Another Story

Posted on January 30, 2020

It’s the last day of the sprint and the story you’ve been working on for two sprints now is teasing you with it’s completion. It’s pretty much done. The server currently returns a 500 status code in cases when it should really be a 404, but that’s because of how the middleware is currently set up. The front end though. The front end is solid. Well, except for that one field that displays it’s validation errors in a way that doesn’t align with all the other validation errors, but it’s unlikely that your changes caused that issue. Other than those things, and a few other really minor issues, you could probably “call this story done”.

After all, unpicking the mess that is the server side middleware could be another story. You could even add the tech-debt tag to the JIRA issue you create so no one will accidentally think it’s important. As far as the front end validation goes, you’re pretty sure there is already a story in one of the backlogs for that. Well at least something similar, and surely whoever picks up that story will fix this alignment issue as well. Maybe you should find the story and add a comment. Would it be in JIRA backlog 1 or 2? Or maybe it’s in that Excel spreadsheet that the BA made because there were no more JIRA seats left when they started. You could also just write it on a bit of coffee-stained paper, put it in a bottle, and throw it in the ocean.

It really would be nice to get those 3 story points counted in this sprint’s total. Those imaginary units, plus the other imaginary units already completed, would add up to a bigger number of imaginary units. Everyone knows that bigger is better, especially when it comes imagination. The importance of imagination in project planning and reporting can not be overstated.

Would it be nice to fix those issues? Of course it would. Could you fix those issues? Of course you could. You are a really smart programmer. Probably the best programmer in the office, except for maybe that Russian guy who never talks to anyone, but you’re pretty sure he is a spy. You are definitely the best non-spy programmer in the office. Unless your imposter syndrome is playing up on account of you having too much gluten today, in which case you should spend the rest of the day figuring out which meal delivery service pays the most because that’s all you’re good for and everyone else already knows it. The fact it’s taken you so long to realise this can only confirms the voluminous nature of your stupidity.

The fixes probably wouldn’t even take that long. But the tests take 17 minutes to run and the build only passes every 3rd run, for some apparently unimportant reason. You’re looking at maybe 51 minutes until your PR would be merge-able again and it’s currently 4:10pm.

Yeah, the server side middleware improvement should be another story. It’s the professional thing to do.