The Games Sysadmins Play

randomlychad  —  January 26, 2012 — 19 Comments

System administrators are an odd bunch. Often we interface with technology far better than we do with people. Rare is the sys admin who ably balances both people skills and technical savvy.


Though I haven’t met him in person, Ricky Anderson is one such person. He loves people, he loves tech, and is a wicked funny guy (and wicked smart, too–he routinely trounces me in Words With Friends), and a kindred soul.

Truly, a sense of humor is key in staying afloat in the demanding world of IT. As such, there are games we play with one another. One of those, that those of you in the blogosphere are familiar with, is “search bombing.” Search bombing is essentially stringing together a ridiculous Google/Bing/whatever search that points to a particular blogger’s site.

Ricky and I, being sys admins, haven’t search bombed each other–yet. But honestly, as IT guys, that’s kind of pedestrian. No, he started our “Sys Admin Games” by firing a WHOIS across my bow.

What’s a WHOIS? It’s a search for record containing ownership and/or administrative information for a particular domain. Thus, it caught me off-guard–for about, oh, point 03 nanoseconds–when Ricky hit me up with my domain information in a Words With Friends chat session. Then I got.

“You dog! You WHOISed me.”

“Darn you for making me seem less mysterious.”

I of course WHOISed him back, but his record is protected! So what to do, what to do?

Google was my friend here. I bided my time, endured several bitter defeats, and finally hit him up with his home address in chat.

“How did you get my address?”

“Ancient Chinese secret. Actually, it was Eric Schmidt and his Googles.”

Don’t worry, Ricky, your secret is safe with me. Besides, Taos* is a long ways to go for a joke.

Did you get the pizza I sent?

*Ricky doesn’t really live in Taos. DADT.

Peace out.

What are some online games you’ve played?




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Christ-follower, husband, dad, blogger, reader, writer, movie buff, introvert, desert-dweller, omnivore, gym rat. May, or may not, have a burgeoning collection of Darth Vader t-shirts. Can usually be found drinking protein shakes, playing with daughter, working out with his son, or hanging out with his wife. Makes a living playing with computers.

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  • Well played sir. Well played. The internets hold some amazing things sometimes.

    • Thank-you! Indeed, they do. I’m hoping those of who are bloggers, and are similarly employed, can make this a thing.

    • He actually got me with that one.

      • I did, didn’t I? Life is beautiful. 😉

        (Guess it’s now on like Donkey Kong plays ping pong, right?)

  • Uh yeah, I can’t even play Xbox 360 games, much less online games. However, Ricky Anderson does want to live in the same holler as me.

    • Larry, I mean online games in the sense of pranks. 😉 But anyway, are you sure about that? I mean Ricky lives in Taos*, and in addition to being a network admin, he’s tasked with caring for the D.H. Lawrence shrine there.*
      *Not really, on both counts

    • It’s not just any holler. It’s The Holler!

      • And the only Holler at least partially named for a paint company. The rest of the county has Dunn Edwards, you two’ve got Dunn Holler. 😉

  • Well, I’m much more terrified of you now. But it’s cool, I don’t have anything to hide.

    • My Internet skillz are legend (in my own mind). Same thing I told Ricky: “You have nothing to worry about… This won’t hurt a bit.”


    • We know you don’t have anything to hide. Take that as you will, Craven.

  • I love Ricky too -- so FUNNY! And such a nice guy too! Hey WAIT ONE STINKIN’ MINUTE! You guys are playing “Words with friends” without me??? I’m Cindyluuhoo -- you and Ricky TOTALLY need to look me up and challenge me! I usually play about 20 people at a time -- so if you can’t start a game with me -- it’s because I’m at my limit. It’s very relaxing and I’m kinda nerdy like that 🙂

    • It’s how we roll.

      Remember: sysadmins are for pwning n00bs!


      • Based on that -- I think I successfully started a game with you AND with Ricky -- if not -- it’s someone who will wonder what the HECK I’m doing!! Let me know if it’s you on the other end 🙂

        • I’m 1357bob

          • And I’m… Wait for it: randomlychad

          • Oh my -- who in the HECK did I start two games with?? Okay -- look for it!

  • I dabble with Words with Friends (as you know). I’ve gotten away from most other games as I’ve discovered I have so many other things to do -- like blogging!

    • Dabble? You’re aces at that game. And, yes--I know what you mean.