So my boss was out today. He called and asked me to look after a problem one of our clients was having - they were stuck waiting a few minutes for the logon prompt every time they connected. So i connect, sure enough, two or three minute wait. Log on, try to su, no dice. Spend the next hour trying to find a root kit for Unixware because the root password listed in our records is wrong. Finally find the root password on a piece of paper in my boss' office. netstat -r shows 10.10.0.0 routed, but nothing else. /etc/resolv.conf contains a nameserver entry for 153.168.something. Bit hard to look up a host name if there's no route to the DNS server, huh? Call a receptionist at the client site, explain to her how to get a DOS box and type "ipconfig /all". Have her tell me the DNS server, enter it in /etc/resolv.conf on the server - problem solved. Total time spent (minus screwing around looking for a password)? About 15 minutes.
So imagine my surprise when after this 15 minute fix the receptionist is praising me like i'm god or something. Next thing my boss calls and asks me how things are going. I told him i figured out the problem, then he says "oh don't worry about fixing it, there's a consultant on the case". I told him it was too late. Then the story comes out. Apparently this has been a problem for over two weeks (!) - the IT support staff at the client site couldn't figure it out, my boss couldn't figure it out, then he handed it out to a consultant.
I didn't realize ANY of this had been happening - i just saw a problem and fixed it. No biggie. Anyone who's used UNIX once or twice should've been able to figure it out. But apparently not. It turns out this consultant was being paid 120 fucking bucks an hour to fix this!!! That's six times what i get paid! It's times like this when i really don't feel guilty for turning up to work late or reading Slashdot on the job.
And this isn't the first time. This stuff happens all the time at work, colleagues or client IT support or consultants spending hours and hours screwing around with something, and then coming up with a messy solution anyway. I'm know i'm not smart or i'd have my PhD and be working at Google, but holy crap sometimes i wonder what happened to all the common sense in the world. You know i couldn't get a job when i was in America because i didn't have a degree and i didn't have all the latest hip tech buzzwords in my resume. Why doesn't having "THIS PERSON HAS MORE COMMON SENSE THAN 99.9% OF COMPUTER INDUSTRY WORKERS" at the top of your resume count for anything?