Thursday, October 14, 2010

10/6/10 Perusing the "Inbox"

10/6/10 Chatterbox
Betty Kaiser

Peering deep into the depths of cyberspace, I think it’s time once again for another review of Betty’s email box. This past summer there were few keepers and lots of deleters (I made that word up). Every year when elections roll around, some people get kinda wacky. They suddenly feel it’s their patriotic duty to bombard unsuspecting friends and family with tall tales and revelations (never nice!) about people brave enough to run for political office. I immediately delete them.

So, if you’re thinking of sending me something political — don’t bother. And please, no more Maxine. I know that people dearly love her. Me? Not so much. I do enjoy (in moderation) the spectacular scenery and other photos that people send. Pictures of puppies, kittens and wild animals are fun. But even then I have limits. After a half dozen cuties with captions, my eyes start to cross.

I find it interesting that whoever puts together spam lists knows that I am of Medicare age. All summer long I have been bombarded with emails that read something like this: “Capitalize on Obama’s Health Care Reform.” All I have to do to take advantage of their offer is to click on a link that says, “View your new health insurance plan here.”

Bulk emails from banks that send balance transfer offers also raise my hackles. I think it’s strange when an institution that won’t make real estate or business loans will offer up to $30,000 if you’ll transfer your debt to them. Of course, I realize they only have my best interests at heart. Not. If I transfer a high-rate balance they say it will give me more financial flexibility. Go figure that one out!

My junk mail box (like yours) is also full of a variety of other scams. The worst, of course, are the ones that begin “Hello, stranger …” Yuck. Just when I think I’ve got them under control, new ones pop up.

Now perhaps you’re wondering what I do like. Well, I enjoy all kinds of trivia and I really like stuff that makes me giggle. Tragedies and other news of the real world can be depressing and sometimes I need cheering up. I like heart-warming truth but not fiction and I’m not big on novella-type scenarios. So if you forward me emails, make me laugh or at least sigh and say, “Ahhh …”

However, the winner of this summer’s unofficial “Favorite email” contest is from Carol, a life-long friend of 60-plus years. After decades of sharing life’s ups and downs, we still have the same wicked sense of humor — the kind of humor that also contains a kernel of truth. The following “kernels” are from her “Truths for Mature Humans.”

1. Re: computers: There is a great need for a SARCASM font.

2. I’m always slightly terrified when I exit out of Word and it asks me if I want to save any changes to my ten-page technical report that I swear I didn’t make any changes to.

3. Was learning cursive really necessary? (Today it’s an art form.)

4. Can’t we all agree to ignore whatever comes after “Blue Ray?” I don’t want to have to restart my collection again. (I second that.)

5. I think part of a best friend’s job should be to immediately clear your computer history if you die. (You betcha!)

6. Map Quest really needs to start their directions on #5. I’m pretty sure I know a better route to get out of my neighborhood.

7. You never know when it will strike but there comes a moment at work when you know that you just aren’t going to do anything productive for the rest of the day.

8. I hate it when I just miss a call by the last ring. (Hello? Hello? Darn!) But when I immediately call back, it rings 9 times and goes to voice mail. What did you do after I didn’t answer? Drop the phone and run?

9. I keep some people’s phone numbers in my phone list just so I know not to answer when they call. (Caller ID is wonderful.)

10. Nothing sucks more than that moment during an argument when you realize you’re wrong. (Again??)

11. How the heck are you supposed to fold a fitted sheet? (The eternal question.)

12. Shirts get dirty. Underwear gets dirty. Pants? Pants never get dirty. Especially blue jeans. You can wear them forever.

13. “Dry clean only. Do not machine wash or tumble dry,” means I will not buy this garment or if I do, I will never wash this garment — ever.

14. I have a hard time deciphering the fine line between boredom and hunger. How about you?

15. There’s no worse feeling that that millisecond you’re sure you’re going to die after leaning your chair back a little too far.

16. I’ll sometimes watch a movie that I saw when I was younger and suddenly realize that the plot makes no more sense now than when I saw it the first time.

17. Sometimes I’ll look down at my watch three consecutive times and still now know what time it is. (It’s called brain block.)

18. I love the sense of camaraderie when an entire line of cars teams up to prevent a jerk from cutting in at the front. Stay strong, brothers and sisters! (It’s especially satisfying when truckers do it.)

19. Bad decisions make good stories. (Oh, boy, do they ever!)

20. Finally, there’s this one: I can’t remember the last time I wasn’t at least kind of tired. (Well, at least in this decade.)

Keeps those emails coming, folks but please be kind. Remember, “Honey catches more flies (and makes more friends!) than vinegar.”

Betty Kaiser’s Chatterbox is about people, places, family, and other matters of the heart. 
Read her weekly columns in the Cottage Grove Sentinel

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