Sunday, December 5, 2010


   I sit here yawning at the end of yet another weekend...This week did drag along, and I am glad that it’s over! But man, its December already! Has this year been flying or WHAT! :-| I don’t even remember living through all those months...If you ask me, I am kinda stuck somewhere between April and June. April , because a lot happened in that month this year...I hit 25, changed my job etc. Reminds of this bald astrologer who happened to look at the lines on my palm in a family gathering a decade back. He smiled, rubbed his chin and declared...” You have a government job waiting for you..You will get one at 25..Your second job”. I giggled as I pictured myself in the avatar of a loyal IAS officer, complete with a starched cotton sari etc...I giggle now, as I look at my present avatar, sitting cross legged on a chair and typing like a mad woman into the computer screen :D I give the astrologer half the brownie points least he did foresee a job change at 25 ;) In his defence, I must say, his predictions were quite accurate...Especially the one where he said I was a budding genius, a prodigy, an enigma waiting to be cracked and a treasure of true talent waiting to be unearthed..LOL..Can we even question that NOW? ;)
    Astrologer aside, let’s talk about my job change. When I was switching companies in April, I intended to take a backup of all the blogs that I had written on my first company’s internal blog site. And since there is a lot of intellectual property blah blah, I just let it be and walked out of the campus without a backup of ANY kind. Not even my official mails. Can you imagine that? I can be quite a dumb blonde when I want to! I have no idea why I did that...I just forwarded few mails from my archives to my personal email id and left it at that. And to think I had created a zillion personal folders on outlook, carefully segregating mails into weird classifications! I don’t give a rat’s ass about ANY of those mails :D But, but, but, I swear at myself when I think what the hell was I doing when I missed taking a backup of the ‘FUNNY’ folder on my outlook. By ‘FUNNY’, I do not mean giggle-and-forget forwards..Nope..These were ‘actual’ official emails. ‘Real’ funny ones! Ones which were sent out or received during times of utter crisis, production go-lives etc. Ones which were not meant to be funny in ANY way, but turned out to be so, thanks to all the insanity induced by the nervous wrecks who were working on the god-damn ‘Priority-1’ issues.
   Without taking any names, I will treat you to some samples, some timeless gems that refuse to leave my mind even now.
   Sample this.
   The client worked with multiple vendors and my previous employer was one of them. Another software firm from India was also a vendor for the same client. We managed their sales software and the other firm managed the client’s database and servers.
   A P1 issue struck us on one fateful day and there was a long chain of back and forth emails being exchanged between us and the DBA from the other firm. And the whole world was copied in those mails, The ‘CC’ section looked like a novel :) It was ‘THAT’ big!
   We did some kinda fix at our end and wrote back to the DBA, asking for a server restart. The guy doesn’t respond for 20 minutes. Now, when you have people sitting on your neck, 20 minutes is a LOT of time! Finally, when my team mates and I were busy raining the choicest of cuss words on this guy, a mail pops up. He had written back. I quote him EXACTLY. This is what he wrote.
I am in the process of getting this done. This will take some time. Could you please bare with me for some time?
    I have a keen eye for grammatical mistakes. Not that I don’t make any. But when there is one, I can sniff it from a mile. When I read this mail, I was guffawing like a mad cow, cackling like a hyena and thanks to all the jittery nerves, this mail seemed funnier that it actually was. The guy wanted us to “bare” with him while he got it done.
    Before we could even recover from this mail, another one came by. It was a jackass from the ‘CC’ list. He said one word. “Sure”. And that cracked us up too..The DBA and the CC guy “baring” was not a pretty picture! :D
    This mail chain went out for some more time and as long as it lasted, every reply that followed the DBA’s “bare with me” mail seemed funnier than the previous one in our gutter heads and helped in easing out the tension that was gripping us until then :)
    Ok, in the second sample, “I” am the jackass. I wrote this mail and sent it out to a senior client guy, whose experience in the industry was equal to my age. Thankfully for me, there was no one in ‘CC’ or ‘BCC’ and for all I know, if I don’t spill it out now, I can die with this secret..But, what’s the fun in NOT sharing a funny thing? We need to laugh at ourselves sometimes ;)
    Now the client guy was an old man, who was around when Mainframes were ‘THE’ thing and was around even when I started my first job. So you can imagine the kind of experience he comes with. This old man was no bossy fellow, but instead, was a very sweet guy. We hit it off really well and once we had that rapport between us, our mails were very casual, albeit official :)
    One evening, some user ran into some issue and immediately shot a mail asking for a quick resolution. Now that meant staying back and winding this up. I did that. Finally, at around 10-ish everything was back in place. All the while, there was a regular email chain happening between the old guy and me.Next morning, when I opened my mailbox, there is a chain mail happening between some colleagues, discussing how I owe them a treat for some reason and how I must keep aside 10K from my salary to treat these lazy bums to some awesome lunch. I giggle and was about to type a reply when the next mail arrives. From the old guy, the client. It said “Thanks for all the help. Everything works fine now. Can we have a call with the user at 11 AM your time?” I was relieved to see that everything was fine now and went back to my previous mail to type a reply to the chain mail.
    I sent a reply to the group of colleagues. And then started typing the reply to the client. ...
Wait. No. This is not happening. Dint I just reply to this mail? OMG. I then click on SENT ITEMS.
    I am done..totally! How do I recall this mail..frantic search for that option ensues. And before I could figure it out, I get a reply from the old guy.
“Oh! Is someone having a bad morning?”. I cringe.
    Guess what. Instead of replying to the chain mail, I had typed my reply on the client’s mail and sent it across to him! And it read “ In your dreams ! Not happening...No chance!”
    This certainly was meant for the “keeping aside 10K for the lunch treat” gig :-| And like my luck might have it, it sounded like a perfectly rude reply to the client’s email :P
    I dialled the client’s number frantically and spent the next five minutes explaining my situation, while he went ‘Ho Ho Ho Ho...Ha Ha Ha Ha” like Santa Claus at the other end of the line...Luckily for me, he was a jolly good fellow :D
    My “funny” folder in Outlook was home to some more of those “real” goofy emails, gathered during my three years at my first job :) Thankfully, I was the recipient of the rest of the emails and not the jackass who wrote it :P Out of the zillion mails, these deserved a place on my pendrive on the last day! I still wonder how I missed them out :)
    Dear Funny Folder, I miss you! In your loving memory , I am considering creating your sister folder on my present Outlook and hopefully I will never WRITE any email that will bring your sister to existence :P I just hope there are enough people out there who would be generous enough to contribute to make her a reality ;) :D

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