Sharky

Questions that Sharky gets a lot

Q: What's a pilot fish?

A: There are two answers to that question. One is the Mother Nature version: Pilot fish are small fish that swim just ahead of sharks. When the shark changes direction, so do the pilot fish. When you watch underwater video of it, it looks like the idea to change direction occurred simultaneously to shark and pilot fish.

Thing is, sharks go pretty much anywhere they want, eating pretty much whatever they want. They lunge and tear and snatch, but in so doing, leave plenty of smorgasbord for the nimble pilot fish.

The IT version: A pilot fish is someone who swims with the sharks of enterprise IT -- and lives to tell the tale. Just like in nature, a moment's inattention could end the pilot fish's career. That's life at the reef.

Q: Are all the Sharky stories true?

A: Yes, as best we can determine.

Q: Where do the Sharky tales come from?

A: From readers. Sharky just reads and rewrites and basks in the reflected glory of you, our readers. It is as that famous fish-friendly philosopher Spinoza said, "He that can carp in the most eloquent or acute manner at the weakness of the human mind is held by his fellows as almost divine."

Q: Do I have to write my story in Sharky-ese?

A: No. Not at all. Just be sure to give us details. What happened, to whom, what he said, what she said, how it all worked out. If Sharky likes your tale of perfidy, heroism or just plain weirdness at your IT shop, he will supply his particular brand of Shark snark.

Q: I've got a really funny story, but I could get fired if my old trout of a boss found out I told you. How confidential is what I send to Sharky?

A: We don't publish names: yours, your boss's, your trout's, your company's. We try to file off the serial numbers, though there's no absolute guarantee that someone who lived through the incident won't recognize himself. Our aim is to share the outrageous, knee-slapping, milk-squirting-out-your-nose funny tales that abound in the IT world, not to get you fired. That would not be funny.

Q: How do I get each new Shark Tank tale emailed to me?

Easy. Subscribe to the newsletter.

Q: Where are the Sharkives?

Tales of old can be found in Sharky's archive.

Party like it’s 1999

Life-saving sartorial advice

Life-saving sartorial advice

Snap-on, snap-off!

Throwback Thursday: Eyes only

Throwback Thursday: Eyes only

Whatever the policy says, it must be very strict.

The power of the beep-beep-beep

The power of the beep-beep-beep

If the UPS had been smaller, she might have thrown it out a window.

Whatever it stands for, you’re deep in it

Whatever it stands for, you’re deep in it

As acronyms go, it WAS easy to remember.

Memory-Lane Monday: For once, credit where it’s due

Memory-Lane Monday: For once, credit where it’s due

It’s the feel-good tale of the year. (But the year is 1979.)

Rapunzel

Rapunzel

A hair-raising story.

Throwback Thursday: But it WILL stay dry

Throwback Thursday: But it WILL stay dry

Over-engineered.

Wayback Wednesday: At least he saw the problem

Wayback Wednesday: At least he saw the problem

Scheduling is not his strong point.

It’s a snap!

It’s a snap!

Say ‘cheese!’

Messages pending

Messages pending

So you’re saying that if your email server is down …

Maybe everyone in IT should go hiking every weekend

Maybe everyone in IT should go hiking every weekend

You don’t get what you don’t pay for.

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