Tag Archives: Idiots

What an idiot!

As DBAs we quite often run into others who aren’t as smart as us.  The dev is an idiot.  The .net guy is an idiot.  The users are idiots.  The manager is an idiot.  The VP, well don’t even get me started.  And other DBAs are really idiots.  At least that’s how it is in our heads anyway.  We fall into this cycle of calling everyone idiots for every little thing they do wrong.  The dev uses a wrong data type and it makes a few queries a lot slower, what an idiot, he should’ve known better.  A .net guy uses EF instead of putting it in an SP and it causes tons of blocking, what an idiot.  Another DBA tries to fix a DB that’s down and he does something that ends up making it worse… what an idiot.

It’s pretty easy to say everyone’s an idiot when we have the luxury of hindsight isn’t it?  Sure, I could have told you that every single one of those decisions was wrong and why.  But could I have told you before you did it and it went south?  Maybe, maybe not.  I’ve made plenty of mistakes in my career (and am dedicated to continuing) that in hindsight weren’t the best option, but was I an actual idiot for doing it?  Again maybe, maybe not.

I just think we jump on the idiot bandwagon too early and too often.  And I know I’m a big offender.  It doesn’t take much for me to start branding people left and right, but I also try to temper it with some reason.  Just because someone doesn’t have the same experiences I do doesn’t make them an actual idiot.  A dev chooses the wrong data type for a column.  Is he an idiot, or does he just not have the same experience with data types that I do?  I’d have to say it depends on what the mistake was.  Did he choose a varchar(25) for Address, or did he choose datetime?  Because one makes him less experienced with addresses and the other one makes him pretty close to an idiot. Well, what if he chose the bit data type for a SalaryAmount column? Well, I can only hope that he’s writing the table his own salary will be stored in.

I’ve seen plenty of things that seemed to be basic that I didn’t know. And that’s becuase there’s just so much to know it’s hard to quantify. That’s why I make sure I interview everyone I see for at least an hour before making a decision. I honestly believe you can’t judge the sum of someone’s experience in just a handful of questions. In fact, I’ve found plenty of guys who got the first 20 questions wrong and then we suddenly got to their area of expertise and they started blowing the questions out of the water.

So anyway, just give some of these guys a break and realize that they may not be complete idiots just because they don’t know something you don’t. That’s not to say there aren’t any real idiots out there. You guys know that I’ve definitely run into my fair share of them. But I’m trying harder to lighten up on them.

Part of the problem is the learning process we go through, which is next to none. Computers are hard. SQL is hard. .NET is hard. They’re all hard. And yet training is so poor. I’ve seen so much IT training I can’t even count, but the number of courses I’ve been in that actually taught the topic is very few. sure, the high level stuff gets taught, but the hows and whys of doing things is rarely covered. There are some guys out there who really take the time to break it down for you, but try to find one of them. One of the biggest reasons I never got into BI is because all the BI guys teach beginning BI like you’re already a BI expert. They explain BI terms with other BI terms and everyone just nods and smiles. But I guarantee you that most of them walk away without a good understanding of what was just said. .Net guys are big offenders in that area too. They explain .Net to you like you’ve been a coder for years and you’re just supposed to know what all this stuff is. So it’s no wonder that so few people really know their jobs well. They’re never taught what they need to know. So are they really idiots for not knowing something they weren’t taught? There are so many things that can go wrong with a system at any given time how can they be sure that the issue is being caused by a bad data type, or by one particular piece of code? There are of course ways to find out, but so many companies are in such a hurry to move on to the next project they never get a chance to dig into these issues. And again, were they really taught how?

So here we are in the middle of the learning revolution and there’s so little quality training to be had. You can go almost anywhere and learn how to perform the steps for a task, but where do you go to learn what you actually need to know? How do you learn that one thing is stupid over another thing, and that other thing exists for a reason, so when is it supposed to be used? I was talking to someone about this very topic just this morning.

