Monday, December 19, 2005

Married to and extreme programmer

She lies in bed sleeping soundly after a rough workout the night before. Her cell phone rings and something about it is ominous and she says "ah-oh". The covers fly off the bed as she answers the phone. There is a problem. Like a secret agent dodging bullets she rolls on to the floor where her laptop lies wirelessly connected to the internet. She begins banging on the keyboard and asking diagnostic questions. Within about 30 seconds she is connected to the corporate server and checks a few things. She tells the caller "I see something, call me back in a few minutes".

She types madly for a minute or so and then runs for the bathroom. I hear a trickle but before it's finished her cell phone rings again. She flies out of the bathroom and runs for the phone. Within seconds she is typing again and asking more diagnostic questions. Finally she discovers whose code has the problem and instructs the caller to locate that programmer and says she'll get there as soon as possible to help out.

She gets up off the floor and wonders out loud if she has time for a shower. But then she remembers last night's work out and knows she needs one. She is in the shower finishing what she started earlier while washing her hair. She barely gets the soap rinsed out of her eyes when the phone rings again. Apparently they can't wait for her to get there and she grabs a towel as she runs out. When I walk out of the bathroom I see her squatting on the floor soaking wet in front of her laptop wearing only a cell phone on one shoulder and a towel on the other. I get dressed slowly and wonder how long she will be working there. Maybe I could have slept a few more minutes. But then she hangs up so I go out to warm the car while she is getting dressed.

I barely have time to start the car and walk back in the house and she is yelling at me "let's go". She jumps in the driver's seat. I am wondering how many times the phone is going to ring on the way to work I am thinking that I could probably improve my chances of survival by driving today. But then I just get in. Unfortunately there is construction on the road and she can't figure out which way to go. She's a genius -- but when it comes to parking, u-turns and other driving obstacles she's brain dead. I give her instructions.

We drive along for 5 minutes or so without the phone ringing and I start to think that maybe I can listen to talk radio on the way to work. I turn the radio on and the topic sounds interesting. Her cell phone rings -- grrrr. She presses a button on the steering wheel to answer the phone. A blue tooth phone is great except for one thing -- it was supposed to be her Christmas present but she went and bought it the week before. She talks with her manager and I hear his voice coming over the car speakers. She gives him instructions telling him what she needs ready when she gets there. He is supposed to download some software utility and get someone else to make a few backups. He sounds a little confused and asks for clarification. She summarizes, issues more commands and then hangs up. I'm wondering who is managing who.

We drive along. The phone rings more times. More commands are issued. I don't get to listen to talk radio but I do arrive safely at work. She says she'll see me for dinner as she kisses me good-bye and I think "yeah right".