Why South American magic realist novelists shouldn’t write IT case studies (part 2)

The story so far…

Grupo Nacional de Chocolates S.A invested heavily in technology for its food manufacturing business, but the machinery was beset by diabolical difficulties.


One clear and chilly winter morning, a flight of brightly coloured macaws circled the factory. After they had completed their one hundredth circuit of the high-walled compound, there arrived at the gates Desarrollo Sostenible, an elderly, wrinkled man with wispy white hair but eyes as clear and sharp as an infant’s. For as long as anyone could remember, he had travelled from village to village in his rickety cart drawn by a flea-bitten mule, dispensing knick knacks and folk remedies.

At the gate, he asked to speak to Marco Estratégico para el Actuación Corporativa, the company’s Director of Information Technology.

“I said, ‘Go away old man, we don’t need your witchcraft here’,” recounted Estratégico. “But he replied, ‘So, you don’t need help with your coffee beans turning into beetles? Your corn flakes becoming porn flakes? And your sausages that look like … you know what they look like.’

“I knew then that this old man had corporate learnings we could assimilate into our knowledge-based strategies moving forward.”

“Even 150-year-old wandering wise men need to visit the supermarket occasionally,” Sostenible said.

Estratégico and Sostenible ascended the four hundred steps to the company datacentre, at the top of the stone tower from which Colonel Sistemas Legado and his men held out in a heroic last stand against the army for 15 days and nights at the end of the revolutionary war.

“As soon as Desarrollo Sostenible entered the datacentre, the servers doused their flames, though the heat was still palpable,” said Estratégico.

Sostenible rummaged in his threadbare carpet bag and withdrew a small paintbrush and set of paints. He then proceeded to paint an uncannily accurate picture of an eye on the production control server. He repeated the process with the database server. He then began to chant in a deep voice that reverberated throughout the datacentre and over the whole factory.

“I couldn’t make out all the words he was saying, but it was something like ‘la ecología, la población local, el futuro’,” said Estratégico.

“Gradually a thick fog crept out of the forest to surround the datacentre tower. It started to seep through the cracks in the walls and settled around the servers.”

As this misty wet blanket smothered the passion of the servers, they began to work properly again.

“You don’t have to be a 250-year-old wise man to know you need two virtual eyes to prepare your datacentre for cloud computing,” explained Sostenible.

Business benefits

Sausages shaped like...With the servers no longer overheating, the production lines gradually resumed their normal operation, aside from the occasional flocks of butterflies from the pasta machine.

Grupo Nacional de Chocolates successfully expanded its operations into Ecuador and Venezuela. Estratégico then developed an innovative new product for the Brazilian market.

“The bonus payment and royalties I received for inventing deep-fried butterflies helped me gain my financial freedom,” he said.

“Finally I was able to marry my second cousin Estrategia de Comunicación, who I had loved in secret ever since I saw her swimming naked under the waterfall in the forest when we were teenagers, but our family forbade us to see each other and promised her to Barón de Ladrón.”

Having finished his work, Desarrollo Sostenible fed a few chocolates to the mule and packed up his decrepit cart, piled high with packets of sausages.

“They may not look appetising, but they are the most delicious sausages I have ever eaten in my 347 years,” he exclaimed.

2 Comments Add yours

  1. The talented Mr Ridley says:

    Wicked! More mule!

  2. what? no long rebel march storming-the-factory scene – with a black pearl in one hand and static hurricanes for spurs? nice one, meester 🙂 stop watching Raul Ruiz films!

Leave a reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s