Friday, August 29, 2003

Spamming continued

I was supposed to harass the spammer again last night, but my Own Personal Blackout (tm) prevented me from doing so (long story short: the electricity company turned off my power by accident last night and as of this morning, I still don't have electricity. I tell you, sitting in the dark gets old really, really, really fast and reading with a flashlight? Not as cool or covert as you might think. And oh yes, the air in this city does not move, so opening windows didn't help either. And, ::gasp:: no coffee this morning -- so I ended up coming in to work very very early because dude, no coffee and no AC. Allegedly, power should be coming back online today but I shall harass the electric company in the meantime. I fear for the food in my refrigerator -- please include my milk, eggs, and cheese in your thoughts).

That being said, Bjorn picked up the slack (brilliantly) in spamming the spammer ( Voila:

Dear Elizabeth:

My name is Eliott Donovan, and I am a secretary for Mr. James Edwards, the manager of money transactions in the US Department of the Internet. I am writing this personal email to you because I have recently become aware of an ongoing investigation into your dialogue with certain US citizens. As you may know, there are many examples of men and women in certain west and central African countries who want to invest money abroad for security purposes, and others who are only interested in exploiting members of the American public. I have been involved in several large-scale investigations into these issues, and from your personal details, I am certain that you are genuinely interested in investing money in the United States.

However, recent events within my office have led me to believe that my manager is interested in submitting a report to the US government. This report will recommend that the US government should start cracking down on foreign nationals that are sending emails to American citizens about estate transfers as a part of the ongoing "war on terrorism". This report is the result of pressure on our department, and I feel that many innocent people abroad will be ruined as a result.

As part of this investigation, two officials from the Department of the Internet have been exchanging emails with you. At this point, I do not believe that they have collected evidence on you, but I think that they may attempt to trap you and use this as an excuse to seize all of your assets. This is completely unfair, and it is my hope that I can keep you away from this fate.

Please respond ASAP, and I will contact you with further information. For my own safety, I hope that you can keep this information between the two of us. I do not wish to be arrested, and if these facts were made public I could be convicted by my government and sent to prison. Good wishes to you. God less.


Mr. Eliott Donovan
US Department of the Internet

Tuesday, August 26, 2003

In which I plead with Elizabeth to please, please help me

Note Rocky asked today whether I was just MSTing or actually spamming the spammer. Yes, I'm spamming the spammer and this is an actual conversation with a Real!Live!Spammer. After all, I figure it can only lead to more spammage, and dude, after the weekend of SoBig and spam, I'm very proud of my inbox being able to stand up to the strain. Plus, I'm getting a malicious, snarky kind of joy out of spamming the spammer. And now, on with my latest response (note that I didn't remove her email address this time; feel free to spam her as well ::grin::):

--- Elizabeth Mulumba ( wrote:

> Dear Seema,
> please i will like to know if you are ready to
> assist me or not i do.I you are try and send me then
> complete information i requested in my first mail.

I am very eager to assist you. Little Hansolo (child
number three) has an ear infection and Obiwan (child
number seven) needs new shoes. So your email could not
have come at a better time. However, you did not
specify to me what information you required. I have
not a phone number because the phone company cut me
off because I had to use the money to buy medicine for
Anakin (child number two).

I would like to proceed on this matter very quickly. I
would also like to get to know yuo better. How many
brothers and sisters have you? And are they still in
Liberia? Also, if you know Mrs. Seko Seko, please let
her know I'm very worried as she has not responded to
my last email. She had some funds in Nigeria she
needed transferring and I was counting on that money
to help pay for heart surgery for Leia (child number

Please respond with all due haste. I'm awaiting
eagerly by my email for your reply.

Your best friend,
Elizabeth writes back

Dear Seema,

please i will like to know if you are ready to assist me or not i do.I you are try and send me then complete information i requested in my first mail.

Elizabeth Mulumba

Monday, August 25, 2003

I respond to Elizabeth

--- Elizabeth Mulumba wrote:
> Hi Seema,
> I got your reply but i don't really understand the
> mail so please try and be specific.

Please tell me what you did not understand. English
is not my native language so I may have misunderstood
your letter. I am very very sorry for my bad English.
I will instruct my seven children to speak better as I
wish them not to miss profitable opportunities like
this one.


