Even the IT department gets a visit from a special Christmas guest in this IT version of Clement Clarke Moore's classic poem. And the goodies in his bag are sure to please iSeries users everywhere.
'Twas the night before Christmas,
When all through the center
Not a creature was stirring, not even my mentor;
The data tapes were hung by the tape drives with care,
In hopes that the operator soon would be there;
The operations staff were nestled all snug in their seats,
While the frosty cold A/C blew down on their feet;
And the director with his clipboard, and I with my year-end map,
Had just settled down for a long job-run scrap,
When out in the center there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from the seat to see what was the matter.
Away to the computer room I flew like a flash,
Tore open the door and it made such a crash.
The florescent lights shone bright on the floor
Gave the lustre of mid-day to the Windows servers below,
When, what to my wondering eyes should appear,
But a miniature sleigh, and eight tiny reindeer,
With a little old driver, so lively and quick,
I knew in a moment it must be "iSeries St. Nick".
More rapid than eagles his coursers they came,
And he whistled, and shouted, and called them by name;
"Now, Sam! now, Frank! now, Al and Ian !
On, Cecelia! on Paulo! on, Stephanie and John!
To the top of the porch! to the top of the wall!
Now dash away! dash away! dash away all!"
As dry leaves that before the wild hurricane fly,
When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky,
So up to the roof-top the coursers they flew,
With the sleigh full of iSeries, and St. Nicholas, too.
And then, in a twinkling, I heard on the roof
The prancing and pawing of each little hoof.
As I disarmed the alarm, and was turning around,
Down the elevator St. Nicholas came with a bound.
He was dressed all in fur, from his head to his foot,
And his clothes were all tarnished with ashes and soot;
A single iSeries he had flung on his back,
And he looked like a peddler just opening his pack.
His eyes -- how they twinkled! his dimples how merry!
His cheeks were like roses, his nose like a cherry!
His droll little mouth was drawn up like a bow,
And the beard of his chin was as white as the snow;
The stump of a pipe he held tight in his teeth,
And the smoke it encircled his head like a wreath;
He had a broad face and a little round belly,
That shook, when he laughed like a bowlful of jelly
I ran for the button as the smoke alarm sounded;
The Windows administrators – from the corner they 'rounded;
I quickly turned off the loud alarm clatter,
As the Windows people exclaimed "What's the matter?"
They asked, "Who's the feller, all dressed in red?"
I said, "He's the guy you will all grow to dread."
They looked at each other as I said, "there's no trick."
And I grinned as I said, "He's the iSeries St. Nick."
He was chubby and plump, a right jolly old elf,
And I laughed when I saw him, in spite of myself;
A wink of his eye and a twist of his head,
Soon gave me to know I had nothing to dread;
He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work,
Replacing those "Windows" with a single iSeries; then said "Bill's a jerk."
As he started the system by flipping a switch;
The iSeries started with out one single glitch.
As the year end run started without one single glitch,
They all started to shake and tremble and twitch.
As they stood in amazement in their blue pin striped suits,
I could see them all begin to shake in their boots.
When the run completed normally and they new it had finished,
They sensed that their MS Certifications had all been diminished.
As iSeries Santa wandered with nothing to do,
They suddenly realized they were being replaced by "Big Blue."
Not a single rebuild, nor a blue "GPF,"
You would think that they all had simply gone deaf.
The SQL Administrators lost all their connections,
Their database was truly without its collections.
As they wandered inside and all took their chairs,
I even saw a tear from the one with green hair.
They all peered inside wondering where he had gone,
And they all new that now, it wouldn't be long.
And laying his finger aside of his nose,
And giving a nod, up the elevator iSeries Santa arose;
As the windows operators shook in their seats;
They realized by January they'd be out on the streets.
He sprang to his sleigh, to his team gave a whistle,
And away they all flew like the down of a thistle.
But I heard him exclaim, ere he drove out of sight,
"Happy Christmas to all, and to the flunky programmer!"
About the author: John Brandt is a site expert on Search400.com
and vice president of technical services, iStudio400.com. He welcomes
your comments and feedback; send your e-mails to
This was first published in December 2003