IT support is troubleshooting a problem for a sales guy who's working from home, but the remote-control session is responding very slowly. "On my screen, I could see he was connected via dial-up," says IT. "He said he had DSL installed just last month but then added that it didn't seem much faster. Turns out he set up the DSL modem per the phone company's instructions -- then kept dialling in as usual, assuming that DSL somehow just made his dial-up connection faster!"

Helpdesk worker needs data on a particular user's hard drive at a remote site, so he heads off to fetch the unit. Not very long afterward, the same user phones the helpdesk about a different problem and asks for worker by name. Sorry, he's not here, tech tells her. She hangs up, turns around -- and there's worker, standing in her doorway. Surprised user: "Wow! You helpdesk people are good!"


Irate VP demands to know why data centre power failed one Saturday. "He asks why expensive countermeasures -- UPS and diesel generator -- failed to protect the data centre," says IT. "After not being able to determine a cause, IT reviews the security video. A person is seen entering the air conditioning room at the precise time the outage occurs. It was the VP. He thought the building was too warm, so he flipped what he thought was the breaker for the A/C -- but it was the main breaker for the data centre."


The most well-known phone- throwing event has been the one involving actor Russell Crowe, who heaved a desk set at a New York hotel clerk in June. But the official annual Mobile Phone Throwing World Championships was held in Finland recently drawing a record crowd of 3000. Old and discarded phones are used and this year's men's champ hurled a Siemens mobile phone 95 metres. Commenting on the throw Siemens expressed satisfaction at the superior aerodynamics of its product line. "We are very happy to observe that even after the end of [the phone's] life, our products still excel through quality," a company spokeswoman said. Event organizers say people like throwing mobiles as "a way of working out the ambivalence the devices introduce to modern life." Judges also rate competitors on choreography, style and originality.

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