Response from Elizabeth Mulumba:

Hi Seema,

I got your reply but i don't really understand the mail so please try and be specific.

In which I respond to yet another spammer

--- Elizabeth Mulumba wrote:

> Dear Friend

Hi! I'm getting a warm and fuzzy feeling already -- it's very rare that I get such a personal and delightful salutation.

> Permit me to acquaint you with this proposal for the
> purpose of investment in your country.

I'm excited to hear this. As you might know, our country has a per capita GDP of $37,700 so it makes investment very profitable.

>This is my
> second mail to you,

Hmmm, I don't recall seeing an email with your name on it before. Are you a spammer perhaps? Or are you Mrs. Seko Seko? Mrs. Seko Seko sounds like she's in a heap of trouble with Nigerian authorities over the money issue and I'm very concerned about her. Do you know her? If so, please let her know that I'm concerned and am waiting to hear from her.

>I know this letter may come to
> you
> as a surprise since we have not met before.

But what a pleasant surprise it is!

>I got
> your
> contact from a searched I conducted in the local
> Internet network.

Excellent. I'm so glad you found me specifically, knowing that that there are approximately 500 million people online. I feel very privilleged to be chosen to make your aquaintance.

> My name is Elizabeth Mulumba, daughter of late Mr.
> Michael Mulumba.

My condolences on your father's passing. It must be very difficult for you to have to act on such business transactions in your time of grief. You are a very brave and courageous young woman.

>My father until his death was the
> Director of Gold/Diamond Mining field of Kono
> District
> in Margibi.

You must have been very proud. It sounds like a prestigious position. However, I could find no mention of your father in google, only copies of this letter -- which makes me think I have been deceived and you are sending this email to many, many people. However, I assure you of my fidelity and my ability to keep this email strickly confidential. You may cease sending this email to others and perhaps, give those names to Mrs. Seko Seko who is evidently in dire straits and deserving of assistance.

> Before his death in a private hospital
> in
> Monrovia, he disclosed to me the reason he was
> poisoned by his business associates

I'm profoundly dismayed to hear this. Have you reported this death to your local authorities? I assure you, while I am sympathetic, I have no background in law enforcement (other than when the police came to my place to break up a large party involving alcohol and loud music; noise travels very well when you live in a double-wide trailer with a corrugated tin roof).

> and that he even
> suspect President Charles Taylor been involved.

President Taylor is very busy, isn't he? If I understand news reports properly, he also has a rebellion on his hands and President Bush is making him leave Monrovia. So Taylor must be busy packing as well. Do you suppose he'll have a garage sale? The youngest of my seven children vomited on our living room sofa and I'm in need of a replacement. I hear Liberia has gorgeous furniture. Do you have a friend who might be able to put me in touch with a furniture expert?

> revealed to me of a consignment containing
> US$23,500.00 (Twenty Three Million Five Hundred
> Thousand United State Dollars) he deposited in a
> private finance company Abroad for safety purpose
> since there was war in our
> country. He explained further that he declared the
> consignment as a family
> treasure and artifact to the finance company to
> avoid them raising eyebrows;

I'm glad to hear that your father is so considerate; raising eyebrows can be a painful process, sometimes taking as long as 18 years before one is free of the eyebrows (but then, one also has to send the eyebrow to college, which is very expensive, not to mention the emotional angst of having a dearly loved eyebrow living away from one's face). Kudos to your father for avoiding such expenses.

> hence they do not know the content of the
> consignment.
> He also directed me where he kept the deposit
> certificate and agreement reached with the finance
> company.

You and your father must be very close. I'm always thrilled to hear when fathers and daughters are close.

> He advised that I should leave in the event
> of his death immediately to facilitate the claiming
> and transfer of this money to any country of my
> choice
> for proper investment and also to avoid being killed
> by the people that killed him.

Indeed! I hope you are safe! And have reliable access to the Internet! Now that I have read your pitiful story and am well-aquainted with you, I fear for you, just as I fear for Mrs. Seko Seko. I pray that you are well, have food, and a safe place. You are my new best friend so I'm eager for this conversation to continue. As I have seven children all under the age of 10, it's often very difficult to have an adult, intelligent conversation. For that reason, I'm immensely grateful for your letter.

