Sometimes a useless Microsoft story crosses my mind and I think “gee, that might be mildly amusing to post on my blog.” But the story’s small enough that I don’t really have a good hook, which means that it’s hard for me to justify posting it. Well, Adam’s given me a good enough hook to hang a few stories on:
One that I hadn’t thought of is the fact that I’ve been around long enough (14 years last week!) to be an and-1, with the alias paulv. The interesting thing, though, was that when I was an intern 15 years ago (now I’m feeling really old), I was actually an and-2, t-paulvi. I don’t know if there was a Paul V. intern before me who didn’t join full-time or what, but there you go. The biggest problem now is that there are a number of and-2 and and-3’s with the first name Paul and the last initial V, so I tend to get mail for them from people who leave off the extra letters. Since several of them are Scandinavian, this makes for some interesting mail at times…
Adam mentions some people got an and-0 (i.e. just their first name). Circa 1997, this was verboten, but a new hire on our team managed to do it. I won’t use his real name, lest people pull a 867–5309 on him, but let’s say his name is David. We all quickly noticed that his email was david, and we were puzzled: how did he get IT to sign-off on a first-name-only alias? Simple. His last name was, let’s say, Duchovney, and he asked IT to give him the email alias that was, “The first four letters of my first name and my last initial.” Since it was an unclaimed alias, it went through the system and his alias was, technically, DaviD.
The other stupid alias story was that when I joined, one of the team members was named Suchada. A coworker told me the story of printing out something and going to the printer to retrieve his hard copy. There was a pile of printouts Suchada had made sitting there, with the banner page containing her email alias in large letters. Her maiden name’s last initial was Y. “Yes,” the coworker thought, “yes, it is.”
Another story you might remember from those days would be the one in which a certain member of that same team wished to have his email address be neither his first, nor last name, but his nickname. I’ll change the specifics, to spare his blushes, but he managed to get IT to create an email alias containing only him. The name of the alias was his nickname, so that every time you tried to send him an email using ms-mail, you got a popup:
Would you like to mail "James Neidermeyer"? or (in bold, since it was an alias) "James ‘Knees’ Neidermeyer"?
If you’re reading this Knees, and you know who you are… keep on rockin’