The computers around here take a lot of abuse in general. I mentioned the bit about the drive bay door and the power button earlier, and it still boggles me. It clearly had been left like that for some time before it was noticed. The PCs are not turned off, and it wasn't noticed until after the power failure turned off every machine in the call center, so it could have been running with the power switch obstructed for weeks until it de-booted itself. The two parts are directly adjacent, with the drive bay door above, so shoving the thing down could lodge it there -- but still! (All the computers in the call center are the mini-towers that look like if they were laid out flat, they'd fit under a monitor, but as it is they're up on their sides. The ones with those drive bay doors and the power buttons in the center of the faceplate, under the drive bay, are HPs of some variety; the Dells have a blank piece of plastic glued in the spot where a CD drive should have gone, and the power buttons are smaller, less Big & Shiny, and are at the top of the case. The plastic blanks come out with enough poking.) It still takes deliberate whacking at the system to do that, and the Geek does Not Approve. This is typical of the sorts of things that get done to these computers.
I bitched at some length about the sheer amount of special it took to do that to a computer, and the Obso1337 Supervisor brought forth some of the latest workplace gems. It seems that the Plaid Geek (the one who I ran into when I was doing the interminable disc project) was cracking the cases on some of the non-working items brought in to him, and he found things inside.
Gum foil. Lollipop sticks. Soda bottle wrapper. All of these things are things that the call center supervisors see jammed in machines with more or less regularity, so we were impressed by the Plaid Geek's touching faith in the integrity and garbage collection abilities of the average phone goon (evidenced by his outrage that some of these unspoken Rules of Computing were broken). I started wondering how long it would take before the other shoe dropped for him; Obso1337 Super indicated that it already had.
"It's a surprise that some of these machines were still running," was Darkside's take on the matter, when I recounted the Tale of Woe (or "This is what I did at work today, honey!") to him.
"Mind you, these were the ones brought in for repair," I said. "Like the one he found with the underwear in it."
All discussions of that PC seem to have short-circuited at about that point, with the usual newspaper barrage of questions like Who? Why? How long ago? Wouldn't someone notice? Was it theirs? Were they ... you know ... used? Boxers/briefs/panties/G-string? and other such frivolities. Such is the zen of employment at this call center that the old-timers have found that it is safest to not even begin to ask most of these.
Though if we knew the Why? we would probably know the Who?, and likewise. No one who works with me (except for the IT guy, who is new) thought to ask the question Who in their right mind stuffs underwear inside the case of a computer? because we all know that no one who works there is actually sane.
This may well be a final farewell from the One Man Bald Nudity Crusade. Who else would pick such a charmingly literal way to tell the computer, "Eat my shorts!"