So this whole thing was prompted by a training session I had with someone not long ago. Someone did something they shouldn’t have and when I corrected them they asked why. And when I gave my reason he said oh y, I never thought of that. And I could clearly see that he wasn’t an idiot, he just didn’t have the experience he needed. And since then he’s done it right and even did it the other way a couple times because the situation was different. See, I gave him the reasoning so now he can reason out for himself when to use one method over another. And that’s training that’s worthwhile.

To me, a true idiot is someone who gets shown the way to do things right and still refuses to employ them. He is also someone who has been in his current career for many years and doesn’t even know the basics. I have very little patience for say a SQL dev who’s been doing it for 10yrs and doesn’t even know the basics of the data types. Because you can’t tell me that it’s never come up. I also don’t like DBAs with 10yrs behind them who can’t write a simple backup statement. Again, that’s a basic that you should know cold.

Healthcare isn’t ready

I just left the healthcare industry for the 2nd time and it’s sad the level of ignornace and superstition that exists around computers… and SQL especially.  The entire industry treats computers like big electronic pieces of paper.  They print things they can easily email, they manually enter in things they could easily write a form for, and they perform repetative manual tasks they could easily script.  It’s pathetic how far behind the industry as a whole is and the people who work in it are so close-minded I don’t see how they ever get anything done.

Part of the problem is the doctors.  Doctors think that because they’re doctors that they know everything.  Several times I’ve had one doctor or another tell me specifically how they wanted me to do something in SQL.  They didn’t know the first thing about it, but they heard a few terms here and there so they decided to run the show.  And here they are in meetings insisting that I follow their HA architecture that was just ridiculous.  I got a reputation in my company for being difficult to work with because I always called them on it and told them to let me do my job.  Then they would complain and my boss would be at my desk the next day.  It’s just incredible ego to think that you’re a expert in all fields because you’re an expert in your own.

However, doctors aren’t the only problem.  Vendors are also a huge problem because they’re very slow to adapt to new technologies.  And by slow, I mean 15-20yrs too slow.  We’ve had so many vendors who only code against SQL2K.  Their support personnel is pathetic to say the least as well.  These vendors know nothing.  And they’re guiding hospitals in their implementations.  And of course now you’ve got the blind leading the blind because while there’s nobody at the vendor who knows what he’s talking about, there certainly isn’t anyone at the hospitals to call them on it.  And when they do get someone in there who knows what they’re talking about they can’t keep them because what really good IT person wants to work with an entire floor of people who don’t know the first thing about IT?

The biggest issue we had with staffing was that everyone who does the hiring thinks that you have to have hospital experience to be able to work in IT at a hospital.  So they end up hiring ex nurses, or other clinical people and give them jobs as programmers, system admins, etc.  These people don’t know the first thing about being in IT or about C# yet they’re given positions based off of their hospital tenure.  So someone who wanted a career change could come in as a Sr. Programmer yet they’ve never even had a simple online coding course.  So now they’re in there trying to figure this stuff out.  They’re architecting solutions that they could barely qualify as end users for.  And anyone in IT who knows what they’re doing has to put up with this idiocy.  And make no mistake… it is idiocy.

The industry itself has too many older managers in it and they need to bring in some fresh blood that actually knows something about IT and how to actually get things done.  As it stands they’re just too scared of the change, too scared of the data, too scared of being sued, too scared of pissing off the doctors, and too scared of technology in general.  Oh sure, they’ll bring in iPads for the doctors to carry around, but big deal.  They’re not doing anything cool with them, and everything they put out there costs tons of money in support because they weren’t put together correctly.  Want a perfect example of how far behind they are?  Whenever you go to a new doctor you still have to fill out all that damn paperwork by hand don’t you?  You have to put your name, address, SSN, DOB, etc on like 9 forms.  Doesn’t that sound like something they should be able to get past by now?  And there’s more to that specific story than just being afraid of computers.  That particular one is caused by the system itself.  I won’t go into specifics though.  I’ve also seen plenty of people print online forms, fill them out, and then scan them back in and store that into the DB in a text column.  Seriously dudes?

