Monday, 15 November 2010

Enlarging Your Penis and Other Scams

Spam. Whether it be greasy offal in a tin, or e-mails from a schizophrenic who firmly believes he is the Nigerian President; nobody is capable of saying that they actually like Spam. Today we will be focusing on the latter, for as disgusting as the food product may be, there is - like the repugnant smelling student at school - only so much you can animadvert on, before beginning to repeat yourself in a manner befitting an elderly landline user. The ultimate goal of spam is to defraud its target of their bank details and subsequently any money held therein. This sounds simple enough, and any right minded person would understand subtly is the game. However as the majority of spam e-mails are produced by people who get their grasp of language from low budget pornographic films, and their outlook on humanity from Rob Schneider movies, it often reads like a novel regurgitated by an intoxicated Dan Brown.

Presented below are typical, yet humorous examples of spam that I located in my spam box like a raccoon scavenging in the trash can. And I hastily hit the delete key, just like I would with regards to said raccoon.

This one takes form of a standard template of spam in which a distant and often unnamed relative has left to join the great non-Floyd related gig in the sky, leaving the recipient a fortune worthy of a bank director’s redundancy pay; and all you have to do to redeem the fortune is to send them your bank details, and perhaps, several coupons collected from a tabloid news rag. But it is the minutiae of the writing that sets this particular example apart. Details such as opening with “Hello dear”, as though the sender believes calling my sexuality into question would actually reduce my imperviousness to scams. He could have researched general letter openings that could be used for either sex, but I can only assume opening Google, and keying his query in, would have burnt off valuable calories. Also, despite supposedly being the next of kin to this woman, my actual extremely British ancestry couldn’t be further removed from her Nigerian surname, and therefore presumed heritage. I know that the sender must obviously be so over-whelmed with bereavement that he is unable to cogitate with logic and coherence, and if he hadn’t burgeoned this message together, surely he would discovered a universal surname like Smith would have been sufficient; after all you wouldn't expect the moniker, Reginald D. Hunter, to appear in an action film which focuses on the ancient traditions of the ninja.

This one is the work of a genius; and to put it into a metaphor that could be misconstrued as an advert for the 2012 London Olympics – it takes the primitive mould and sprints an extra triathlon with it, by creating a back story so deep, it probably spent time down with the Chilean miners. Apparently in my life I have been the victim of corrupt officials who, metaphorically, tore my human rights asunder, and as a result I am to be awarded five million sterling as compensation; an act which has been sanctioned by the United Nations of the Republic of Benin themselves. If you give any thought to how the writer of this e-mail has gone to all the pain staking trouble of meticulously attempting to create a professionally written document, by later dissecting the inner workings of economics and bureaucracy, and the connotations of both, it actually creates sympathy for your would be scammer; especially as they came so far, but ultimately, failed to process the fact that this lavish and over the top back story isn’t going to be compatible with the majority of their potential victims’ own lives/common sense. After all, the worst human rights violation the average Briton has received at the hands of corrupt officials was the discovery that John Prescott had been breeding.

Anyone who has been unfortunate enough to bare-witness to television’s equivalent to the medieval torture rack, aka the Hannah Montana show, will have realized that Miley Cyrus’ wig expectorates lethal levels of radiation, which impairs the cognitive processes of her friends and as a result they remain completely oblivious to the fact the two are identical, produce the same shrill noises and both act like a fart trying to deny its existence. Also,mysteriously, neither are seen in the same postcode as one another, which is terribly similar to the slasher movie breed of serial killer. Well the radiating wig theory is also true with my e-mail address as I apparently have a secret life. So not only have I fallen victim to the hands of corrupt officials I am also intricately involved with the Tunisian ministry of commerce and foreign trade department. And in case anyone doubted that my ability to surpass Quantum Leap’s Sam Beckett in the Jack-of-all-trades department, I’ve also been elected by the will of Allah for ‘altruistic’ purposes, although this could explain why I have the feeling that if I accept this money to ‘help’ the orphans it will end with me gaining seventy-two houri.

However, unlike the previous spam e-mail this message has darker undertones, with one paragraph even deviating into the philosophical; ‘Am doing this so that Allah will forgive my sins and accept my soul because this sickness has suffered me so much’, and just slightly before the writer even alludes that her husband’s five day illness was the result of his wicked relatives - ‘I don't have any child that will inherit this money, and my husband relatives are not good, not even good at all, because they are the one that were responsible for the death of my late husband in other to have all my late husband's properties, and I don't want my husband's efforts to be used by those that conspired for his death.’ Surely the writer doesn’t actually believe that the best scam available is to convince their intended target that they are starring in an Islamic remake of Dallas?

Probably the most efficient scam in the spammer’s arsenal; as the most effective way to hook a victim is to play to his insecurities regarding the taunting sobriquets, such as Earthworm Jim references, he undoubtedly receives in the male locker room. Obviously they try to make it seem as appealing as possible, but fail rather miserably; as who amongst you can honestly read the phrase ‘ROCK SOLID HARDNESS’, and not think of the Thing in a state of extreme arousal. And who can also read extreme arousal, and not picture a reality show in which the contestants forcibly attempt to pleasure great white sharks. The actual opening line of the advert - ‘…Grow Your SmallDick’ (bad grammar aside for a moment) - only creates the illusion that they are the Alan Titchmarsh of enhancing male genitals; not an image one wants if they wish to obtain the allusive ‘ALL-NIGHT staying power’. Not only does it presume I am this man…oh who am I kidding, I’m not going to delete this one.