Dramatis Personae: Programmer, Second Programmer, IT Person, Client Relations
Location: Programmer's office. Programmer is at a desk. Client Relations person peeks in through the door.
Client: Hi there.
Client: Welcome back.
Programmer: ... from ... ?
Client: You were on vacation all last week.
Programmer: I was?
Client: That's why you weren't here.
Programmer: I was here all week.
Client: Everyone said you weren't here.
Programmer: I plainly grunted ``erg'' at over four people coming in and going out every day.
Client: Maybe they thought they saw you another week.
Programmer: Maybe I'm not here now.
Client: [ Laughs, sincerely yet too much for the joke. ] That's great, you should do stuff like that.
Programmer: I should ...
Client: Absolutely. Thanks for the laugh, we need them on days like these!
[ Client Relations ducks out, leaving Programmer to wonder at this as much as anything. As Programmer resumes typing, Second Programmer peeks in. ]
Second: Do you think there'll be an answer soon?
Programmer: An answer ... ?
Second: It looks unprofessional not having anything. The customers expect answers that pop. I know it's hard getting back from vacation, but you've got to be faster.
Programmer: I'm not back from vacation!
Second: Oh! Oh, I'm sorry, I thought you were here just checking on the fires. You going away again this week?
Programmer: I wasn't away last week, and I'm not away this week!
Second: I like those vacations best too. All the comforts of home because it is home and no travelling. Good call. But you're going to need answers when you get back.
[ Second Programmer vanishes. ]
Programmer: [ Crying out ] I'm glad I make such an impression here! [ To self ] They better not be charging me [ as Client Relations and IT peek back in ] vacation days.
IT: Vacation again already? You're talking like the boss.
Programmer: I'm not on vacation!
Client: Just got back.
IT: The boss did too. Forgot everything we spent last month doing. Takes the pressure off me.
Client: [ Laughing, again sincerely yet too much. ] Oh, there's just too much in this place.
Programmer: Can I help with ... something?
Client: First, we got this phone call.
Client: From one of our customers.
Client: Using your project.
Client: With a question.
Client: That we couldn't answer.
Programmer: About what?
Client: Your project!
IT: It was the graphics, right? This thing about the shape?
Client: The little red rectangles.
Programmer: Red ...
IT: Well, not rectangles, but they're kind of ... rectangle-y.
Programmer: The highlight polygons?
IT: Yeah, those rectangles.
Programmer: They're green.
Client: They said red, but we knew what they meant.
[ Second Programmer, seeing the gathering, joins, and all finally enter the office. ]
Second: You have to pay attention to the customers, or you aren't ever going to meet their needs.
Programmer: What about the highlight polygons?
Second: I like your passion. That's exactly the way I would dig in to problems after a week on vacation.
IT: You were on vacation last week?
Programmer: I was not on vacation last week.
IT: I thought I kept seeing you on the way to the bathroom.
Client: They wanted to know if they can turn it off.
Second: The customer?
Client: The highlighting.
Second: You should have programmed some way to turn it off. That's one of the first things you should've learned.
Programmer: Yeah, if they go to 'options' there's a box to turn highlighting off and on.
IT: Ah, so you hid the option.
Client: I never would've thought to look there.
Second: You ought to put those options somewhere customers can find.
Programmer: I should put the 'Highlights off/on' option somewhere more obvious than 'Options'?
Second: If you can.
Client: That's probably it. Let me go tell them.
Programmer: They're here?
Client: No, they're on hold.
Programmer: I ... what number?
[ Programmer picks up the phone and taps on the keypad. ]
Programmer: No, not 101. [ More tapping ] Not 102. [ More. ] Not 103.
Client: Must've given up.
Second: It doesn't speak well for your programming when your customers are giving up on you.
Programmer: Maybe I should just stay home.
IT: I did all last week. I feel great.
Trivia: In 1870 slightly under 500 ships travelled the Suez Canal, carrying just over 400,000 tons. Great Britain was responsible for three-quarters of that. Source: Parting the Desert: The Creation of the Suez Canal, Zachary Karabell.
Currently Reading: 1939: The Alliance That Never Was And The Coming Of World War II, Michael Jabara Carley.