So what can they do to change?  How can healthcare move into the 80’s?  For starters they can hire some younger more hip managers who understand how IT works and the benefits it brings, and give them the power to do what they need to do.  Next they can stop hiring from hospitals.  C# coders, or SQL guys don’t have to know crap about your business.  They have to know their business, which is IT.  And they’ll have to pony-up the money for some real IT folks.  IT folks aren’t going to work for peanuts… not when they can go somewhere else and get 20-30K more.  Oh yeah, and you’re also going to have to start treating them like they’re professionals.  IT guys don’t want to hear how much the doctors know about IT.  They want you to let them do their jobs.  So seriously, stop treating them like they’re nothing compared to the doctors.  Doctors are essential to hospitals, but your IT staff is too.  It’s getting so that hospitals are crippled without IT.  So why do you still insist that all IT guys are the same?  Hell, even all janitors aren’t the same.  I can easily tell the difference between one who cares about what he does and one who doesn’t.

Here’s a scoop for you.  Healthcare is going to need to get their act together or else.  The government is mandating that everyone have their health records in a meaningful use format by 2015 so the time of getting by on the idiots you’ve got is over.  You’re going to have to get some real talent and do what it takes to keep them.  If that means paying them a good salary, and listening to them, then all I can say is ‘you poor baby’.  Hospitals jump through hoops all the time to attract some new doctor because of what he brings to the network.  If anyone in healthcare is reading this then you’d better start planning now.  Start gathering some talented IT guys and let them do their jobs.  And NO, before you ask, you don’t know what IT talent looks like.  Get someone to help you find that talent.  And I’m not talking about recruiters either.  Go to the Microsoft MVP site and google someone in the field you’re looking for and start emailing them.  Ask them to help you interview a few guys.  I’m sure they’ll charge you a little, but it’ll be more than worth it.  Then once you get these guys on staff don’t treat them like 2nd-class citizens to the doctors.  You’ve got no choice anymore.  You have to do something.  You can’t keep this up.

My guess is that it’ll probably take about another decade before this starts really turning around though.

SQL Server 2012 Launch is a joke (#SQL2012)

Ordinarily I don’t jump on these bandwagons and slam something publically like this, but I have no choice.  I’m amped up ready for a launch event and I’m in the office so I don’t have access to porn, so I’ll blog-off this energy. 

Jen’s already written an excellent blog on the issues with the event so far, but I’ll add another perspective.

I signed up to be a moderator in a couple of the expert pods and not only have I had an hour worth of trouble getting logged in, but now the chat window in the pod won’t come up.  Apparently, the site doesn’t work in IE.  REALLY!?!?!?!?!?!? I mean REALLY?!?!?!?!?  Now, I’ve had a couple people tell me to just install chrome and it’ll work just fine, but I’m not going to install a new browser just to watch an MS webcast.  If anyone should be IE friendly it should be the SQL Server Launch Event.  This is just ridiculous.

However, I will say that this is par for the course with vendors.  This is the type of lazy, poorly-executed vendor crap that’s pushed on us all the time in the DBA world, so we’re actually used to it.  I don’t know who this vendor is, but if I did I would do my part to run them out of the business.  So aside from all the issues Jen outlined in her blog, which I’m fully behind, basic compatibility for the customer’s main web platform isn’t even there.

And on top of everything else, I’m hearing from those who were able to get in that they’re not classified as the MVP expert in the chat session, so nobody knows who they even are.  This vendor is a joke and they’ve ruined the launch event.

2 Addictions worth fighting

A recent email chain with a friend has spawned me to write this post.  What I’m trying to do here is help the 2 extremes of people you’ll find in your company:  the idiot, and the DBA.  Ok, I know all DBAs aren’t super smart, but I had to call the non-idiot something.  So this email chain I had was with a DBA who was stressing-out about something stupid his company is doing even though he warned them.  So what you’ve got to understand is that both sides of this equation are an addiction.

