Self-taught-techie slept on the datacenter floor, survived communism, ended a marriage

This is what happens when you get promoted too fast, too soon

Who, Me? As the working week opens, The Register likes to help readers focus by offering a fresh edition of Who, Me, the weekly reader-contributed column in which readers share stories of the times they got it wrong.

This week, meet a reader who called himself "The Cuban Boy" and shared his story of graduating from a computer science degree on that fabled isle, scoring a gig working for the provincial government and then – due to a superior running afoul of the Party – suddenly finding himself running tech at the local health service.

Penguinistas of the word, rejoice! The Cuban Boy told us the environment was all Linux, all the way down.

"Communists love Linux over there," he wrote.

But they didn't love training or mentoring. The Cuban Boy admitted he was in way over his head.

But after three or four months, and spending many nights sleeping in the datacenter, he felt on top of his ten-server environment.

Or he did, until he noticed a stack of undelivered messages on the mail server. He thought little of it, figured out how to clear the backlog, and got on with things.

At this point we need to know a little about life in Cuba at this time – the late 2000s. As The Cuban Boy explained it to Who, Me? internet access was rare at the time, so those with access to email in the workplace relied upon office mail to stay in touch with loved ones. And as this story took place in Cuba, many of those loved ones were out of the country.

A couple of days after clearing the email queue, The Cuban Boy was visited by one of his users, who introduced herself as "The Lady Who Lost A Marriage Because The Mail Server Didn't Work."

The Lady's husband was working abroad and had promised to email every day. The husband stuck to his word, and the Lady tried to … but her occasional lapses stressed an already frayed marriage.

When the server The Cuban Boy tended stopped sending messages, the relationship fell apart.

"The Lady said she was joking about having lost her marriage due to the email, but she said it was definitely a contributor and now she was sure she owed the guy an apology because he did write every day," The Cuban Boy told Who, Me.

"The Cuban Boy learned a lesson or two this day," he wrote.

Of course the real lesson should have been learned by Cuban authorities – they're the ones in the wrong in this story.

Has your inexperience led to problems? If so, click here to send us an email and we may tell your tale with all the kindness we've shown The Cuban Boy in this story. ®

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