April is good about identifying and assigning her friends their “special super power”. My super power is “defeating internet hoaxes one e-mail at a time” according to April though I really think it’s “dispensing justice one nasty e-mail at a time”, but I’m not in charge of the designations. It started back in the day when I was actually respected in my job, back when people believed I could make things like copies without careful supervision and when something like “copy making” wasn’t a dimension on my evaluation. I was in charge of all things related to the Internet. I was the one and only IT gal at our PBS station and because of that, staff constantly flooded my e-mails with the latest thing that had been forwarded to them. Most of the things I received were just so silly you couldn’t believe anyone would buy into it. Still, it was my job to look into them and to help educate the staff. I mean it was the CIO/CFO and I who unleashed the “I love you” virus on the station. I do still stand by my reasoning for opening the e-mail though, I thought the CIO cared. That and I hadn’t followed the news that night to know a threat was lurking.
Needless to say I lived on both the Snopes and Symantec sites. I still live there today because despite my best “educational” efforts, which are sometimes known as mocking friends and family openly, I still receive some of the goofiest e-mails. My friends and family are goof-proof.
For example, yesterday I got a warning to beware of toilet seats. The e-mail encouraged me to lift the seats in all public restrooms to make sure deadly bottom biting spiders weren’t lurking under the seat waiting to nibble on my ample derrière. People were apparently dropping like flies or dropping like whatever it is toilet spiders like to consume. Now, I don’t know about you, but I see public restrooms as a last resort. It’s after lunch where you had one too many drink refills and you’re stranded in Best Buy for what will probably be hours. That’s when you finally break down and head for that restroom. I see them as a last resort because typically, despite the little “employee restroom checklist” on the back of the door, they’re gross and I have a hair trigger on my gag reflex. Once I’ve surrendered to the fact that I’m going to be in there I try to put a healthy layer of anything between me and that seat. Which also speaks to another phobia of mine getting “wet tail” – a condition where you sit on something wet in the public restroom. All of you women who magically miss, something that will always amaze and baffle me, should be strung up with herds bicyclists. Anyway, since I typically won’t touch the seat to begin with, I’m not about to lift the thing up and hunt for spiders.
The e-mail was ludicrous, but still I went to Snopes just in case there was a spider problem – you never know. Low and behold there’s the article on Snopes winking at me with a big “False” in large bolded letters.
Of course, later that day I did fall for marzipan babies, but they really did look real and creepy to boot. It turned out they were little statues – creepy little statues. I’m just glad no one is eating them.