I admit it - I'm an e-mail freak. I love e-mail. I get e-mail at work and through 2 other private addresses (I know, for some of you this is a laughably small number of accounts. I'm old, and to me this seems rather enough for now). People at work e-mail me through my work address (technology, kids, it's all about the technology), people I know and love and to whom I am related e-mail me at one private address, and all spam goes to the third.
I love the spam e-mail address - it's great!! I buy something online, give a fake name and the correct e-mail info, and just sit and watch the e-mail come pouring in from websites I've never visited and companies I've never heard of. It's stupidly easy to track who sells their e-mail address to whom; for example, when I get an e-mail to "Amber" (or some other name I choose randomly, depending on the mood I'm in, sometimes I'm a boy, even) I know it's because the lovely people at Company X sold their list to a third-party marketer. Then come the unsolicited e-mails. Completely nonsensical "sender" names hitched to a completely nonsensical subject line, sometimes with attachments! I opened one the other day because it had a "payment failed" subject line (I know, stupid), and, guess what? it was for an herbal and COMPLETELY SAFE (nothing is ever completely safe, mind you) supplement to improve my penis size. Quel Surprise! Apparently I've been missing something about my anatomy! Apparently I've had a penis for years, only it's too SMALL to take much notice of! Imagine my surprise at this news, and my subsequent concern over the implications.....
(Not that I wouldn't like to have, from time to time, my own penis. They seem like fun. My kids seem to like theirs. A lot.)
Anyhow, the e-mail. I believe I've mentioned that I like it. I like checking my accounts and finding something, anything, therein. Heh, I partially signed up for "match.com" (just go there, finish about half the questions, then quit) to see just how many ways they could bombard me with e-mail begging me to finish signing up with them so they could find me my "soul mate." Note to my "soul mate" - sorry, my love, that I didn't finish my questionnaire, thereby ensuring that we can never meet; but if you were indeed my soul mate, then you KNOW I have a hard time finishing anything, and therefore you accept me as I am. Still, I hope to bump into you some life or another so we can finish what we never started.
Also, if you haven't already, and want an unreal amount of garbahge in your inbox, go ahead and sign up for a couple of Yahoo groups - they do keep the e-mail comin', night and day. I was part of one group that must have sent out about 100 e-mails a day (very into the soapmaking, they were), and some of the the people in the group were all like "I'm getting too many e-mails from you and I'm unjoining this group because I can't track all that," which was really amusing because if you're even the tiniest bit savvy (like me! I can read instructions!) you'll have noticed when you signed UP for the group that there are all kinds of ways to be notified of their goings-on, one of which is the "daily notify" or something like that, another of which is to not get ANY e-mail from the group and just go there when you want to, because you're BUSY, dammit, and can only go check that group when your BUSY schedule allows! Because you are making the soap and cannot be bothered with their petty e-mails about bath bombs and shea butter, for Pete's sake! Dammit.
Crap, where was I? Ah yes, getting to the point. It's here somewhere.
Ah, yes. What I really love about e-mail is that it's POLITE. One of my brothers says, and I agree, that e-mail is better than a phone call, because phone calls are convenient only for the caller. The call-ee must decide whether or not to pick up the phone, must subject themselves to whatever conversational tidbits the caller has lined up, and must interrupt whatever they were doing to talk. (Side note - I love me some caller ID. I'm famous for just not picking up the phone if I don't want to. Sorry y'all, but there are very few phone numbers that always get me to pick up. I'm selfish like that). The polite e-mail patiently waits in your inbox until YOU decide you're ready for whatever goodness or evil might lurk therein. You can stare at the subject line all day all day if you want to, or peep at the contents if you've got a little "preview" pane, and not have to DO anything with it until YOU'RE good and ready. It's all about YOU! YOUR needs! About time, don't you think?
Yet another wonderful thing - E-mail is editable, and, while the content doesn't have to be particularly well-written, e-mail does give you time to collect yourself and re-read your thoughts and edit as appropriate. Again with the politeness. I see a trend here.
E-mail is also cathartic and good for your psyche - you can write truly nasty and evil e-mails to someone who has pissed you off and then just hit "delete" and there! Therapy is done! You can go back and write something nice and polite and maybe only a tiny bit scathing and no-one is the wiser of your earlier bile-filled missive. See? Harmless!!!
But above all other things - E-mail from friends is the best. You can be 500 miles away from the people you love best in the whole wide world (hey y'all!) and it's like being in the office next door to them again. Because, let's face facts, here, even when you WERE in the office next door you'd send stupid and snarky and snippy e-mail to one another because it was funny and because just maybe you were on a telecon with someone in Japan or NYC or California and they were pissing you off and you needed to MOCK them rudely. Through an e-mail. To a friend not 3 feet away from you. Works just as well at 500 miles as 3 feet, and keeps the wheels of friendship rolling smoothly along.
For all those many reasons - I love me some e-mail. Send me some, and see how long it takes to get a reply back from me. I'll offer that it will be, in all likelihood, an embarrassingly small amount of time. I'm like that. :>
Post-Post addendum - "500 miles" is random. If you're more or less than that, I feel the same way about you too. Hi KSM!