Passive Aggressiveness For Fun and Profit, Part II

We had a user a while back that frustrated me to no end. Dealing with her is what got me started writing the Network Administrator Diaries bits. Rather than vent my thoughts on her, I started writing stuff down for you. It's one of the many passive aggressive ways I deal with people.

I'm not proud of most my passive aggressive methods...except this one!

This particular user was a Panicked User of Doom (PUD). She had no initiative whatsoever. One time she locked herself out of her network account while I was on vacation. She came in day after day and dutifully sat at her computer, doing nothing. She didn't tell her supervisor. She didn't ask my backup guy for assistance. For eight days, she sat at her desk and waited for me to return.

She had several recurring issues. One was with her optical mouse. When she would twitch her wrist and the mouse would fly over to the edge of her screen, she would call me and tell me her mouse was broken.

I showed her how she could simply try moving the mouse and the world would start spinning again. She didn't believe me it was that easy. She wanted a more thorough fix. So I showed her how to unplug her mouse and plug it back in. She refused to try it, saying she was too scared to mess anything up.

Finally, I resorted to 'giving her a new mouse'. This consisted of keeping a spare mouse right inside the server room door. When she'd call me about her 'broken' mouse, I'd come snag it, take 7 steps over to the server room, and bring out the 'new' one. I swapped these two mice out for her for over a year, until she finally got canned retired.

What passive aggressive ways have you dealt with difficult people?