There are times I could just kill the guy. I'm still mad at him.
Monday: Donna was waiting for me this morning, as the PC had lost her password over the weekend. I said the PC can't lose your password, but she said I told you I didn't need to change it, I've had the same password for nearly three years and I've never had a problem - now all of a sudden it's lost my password and won't let me in because you made me change it. I asked her what her new password was hut she couldn't remember, so I deleted the setting and asked her for a new password. She said good - and it'd better not forget it again. Sometimes it's easier to just give up from the start.
AJ called us together for the morning meeting and said he'd decided over the weekend to implement an "energy saving" policy. He wants us all to make sure non-essential things are switched off, but there was a call to the switchboard as he opened up on the subject and Amy said there was a courier downstairs asking for me. It was the patches from Guru Bob, and the note inside said to tell AJ his Boss had agreed they'd be fitted immediately. I went back up and AJ asked me what I'd been called downstairs for and wasn't Stores able to take deliveries. It seemed the perfect time to say, so I told him Head Office had sent some patches and I'd have to fit them immediately, then gave him the note. He said oh all right.
He spent about ten minutes telling us all how Head Office Marketing were still working on the rebranding of our item (the one that's nearly eleven percent of our on-site turnover but totally insignificant as far as Head Office are concerned.) I'd set Mike's laptop up to delete Lotus while we were in the meeting, so when it beeped I said excuse me and got up to go see what it wanted. AJ glared hard at me when I came back and said was that important as well? so I said yes, but it's OK now. He said I hope we won't get any more interruptions, and that's when it beeped for attention again. I got up to go but he said leave it - this is more important, you'll just have to finish it off afterwards, then carried on for another fifteen minutes more about Head Office Marketing working so hard.
I reset Mike's password information so the field is now only two characters, and told him how all he had to do was put his initials in. He should be able to manage that, although I'm not going to hold my breath.
Fiona came over after the meeting and said her PC had lost her password over the weekend too, just like Donna's had - it was already too hot in the office to argue with her so I just deleted the password setting and helped her select a new one.
Tuesday: Donna was waiting for me again this morning, as she hadn't been able to sign on and couldn't find any files. I said it's the same password as it was yesterday, but she said nonono, it's the screen - it's not there. I said what do you mean, the screen's not there? have we been burglarized? and she said no, but the security alarm was off when I got in this morning. I went over and the PC was powered up OK, but showing a network error. I went in my office and the servers and UPS boxes were all dead.
There must have been a brownout in the night some time, so I fired up the servers and they came back up with a string of errors. I went out and told Donna to switch off her PC, and tell anybody coming in not to switch on as it looks like the backup didn't run last night and I'll have to do a manual one. Fiona and Amy came in just then, so I told them too. I got a quick backup done and the servers back up on line, then let everybody sign in - but we all weren't on until nearly ten. The UPS boxes weren't powered up, but I thought they should be OK by tonight.
It was a hot day again so we all went outside during the lunchbreak, and when we all got back at two LeeAnn called me over because the big printer wasn't working again. This worried me because Mike hadn't gotten in yet, so I flicked the power switch to see if it would come back on line. Nothing happened. Amy called out that the switchboard and her PC weren't working either, so I went in to check the servers. They were dead too, so I thought maybe we've had another brownout. I flicked the main power switches just out of desperation, and it all lit up and came on. Amy's switchboard lit up too, and the phones beeped and came back on.
I wandered around for a while checking everything was OK with the network, and to see that all the PCs and printers were connected, then AJ came up behind me and asked was it the system. I said no, there'd been a power interruption during the lunchbreak, and I was worried in case there'd been a surge and anything was shorted out. He said oh - good thing I switched everything off, then. You know, I went in your office at the start of the lunchbreak and everything was left switched on even though you were sitting outside, so I had to switch it all off just like I had to last night when you went home and left it all on. Amy'd even left the switchboard plugged in, just draining power.
