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Attention Detention

| England, UK | Liars/Scammers, Students

(A group of us are sent on a course paid by the company. We all know each other so spend a lot of time together during and in between classes. The only female student loves the attention, but as the novelty wears off she starts to act differently. First it is by publicising her private life and over-acting, then it moves on to making things up. Recently she is always the victim in these stories.)

Girl: *out of nowhere* “Ugh the other day, I went to [Fast Food] place, and the guy was so rude.”

Classmate: *barely interested* “Oh, yeah?”

Girl: “The guy was so mean, just because I was a woman.”

Classmate: “What happened?”

Girl: “Right, I ordered my meal at the drive-thru, then he tells me he won’t serve me. I had to get the manager over to sort him out. He’s probably fired.”

(The whole class has turned around. Her acting is Oscar-worthy, but something pops into my head.)

Me: “Hang on, I was with you. Actually, I was the one driving! What was it? Oh, yeah, they were out of something and you had a right fit. The manager came over to calm you down and offer you something similar.”

(Thankfully the ‘stories’ stopped after that. Unfortunately her attention seeking didn’t. Despite being in a heavy industry environment, she would dress in skimpy outfits, have a string of work ‘romances,’ etc., until the attention seeking took up more time than she was supposed to be working, and eventually she was fired.)

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Zero Attempt At Hiding The Bad Grade

| GA, USA | Exams/Tests

(I have to make-up a quiz I missed in class that has two questions and is pass-fail. About a week later I see my grade hasn’t changed.)

Me: “Dr. [Teacher], have you put in my grade for the quiz I made up?”

Teacher: “Yes, I have.”

Me: “But it still says I still have a zero for it.”

Teacher: “Like I said, I’ve already put the grade in for the quiz.”

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Their Understanding Of The Problem Is A Bit Floppy

| BC, Canada | Ignoring/Inattentive, Technology

(It is the mid ‘80s and I have just finished a two-year computer programming diploma program. I am on a short-term work contract with a provincial government agency to do a few projects for them. This is the days of 5-1/4 inch floppy drives. The computer assigned to me has a strange fault where periodically it makes an odd VRRT… VRRT… VRRT… sound and corrupts the diskette in the primary drive. I quickly learn to back-up… back-up… back-up… at about twenty-minute intervals. I also report it to my immediate supervisor.)

Me: “[Manager], my computer has a malfunction and periodically makes a strange noise and clobbers the diskette in the drive.”

Manager: “Are you sure it has a problem?”

Me: “Yes.”

Manager: “Okay, I’ll call someone to check on it.”

(About a week later I am supposed to show Manager my progress to date. Also, no one has come to check on the computer.)

Me: “All right, I’ll show you what I’ve got working so far.”

(I start running the skeleton program I’ve developed so far.)

Computer: “VRRT… VRRT… VRRT…”

Me: “Oh, rats. The disk just got clobbered. I’ll have to make a copy from a back-up and then show you.”

Manager: “Your work doesn’t look too promising, but I’m busy and I’ll check back with you later.”

Me: “Could you get someone to look at the computer?”

Manager: *making face* “I’ll check into it.”

(A few days later a special trainer is flown in from Vancouver to teach the clerks in the office how to use a brand new word processing machine. She is put up in the best hotel in town. She comes in on her first morning and is instructing the first group of people. They are using my computer as I have lowest priority in the office so I am just standing nearby watching. She has loaded the program and is about five minutes into the training.)

Computer: “VRRT… VRRT… VRRT…”

Me: “Um… Do you have a copy of that word processing program?”

Instructor: “Well, of course not; it costs $1800 per package and they are only going to give me one.”

Me: “Well… The computer just ate your program disk.”

Instructor: “Don’t be silly; computers don’t do that.”

(She tries to go to the next screen and the program crashes when it tries to read the drive.)

Instructor: “Don’t worry, ladies, this sometimes happens. I’ll just reboot.”

(Screen displays disk error when she tries to reboot.)

Instructor: *turning to me* “What is wrong with this machine?”

Me: “Did you hear it when it went VRRT… VRRT… VRRT…? That was when it was eating your disk. You will not be able to continue with your instructing.”

(I got a new computer.)

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Should Have Written An Esé

| Bay Area, CA, USA | Language & Words

(We’re taking the final for our Spanish 3 class. The last part is a 500-word essay. There’s about 15 minutes left in the exam period.)

Student: *completely serious* “Excuse me, are we supposed to be writing this essay in Spanish?”

(Class laughs thinking he’s joking but he’s not.)

Teacher: “Uh, yeah. This is a Spanish class.”

Student: “F***!” *immediately begins to erase*

(Somehow he ended up at an Ivy when we graduated.)

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With Great Power Comes Great Malware

| Perth, WA, Australia | Technology

(My lecturer has come to the topic of loops in programming. For those who do not know, loops are blocks of code that run over and over again until a certain condition is met. The lecturer, as a teaching point, takes an example of a loop that will run forever and runs the code.)

Lecturer: “If you ever find yourself in this situation, simply hit Ctrl+C.”

(The code stops.)

Lecturer: “In the next lesson, I’ll teach you how to disable Ctrl+C.”

Me: “And then the program will run until reality redefines itself such that ten is less than zero!”

Another Student: “So is this how malware works?”

Lecturer: “Well, yes. Another student once ran an infinite loop like this, creating new files repeatedly. With great power…”

(And that is the story of how I learned how to code a worm.)