>Presently, I am in
> Accra Ghana while my mother and younger ones are
> still
> in Liberia after the burial and three months
> mourning
> as our village local tradition demands.

Are you not concerned for your mother and your younger ones? SHould I add them to the list of people in Africa whom I now must worry about unceasingly?

>I want you
> to
> assist me in this business as my late father
> instructed. Besides, I strongly want to continue my
> education in your country and you would definitely
> stand as my guardian and overseer of any investment
> made with this money.

Guardian? I know you're my new best friend, but I've got seven children already and I'm afraid I have my hands full. I applaud you, however, for desiring to continue your education in my country. I should let you know that you should bring along a brother if you have one; in my country, it's customary to marry one's siblings. It helps keep money in the family. Since you are recently come into so much money, I think this would be the best course of action for you to marry your brother as soon as possible.

> As soon as the consignment is out from the finance
> company and the transfer made, you will be
> compensated
> with 15% of the total sum, while the remaining will
> be
> for investment. If you are willing to assist me in
> this transaction, kindly contact me on my e-mail
> address state your phone and fax numbers in your
> next
> mail, I will then furnish you with the details.

I'm afraid that my phone has been turned off (the phone company says I owe them $239,103.34 cents for long distance calls made to Nigeria for inquiries after Mrs. Seko Seko) because of non-payment and as I'm unemployed, I have no access to a fax machine. However, I stand ready to help you!

> I am now in Accra Ghana but I hope I will be able to
> get a phone number soon.Reply through this email
> Thanks and God bless you.

As to you and yours. I hope toh ear from you very soon. Thank you.

Sincerely, Seema
Spammers - Idiot Tax. It doesn't get any more blunt than this, lemme tell you.

Saturday, August 23, 2003

Stop opening attachments, you crazy people!

I get the sense my Yahoo! mail is going to simply keel over from exhaustion over the SoBig virus. As I said before, I've received quite a few of those virus emails, but today... today has been a beaut of a day. In three hours, I accumulated 38 of them, including several undeliverables that I apparently sent to "The Pratice"-related yahoogroups (man, I'm really a fandom floozy -- don't even have to work at it anymore. The virus is apparently streamlining my fan girl tendencies and getting me involved in new fandoms without any additional fic taxes on my part).

jemima advocates Macs for everyone, but in lieu of that solution:
  • Update your virus software on a weekly, if not daily, basis.
  • Use a firewall. McAfee, Norton, and Zonelabs all provide firewall software (Zonelabs has a free version).
  • Don't open attachments, not even if it's from your bestest friend, and especially if it's someone telling you they love you
  • Don't use IE or Outlook Express

Idiot moment of the week

Can't stand the heat? Please tell me I'm not the only one who wants to smack this editorial writer. The fact that it was written on August 14 a little better, but not much. Thousands of people have died in France and this person thinks ze is being funny. Sheesh.

Thursday, August 21, 2003

So I survived the baseball game. Only four innings though. I still contend that baseball is dull, but I thought the stadium was terrific, though $3.50 for a bottle of water is pricey. Since this was right after work, I bought some Velveeta-drenched nachos to soothe my rumbling stomach (right, it's as gross as it sounds, as it also had runny salsa and gelatinous sour cream). Our seats were right behind right-field in the seventh row. And when we finally found them, I looked out at the field and there was Sammy Sosa no more than 15-20 yards away. I was like, "Sammy Sosa! I've heard of him!" My co-workers were amused, to say the least.

During the four innings I watched, both pitchers pitched no-hitters. So it was like watching people go up to bat, stand there for two minutes, and then sit down again. There was only one homerun and I missed it because I was eating my nachos. Or standing up to let someone go by. We stood up a lot to let people go by. At one point, while someone was passing by, he actually spilled his beer on the person sitting one row in front of us. Luckily, it was all good and there wasn't a brawl. Otherwise, I'm pretty sure I would have ended up wearing what was left of my nachos at that point.

Anyway, turned out I didn't miss anything by only staying four innings. It was a complete shut-out and the home team didn't score a single run. Poor Sammy got booed. A lot. Someone near us yelled out to him, "Hey, Corky!" and someone else made a sign and held it up; it read, "Where's the cork?"

