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I’m Insane And My Email Proves It

June 19, 2018


You are given a bucket and taken to a small pond. Your requirement is to empty the pond.

The insane individual starts bailing out the pond.

The sane person first diverts the stream.

I got a little behind on my email. This morning I had 173 unread emails and 239 unopened emails. Seriously, that’s just a couple of days worth of ignoring my email.

I often track my “progess” at emptying my mailbox. I’ll write


With the current time. Then, every 30 minutes I’ll update the chart. Today was a good day. I’m sitting at 3 unread/4 total.

I was the email administrator for a large non-profit corporation in Utah. Our datacenter crashed. It went down “hard.” That means someone pulled the plug and everything turned off all at once.

It’s very similar to a scene in Mission Impossible Rogue Nation. The bad guys shoot a nuclear warhead at San Franscisco. They then “turn off” the datacenter that controls the missile. Ethan Hunt and his team have to restore the datacenter in time to stop the warhead exploding. It takes them about 10 minutes.

When our datacenter crashed, it took us 5 hours to get email back up and running. (I want the IMF working on MY datacenter.)

This was several years ago as companies were transitioning from email to instant messaging. I pushed our engineers to get email back up and running first. We needed a way to communicate with our teams other than the phone bridge we were on.

As email came back online, the engineers said,

That’s great, but what we really want is Skype.

(Okay, it was a few years before Skype, but just go with it.)

I started to understand that how we communicate in business was changing. Email, invented in the 1980s was being replaced by instant messaging programs. Email still had a place, but more for storage rather than getting timely answers.

My production floors do not have Skype. They don’t have any chat program. We deemed it too much of a security risk. So, for a whole group of people I work with daily, it’s still email even for the simplest of questions.

What time does Bob come in?

Did you mean Bob Smith, or Bob Sanchez?

Which one is in accounting?

Sanchez. He’s in at 10:00am


In addition I get email from our client, whom we don’t share an IM product with. I get Change Notifications. I get Outage notifications. I get a lot of email.

So, when I can get to the day and see single digits for the remaining emails, it’s a good day.

And then I think about the Insanity Test I referenced above.

I’m good with a bucket. Crazy good.

Rodney M Bliss is an author, columnist and IT Consultant. His blog updates every weekday. He lives in Pleasant Grove, UT with his lovely wife, thirteen children and grandchildren.

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(c) 2018 Rodney M Bliss, all rights reserved

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