After 40 years as a computer programmer and game developer—and the passing of his wife of 47 years—Rick has retired and is now living in Ye Olde Folks Home, where he still tinkers with tech and likes to write these amusing and/or thoughtful tales about his storied life.

“He Who Should Not Be Named”

Once upon a time we interviewed a prospective employee, who for the purposes of this delightful monograph we shall call Clint.

Clint was a self-professed expert in a newer technology to which management hoped to transition, from our present serviceable but somewhat dated development environment. But when a coworker and myself interviewed him, he was so incredibly rude and arrogant that we were turned off.

We both recommended that he not be hired. But management thought he sounded awesome, so we were told, “Better get used to seeing him around.”

Once brought on board, he started making waves right away. Frankly, the guy was insane. He accused me of defacing our corporate website and corrupting it in a way that “was going to get our company banned from the internet.” (Wrong, and bizarre.)

He started ludicrous feuds with some of the other developers, telling management various untrue tall tales of unprofessional conduct that resulted in his victims being called in by corporate to explain themselves.

Clint was tasked with a pilot project to convert one of our simpler products to the new technology, and he set himself to the task, but with somewhat of a lackluster work ethic.

My office was right by the door, so I had a good vantage point to see his various coming and goings, and after a while I realized he was coming in an hour or so after me, and leaving an hour or two before I left.

I monitored him more closely and realized he was working about five hours a day.

He spent several years on a project that properly should have been completed in a month. Even at that, the release date slipped a few times, but that wasn’t what got him canned.

Our network admin noticed unusual activity on the network one night and found that Clint had programmed his work computer to disable a website belonging to one of the other developers with a denial of service attack.

That was the end of Clint, who soon thereafter retaliated by pretending to be one of our customers and posting a defamatory online article about our company.

That led to our CEO hitting him with a restraining order.

We lost four developers in this debacle: Clint, as well as several of his victims who got tired of being persecuted and moved on. We’re still transitioning to the new technology.

To this day, whenever I mention Clint or his shenanigans, I refer to him as “He Who Should Not Be Named.”