Apparently I keep missing the Irrepressible Miss Barr on chats (and I quote jemima: "You just missed Liz!"). If this goes on much longer, I might start to take it personally. But good on you for going to Mozilla. Together, we'll all take the Internet back from the Evol Corp.

Wednesday, August 20, 2003

Yet another reason why to use Mozilla products

Worm Week Continues and my inbox confirms it. I estimate I'm getting 6-8 copies of this worm every hour, most of them from email addresses I don't recognize (which makes me wonder whose address books am I hanging out in?). Apparently, I'm sending out copies of this worm as well, thanks to the spoofing of my address. The 'undeliverable mail' message I received indicated that yes, once again, Outlook Express is the weak link.

So, link o' the day: Mozilla.

Why are you still here? Go. Download. Stop pop-ups and virus prolifergeration in one easy download.

Tuesday, August 19, 2003

Quiz results: My Bloginality is ISFJ!!!

Unlike most of the Myers-Briggs tests, this one doesn't take terribly long to take.

Tomorrow I'm going to a baseball game (stop laughing all you people who know me in RL! Stop it, I say, stop it!). I tried gracefully to get out of it but no go. I haven't been to a baseball game since... 1996 when I went to see the Vermont Expos play. Forgive me, but baseball is about as thrilling as watching grass grow or paint dry or painted grass dry (your choice). Up to about 8th grade, I played on a softball team. I played catcher. And I was bored even when I was playing. I don't even know who's playing tomorrow... this would be good information to have. ::ponders::

The positive thing is that tomorrow is massage Wednesday at work. I have a 1:15 appointment. Dude. After my day today, every single muscle in my back and shoulders is aching and as I said to co-worker, mine eyes doth bleedeth.

I shall report back tomorrow on whether I survived the baseball game or not.

That is all.

Monday, August 18, 2003

This amused me:

Scientologists, General asshats
Circle I Limbo

Circle II Whirling in a Dark & Stormy Wind

George Bush
Circle III Mud, Rain, Cold, Hail & Snow

Parents who bring squalling brats to R-rated movies
Circle IV Rolling Weights

The Pope
Circle V Stuck in Mud, Mangled

River Styx

Rednecks, Republicans
Circle VI Buried for Eternity

River Phlegyas

Saddam Hussein
Circle VII Burning Sands

Qusay Hussein, Uday Hussein
Circle IIX Immersed in Excrement

Osama bin Laden
Circle IX Frozen in Ice

Design your own hell

Viral Marketing. Yet another link Provided By Bjorn (tm).

Sunday, August 17, 2003

I played tennis this weekend and even after 8 pm, it was very hot. In general, my ground strokes were decent (we won't talk about my currently defunct serve), but I have resumed my bad habit of crunching up on the forehand and getting way too close to the ball. I don't have this problem on the backhand -- I keep enough distance to give it a good whack, but the forehand is a lot weaker simply because I pull in and get too close. I was playing about 5-6 feet behind the baseline since my opponent is a heavy hitter and the first bounce usually lands right insde the baseline; I usually try to return as the ball is coming down for its second bounce. I seem to get the most power at that point, but of course, if I'm not right in position, it also means the ball does get the second bounce and point goes to the other side.

In other news, where is everyone? ::sniff:: I'm missing the chats o' doom... so, Modly Beings, how about it?

Friday, August 15, 2003

There was a meme going around once where you had to pick different songs for different events in your life if indeed your life became a cinematic drama. I couldn't come up with enough songs, but I do have a personal theme song, adopted during the hell that was NaNoWriMo. For some reason, it's not just that I love this song, but I feel it fits all too perfectly.

Moon River
by Harry Mancini

Moon river, wider than a mile,
I'm crossing you in style, some day.
Oh, dream maker, you heart breaker,
Wherever you're goin', I'm goin' your way.
Two drifters, off to see the world,
There's such a lot of world to see.
We're after the same rainbow's end,
Waitin' 'round the bend,
My huckleberry friend,
Moon river, and me!
Useful Statements from the Workplace. I'd very much like to add my personal favorite to this list: "Do what you want to do, you're going to do it anyway" and also, "I have no idea, I only work here."

