Remember, April is Check Your Helmet month

IT pilot fish who works at a small rural hospital gets a wake-up call at 5:30 a.m. -- from the emergency room.

"The ER tells me that the lab is having some problems," says fish. "When I call the lab, they tell me the night lab tech ran over a network cord with his bicycle and broke it.

"Huh?"

Fish wonders if he's dreaming as he pictures people riding bicycles up and down the hospital halls in the middle of the night.

But when he arrives at work, he's immediately led to the back parking lot to survey the damage. That's where the mobile MRI unit is parked.

And that's where fish sees the network cable that connects the MRI unit to the outdoor network jack 20 feet away. Or did, anyway.

The cable has been ripped in two, and it obviously suffered some extreme stretching before it gave way -- the wires are more than 12 inches past the insulation on each side of the break.

Fish replaces the broken cable with the longest one in the storage closet, which is barely long enough to reach between the MRI trailer and the jack.

Then he calls the night-shift tech -- who sheepishly admits that when his shift was over, he rode his bike past the mobile MRI unit on his way home.

"In the dimly lit rear parking lot, he somehow got the network cable wrapped around his tire and broke it," fish says. "Then he asked the emergency room staff to get IT to fix it before they started MRIs in the morning.

"He didn't mention anything about injury to himself or his bike, but you have to wonder ... "

Sharky doesn't have to wonder -- I hear it all from pilot fish who send me their true tales of IT life at sharky@computerworld.com. You'll snag a snazzy Shark shirt if I use it. Add your comments below, and read some great old tales in the Sharkives.

Now you can post your own stories of IT ridiculousness at Shark Bait. Join today and vent your IT frustrations to people who've been there, done that.

Copyright © 2010 IDG Communications, Inc.

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