Tech Tales



A few samples are below, but you can find more at


This one happened to me while

working at a university helpdesk. A user came into the office and asked if

someone could close a window for her. As I was nearest, I said "OK, lets have a

look and see whats wrong", thinking some app must have locked up. I followed her

into the computer room next door, where she sat down and carried on


As everything seemed OK, I asked her what the problem was

exactly, to which she pointed at the open window across the room and said "its

cold in here".

Completely speechless now, I just made a few stammering

noises, and quickly left (without closing the window) before the stammering

turned to expletives.

I have a PhD. I know everthing.


one of them at every college. The professor who has a PhD in 'underwater basket

weaving' but 'knows' everything about computers. I received a call from this

woman who fit this type. She simply wanted to forward her unversity email to her

ISP email account. I told her about a university website that has a form for

this. Well, she says she already did that, but it wasn't working. She then

begins to lecture me on the importance of her email and how it's my fault that

it isn't working. Not wanting to argue with a stubborn person, I simply

forwarded the information to one of the university's full-time all-knowing


The next day I ran into my supervisor and asked about this case.

He told me that he had contacted the professor's ISP and found out that she had

set forwarded email from that account to her university account. She had also

filled out our forwarding webpage a couple of times. Well, this created a nice

looping effect where the email kept getting bounced around. We fixed it for her,

but some people don't understand, once is enough sometimes.

Help Desk confusion

I worked the 'Help

Desk' for a university. In campus phone books and pamphlets, it's called the

"ITSS Help Desk" (Infomation Technology Systems and Service). Anyway, because

it's commonly referred to as simply the Help Desk, we would always get phone

calls for information not relative to our department. We would simply forward

the calls to the 'real' help desk or other departments

One time I got

this call from a woman who wanted to register for classes over the phone. I told

her the above and gave her the phone number for the Registration office. Five

minutes later she calls back and says that the Registration office told her to

call the "Help Desk". I immediately saw where this was heading. I told here

again our situation and gave her the campus wide information number. About 10

minutes later she calls me back and is surprised to here my voice. It seemed

that all the automated forwards gave her back to me. Oh joy. By this time the

women was rather beligerant. Not knowing what to do, I simply said to call back

tomorrow when someone else could help her.

After coming into work the

next day my co-worker told me this exact same story and how she got bitched out

before she hung up on her. Oh well.

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