Tuesday, October 23, 2012 | By: HiDee

Stupid, Pointless Annoying Messages

Guten morgen, honey! How are your boobs? 

Apparently my spam filter is male.  It catches and holds messages from girls who want to meet me and companies who want to help me have better sex, but it directed this “boobs” message to my inbox.  Normally I ignore these messages and get on with my day.  But I have to admit, this one made me laugh!

Spam is a slang name for Unsolicited Commercial Email.  Used as an acronym, SPAM stands for stupid, pointless annoying message (folk etymology).  Spam message topics seem to run in cycles: lotteries, speeding tickets, inheritances, online pharmacies, sexual enhancements, mortgage or insurance rates, mystery shoppers, and drugs. Unsolicited?  Definitely.  Stupid, pointless and annoying?  You bet.

But for email users, spam is unavoidable.  Spam messages find their way into my inbox every day.  And more often than I would like, important emails join the spam caught in my junk folder, making it necessary to check all those messages before I can delete them.  Outlook allows users to preview messages in a reading pane, without actually opening them.  I can highlight any message that is not obviously spam and scan the content.  This enables me to quickly determine the authenticity of emails and to avoid infecting my computer with viruses.

Since I need to check the messages, I try to make the time spent checking them worthwhile.

Many spam messages are written with terrible grammar and punctuation.  The sentences often make no sense at all.  I know there are gullible and lonely people in this world, but I hope they are all smart enough not to be sucked in by this stuff.  I have to shake my head and laugh at some of it.  It’s better to laugh than be annoyed.

Do you ever pay attention to who sends spam messages?  I’m sure these are not real people, but I keep a spreadsheet of names (male, female, and surnames) to use in my writing.  This isn’t something new for me.  I started keeping lists of names years ago when I worked at a cap and gown company.  One of my jobs was to check measurement forms submitted by schools and churches to order graduation and choir gowns, making sure each form contained name, height, and cap size.  Any time a name caught my attention, I added it to the list: names I liked, names with unique spellings, funny names.  Over the years, I’ve continued to add to the list, and keeping a spreadsheet is an easy way to keep them all in one place.  Now when I need a character name, I like to refer to this list.

So, thank you for your interest, Mr. Spammer.  While I am not inclined to answer your email, I did get a good laugh out of it, and if you’re lucky, I might name my next villain after you!

How do you deal with spam emails?  Do you mine them for ideas to use in your novels?  Please share.


RT Wolfe said...

Your posts are so fun to read! I wish the SPAMers would at least Like my page while they're there. It's the least they could do. LOL!
R.T. Wolfe

HiDee said...

Glad you enjoy the posts. :) Thank you for being a regular visitor to our site!