|Remnants of the PewterMatics server room|
Local telesales company PewterMatics had to call in a crack team of network support specialists on Tuesday when a disgruntled employee went on a destructive rampage. “I’ve never seen anything like it,” said John Hindenberg, PewterMatics’ operations manager. “She just went crazy!”
According to police reports, at about 1:32 pm on Tuesday, Sally Druthers rose from her desk screaming and throwing office supplies. She then proceeded out of her cubicle and down the corridor to the server room. While shouting profanities, she kicked the door down and began dismantling the server racks, yanking CAT5 cables from the switches, hubs, and other expensive equipment.
By the time PewterMatics’ own network team got on the scene, it was too late. The equipment lay on the ground in ruins, wisps of smoke rising from some of the more expensive components. “I was horrified,” explained technician Travis Bray. “And when the smoke cleared, I saw Sally sitting in the corner, trembling, with a piece of our Cisco PIX firewall in her hand. No more working from home…,” he said, as his voice trailed off.
Knoxville computer support company Widget Integration Group (WIG) were called in and within the same day had the racks reconfigured to accept new hardware. “We are sourcing them new hardware, but it has to be overnighted from Austin,” explained WIG consultant Ernie Gomez. “This was an interesting situation, but I think we have it under control. We’ll be installing kick-proof doors as well.”
PewterMatics will only be down a couple of days while the network is replaced, and in the meantime, calls are being handled by an answering service.
In an exclusive Knoxpatch.com interview, Druthers revealed the reason behind her rampage. “Well, the damn server had been going down all morning, causing me to have to spend more time on the phone than I like to and it increased my call closing times. When I got back from lunch and the server went down again, I just flipped. Poor Mrs. Smith, the lady trying to place an order when the server went down that time, probably thought I was some psycho-bitch. I’m really not. Anyway, I sure hope she can get her pewter mugs in time for her party.” She added, “Those servers have gone down for the last time!”
When asked if the servers went down often, she responded, “Hell yeah! Those things go down at least once a day. Those network people don’t know what the heck they’re doing. If you have a problem, they always tell you to reboot your computer and call them back.”
PewterMatics is still considering whether to fire Druthers, send her off for a psychiatric evaluation, or simply write her up. “Nothing like this has never happened before,” explained John Hindenberg. “We’re at a loss. Otherwise, Sally is an exceptional employee. The only other offense we have on record is an incident where somebody used all the coffee creamer and didn’t buy more. She dropped the coffeepot out the window. On the upside, her episode gave us an excuse to upgrade, which actually fulfilled a request that was recently denied by the board.”
PewterMatics sells pewter gift and practical items through a catalog and a website. The company has been in business in Knoxville since 1983.