There are a lot of geniuses in the world. I know there must be, but there are a lot who fall short of that mark as well. This is a post about several of them.
I first noticed this little idiosyncrasy of the online world when I started getting e-mail for Tiffany Patton. She’d apparently gone shopping online, and used my e-mail address when she was prompted for one. I got a lot of her mail, though none of it particularly interesting. Clothes for large women, mostly. Tiffany, I’m afraid, is a fairly pedestrian woman.
But then, Tiffany used my e-mail address to sign up to get real estate listings in Memphis, Tennessee. She signed up for at least three services to send her listings. She appeared to be shopping in the $400-500k range in Memphis. You can apparently buy a lot of house in Memphis in that price range. I hope she found something, because I got all her listings. I called at least 3 Realtors she’d signed up with, but none had any way to get in touch with her. I got my last real estate listing for Tiff just before Christmas. Hopefully she figured it out.
I developed a mental picture of Tiffany. I googled her, and found some things that could have been her. She’d run in some kind of charity race, but I somehow, based on the online catalogs I got attributed to her, imagined she was a bit of a BBW. And African-American, as best I could tell. She might have even been a Realtor in the Memphis area. I tried to track down a phone number for her, based on her name and the locations she was looking for a house. I found a listing, but it had been disconnected. Tiffany, I hope you’ve figured out my e-mail address is not yours to use.
Then there was the kid who signed up for a “My Space” account with my e-mail. Seemed like a nice enough kid, football player, likes music. Thing is, I stated getting all his requests to be a friend dumped into my mailbox. My Space was nice enough to give me the password for the account, since, after all, I had the right e-mail address. “Forgot my password” is a wonderful thing. As tempting as it was to go in and change his picture and make him gay or whatever, I just cancelled him.
He finally got the message, I think. I haven’t gotten any My Space stuff for a while.
Most recently, there’s been Tim, I think. Tim thought it would be a good idea to use my address to sign up for dating sites. Match.com and one other which I don’t exactly remember. I first became aware of Tim when the “Welcome to Match.com” e-mail popped up a couple of days ago. Tim, from somewhere in Indiana, was pretty persistent. I again resisted the urge to change his picture and preferences. Since I was getting his e-mail, what good was THAT going to do. So I just cancelled him. Match.com was kind enough to send his username (ilpleaseurlips) and password to me in the confirmation e-mail. It made it really easy to access his profile and cancel him. Next day, he’d re-instated the profile. So I changed the password and did it again so he’d be unable to access the account. He signed up for another one, using exactly the same user name and password. I cancelled that one as well, but changed the password the first time. I think he finally figured it out.
I was really tempting, in the “about me” box, to write “I’m so stupid I can’t even use my own e-mail address to sign up for this service … so I’m sure you’re going to want to date me”. But I exercised a bit of restraint. I think he got the message. Good luck, Tim. I hope you’re finally getting all the e-mail you can handle, and more dates than you know what to do with. As long as your wife doesn’t find out.
Geniuses. They’re everywhere.