Thursday, August 25, 2005

Are you sure you want to delete file "DONTDELETE"?

Ach. Yesterday at work was a chore. I'd been removed from my desk to elsewhere in the building to work on some project or other. And where I was stationed left me stranded from workmate banter, a view onto the busy street below, the interweb, and most importantly emails. Slacking off is what gets me through the day.

After an hour or three working on this fiddley and frustrating task I was really pleased to see one of the girls from my office stick her head round the door.
"Yo Yo Yo!" I cried out cheerfully.
"Oh, hi Huw. Ummm. Yeah. Say, did you ever happen to delete a load of stuff of Other Office Girl's off of your computer?"
[Flashback, two weeks earlier.
Other Office Girl: Hey Huw, there's a load of stuff on your computer that is mine from when I used to use it. Most of it I don't need there anymore. You can just wipe a load of it off if you want.
Me: Hmmmm'ok.
Methinks: Can I be arsed? It's not in the way. I suppose I could. But I could not bother. Shall I, or shan't I? Hmmmm... dum dee dum. I wonder if the staff shop sells snickers bars? What's this website? Ooooh, pictures of dogs dressed like people! Good effort.
End of flashback device]

"Er.... I might of. I can't quite remember. I was pretty swamped."
"Yeah, it's just she's missing one of her PhD chapters and thought there was a copy on your machine."
"Yeah, but she saved a copy of all that stuff onto a CD."
"Mmm, she said. But apparently that CD is corrupted or something."
"And she thinks that copy on your machine might be the only one in existence. And she just looked, and can't find it..."

Crap. You know that awful feeling, a bit like having a bucket of icy jelly being poured directly into your tummy? Well, that's how I felt as I scampered to my office. I looked through everything - including the recycle bin - and there was no sign. Looks like I probably did. It's not like I'm really stupid; I wouldn't have seen a file named "Other Office Girl's Really Important PhD. Notable Contribution to Science. DO NOT ERASE" and whacked delete. It must have been hidden away in an insignificant looking file or something, but all the same the guilt is a killer. The situation is comparable to kindly deciding to wash your mate's trousers for them cos they're looking a bit grubby, only for them to walk in just as the final spin is coming to an end saying "Here, where's my trousers with that fifty quid note I left in the pocket?".

Only magnified somewhat.


Shane said...

An (18) certificate post if ever there was one.

Monica said...

Who doesn't have twenty nine backups of their PhD files? The fear has gripped me so, I actually spend more time backing up my PhD than actually working on my PhD.

Curly said...

There shouldn't be any guilt on your part - she gave yoy permission to write it eh?

Alternatively, you could quit the job, move out of London and take up a job as a croupier in an East-Venezuelan Casino - she'll never find you.

Huw said...

Yeah, I thought about going for the whole hand on hip, wagging the finger "What are complaining about? You've no-one to blame but yourself, and surely you know to ALWAYS make backups? *I* always do" line.... but wasn't sure it was what she'd have liked to hear somehow...