Using Old Technology Is Murder

, , , , | Right | October 30, 2020

Back in the day, one of my customers was the cafeteria at a local hospital. At the end of every shift, they would run reports on those long folio folded perforated ledger sheets with the green and white stripes. If you are over fifty, you know exactly what I’m talking about.

These are continuous feed via a tractor mechanism to a dot matrix printer. The sheets are 8 1/2 x 14 legal size so the printer is huge.

One day, I get a call.

Caller: “The printer won’t stop screaming when we print reports!”

Me: “Screaming?”

Caller: “Yes, screaming.”

In a hospital. It is disturbing patients, apparently.

I go out there, run a report, and d***ed if the printer doesn’t start screaming like it is a peacock being murdered!

I do all my checks and am about ready to pull out my screwdrivers — machines fear me when I get out the screwdrivers — when I look down the paper feed path and see…

An Aspirin.

As the paper went through the tractor feed, it dragged along the aspirin and vibrated it against the plastic feed guide at JUUUST the perfect frequency to sound exactly like a woman’s scream.

I removed the aspirin and it was just as quiet as you remember dot matrix printers to be.

After explaining what had happened, I offered the aspirin to the office manager. She declined.

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