In fairness, there probably WAS a reason...

Flashback to the 1980s, when this pilot fish is working for a big computer vendor as a field service tech.

"One day, at a customer site and up to my elbows in a large-capacity drum printer with parts everywhere, I got a call from my boss," says fish. "He told me, 'We have a situation a few blocks from you. Drop everything and head over there, calm the customer down and fix their issue.'

"I dropped everything, took a few tools with me, walked over to the irate customer's site and got an earful."

Customer: "I have never been so insulted in my entire life!"

Fish: What can I do to help?

Customer: "We have a printer that just won't work and I called it in for service and this rude guy showed up to fix it."

Fish: What happened?

Customer: "He walked over to the printer and plugged it into the wall outlet. It came on. I said, 'You must think I'm stupid.' He responded, 'Lady, that's the first thing you've said that I agree with' and handed me a billable service ticket and walked out."

Fish: So, what would you like me to do?

Customer: "Check the printer to see why it was unplugged."

Sighs fish, "And no, I didn't throw any more gasoline on the fire. It was all I could do not to laugh out loud."

Special note from Sharky: Want to know more about Computerworld's Shark Tank, where it came from and how it's changed over the years? Sure you do -- so be sure to check out a special "CW@50" interview with Sharky, part of Computerworld's year-long 50th-anniversary celebration. And don't forget...

Sharky wants to plug your story into the Tank. Send me your true tale of IT life at sharky@computerworld.com, and you'll get a stylish Shark shirt every time I use one. Comment on today's tale at Sharky's Google+ community, and read thousands of great old tales in the Sharkives.

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