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Tuesday, June 15, 2004

Spamville (Not Spam, I Swear)

I made a promise to myself a while back to take a day and respond to every spam email I received in an effort to better my life. “Why else,” I asked myself, “would someone go to all the trouble of emailing me ‘amazing offers’ if they didn’t have my best interest at heart?” It would be near-sinful for me to continue to turn my nose up at their philanthropy.

So, I feel it appropriate to detail for you how my life has changed since I began replying to Spam.

The most obvious change in my life is that I’ll soon be typing on a copy of Microsoft Office XP for which I paid only $50. I can hardly wait for the six to eight weeks for shipping to go by (it’s like freaking waiting for Christmas!!!). In fact, I’m soon to be loaded up on software sold at 90-95% of retail price. It will be amazing how much better my photos look when tweaked with Photoshop, and I will have saved close to $500 by buying through my new buddies Randi Sherman [hunkmhynseu@supermail.ru] and Melba Gomez [axaacjiov@yahoo.com]. They don’t really respond to my “thank you” note emails. Randi and Melba must be quite humble and shy.

A lot of my new internet friends seem to really have a special burden for my wife’s well-being. They are constantly reminding me to check to make sure she is happy, or satisfied, or pleased, or “elated”. There are a wealth of products available which apparently will ensure her perpetual happiness, and there is nothing a husband wishes for more than his spouse’s perpetual happiness. “The smile on her face,” they promise, “will let you know its working!” Wait till she comes home from her conference this weekend and opens the boxes of goodies I’ve purchased on her behalf!!!

(A couple of emails also seemed to take great interest in helping other people’s wives meet men who can fulfill their idea of a perfect prince charming. “Wives Looking for Real Men. They need someone new,” said one email. It is sad when marriages don’t work out. Some guys are just jerks, what can I say. Sadly, I don’t know very many single guys who would be seen as a “catch” to a previously married woman on the rebound, so I couldn’t help them much. I sent them my friend Thomas’s email address and phone number though. I don’t know if he fits the “shining armor” mold, but, whatever…)

Some of my new friends apparently are working with technology which needs to be updated. Their keyboards, for example, seem to have keys that tend to be stuck. Their email subjects contain spelling errors which demonstrate this: ssshhheeee wiiiillll sssssaaaayyy itttttssss ttttoooooo llllooonnnggggg and Blllooooooocccck spppaaaaam frrrroooooom yoooour innnbbboooox. This reminds me; I should ask my friends Randi and Melba if they also sell computer components in addition to software.

I would be remiss if I failed to mentiong the convenience of shopping for prescription medications online. Some of them I can purchase from Canadian companies and get around paying the high prices which translate into profit for companies like Lily. I mean, sure, Lily employs thousands of people in my state, and is about the only reason our State has remained solvent and not been bought by some third world country, and SURE, a lot of that profit goes back into research for new drugs to treat different diseases and stuff, but man, it feels nice helping out the Canadian economy too. Everyone wants to “Buy American” when it comes to cars and jeans and stuff, but who wants to help Big Pharmaceutical companies do well?

Plus, there were a lot of drugs I didn’t know I really needed, but it turns out I might at some point, so I went ahead and stocked up. Maude Massey [carmelbremneryson@thailand-email.com] was the friend who helped me out here. Maude lives in Toronto and is, apparently, of Thai decent. She tipped me off to a fab Canadian organization to help me out. Josh Blankenship [meloniemcm@2d.com] sent me the same information. People in Toronto are really nice. I haven’t heard back from either of them to find out if they took my advice to “meet up”. (They seem to have a lot in common, and I could feel “love” in the air, you know?)

Anyway, I have several varieties in various doses of the following, should you find yourself short: Viagra, Super.Viagra, Cialis, Xanax, Valium, Zocor, Propecia, Phentermine, Vicodin, Prozac, Ambein, Nexium, Phentermine, Paxil, Vioxx, Lipitor, Soma and “many others” which I had seen advertised on TV. (On TV, you never quite know what the drugs are actually used for, so now that I have a nice supply of them, I can read the indications in my spare time. Yet another benefit!) (P.S. Nexium really IS a purple pill!!!!)

When I first decided to purchase some of these medications, I was a little embarrassed to ask my local family doctor to prescribe things I didn’t need. And it’s too much of a hassle to travel out to Chesterfield to see the quack doctor who would write me an excuse from work because of a “difficult pregnancy” were I to ask him nicely (ie, make the mouth of Ben Franklin move on a $100 bill). So, I was happy to learn, from my new pal Reva [MQDWRFAIA@locos.com] that she was the head physician at a major medical practice, and that she could “hook me up” so to speak. Her email said, “Our doctors will write you a prescription for F.R.E.E. Any prescription drug you WANT!!! Brand name or generic! Overnite shipping!” With all those exclamations, she seemed as excited for me as I was.

As exciting as all of this is, there is something even better: mortgage(s)!!!! Wow! Can you believe the deals that are out there right now? Several mortgages have been offered to me (I was even “approved” for a few I forgot I had applied for?!?!). So many, in fact, that I was a bit depressed by the prospect of filling out so much paper work. Luckily, it turned out that they all wanted the same information (bank account info, social security number, address, mother’s maiden name, etc) so I cut some corners by only filling out the info once, then sending it back via a carbon copy feature on my email program. (Don’t tell them that I cheated, though, ok? I would hate for any of them to feel like I don’t value our business relationship.)

I’m not sure how I will ever choose between all of these lenders, but once I have all of their offers back, it will be interesting to see which ones are the best! I could be wrong, but I think the offer I received from ClubXianBank, (Erin Fernandez [aldrakor@clubxiangqi.org]) will end up being the one I want to go with. “We are ready to give you a $200,000 loan for $350/month payment. Approval process will take 1 minute. Just visit the link below and fill out the short form.” Sadly, when I visited the link, their server went down just after I filled out the form and hit “send”. Luckily, they received my info and told me they would send me a “hard-copy” approval soon. $200,000!!!! In the words of George Jefferson, “we’re moving on up!” (Just don’t call Cami “Wheezie”…trust me…)

Of course, I’ve found a few new friends who lack discretion and common courtesy. Many of their emails refer to certain male body parts which I will respectfully decline to detail here in a “family friendly” environment. Such as the one from Hung Greenberg [htrzsbhblvac@funmail.co.uk]. I know my British friends have a different sensibility about certain words, but his email was a little crude even for my sophisticated tastes. (On a side note, he too seems to suffer from the stuck keyboard syndrome I talked about earlier, as evidenced by this line from his email: “Do yooou want do increeeeease the siiiiiize of…” etc.)

And, my friend Hung isn’t the only one. I mean, it got so bad that I fired off an angry email at someone for using the word “pennies” in a subject line of an email. I had to apologize and admit I misread their intention.

But enough of the negative! There’s so much more to cover, such as getting a GED (I figure it’s good to have both a diploma AND a GED), completing a Master’s Degree (they are crediting me with, like, 40 credit hours for my “work experience” and all I have to do is pay for the credits, not take any classes!!!), losing weight (those turn out to be purple pills to!?!), and filtering spam. But, the way I see it, all this talk about spam is a bunch of garbage. Spam can make your life better. Blocking it should be illegal. I hope Congress does something about all these hucksters who want to make money off of us by “protecting” us from these friendly, useful, and valuable emails.

Thomas V. Bona contributed valuable knowledge to this essay.


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