No comet

It's 1999, and this pilot fish's boss gets a new PC -- and new mail software, complete with automatic spelling correction.

"He was writing an e-mail to a major customer, the customer's project consultants and engineers, and our own upper management," fish says.

"For each word the mail client didn't know, he thought he was hitting 'ignore' but was actually hitting 'replace,' so it replaced all the unknown words with the first suggested word.

"Our company name began with V, and it changed to Varmint. The primary customer's name was Hoss, which changed to Hose. The e-mail was in regard to some firewall issues, which changed to fireball.

"I was the first to see the e-mail, and sent out an immediate correction, explaining my boss's mistakes.

"But in the next project meeting, the customer's consultant said, 'Well, at least we don't have to worry about Y2k.' My boss asked, 'Why is that?' The consultant said, 'We're going to be hit by the Varmint Fireball first.'"

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