The Addiction of Stupidity:

It’s easy to get caught-up in the fact that our users are morons, or that the other IT guy is an idiot, but you’ve got to have a little compassion.  You have to understand that stupidity is an addiction.  It may have started through a combination of them not knowing anything at all about SQL, and them not having any qualified DBAs to help them learn.  How it started though doesn’t really matter in the end.  What does matter is that now you’ve got to help them through it.  You need to advise them on the proper way to do things.  At first they won’t listen.  Keep it up though and you’ll start to prove yourself a little at a time.  Then they’ll start to trust you.  Even when they trust you though, they’ll still fall back into being stupid all the time.  You have to urge them to fight it.  It’s hard though, right?  They really want to fall back into their old habits but you can’t let them.  It’s all they know and a little knowledge is empowering and dangerous.  So you have to guide them and not let them slip back into their bad habits of making stupid decisions.  Remind them that trusting you in the past has paid off and it will again. 


The Addiction of Caring:

The other side of this is the DBA himself.  See, as DBAs we tend to own the DBs under our control.  We want everything to work together like a well-rehearsed ballet.  And when it goes that way it can be a beautiful thing.  But it almost never goes that well, does it?  The company doesn’t see things the way we do.  The addicts in the above section quite often have the power to block our intelligent moves and even put things into play without us even knowing.  People in power are quite often worse than anyone else.  So how do you deal with this?  How do you get them to do the right thing?  Well, you can discuss it with them and get them to see reason, but if they don’t then you have to let it go. 

You’re not being paid to do a good job.  You’re being paid to make your boss happy.  I’ve said this many times before, and it’s still true.  Turn yourself into an internal fulltime consultant.  Advise them of the right thing to do, but if they make the wrong decision then it’s their business and their decision.  You can’t make them run their business the right way.  You can only advise them.  Remember that.  It’s not your business.  So stop insisting that things be done a certain way.  Tell them what should be done and let them make the decision.  And if they make the wrong decision just make sure you’re covered with an email.  You want it on record that you advised them correctly and they made the wrong decision.

But caring to the point where you’re pulling your hair out is just as much of an addiction as being stupid.  You have to constant remind yourself that you’re just a consultant and if they want to pay you a bloated salary to ignore you and have you spend your days cleaning their messes up instead of providing real value then that’s their business.  Again, you’re being paid to make them happy, not to do a good job.  Plenty of people disagree with me on this, but they’re wrong.  It just so happens that some bosses want you to do a good job and want you to guide the company, but that’s just a case where their priorities align with yours.  If their priorities were to change then I bet you’d find that you’re all of a sudden butting heads.  I’ve been in several companies where everyone in the world has sa and they’ve even got lots of apps connecting with sa and everyone knows the password.  I’ve advised them how unsafe this is, but they insisted that it’s too engrained and can’t be changed.  Fine, I put my advice in an email and went on about my business.  Things kept happening to the servers and they wanted it to stop, but I said I can’t stop it because everyone has sa.  They said it’s impossible.  So ok then.  Then they started failing audits.  They lost clients because they couldn’t produce  the report of the passed audit.  Now they came to me again and said how can we pass this audit.  I said you have to get everyone out of sa and do about 10 other things.  They said but the effort would be too great.  I said ok.  Then they lost another client.  Then they asked me what it would take to pass the audit.  I repeated the same thing.  They said it would be too hard.  I said ok.  They said can you give me another way?  I said no, but have you looked into what it would take?  What’s the actual effort?  They said no, we haven’t looked into it, but I know it would be really hard.  I said, then why not ask the question to the right people?  As it turns out it was a single VP who was blocking it because she had NO IT knowledge and just thought this kinda thing was really hard.  All they had to do was change a connection string in a .ini file and all was well.  Then they just told everyone to get over it and they weren’t getting sa anymore.  They would have to stop doing things that a DBA needs to do.  All of a sudden the environment became much more stable, they passed their next audit, and they started getting those contracts they were losing before.  That’s a true story BTW.

