Maybe he started out in APL and just never got over it?

This pilot fish starts his mainframe programming career at a state agency, but soon moves on to a job at a company in the record industry -- which turns out to be much more, um, challenging.

"The environment is totally different," fish says. "I'm responsible for supporting several high-profile production and revenue applications.

"All is well until there's a coding update request, and my manager wants to review the code before it's even tested, much less implemented.

"I have the compiled output ready to review with my manager, but he takes it away to review alone so he's not interrupted.

"Other members of my group are laughing when I return to my desk, but they don't explain why.

"Next day I get the compiled listing back. It is not only color-coded for clarity -- the manager has a set of 64 colors of highlighters -- but also stamped boxes, circles, stars and assorted graphics outlined within the code. It is a work of art, but more like an abstract painting than a coded program.

"My wife works in a psychiatric environment, and shows the artwork to a psychiatrist co-worker. He asks whether this was done by one of their patients, and when told no, laughs hysterically and says, 'If this is not from a patient, then maybe this person should seek some help!'"

Sharky won't add colors, circles and stars to your true tale of IT life, but I will file off the identifying marks. So send me your story at You can also comment on today's tale at Sharky's Google+ community, and read thousands of great old tales in the Sharkives.

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