I Love When Shit Works
Ok so my job - right - umm - here it is - I fly all over the country (man that sounds cooler than it is) and I go to work for these huge HUGE companies with gigantic humming server rooms that are kept at 50 degrees where you have to wear static free clothing and booties. There are guys with 3 id cards and codes and armed guards in front of the door. And in rolls me, red eyed, stenched with booze and I sit down to a screen the size of Ray Lewis's TV and people stand around and watch me. Well, not now while I'm typing - because usually I have like a ...I guess you would call it... a practice computer in another room. I always insist on having an outside connection. You get locked in the "Glass Zoo" for too long and you start to go nuts. These places fly you around, take you to dinner, let you stay in the sweetest hotels, even try to get you hooked from time to time. It's not a bad rap.
Anyway - so I cruise in and I hit a bunch of keys *warning technical talk for my technical people coming up*
Duties:Restructure DLL's to work with Microsoft COM components to read our software
Create XML scripts to carry changed data from one DB to another i.e. DB 1 fielda != DB 2 fielda so you write a script that says something like fielda something like that.
Install and design software infrastructure revolving around number of users and scheduled tasks.
Bullshit and grab ass.
Trouble shoot issues with SCORM software and viewers such as NETg, AICC, SCORM 1.2, etc....
Write procedural documents for logging and tasks
Configure Branding using ASP/XML/XHTML/XSLT/CF
So there you go..that's me. I'm a fucking nerd. But those who know me - really know I'm a damn rockstar and sometimes when you go out to these places you vibe with a customer so well that the week flies by and you sort of want to stay. That is of course if what you do works.
That leads me to my other point. My job is difficult. My company's infrastructure is going through change and our support system is pretty slim. So if you get stuck, well..then..you get stuck.
Customer: "What's wrong?"
Me: "Oh nothing. Just let me call my support team." *dialing
Customer 2: "What's he doing?"
Customer 1: "Calling his support team back at *company name*"
Me: *on the other end of the phone "The time is 2:15. The Time is 2:15" * Hang up.
Customer 1: "So what did they say."
Me: "Thay have escalated the issue, have some idea, and hope to get back to me by CoB. Who wants lunch? I'm starved."
Customer 1: "We already ate lunch."
Me: "Well then. I'm going to hit the head." *Pray in bathroom and think of ideas.
You can't pass the buck because you are standing in a room that's 50 degrees with guys in Outlet Armani Suits, that paid 4 grand a day to have you there, and they own Volvo's, and are worried about having to put wallpaper up over the weekend in their new sitting room. Anyway - so when the shit hits the fan and things break, well I tend to freak out. I'm not what you would call "cool under pressure" in this way. I'm a jumper. I'm a frog on a lilly pad. I'm a cat on a hot tin roof if you will (one of my favorite characters of all time).
But...see... when you get it to work. WHEN YOU GET THINGS TO WORK! Then...THEN boys and girls life feels amazing. I used to give this spiel to the people I used to teach and they bought it and you know what, I didn't have to sell it. Because it's true. If there is one good thing about working as a programmer or problem solver or whatever is that you get to go out there and solve puzzles every day. Some days the puzzle falls apart and catches on fire. But some days you put all the pieces together and look down and do the little programmers lean back in the chair and maybe a self high-five on the way to the bathroom.
It's not the same as closing a deal on a million dollar house or winning a big case. It's not the same as driving a truck or filing papers all day. It has it's own rewards and that reward is, that deep down, you know, that other people can't do this. It would take someone, I don't know, at this point in the evolutionary scale of computers, 10 years of face time with a DPI (oh yeah). Now that's speaking about someone with no computer background. I'm not saying I could do those other jobs either but eat shit every day and then someone throws you a beam of light that makes you feel good and watch you get reall smug.
Anyway - I love when shit works. Today I love my job. I come home tomorrow. I need a drink and pack of Dunhills and damnit if I don't want to play poker til the sun comes up and I have to go to bed at 8 am and yell "WIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIINGS" at 9:15 am.