How can you tell if one of your coworkers has been secretly using Meta Stack Overflow in their free time?

closed as primarily opinion-based by hims056, Tobias Kienzler, asheeshr, Jeremy, Doorknob Jul 19 '13 at 7:17

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  • 6
    Is it Friday where you are already? – John Rudy Apr 15 '10 at 20:40
  • @user I lost track of the days in my cave, so I'm hoping so – Earlz Apr 15 '10 at 20:45
  • 1
    @user: It's Friday somewhere! – Jon Seigel Apr 15 '10 at 20:46
  • 2
    WTF is free time? – squillman Apr 15 '10 at 21:09
  • 3
    @squillman: Meta time – perbert Apr 15 '10 at 21:13
  • 3
    It's Friday here – Mark Henderson Apr 15 '10 at 22:07

18 Answers 18


They stopped posting on Stack Overflow, and now seem to be getting even less work done.


He says "You should totally drop that and use jQuery" in completely inappropriate situations. example

Employee A: Dude, me and my wife got into this big fight last night.

Employee B: You should totally drop her and try jQuery

  • 5
    +1 Extremely unfunny – uɐɯsO uɐɥʇɐN Apr 15 '10 at 22:25
  • 17
    +1 - extremely practical. I tried that today and it worked! – DVK Apr 16 '10 at 0:38
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    There's probably a plugin for that...lemme check – Michael Haren Apr 16 '10 at 2:44
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    I'd like to point out that since 1.4 dropped the easiest way to say "you should totally drop that and use jQuery" in completely inappropriate situations is to use the new $.live() functionality. – snicker Apr 16 '10 at 17:40
  • Can you send me the code for that? – Gayot Fow Jul 19 '13 at 9:38

Every estimate is now 6 - 8 weeks, and he wants to do the work from a boat.

  • They have a newly-developed unicorn and/or waffle obsession.

  • They start insisting that it's Friday somewhere, even when it isn't.

  • They begin demanding that freehand circles be drawn around everything.

  • 9
    It is in iceland. While they were off partying, they let a volcano go off, and now all our flights are cancelled :( – Phoshi Apr 15 '10 at 20:49

They write in haiku,
Expecting people's upvotes.
Whatever that means.


They write next to everything.

  • more like status-declined :P – Earlz Apr 15 '10 at 22:53
  • Okay... fine. That too. – uɐɯsO uɐɥʇɐN Apr 15 '10 at 23:24
  • @Johannes, some, like me, actually think it looks worse. – Arjan Jul 19 '13 at 10:08
  • @Arjan Thought it gets the nice red color. – Johannes Kuhn Jul 19 '13 at 10:53
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    @JohannesKuhn Now with nice red colour. – michaelb958 Jul 19 '13 at 12:09
  • @michaelb958 ohh, thanks. Forgot the meta- part *hides* – Johannes Kuhn Jul 19 '13 at 12:18
  • Instead of playing an april fool's joke, they just replaced all the pictures in your office with unicorns.
  • They complain your charts are useless because the circles were computer-aided.

The website on their screen is the most awkward combination of grey and maroon.

  • 2
    and yes, it is always on their screen. – Jimmy Apr 15 '10 at 22:14
  • they suddenly burst out laughing unexpectedly and cry, "waffles, OF COURSE!"
  • you see them spending an inordinate amount of time in Microsoft Paint trying to perfect their freehand circles.
  • they have a google image search up with a lot of waffle and pony pictures standing ready
  • 1
    I would say my practice time is perfectly ordinate. Freehand circles is hard! – devinb Jul 30 '10 at 11:32

He is wearing a meta T-shirt.

alt text

  • 3
    I want that – Earlz Apr 16 '10 at 17:21
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    @earlz <waves hand> no you don't. – Jeff Atwood May 13 '10 at 8:03

He complains about exceeding his disk quota, and when you investigate to find out why, it turns out that it's because he has 38 GB of unicorn pictures saved.

  • 21
    Hopefully it's not uniporn! – gnostradamus Apr 15 '10 at 21:21
  • 1
    @gnovice: That would be one of the top ten signs that your coworker needs professional help. Wait... that's the same as being on Meta, never mind. – Aarobot Apr 15 '10 at 22:03

They have started saying "Eeek!" a lot.


They start replying to emails or other correspondence with:

+1 excellent idea!

But most importantly, they have already read this thread. Most likely they will ask something elusive, such as:

"If the top 10 of something have 15 answers, shouldn't it be the top 15?"


He'll give you humorous questions/answers/comments that are completely off-topic, and later excuse himself because it's not Friday yet.

  • Lies, its always friday somewhere – RhysW Jul 24 '13 at 13:51

They start making snide comments every time you ask a question unless that's their normal behavior. If that is their normal behavior, then check whether the comments include references to waffles, ponies, or He Who Must Not Be Named.

  • 2
    We never make snide comments. Never ever! Well, more ever than never, but I think even you will get it... – Ladybug Killer Apr 15 '10 at 21:05
  • Snide what? How dare you! Liar! Cheater! Deceiver! :) – uɐɯsO uɐɥʇɐN Apr 15 '10 at 23:25

They come to work wearing breakfast foods on their heads. They keep pets in their cubicles that also, inexplicably, wear breakfast foods on their heads.

better than prosthetic foreheads, i suppose.

  • where was i? i forgot the point that i was making. i said if i was smart that i would save up for a piece of string and a rock to wind the string around – quack quixote Apr 16 '10 at 11:26

Every solution becomes just a greasemonkey script away.

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