Thursday, April 29, 2010

I'm no hero...

Several weeks ago, I made the observation that working in desktop support is like playing Whack-a-Mole. You spend all day knocking out problems, but they keep popping up, usually at a pace quicker than you can hit them with your mallet.

Well, yesterday, my buddy Chris popped up out of his hole a little before 11:30, sending me two e-mails in three minutes about an issue he was having with one of his applications. Shortly after the program opened up and appeared on his screen, it would max out his processor and become unresponsive. He needed it fixed right away, as it was an urgent issue (aren't they all...).

I went over to his desk, hoping I could resolve it right away. Not because he's my friend; I just wanted to go to lunch. As we're sitting there, uninstalling and reinstalling it, he makes the causal remark that I'm his hero (he may have even called me a "superhero") for dropping everything I was working on and coming over to help him right away.

This comment has greatly disturbed me since then, because it's so true. It makes me want to retreat to my fortress of solitude and never come out again. My users, my customers, my co-workers just see me as this guy in a cape that will come to their rescue when things look bleak. I fly in and resolve the issue, and although they are usually very thankful of it, they'll think nothing more of it and proceed with their lives.

This is why I have to get out of desktop support. I'd much rather have a job where I can work behind the scenes and go unnoticed. Where I can walk by someone's desk or pass them in the halls, and they ask me about last night's ball game, not the error message they get when launching PowerPoint. Where I can focus on one or two tasks all day, instead of twenty. And without interruptions or having to save somebody's life.

I don't want to be Superman anymore. I just want to be Clark Kent.

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