BTW, yesterday at the office, I got my first misdirected phone call. At Very Big Insurance Company, I got them all of the time; I think our department secretary sent them to me on purpose on occasion. Anyway, I tried never to transfer anyone randomly, which meant that I was often on the phone trying to track someone down for quite a while. So yesterday, someone got my number calling for tech support. We have something called 'Sametime' which is like AOL IM but for the workplace and it rocks -- so I sametimed the tech people, got the question answered, and voila, was able to transfer the guy without knowing what the heck he was talking about. And while I'm at it, it was great to get a tech question and not have to be the one to answer it!

I've seen this in other places, so I'll try it here. I see my stats, I see people visiting, and with the exception of two or three people whom I know in RL, I'm not sure I know who the rest of you are. Soooo, pretty please, make a girl happy and leave me a note in comments, 'kay? Just let me know who you are and tell me a joke or where you found me and why you come here. Deal?

And did anyone else think W was a bit... stilted on the news conference yesterday?

Thursday, August 14, 2003

The blog can wait

So quoth jemima. Would like to inform all of you at large that I have Internet once again. I have a phone line. I'm no longer living in a stone age. But alas, since I'm no longer unemployed carefree Seema, it's time for bed. Unfortunately, bedtime came before I had time to write tonight; jemima has agreed to cover my 1,000 words so you can just trip on over to her blog to see what I didn't write tonight.

Wednesday, August 13, 2003

Loss of email 'worse than divorce'. I'm now on day five without private Internet access. This article validates my feelings of grief and loss completely. Bravo to the BBC for giving those of us who are email-less column inches. It's lovely to finally be taken seriously.

Friday, August 08, 2003

So the move is tomorrow. I'm not nearly finished packing, but am too tired to contemplate doing any more. I figure, whatever I don't get now, I'll get on Labor Day. My bed calls. Anyway, no television until Tuesday, no electricity until Monday, and no telephone until Wednesday. The apartment complex is pinch hitting for me on the electricity so I can, y'know, actually stay there, but everything else is sketchy. So I'm basically offline until then. If you're one of the people with my cell number, feel free to call me. You'll most certainly get my undivided attention :-)

Thursday, August 07, 2003

Can't remember if I blogged this before or not, but if you use Netscape or Mozilla, type about: mozilla in the address bar and see what happens.

Tuesday, August 05, 2003

There's nothing worse than writing up a really long email which, in the first place, hasn't been answered in weeks, and then, just as you're about to write "Talk to you later," Mozilla decides to go belly-up. Grrr....

In other news, I've finally settled on an apartment for the new job. I've decided to live near downtown and go the luxury route. Apartment rents are cheap right now, comparatively. So I've decided to indulge while I can. Who knows, in a year or a two, these rents will go sky-high again. So I figured, what the heck? Enjoy it for now. So I'm really kind of busy right now. Not trying to ignore anyone really, but I'm a bit on the harried side. And no, I haven't started packing yet...

Sunday, August 03, 2003

Shop until you drop

So, exactly what the title says. This was tax-free weekend here, meaning no sales tax on clothing this weekend. Which means you spend $10, you save 85 cents and you get to dodge people. Lots of 'em. Most of them shopping in Old Navy. Note to kids going back to school: you're all going to look exactly the same.

Which is a long way of saying that yes, I was a lemming and I was so at the mall. Shopping. I dragged Sarah along for moral support. I'm not good at the shopping thing because I'm convinced that clothes are not made for 'real' women, so Sarah was along to convince me otherwise. I found a few things at my favorite haunt, Casual Corner. but in general, didn't fall into line with any trends. It's hard to have curves and be trendy. I did, however, buy a skirt in a style I've been lusting after since last summer in France. And a fire engine red silk tan top. And three shirts in various shades of white. And a new pair of penny loafers. Only thing missing was a pair of black slacks, but not for lack of trying. We topped off our marathon shopping spree (4 hours in the mall -- long time for me anyway, since my previous record was 25 minutes) by going out to dinner.

And since I've shopped, I'm oh so ready to drop. G'nite, moon!
Think because you name

Baby's named a Bad, Bad Thing. I would suggest not eating or drinking while going through this site. Your keyboard will thank you.

Friday, August 01, 2003

File under WTF?

Someone on VH-1's "Top 200 Pop Icons" just called Ben Affleck the new Cary Grant. Why this amuses me, I cannot say, not that, I have another candidate who I would call the new Cary Grant. What's next, J.Lo as Grace Kelly?