Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Dies Irae

It was bound to come, sooner or later. The day of reckoning, Judgement Day, Rapture, the Apocalypse, call it what you like, it was inevitable. What was unexpected was that it would come about at my own hands.

Today I was working on a very long and very boring document. For ease of editing, I decided to print it, and sent it to print on one of the ageing machines adjacent to the section. Imagine my disgust when I went to the printer ten minutes later to discover that only a tenth of the document had printed, due to a paper jam. I opened the covers and removed the offending paper and waited for it to come back online. Two more pages printed. It jammed again. I cleared the paper jam once more and waited. One page began to print, but gave up half way through. Ink stained my fingers and the innards of the machine scalded my hands as I attempted to pull the shreds of paper out.

This went on for several minutes, and the attention of people working close by was being attracted by the repeated banging noises coming from the printer room. A closer look brought them to witness a red-faced EO with black hands slamming the cover of the ancient printer down while foaming at the mouth. They backed away pretty sharpish.

I got about ten additional pages printed before a message flashed up on the printer's display screen: "Error 666 - Call maintenance". I pressed the "Cancel job" button on the printer. I picked up the screws I had shaken loose from the printer and threw them out the window. I then gathered the crumpled sheets of my report and threw them in the bin. Then I went to the bathroom to wash the blood... er... ink from my hands. Finally, I walked calmly back to my desk and proceeded to send the print job to another machine at the opposite end of the building.

And all the time I was doing this, the "Ride of the Valkyries" from Apocalypse Now was on repeat in my internal jukebox.

I have defeated my arch-nemesis. And now I'm looking for something new to kill.

1 comment:

Serial said...

Printers and photocopies now come with built-in blood pressure sensors. The more stressed you get about a document, the more likely they are to jam.