So we had a meeting today to discuss a particularly poorly coded area of software. At some point I heard the word “insanity” so much that I realized we were actually participating in demon summoning in the Cthulu vein. Then the conversation started to make sense. How could we be doing this without being in properly build pentagrams, with silver sided magic circles? The drooling ur-beast we were attempting to kill by carefully refactoring the attributes code, did we really have any hope of conquering it? At one point a developer kept saying some nonsense syllables and I realized he was trying to say one of the names of the Old Ones that’s not pronounceable with a human tongue. The desperation of our team was clearly captured by such phrases as, “We need to have control over this stuff!” and “Things that were previously coping started dying.” I had wondered why we’d had such terrible attrition in the Sys Ops team. I thought it was because of our salary structure.

Eventually, the guy leading this effort said, “When are we just going to have a zero tolerance for this kind of shit?”

I said, “I’d be happy if we just had a zero tolerance for, say, fox shit. Then we could work our way down through the carnivores and maybe only have herbivore piles of shit.”

A second developer said, “Ah! If we were even able to say no to fox shit! That would be a happy day.”

We sacrificed a small cup of instant coffee, then escaped into the greater madness that lie beyond.

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