Throwback Thursday: Well, no, not exactly

Pilot fish is configuring a new router to replace a loaner from the telco. It's for running a secure tunnel to allow a branch office to connect to HQ's VoIP.

"When we finished the setup on our side, we needed the remote router to be powered down and then back on," says fish. "I phoned a user at the other end and asked her to restart the router.

"I described it to her and she seemed to know what to do. We exchanged cell numbers in case there were issues."

And that turns out to be a good thing. A few minutes later, when fish tests the connection, he gets nothing. No ping to the other side. No activity at all. Dead in the water.

Everything seems OK on fish's side, so he calls the user at the branch office again.

Fish: Hey, did you restart the router?

User: "Yes, but I had to use a paper clip."

Fish: What?

User: "I had to use a paper clip to reset the router."

Fish: You're kidding, right?

User: "No, why?"

Fish: Are you telling me that you took a paper clip and inserted it in a little hole?

User: "Yup. The little hole said reset, and that was what you told me to do."

Fish: I told you to restart the router.

User: "Isn't that the same?"

Sharky doesn't need a paper clip -- just your true tale of IT life. Send it to me at You'll get a stylish Shark shirt if I use it. Comment on today's tale at Sharky's Google+ community, and read thousands of great old tales in the Sharkives.

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