Hack & Slash and the Ghetto fix; or why one’s Tech is Sacred.

So, I get a phone call in the middle of the morning yesterday, informing me that there might be a little problem with my Internet connectivity.  “Why is that?”  I ask.  “Oh, it’s simple really” said the voice on the line.  “I think I may have cut the wires.”

For those who don’t know, the missus and I bought the old family house after the sudden death of my father-in-law.  His last wish was that one of the kids buy the house and try to find a way for my Mom-in-law to co-habit with them.   We had an adjacent flat built for her and everything is smooth as glass.

The hook-up consists of a Linksys WRT-54GL, four port wi-fi router, connecting 2 fixed comps and a MacBook using Airport.  I installed a (temporary) internet wall outlet when we moved in because I knew the office was the last room to be renovated and i’d more than likely make some changes.  I made the connectors, wired everything up and ran the wires between the house and into the flat by going under the floor and between the trusses.  Hooked up Mominlaw’s comp with a end connector and another wall plate.  All purddy, clean and secure.  We’ve enjoyed fast access ever since.

Now, we’ve had a couple of stragglers stay over at Mom’s in the last little while.  She has a sewing/craft room being used as a dorm and I’m not very happy with the situation.  Nevertheless, family is important and I don’t mind helping out (a bit here and there) but any more and I will start charging rent.

Now, said lodger had an itch and decided that they also want to benefit from (free) net access and just decided that they would hook himself up to the remaining ports on the router.  They simply walked in our house (we have separate entrances, btw) and drilled, hacked and slashed his way under the floor.


The drill bit caught the wire and twisted the hell out of it. ” It wasn’t funny, it almost tore my wrist up” he chipped

Dude, I couldn’t give a rat’s ass about your wrist, you just cut our feed. “Oh, yeah but I fixed it” he said.

This is the Mother-of-all-Ghetto Fixes.

From this;
as you can see there’s nothing left so, he got the electrical tape out.

and did this; 
Ghetto Fix

Now, I have to fix to whole outlet on my end because it’s GONE.  You can see on the pic where it was in the wall.  The plate broke because he pulled on it (it was screwed to the wall) to examine HOW to connect the wires on his end.  He felt it was a good idea to have a plug in (his) the room and never bothered to inform anyone (the owners – namely ME) if this was ok…Hell no.

People, I can’t impress this upon you hard enough.  Never, EVER,  let n00bs get close to your Tech.  I don’t care what you have to do;  invest in a Phalanx, use anti-personnel weapons, attack dogs, bullet-proof enclosures or the Force but protect your gear at all costs.


  1. Burgy, I can only empathise with you.

    The “said guest” should be hung, drawn and quartered. His Head should then be mounted on top on the Router antennas as a warning to any other family member of what happens when you mess with a Fat Dad's tech gear.

    Buy I have to admit, I'm really curious to know if the n00b got it to work with all that electrical tape?

  2. Drill, reciprocating saw – the result on 4-pair UTP is all the same.

    Who's power tools did the “straggler” use?

    I would say this is your fault if you did not insist he check his tools at the door.

    But messing with your tech AND your tools counts as three strikes (one each for the tech & tools, and another for doing both at the same time). And after three strikes you're – or rather he's – out!!!

  3. @Johnny.
    I don't know just yet. I'll check it out as I pull it apart. I'll try to update over the weekend.

    He used MY tools/tape for this mess. The office is a temporary tool storage while we work on the upstairs. Guess the writing was on the wall for this one, huh!

  4. You are a kind man. I would have taken much more drastic measures.. hope he actually PAYS his fare share for the intarweb usage..


  5. It hasn't yet. Discussed, yes. Fixed, no. We had to finish the bathroom today. Plumber, electrician and the works. Gonna fix everything tomorrow after I change the car tires.

  6. It hasn't yet. Discussed, yes. Fixed, no. We had to finish the bathroom today. Plumber, electrician and the works. Gonna fix everything tomorrow after I change the car tires.