Littering my Inbox is more spam than I ingested during three summers at Girl Scout camp. If I had a big jar of yellow mustard and some Wonder bread I could throw a picnic for the Mid-Atlantic.
I don’t need a physics lesson to know that nature abhors a vacuum. Every time I hit “unsubscribe” to a teaser for something I can live without (such as cheese-filled brats with a pound of bacon tossed in if I order before Easter), a dozen or so new messages pop up to fill the void.
Today I scanned ads about breast and penis enlargers (No thanks, I like ‘em all just the way they are), congressional representatives seeking donations, teeth whiteners, personalized calendars, domestic partnerships (I’ll pass), wrinkle removers and fillers (Not if there are needles involved), books I should buy, belly fat minimizers (20 years too late), a bracelet that will “increase strength, flexibility and balance” (Will it increase my IQ?); gluten-free recipes (hey, I like gluten!), reverse mortgages, yoga retreats, silk underwear (It’s 97° on my deck), a virtual tour of Miss Ollie’s in Jackson, Tennessee, a retirement community in Tierra del Fuego (My kids would never forgive me), Christian Singles/J Date/match.com/eHarmony/Black Singles, bladder control, and a rodeo in Kalispell. Some smartski marketer asks, “Want to make your book a bestseller?” (Hell, yes. How stupid do I look?).
I’ve entertained ads for erectile dysfunction, a trip to Antarctica (only $12k), tango lessons, Vocus, to “monitor my brand on social media in near-real time” (is Bill Maher involved?), and cancer/heart disease/MS/diabetes/cerebral palsy/overeaters anonymous/Red Cross/short people organizations.
An airline invited me to fly to Columbus for $49 (Sorry, $49 too much). I’ve dodged pitches for premium business cards “for only $5,” the First Ever Colorado Virtual Beer Tasting (What fun is that?), and the premiere of “Death and Cremation” at Fox Studios. (Go ahead, look it up if you don’t believe me.)
Of the 100 or more announcements clogging my pc’s arteries daily like nasty LDLs, six or seven are work-related, a few are from friends and family, and one is from a Nigerian gentleman with a pile of dough he’s dying to gift me—if only I’ll send him a check because his aunt is ill and, while I’m at it, include my Social Security number.
Brightening my day is the occasional flirtation from a balding blast from the past who thinks we should give it another shot (after 48 years).
If I had the discipline to delete messages without first inspecting them, I’d conserve precious hours each day. I could take up cross-stitching! Bake a soufflé. Finish my memoir, Tales of a Fallen Pork Roll Queen. But I’m weak. And, my luck, I would miss the one message sure to bring me riches and fame.
Every time I double-click on Outlook, I see my life passing before my eyes. And that’s something I can ill afford. So, please, stop e-mailing me. Unless you’re in Nigeria and have a lot of money.