Dear spam,

Thanks for keeping it real. While most of you pass through my gmail undetected (thank you spam folder), some of you still fight your way to my inbox. I’m positive I’ve clicked the “mark as spam” button on your previous pesterings, but there you are, you made it. Why didn’t I just tell the cashier I don’t have an email address? I knew the whole “Be green! Get your receipt via email!” thing was just a big capitalist advertising scam, but the combination of forgetting my bags and wanting a paper copy seemed like too much for the sad dreadlocked grocery man. Sigh.

Every half-hour or so, my number of unread messages will pop up from the usual 29 to a startling 30 or 31. My breathe gets caught in an invisible net, right at the back of my throat. Could this be? Is this the email I’ve been waiting for? I know that it’s not, but one day it will have to be. Why not today? I stare at the tab:

Inbox (30) – sarah.cather   X

After a few long milliseconds, I muster up the courage to guide my cursor across the screen, click. There you are staring back at me, just as I expected. Honestly it’s not that I don’t appreciate your free credit check offers and date night recommendations. Maybe one day I’ll take you up on it. No, that’s a lie. Nevertheless, you serve as a constant reminder that life is rife with disappointments. This is not meant to sound depressing, just matter-of-fact. We cannot know the extent of sweetness if we have never tasted the bitter, ya know?

If anything, dear spam, you provide a weak reassurance that the universe still knows I exist. Although I imagine you will probably still haunt my gmail after I’m gone for a while, too. Whatever. One day, I will see that number rise, and it won’t be you. It won’t be you. Until then.



P.S. If I really did win that Caribbean cruise/ lottery I didn’t enter/ free flight, will you send that email again? Sorry for not believing in you.


One comment

  1. Some people have all these sweet saying that their mama always said to them when they were growing up (don’t hurry love, play nice, life is like a box of chocolates…..). My mama’s one saying is not sweet at all but I use it every single day, particularly when I check my email: “if it’s too good to be true, it’s not true.”

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