The Internet used to be an incredible thing. A few years ago, it was like craps: throw the dice, if you lose, throw again – just make sure you don’t throw a seven that second time around.
Of course this was a while ago, possibly in a galaxy far away, when our economy was inflated upon projection and conjecture as opposed to the needle of actual capital that has recently depleted our airbag. Although if you have (verb) this column lately, you may realize that I did not profit from the Internet boom of the late ’90s, but I assume that none of us did.
Which leaves us where we are: destitute as a country and poised to casually wage a war against a ravaged people, for whatever reason. We are destitute as an economic powerhouse, for the moment, possibly; the Iraqi people are ravaged by the absence of actual necessities. They cannot possibly care about the burden that I am facing, the shallow burden of Internet privacy, because they are more concerned with obtaining food and keeping roofs on their houses in the wake of our weapons of “unmass” destruction.
But I’m just conjecturing, because I’ve never been to Iraq and possibly have never really felt need, actual need. No, I’m more concerned about why every time I check my e-mail someone is asking me to increase the size of my penis, to enlarge the size of my breasts and to finally take out that second mortgage.
I’ve never owned anything, least of all a house (my pets are just my roommates); the one thing my breasts don’t need is enlargement; and my penis is my best friend – we’ve always been content. So beyond confusing relationships, the one thing that gets me is superstition. As Stevie Wonder, a much wiser man than me, was once paraphrased: It’ll get ya.
Superstition is something that has always alarmed me. Not that I believe in it, but it makes me jittery, you know? Although it is beyond my better judgment as a writer to place this responsibility upon my readers, I am a weak man able to be both drafted and castrated (see below), and being that I spend most of my time in a cave watching MSNBC and contemplating ancient Stone Mason rituals, I have no friends. So when I received this e-mail chain letter, I just hoped that more than five people would read this column (the names of real persons have been changed to protect their identities, but I will say that this chain letter originated from the Netherlands):
>FWD: FWD: FW: The Chains of War
>Whatever you do, read this until the end, your life may depend upon it.
>From: Ryan Hume [email protected]
>>>Subject: FW: The Chains of War
>Subject: Now is important. Today we face a crisis. War is immanent, if you do not pass this letter on to five people. By throwing this letter away, you will face severe repercussions. Namely the genderless castration of any individual who does not take this seriously, by a blunt, empty chemical warhead from Iraq, if you DO NOT PASS THIS ON TO FIVE OTHER PEOPLE. If you do not comply, war will start possibly next week, or maybe the week after that, but soon, really soon.
(Author Note: I’m sorry, I had to pass this along, but I hope that you will do the right thing.)