Episode 10 It’s a great morning! The phone didn’t ring once (and not because the PFY restarted the phone server with a USB DBAN again), the air conditioning and security system behave, and outside the sun is shining .
“What is he doing here?” I ask the PFY.
“Who?” the PFY asks, rising from his chair as he sensed a hint of urgency in my tone. “What makes…SH*T!”
“Quick, which printer is offline?”
“None of them,” he said after a quick scan.
“F*CK! We are probably too late. How many do we have left? »
“Uh….. just two, one in security and one in HR!”
I’m leaving before he finishes the exclamation mark.
But it’s too late, the damage is done. The HR printer was repaired and the service engineer – whose heavily emblazoned wagon I had seen outside our window – left.
“WHO called the service guy?” I ask.
“I did it,” says the new head of the HR office.
“It was broken.”
“Yes, I KNOW it was broken and off for two years AND there is a tag on the service tag saying you should call us if you have a printer problem.”
“I don’t know about that, I just saw the number when I opened the paper jam panel.”
I open the panel and sure enough there’s a second service sticker in there – a sticker so difficult to remove we had to put our own sticker on top of the machine. I also note that the engineer put a new label on top of the label we put on his previous label.
“What did he do?”
“Oh, he said he had to replace some things.”
“I don’t know. It’s on this worksheet.”
Part of my mental processing is a background stroke warning sub-process casually watching that vein in my forehead. The further down I go in the worksheet, the more mental processing power the monitor uses. I need to stop before I get CPU bound.
“These printers,” I tell the new HR manager, “are the biggest white elephants the company has ever purchased, and they’re meeting stiff opposition. They are unreliable, have horribly expensive consumables, and are so old that the page count is in Roman numerals. We do NOT use them. They are off and will remain off until the end of the maintenance contract – in about 18 months.”
“YOU, however, authorized him to service the machine,” I said, pointing to his signature on the worksheet, “and he replaced the four toner cartridges, the fuser unit and the waste container of toner! You can buy a BRAND NEW color laser for the price of just one of these toner cartridges!”
“A toner cartridge that did not need to be changed because WE DON’T USE THESE PRINTERS! HE EXCHANGED AN OLD FULL TONER CARTRIDGE FOR A NEW FULL TONER CARTRIDGE! AN OLD FULL TONER CARTRIDGE THAT HE WE WILL SELL AGAIN NEXT TIME SOMEBODY TURNS ON THIS MACHINE!”
“Ah. Well, I guess we just turned it off then? he asks.
“Yes,” I replied, trying to remove the new service tag from the label we affixed to the printer.
He also put them in the paper bins,” he says.
Sure enough, on the bottom of each paper tray is a shiny new service sticker that the sneaky bastard…
“What did he say he was doing in the paper bins?”
“Oh, he, uh, improved the paper for us.”
I look at the bottom of the worksheet and my stroke warning process starts at 100%.
“HE CHANGED THE BLOODY PAPER INTO US LEGAL AND SOLD YOU 20 BOXES OF THE TRICK!”
“He said it was a robbery.”
“HE WAS DEFINITELY STOLEN! »
20 minutes of calm thoughts and contract reading later, stroke sub-process dropped to 2%
“Okay, so here’s what we’re going to do. In about 20 minutes you’re going to call him back and tell him that there’s a very thin black line on every page. He’ll tell you that the drum probably needs to be replaced – something he probably didn’t have with him earlier because his vehicle was full of paper that no one uses.”
93 minutes later…
“You’re probably looking for your printer,” I tell the engineer who scans the room unsuccessfully.
“Uh yeah,” he said, preparing to talk some bullshit to get off any accusation.
“I was just reading the contract. Apparently we still have 18 months left to run on it.”
“It is no longer economical to maintain.”
” Um yes ? ” he says.
“And?” he adds
“…” I say raising my index finger
“Oh my God,” I said. “I think I just saw a printer fall in front of the window after it accidentally fell out of a third story window. Guess it’s no longer economical to maintain. And maybe your car has suffered the same spell ?”
The engineer rushes to the window.
“No, it’s just the printer,” he said with a hint of triumph.
“And yet…” I said, raising my finger once more.
>CRUNCH< >CRASH< >Crash
“Oh my God. I think I just saw the printer from security after falling out of a fifth floor window, hitting the air conditioning mounted on the fourth floor window. It looks like both units then fell on your vehicle, making just about everything uneconomical to maintain.”
“You think you…” he sneers.
I raise my finger once more.
“But wait!” I say “Is that the sound of 20 boxes of paper being opened and 100 reams of paper being handed out to staff to hit the engineer who has robbed us so much in the past?”
“And just so you know – I think the elevator is locked,” I said. “And I suspect the stairwells are full of people carrying reams of paper.”
“WHAT DO I DO??!?!!” he gasps.
“There is always the window…”