what is 'tput' waiting for?

what is 'tput' waiting for?

I run a server with a family account, any member of the family can connect to
the server using a different port. when I test the program, I found a strange problem:
after resetting the connections, the script occasionally waited for about 37 minutes
and went on as nothing happened. the script just waited for a single line of start_acct.sh:

term_cols=`tput cols` 2>/dev/null
'tput' seems to support multi-instances running at the same time.
but what is 'tput' waiting for under the situation described above?
Tue Jul 31 08:46:06 CST 2012 [cmd]ps -xf -o pid,etime,stime,args

 5571       36:58 08:09 sh -c acct_path=${PWD/*account/account};./reset_acct.sh ${acct_path}

 5942       36:52 08:09      _ /bin/bash ./start_acct.sh account1/1-8 127.0.0.1 50001

 6203       36:52 08:09          _ tput cols

 5574       36:58 08:09 sh -c acct_path=${PWD/*account/account};./reset_acct.sh ${acct_path}

 6138       36:52 08:09      _ /bin/bash ./start_acct.sh account1/1-1 127.0.0.1 50001

 6218       36:52 08:09          _ tput cols

 5598       36:58 08:09 sh -c acct_path=${PWD/*account/account};./reset_acct.sh ${acct_path}

 5991       36:52 08:09      _ /bin/bash ./start_acct.sh account1/1-2 127.0.0.1 50001

 6237       36:52 08:09          _ tput cols

 5612       36:58 08:09 sh -c acct_path=${PWD/*account/account};./reset_acct.sh ${acct_path}

 5963       36:52 08:09      _ /bin/bash ./start_acct.sh account1/1-7 127.0.0.1 50001

 6214       36:52 08:09          _ tput cols

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