So find a way to divorce yourself from the outcome of these things.  I like to look at it like this… if you see a guy on the street getting into his car and he looks like he’s about to run the red light, and you call into his window and warn him there’s a cop sitting there, and he does it anyway you just look at him and say dumbass.  Chances are you probably won’t get upset and give yourself an ulcer over it because you’re just not that invested in the outcome of your advice.  You warned the guy but he didn’t listen… so what!  And that’s the attitude you have to take with your own company.  You can’t invest yourself in the outcome of your advice.  It’s not your company.

So anyway, I’m just trying to help you keep a little perspective.  If you’re truly in a job where they hang on your every word then consider yourself lucky.  The vast majority of us don’t have that luxury so we have to find ways to cope with the fact that everyone doesn’t listen to everything we say. 

And remember, both of these are addictions.  As much as we have to help our users fight against being stupid, we have to constantly fight against becoming too invested in the outcome of our advice.  And I struggle with this with different degrees of success.


Why GoDaddy Sucks

Well, the site if finally back online.  I’m still moving a lot of the content over, but most of the vids are online again.

This whole debacle was caused by GoDaddy.  MidnightDBA.com has been up and running for 2yrs and for no reason whatsoever, it just stopped working last week.  None of my .net controls would work, so the menu and datagrids were all returning errors.  I tried to see if something went wrong on my end, and even pulled in the best .net guy I know from work, and nothing fixed it.  My work guy said that it seemed like GoDaddy was blocking .axd files and that’s why the content wasn’t working.  I finally got on with GoDaddy support, something I always dread because every time I’ve ever called them they’ve been absolutely useless.  Oh they’re polite, but every tech I’ve talked to with GoDaddy has been completely worthless and they do nothing but try to find ways to boot the call the second they start talking to you.

So anyway, I called support and no matter what I did I heard the same song again and again… “We don’t support custom coding.”

I tried and tried explaining to them that it’s not custom coding and that the site had been working for 2yrs.  And they insisted that nothing was wrong with the server and that my code had to be bad.  And to prove it they pushed a stupid little text file up and since they could read it, they used that as justification to try to close the case.  So I had the ticket escalated and talked to a couple managers.  The problem is with me at this point… for some reason I actually expected a different result.  I didn’t get one though.  The advanced escalation team fed me the same line of BS.  I even went around and around with them showing them a simple test page, and how the site worked on 3 other web servers, but they refused to listen to the simplest logic.  None of their support people know even the most basic principles of .net so they only gave me assinine ideas.  And that’s if the idea were even an idea at all.  The first guy I talked to went to his 2nd-level support guy and came back and said, “He said you have to push a ticket to your web.config file and do something I didn’t understand.”  Now, I have no idea what ‘push a ticket to your web.config’ means, but even if it meant something just the fact that he couldn’t finish the sentence means something doesn’t it?  He should have at least gone back to the guy to ask for more details, but he wouldn’t.  He was more concerned with booting the call because he doesn’t support custom coding.  And of course, I’m not allowed to talk to the 2nd level techs because I’m on a shared host and we’re not important enough to talk to the higher level morons.  So I was refused and was only allowed to talk to 1st-level guys.  And every time my tech would go away to ask someone something he’d be gone for around 30mins.

I did talk to one manager who actually got what I was saying though and she really went to bat for me.  Unfortunately, she works in a sea of morons and there’s just no way she’ll ever make a difference.  So after a week of being down, I signed up with another host, and amazingly the site came online right away.  I guess my code just decided to work again and it really didn’t have anything to do with GoDaddy’s servers, huh?  I mean, it must have been my mistake for thinking that code would run on their servers through whatever they do to the box.  It certainly wasn’t because they were blocking .axd files all of a sudden.  Because if they had for some reason decided to start blocking those file types, I know they would be responsible enough to tell their customers they were making a major change like that.  So I know now that it HAD to be me.  I didn’t do something right in my code.  So the code that I thought was solid and had been working for 2yrs just stopped on its own.  How could I have been so stupid? 

