It's in the cards

?This IT pilot fish takes a job working for a company owned by a financial trader. Fish's job title, as of the day he's hired: manager of Unix operations.

"This guy was a millionaire, but had some quirks," fish says. "One was that he wouldn't pay for business cards. But it was OK if we bought card stock and printed our own, so I did that for everyone in the company, including myself.

"The first time he introduced me to a big client, he called me 'director of software development.' I looked at him ... and, after the meeting, reprinted my cards. He didn't say anything."

Not long after that, the boss introduces fish to another big client as "vice-president of software development." After the meeting, fish reprints his cards again.

But while printing out the latest de facto promotion, fish prints one extra card that gives his title as "Master of All Computational Knowledge" and sticks it in his wallet.

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A few days later, fish is meeting with execs from a big IT vendor. Everyone exchanges cards, and after a few seconds, one of the vendor guys starts laughing.

"Yep, that joke card snuck to the front of the pack and got handed out," says fish. "He wouldn't give it back, either; he loved it.

"And when I finally couldn't take the trader's quirks any more, the place I landed looked at my regular business card and decided I had to be offered a VP position, since I'd been a VP at my last company -- at a noticeable pay increase from their initial offer.

"Sometimes it pays to grab the bit and run."

Sharky wants to trade, too. Send me your true tale of IT life at sharky@computerworld.com. I'll send you a sharp Shark shirt if I use it. Add your comments below, and read some great old tales in the Sharkives.

Now you can post your own stories of IT ridiculousness at Shark Bait. Join today and vent your IT frustrations to people who've been there, done that.

Copyright © 2010 IDG Communications, Inc.

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