Bill or Dave to assist me.”

Boss: “It won’t be here for a while, right?”

Me: “Right, not until March. I just wanted to give you a little lead time on getting an assistant, so you could arrange it with their manager.”

Boss: “Okay. Remind me again when it gets a little closer to the time.”

Me: “No prob…”

(January, 1995)

Me: “The contract for the new machine has been awarded. You asked me to remind you about getting an assistant.”

Boss: “Okay, I’ll take care of it.”

(February, 1995)

Me: “They’re starting to build the machine. It should ship early next month. I still need an assistant.”

Boss: “Okay, I’ll take care of it.”

(March, 1995)

Me: “The machine is being shipped tomorrow. I still need an assistant.”

Boss: “Okay, I’ll take care of it.”

(Late March, 1995)

Me: “The machine is on our receiving dock. I still need an assistant.”

Boss: “Okay, I’ll take care of it.”

(End of March, 1995)

Me: “The machine is in the computer room. They’re starting to hook up the power. I still need an assistant.”

Boss: “Okay, I’ll take care of it.”

(April, 1995)

Me: “The machine’s up and running. I still need an assistant.”

Boss: “Okay, I’ll take care of it.”

(May, 1995)

Me: “The machine’s been running for a month, and I’ve begun the migration, but I still need an assistant.”

Boss: “Okay, I’ll take care of it…”

(September, 1995)

Boss: “Why aren’t you finished yet?!”