This is a warning to anyone who’s considering putting their site on GoDaddy.  If you do you’ll be sorry because they make changes on their servers without telling you about it and then blame you when something goes wrong.  If I hadn’t gone to another host, my site would have to be completely re-coded to use nothing but static HTML or classic ASP.  It’s ridiculous, unprofessional, and shows a real apathy for their customers.  GoDaddy has proven to me again and again that they don’t give a crap about their customers.  We’re just a paycheck to them.  But you know what?  If they keep this up we won’t be a paycheck much longer.  CIHost pulled a bunch of the same crap and look what happened to them.


My ridiculous day

Yeah, some days it just doesn’t pay to even try to do a good job.  Not only are my sinuses really giving me a raging headache today, but these are the ridiculous things I’ve been engaged in on top of it.

I had to tshoot an ssis pkg because it stopped working when I moved it to the dev box.  As it turns out the moron who wrote it put the values in the config file like I told him to, but he only put part of them in there.  The rest are still hardcoded in the pkg so of course it was failing.

I’m installing SQL R2 ent. on a VM with 1GB of RAM.

I turned AutoShrink back on for a DB because the business owner is scared to death it’ll blow something up if I don’t and they wanted to check with the vendor to make sure I wasn’t going to kill the DB.  Shoot me now.

I BCPd a couple large tables out to a different server and zipped them up.  I had to do this because the server is running out of space and the server team says they can’t get any more right now.  So in order to keep the DB running I’ve had to take a couple tables out of the DB so there’s room for normal ops.  This won’t end well.

Heard back from the support guy about the AutoShrink issue above.  He’s not sure but he’s pretty sure that a major change like that will void our support contract.  Really?  On the day my head is pounding so hard?  Consider yourself lucky this time.

Going to lunch soon.

Another Interview

Ok, I just got out of another interview earlier today and there are a couple good ones in here.  It’s not anywhere near as good as the last one, but you’ve gotta admit that’s a tough act to follow.  So this girl was much more business-like and she was quite nice and honestly just trying to do her best.  She was quite shy and Asian so her english wasn’t the best.  So I’m forced to interpret her answers as best I can sometimes.  So I honestly can’t tell you exactly what she said for all of them, but I’m getting the gist as best I can from the different things she want through to try to reason it out.  I typically just landed on the last thing she said and took that as her answer.

Q:  What the difference between an SP and a trigger?

A:  A trigger is a special SP that stops when you run it after a certain time.  They can only run for a pre-determined time.

Me:  Oh yeah?  Ok, so how long can they run?

Her:  It depends on how big the server is.  It’s determined by the resources.

Q:  what’s the difference between datetime and smalldatetime?

A:  Smalldatetime is limited and datetime is much more range of time.

Q:  What does sp_ in front of an SP signify? 

A:  It just means that it’s an SP.  All SPs have to be named sp_ or the system won’t read them as SPs.

Q:  What are the 2 types of UDFs?

A:  Fixed and variable.

Me:  Ummm, ok.

Q:  What’s the difference between ‘Select Into’ and ‘Insert Into”?

A:  Insert puts data into a table… select into… (she struggles with the answer and half says a couple things.  She then fades out after saying about 3 things I couldn’t understand.  None of them sounded like an answer though.)

Q:  What’s the difference between varchar and nvarchar?

A:  International support.

Q:  What’s the difference between a clustered index and a non-clustered index?

A:  Cluster is a pair index.  It’s at the server level so when something is down it’s kind of like a backup.  Non-clustered  in the only one…(something I can’t understand)… you can rely on that one and only backups can support it.


I then told her to give me a question to ask her.  “I want you to pick the next one.  Give me a specific question to ask you.”

And after thinking for a minute or so she comes up with this:

“What does DML stand for?”

So I asked her that question, and after fudging around for over a minute she finally came up with the right answer.  She went through many variations before landing on the right answer though.

Ok guys, that’s it for this round.

