X-Message-Number: 8388
Date: Thu, 17 Jul 1997 21:48:20 +0200 (MET DST)
From: Eugene Leitl <>
Subject: FY;): Judith the (frozen) COBOL programmer. (fwd)

---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Thu, 17 Jul 1997 15:31:06 -0400 (EDT)
To: , , , ,
Subject: HUMOR: Judith the (frozen) COBOL programmer.

Judith, the COBOL Programer:   
Judith was a COBOL programmer in the late 1990s.  After years of deplorable
treatment as a technological dinosaur by UNIX programmers, Judith was finally
getting some respect.  She became a consultant specializing in year 2000
date-compliant conversions.  She worked short-term assignments for
prestigious companies and traveled all over the world.  While she had to work
70, 80 and even 90 hours a week, it was worth it because she made a lot of
Nevertheless, several years of this relentless, mind-numbing work took its
toll on Judith.  She couldn't sleep and began having nightmares about the
year 2000.  It reached a point where she became violently ill at the mere
thought of the year 2000.  She had to do something or suffer a nervous
breakdown.  All she could think about was avoiding the year 2000 and the
turmoil coming with it.    
So, Judith contacted a company specializing in cryonics.  She made a deal to
have herself frozen until March 15, 2000.  By that time all the year 2000 New
Years Eve parties and computer debacles would be over.  Cryonics seemed like
the only solution.  Judith was thrilled.  There would be no year 2000 to
worry about and then she could get on with her life.   
She was put into a cryonics receptacle.  The technicians set the automatic
re-animation date.  Injections of drugs slowed her heartbeat, she was frozen
and that was that.   Time passed.  
Judith opened her eyes and was blinded by the bright white light.  She was in
the middle of an enormous outdoors auditorium.  Excited people filled the
bleachers surrounding her. They were all chanting "She's alive!  She's
There were cameras unlike she'd ever seen before and equipment looking like
it came out of a science fiction movie.  Judith couldn't contain her
enthusiasm, "Is it over?  Has the year 2000 come?  Are the millennia parties
and crisis over and done with?"    
A man who looked like the senior scientist stepped forward.  "I'm so sorry,"
he said.  "There was a problem with your cryonics re-animation timer.  It's
wasn't year-2000 compliant.  You've been in suspension for almost 8000
"Oh no!  This is not the year 2000?!" she shouted.   
"Please, calm down.  There is someone here who wants to talk with you."   
Suddenly a wall-sized projection screen displayed the image of a man looking
very much like Bill Gates.  "I'm Bill, the Chief Executive Officer of Earth.
 There's no need to be upset.  This is a wonderful time to be alive.  There
is world peace, everyone is rich and there is no need for governments or
taxes.  The space program is self-funding from asteroid farming and there are
colonies orbiting the Moon, Mars and in several nearby star systems.
Technology has advanced to such a degree that everyone can travel by virtual
reality and can contact anyone on or off the planet.  We participate in any
entertainment whenever we want."   
Calming down Judith said, "That sounds terrific."  She was relieved and
excited to restart her new life.   Still, being revived in an auditorium
setting seemed wrong to her.  "Bill . . . I'm curious, why are all these
people so interested in me?"   
"Well," he said, ". . . the year 10,000 is just around the corner and it says
in your file you know COBOL."   

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