I said the servers must be left on. He said well, if you're sure. I said yes, I'm sure. I guess I must have been breathing through my teeth a little too aggressively at that point because he was nervously backing away, then he went and hid in his office. James said what's up with you? and I said don't ask or I'll tell you.
They all heard me slam my office door and call up Guru Bob and shout a couple things though, and they all left me well alone for the rest of the day.
I was still mad when I left.
Wednesday: It was a hot day again today, but at least AJ hadn't gotten me mad first thing by doing anything stupid overnight, although I made sure I never left my office for too long in case. The big printer wasn't working after the lunchbreak again. LeeAnn got there before I did and found it had been switched off at the mains - Mike had done it just before plugging his mobile charger in, but LeeAnn immediately leapt to the conclusion that it was AJ again so Mike got away with it. She said something about AJ and plugged the printer back in.
Guru Bob called me up last thing and told me he'd been intending to send down three Head Office IT people, but they wouldn't be coming until Tuesday now - although one would be coming down on Friday to run it by me. I said does AJ know yet? but he just laughed and hung up. I guess that means no, he still doesn't.
Thursday: Andy came through for Fiona to call up the service engineers because the fire alarm and the sprinklers weren't working. James said is the power switched off, and Andy said hold on, I'll check. He came back later and said how did you know? James said it was a lucky guess.
I'm not getting involved - I'm still guarding my office. He's dead if he tries anything.
Friday: AJ said at the morning meeting we all hadn't really done much towards implementing his "energy saving" policy, and several times someone had switched on things he'd switched off. James reminded him the fire alarm, burglar alarm and sprinkler systems have to be left on all the time, and AJ said well, yes, he knew that. I said yes, and the server has to be on all the time and it has to stay on overnight, all night, to do the scheduled backup. AJ said well, yes, there was that too - but we should switch off non-essential things more often. LeeAnn said do you mean the big printer then - because that's essential, and AJ said no. Mike went apple red.
Amy called me up about twelve to say there was someone from Head Office IT at the desk for me. His name's Jeff and he said he'd be one of those coming next week too. AJ came over, of course, then said he'd leave us to talk when I said he was here about power interruptions.
Jeff said we've got some simple tests, and showed me three sheets. They're stuff we all should be OK with - apart from passwords, maximise/minimise, the difference between the screensaver and the Blue Screen of Death, scandisk, how to tell whether to open a file in Word or Excel, and the whole Email program. It should be OK, because either they take the test sheet and do it themselves or the person testing them can stand by them and talk them through it if they ask for help. I said we'll go for that one. Jeff said OK, and this one's for your boss, then gave me another test sheet. It's a little different. I said he's going to need the help too, but Jeff said he's not going to get it - no help to Managers, that's Guru Bob's orders.
AJ was wandering around all the time we were talking to see if we'd finished yet. We could see him walking about and checking his watch before the lunchbreak, and then he was straight back out watching us again afterwards. Jeff said is he paranoid or what? and I said I guess he's what - but yeah, you're from Head Office so of course he's paranoid. We caught his eye then, and Jeff smiled and waved. I said don't do that - he'll come over.
Just before he went to the afternoon meeting at Head Office AJ put his head around my door to say sorry to interrupt, but I'm off to Head Office now. I said OK, so he said don't forget there won't be a morning meeting on Monday because it's a Bank Holiday, and you don't need to come in - it's the last one until August, so make the most of it. I said OK, I will.
Jeff waited until he'd gone and said does he do that every time? and I said he tells us all, yeah, even though nobody's forgot yet.
We both went out to the main office, and Jeff said look, don't worry about next week's tests. Amy said well, I'm worried, so Jeff said it's OK, we'll talk you through it first. I said it's not aimed at any of you anyways. They all nodded and James said yes, we heard some of what AJ said to Guru Bob - Donna happened to be standing by the door. Jeff gave everyone a copy of the sheets with the questions they'll be asked next week so they can get ready for it. Amy started to panic, so I said I can stand right beside you all the way through if you want me to. She said oh yes, and Donna, Fiona and LeeAnn said yes too.