The Dumbest man on Earth -char() vs varchar()

Wow, I didn’t realize I left this question out.

So here’s the question:

Q:  What’s the difference between char() and varchar()?

A:  With char() you can store the standard set of characters.  And with varchar() you can store the extended set… pretty much any character you can think of can be stored in varchar() whereas with char() you can only store the standard 50.  I think it’s 50.  Maybe it’s 53 or something.  I forget the exact number, but it’s about 50. 

So that’s when I asked him about the difference between char() and nchar() because that usually kicks them in line and they go, oh wait, y, so char() holds regular data and nchar() holds extended data.  So that means varchar() holds… and then whatever they come up with next.

But not this guy, no, he stuck to his guns and went with nchar() holding numeric character data.

You’ve gotta love someone who sticks to their guns no matter what!

The Dumbest man on Earth -Another Short Note

Sorry guys, but I keep remembering things.

When I announced to him that the tech screening was over, he sighed and I could see 10yrs leave his face.  Come to think of it, that’s why I decided not to call him out in front of everybody and tell him he didn’t know anything… because I felt so incredibly sorry for him.  It’s like kicking a puppy until he bleeds and then laughing at him for the way he licks himself clean.

But he did ask the other team to take it easy on him because he just had a huge beating of a SQL interview.  He said that he had no idea we were going to ask him so many master-level questions, and then asked the guy how the job ad matched up with what we’re clearly expecting.

I’ll say that this whole thing is entertaining from the angle that I didn’t take him on to raise.  I’m not responsible for his knowledge or his income.  He’s clearly managed to find work all these yrs, so he’s gotta be doing something… right?  So I’m sometimes torn when I have interviews like this because I want to help these people… but I didn’t take them on to raise.  It’s not my job to teach them everything they need to know.  And while we’re feeling sorry for him let’s all remember that he’s got more time in this industry than I do and he’s chosen to not pick up any books or read any articles.  He’s chosen that himself.  So y, it’s sad that he’s that pathetic, but he brought this on himself.  I bet even dog catchers read dog catching books.

The big question is, does someone like that deserve our ridicule or our pity?  I say both really.

The Dumbest man on Earth -Follow-up

Since everyone is so interested, I thought I’d give some further observations about our favorite candidate.

1.  He was visibly shaking throughout the entire interview.

2.  He claimed that had he known there would be so many sql questions he would have studied.  He said he’d only need a couple days.  Frankly, I was VERY tempted to give it to him just out of morbid curiosity.

3.  He said that he had been concentrating on Access the past few months and that’s why he couldn’t remember any of the SQL Sever stuff.  But when I started quizzing him on Access he bombed that too.  And I only know enough about Access to barely get by.

4.  His nervous laughter wasn’t just time consuming, it was loud and annoying.  Everyone go ahead and ask Jen how much I adore loud obnoxious laughing when I’m trying to talk.

5.  He was actually pre-screened by the team doing the hiring.  I’ve since then heard that the guy who did the screening was very embarrassed that this guy turned out to be such a loser.

6.  The guy actually said he was sorry for being so disappointing.  I told him I rarely come into these things with any expectations so it’s impossible to be disappointed.  However, I did tell him I was quite pleased what what I got out of our discussion.

7.  I managed to hear a couple of the questions by the hiring manager as I was leaving and he was basically telling them that he would do whatever they wanted and was divorcing himself from any independent thought.  He wanted a job so badly.  Can you believe he’s a contractor?

8.  I knew this was going to be fun when I saw his resume claim that he had done SQL Server on VMS.

9.  One of the things I didn’t tell in the main post was that with a little prompting he WAS able to tell me the 4 basic steps to creating a cursor.  Funny isn’t it?  The only thing he got right was about how to use a cursor.  Run away very fast.

10.  After he blew the char() vs varchar() question so badly, I asked him the question about char() vs nchar().  Again the answer was I’m not sure where you’re going with that.  nchar()?  What is that, like a numeric Char()?

I’m sure there’s more in my brain somewhere, but that’ll do for now.