Happy SysAdmin Appreciation Day!

datePosted 10:13 AM, July 29th, 2011 by MarkleB

I’ve been meaning to get a post out about D.L.’s first birthday, but the weekend following it was a grueling one, and I just don’t have it in me, yet. Maybe after we get his First Birthday Photo Shoot done.

Instead, I’ll just do a quick drive-by about SysAdmin Appreciation Day.

Today (the last Friday of July) is SysAdmin Appreciation Day. Most of my career has been spent as a SysAdmin because it’s fun. There are some SysAdmins who might not agree, but most do. It’s not one of those professions where people ask if you do it at home and you say, “Oh, no. Computers are what I do at work. I just want to get away from all that when I get home.” For every one SysAdmin I hear say that, I know at least five others who are just waiting for someone to ask them how they’ve set up their home network.

“Oh, it’s great!” they’ll exclaim. “I set up a Linux SSH server on a VM so I can proxy in over an encrypted tunnel from work. Because, honestly, who’s going to block port 22?” Well, not many SysAdmins. Some network engineers, though. Bastards.

The point is, you can generally gauge how good of a SysAdmin you’ve got by the enthusiasm with which they answer that question. A good SysAdmin isn’t necessarily someone who’s been around forever and seen everything (though that helps, and those guys are awesome), but how energetic they’ll be in tracking down something they haven’t seen before.

But an appreciation day? Really? Here’s the problem: We’re not under-appreciated. Most places I’ve worked, the SysAdmins get bribed on a regular basis with brownies and cookies so we won’t crack down very hard on IMs and social media sites. Sadly, nobody does that at my current company. (You reading this guys? You want Facebook back?)

Some picked-on IT professionals say that nobody ever thinks about the job they do until something goes wrong or someone can’t get something they need. I haven’t found that to be the case at all. We wear the coolest geek-shirts, you all come to us to talk about the latest gadget you’ve bought and love, and every person in the company knows us, even though we know about four people’s names in the company.

The only down-side is that you do have to put up with us wearing white socks with slacks and dress shoes. That’s really non-negotiable.

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2 Responses to “Happy SysAdmin Appreciation Day!”

  1. Kat on July 29th, 2011 at 10:22 AM

    If I worked with you, I’d bribe you with brownies just so you’d stop wearing white socks to work.

    • MarkleB on August 14th, 2011 at 4:49 PM

      That would only work until the next time that I wanted brownies.

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