When Im on a flight sitting next to someone, and were making polite conversations, often the question comes up what do you do? In these situations, I have to assess whether the person works in the IT industry or is otherwise familiar with the lingo. If not, my stock response is I fix databases. This usually warrants a polite nod, and then we both go back to sleep. This over-simplified explanation generally suffices, but in truth, it is wholly inadequate. The truth of the matter is that my job is to ensure that databases dont get broken in the first place; more specifically an HP Vertica database. But our clients have different, complex goals in mind, they sometimes configure their systems incorrectly for the kind of stuff theyre doing. Im constantly looking for ways to empower clients to understand problems to look for before they become bigger problems.