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Monday, January 17, 2005

I had two interesting e-mails over the weekend. The first read:

do you own jail babes if so contact me it is urgent

The author's clearly not a fan of such conventions of letter-writing as punctuation, capital letters, or indeed signing your name at the bottom, but I won't hold that against him. What I will hold against him is the fact that clearly people are now starting to think I actually owned the Jail Babes site (sadly no longer with us), when in fact all I did was write an article about it a couple of years ago.

As previously discussed here, I already get more hits for the term 'Jail Babes' than for any other phrase (although 'Poddington Peas' runs it close on a good day, which is slightly scary), possibly due to being ranked number 3 for those two words out of 259,000 sites on Yahoo (so no, it's not a Googlewhack).

So once word gets around that I might actually have owned the thing, I could be inundated with heartbroken guys who fell in love with violent criminals on the net and don't know how to get in touch with them after the site closed down. Personally I'd contact the prison visiting service or the parole board, but I'm the kind of guy who would've noted down my girlfriend's prisoner ID number and the name of the state penitentiary she calls home, and obviously I can't expect everyone to be that conscientious. These are the lovesick partners of major felons, and they're not going to be thinking clearly. Or calmly. Or non-violently.

Meaning it's important I set this guy straight.

Which makes it mildly tragic that in common with about 30% of people who use the Phil-Mail-o-Matic, this chap didn't bother entering his name or e-mail address, yet still felt confident I'd know who he is and would be able to reply.

But hey, that's love. It's tragic at the best of times.

My second e-mail was far more exciting, and was sent direct, avoiding any such mishaps. It was from Andrey Eris. That's right, Andrey Eris. Me and Andrey go way back. We're like brothers. I remember with great fondness the time old Eris, or Andi as I call him, travelled the world together, seeing the sights, experiencing the highs and lows, living life with gusto...

Ok, I admit I've never heard of Andrey Eris. But he seems to have heard of me. He says:

At me the Big holiday concerning my successful spelling of the novel 'Joseph' Is planned. I wait to myself for you and your friends? 19 January till January 21.

I'm guessing, but I don't think English is Andrey's first language.

Which is no problem, because he then repeats it all in French:

Chez moi On decide une Grande fete au sujet de mon orthographe heureux du roman 'Iosif'. Donc! J'attends chez moi-meme de vous et vos amis? 19 de janvier avant le 21 janvier.
La fete!

... which actually made more sense to me.

Now, I'm as pleased about Andrey's successful spelling as the next man, but is that really enough to entitle me to three days at his house?

The e-mail concludes:

Kind Regards from Alexandria,
The Russian Writer Andrey Eris.

Alexandria?? That's Egypt! I've always wanted to go to Egypt! And what's more, I can take my friends with me. Woo-hoo! Pack your bags everyone, we're off to Africa on Wednesday!