Day One

July 17th, 2006
  • came into work: 12
  • left work: 15
  • cups of bad coffee: 2
  • results: none

Last night I arrived on the last flight from Gardemoen into Trondheim. It was delayed for two reasons; 1) the crew couldn't get to the airport in time and 2) a flight in from Paris was delayed and since this was the last one to Trondheim, those passengers travelling up north would have no other connecting flight. First of all, who the hell needs the crew anyway? We should just have the pilot announce "sit down, shut up and I'll bring this bitch home". (Pilots work long days, no wonder they're grumpy, have a little compassion.) It's a 50-minute flight, you can do without your coffee.

So we land just after 1am, by the time people collect their luggage and the shuttle takes off (thank god they wait for the last flight even when it's delayed, the airport is 40km away) it's 1:30. I'm in town by 2 and then I got a 15 minute walk home. By the time I get to bed it's 3am. Not the ideal lead-in to the first day on the job.

By the time I got into work it was noon, but the university doesn't look much like it does on the average day at noon, it's basically deserted. The first piece of business is getting the computer up to speed, I start installing Ubuntu Breezy and... realize I have no network connection. At universities, the networks are very complicated, all the more so in our department. There are 4 plugs in the wall, one is for phone, one is for a Sunray network, one is disabled and one is for some old SGI network. In other words, I'm out of luck. The installer freezes halfway through, because my improvised network connection dies for no apparent reason. So I manage to install Ubuntu with no network for now.

I ask around the office, of course none of the people there are responsible for networking, so I need some other person in some other department in some other building, who may be on vacation at this time, to fix the network plug for me. So my officemate sent an email on my behalf and we wait for the reply. It doesn't come. Meanwhile I need to get my keycard activated so I don't have to ring the doorbell everytime leave the building. At one point I had 3 office veterans working on this problem, trying to remember who is reponsible for signing off on keycards. Finally the verdict comes in "bureaucratically speaking, they're all on vacation, the whole department". But since I already have a card and I just need to get it re-activated, they eventually managed to pull a quick hack and get me access.

But my network problem persists, so I take the grand tour up to the 3rd floor of the main building and realize I can't get in there, because my card doesn't give me access to that department. And there is no doorbell. "Visiting? Use the phone on the right to call the person you're here to see." I scan the list of names beside the phone and I try the one in bold listed under "Networking". Answering machine "the person you are calling, number 93423, is on vacation". So I try another networking guy and I get the switchboard, connects me to someone who *should* be in today. No answer. Apparently they "work until 3, but they're open until 2". This was around 1:30 and I still couldn't get anywhere.

So the eldest guru in my office says "you can use the big boss's computer until they fix the problem". The guy has a top of the line AMD X2 64bit with 4GB RAM and a dual 21'' LCD display, it's a sight to behold. He's not in today, like everyone else, he's on vacation. But I'm not about to invade his office. So I end up spending an hour and a half chatting with my officemate about everything and nothing until we both realized we've done enough today. Hopefully the network bug can go away first thing tomorrow morning.

Have you also had an unproductive first day? Write to us at:

Here's how I killed 4 hours playing Solitaire as I was waiting to get on the network
47 Efficiency Avenue
342-12 Time-to-waste

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3 Responses to "Day One"

  1. erik says:

    Well I'm having a pretty crappy day myself if it makes you feel better...

  2. ash says:

    Since when did unproductive equal crappy? :) You're still getting paid right?

  3. em says:

    I didn't say it was crappy, Erik did :D Merely frustrating :lazy: