Monday, 18 January 2010

My Dear - Come To Me


Carrying on from the last entry's somewhat curious subject matter, I've been increasingly intrigued lately by the contents of my Spam folder.

It actually seems as though I've been leading a double, triple, indeed quadruple life to such a level of secrecy that even I am not aware of it.

For a start, there's this lady from Russia who calls herself 'Olga' and seems to think we spent some sort of torrid time together of which, sadly, I have utterly no recollection:
Hey, why do not you write? You forgot about me?

"I am very unhappy without you, remember me?" It's me, Olga from Russia, Moscow, remember?
I'm waiting for you on his page on the Internet, and miss you terribly!

No Olga, I'm afraid I don't remember you. And yet she supplicates in another message entitled 'Let's talk more my bunny!':
Hi, I am sad and dreary one - there - In Moscow,
I live alone now hooked up the internet, that's looking for someone to talk to,
I have a web camera as well as personal page on the internet, come on,
help me to remove my sadness.

So apart from not really being sure if she's here or there, I have no idea how I'm supposed to help her to remove her sadness, or anything else for that matter, by watching her on a webcam. And I'm not her bunny!

And then there's this message from Tanya, who calls herself 'Marina - with Russia', which is just downright sinister:
Hello dear, do you remember how we communicated with you?
Long ago you could not see, I am Marina - with Russia, do you remember me?
"Come to my page - let's talk, I'm waiting!
Well I'm certainly not getting involved with anyone who calls me 'Dear' - that's for crusty grandmothers and stale partners, so I'm just not going there... (don't like the 'We' much either, even if she/they is/are waiting for me)

So just when I think I've got rid of Olga/Marina along comes one from Oksana who refers to herself as Mary (is this some sort of code I should be trying to break..?) in a touching soliloquy to country living and loose morals with the subject 'I came to you in the country, I have no money, looking for a rich man!':
Hi, I'm from Russia - a dream to live abroad, my name is Mary, can we get started?
"I'm on this dating site - come in to me.
Then we have Tanya, who is also called Marina (this is getting really weird) who heads up her plea: 'I'll still love you, come to me, I'm in a hotel!', and offers a strangely familiar message:
Hello dear, do you remember how we communicated with you?
Long ago you could not see, I am Marina - with Russia, do you remember me?
"Come to my page - let's talk, I'm waiting!
Now, call me naive, or stupid, or anything you like, but either I'm going nuts, or peole in Russia have absolutely no idea that you're supposed to close inverted commas once you've opened them, not to mention not just throwing them into the middle of a piece of what is clearly intended to be direct speech...

Svetlana, who seems, somewhat surprisingly, to be called... Svetlana ('Hey, why do not you write?' - good grief, word order girl, word order...), does nothing to restore my confidence in the Russian education system, whilst earning a measly 1 out of 10 for originality (or downright plagiarism - I wonder if Olga's aware of this):
Hi, I am sad and dreary one - there - In Moscow,
I live alone now hooked up the internet, that's looking for someone to talk to,
I have a web camera as well as personal page on the internet, come on,
help me to remove my sadness.
Like, YAWN! Look girls, you're really gonna have to come up with something better than this if you genuinely expect me to put down this doughnut and hot-tail it over to your here-there hotel room / webcam / dating site and talk bunny with you... (and I'm not even going to start telling you about another Tanya who now thinks she's also called Mary, or Nadya who seems to believe she's called Olga...)

Funny how they always seem to include the word 'come' in all their messages too. Must be the first verb they learn at school I guess...

And hoards of schizophrenic Slavic nymphettes isn't the only Spam spookiness I've been experiencing lately either.

The latest craze, if I've read it right, seems to be a belief, mistaken in my opinion, that the vast majority of men are actually screaming DIY freaks in search of the ultimate work implement.

Mauro Osborn suggests that 'With a bigger tool the confidence will be shown in your eyes', and goes on to say that:
Probably at least once in your life you have had the idea of making your tool larger and look bigger and stronger.

If you did, then you are among those 80% of men who have already done that and are satisfied with the results. We are here to help you make you life full of interesting acquaintances with the other half of our society – women. We offer you to try... (etc. etc.)
I can't quite work out how increasing the size of your hammer or saw, for example, is going to allow you to produce better cupboards or indeed successfully wire up a bathroom without electrocuting yourself and the cat as I once did.

A Jeannette Morse from I-don't-know-where seems to share Mauro's view, however, and claims that 'Every man would give up his brain for a decent size', and then expands with a suspiciously redolent refrain...

Probably at least once in your life you have had the idea of making your tool larger and look bigger and stronger.

If you did, then you are among those 80% of men who have already done that and are satisfied with the results. We are here to help you make you life full of interesting acquaintances with the other half of our society – women. We offer you to try... (etc. etc.)
Quite apart from the fact that I've had some girlfriends who would seriously suggest that actually finding the brain would be the greater challenge, I don't really want to base my entire self-worth on doing a good DIY job whilst leaving the moggy intact just for a grudging 'at last' from the missus. I'm also considering getting in touch with Mauro though, who should probably be told that a certain J. Morse appears to be a cheap plagiarist, unless it's the other way round. It's difficult to tell. And based on my Russian experience I wouldn't even be surprised if Osborn and Morse ended up being one and the same person!

A certain Bernadette Dick has also been in touch, apparently on the same topic, with her 'Pecker enlargement free trail here', but as I'm not sure what that particular tool is and wouldn't want to go through the hassle of unenlarging (downsizing?) it in the case of dissatisfaction I'm not going to pursue it further.

And just to finish off, here's a little choice selection of some of the other intriquing, if not to say totally opaque e-mails I've been receiving recently:

A Shannon North sends me an 'Answer on your comment' which, apart from being appalling English, isn't an answer at all, just a picture of some little coloured pills.

A Nigerian gentleman (I believe) called Augusto Nandu Savimbi starts his communication thus:
Dearest One, This letter may come to you as a surprise but I really prayed to God to help me choose somebody that will be my true partner. My name is Augusto Nandu Savimbi. I am the first son of Mr. Jonas Savinbi, the leader of the UNITA movement in Angola. May be you know that my father was killed recently in Angola by the Angola Government soldiers and has been buried. Two weeks before he died (May be he know he will die) he called me and showed me a box containing US$ 35 million and some Diamond value about US$18 million. He send the box to a security company overseas... (etc. etc.)
Strewth! Doesn't he know how I feel about being called 'Dear'? Deleted.

And an enterprising chap called Ray Edward from somewhere suggests a professional link up for this year:
I got your websit in the internet, when i was searching of a good business partner interconnection to 2010 Fifa world cup that will be hold in your country south africa nest year,
Do you know a good profitible business that we can invest? I did it in Germany 2006 and i was favored so much, Get back to me with your kind of investment proposal so that we can proceed now,

Yours truely
Mr. Ray Edward.
And besides, I can't to stand any sort of crap speling, grammer and, puncutation (including american) except my own. Delete. (he did send me a nice attachment called 'My name is Mr.doc' - which isn't strictly true, now is it Mr. Edward! - which didn't seem to do much when I opened it but in fact seems to have finally sorted out the problem I was having with my computer running too fast.


So just to finish off with, I couldn't resist sharing this official message from VISA which really should have been checked before being sent out!
Dear VISA card holder,
A recent review of your transaction history determined that your card was used at an ATM located in Andorra, but for security reasons the requested transaction was refused.Please carefully review electronic report for your VISA card at:

http://sessionid-FP26L20BIUY.visa.com/cards/alerts/transactions.php?ref=6394351790822062781592813779226827668247314836345&email=jgoering@gaymassagenow.com

VISA Cards Support

id: 7W65EWEAW9DQP2OHDVRD4Q9MTX5JQR8ZZTCPBSV6FRTHT6TAEJ4HN2QYLLK8D1MYFJ227GK3T9
Now, call me picky if you will, but the major flaw in this communication, no doubt entailing a considerable amount of lost time and therefore a loss of money to the VISA corporation, is quite simply that... I don't have a VISA card!!! I don't even know where Andorra is, for crying out loud - I thought it was a kind of sheep!

And if you look closely at the web site address I'm supposed to go and give all my bank details to, you'll see that some cheeky chappy has slipped in a somewhat un-banklike address, namely: jgoering@gaymassagenow.com. If this is some sort of special offer for new customers I'd have thought it far more effective to actually draw attention to this attractive opportunity rather than hiding it away in a long, obscure http:// reference. Very poor marketing sense indeed!

So come on guys, get your act together! Makes me quite relieved to be a Mastercard holder when all's said and done!

Oh, some exciting late news just in from Olga (to her bunny). Seems she's having more rather worrying recollections about our mystery liason. She says:

Good day, I accidentally found a letter from you, I remember how we communicated with you.
You were so hot, let's talk again - drop me to the page - I'll wait for my very sweet!
It's strange, because although I don't manage tropical climes well, I can't imagine overheating in typical Moscow temperatures, but I've probably completely lost the thread by now. I'll keep you posted in any case. Feel free to leave any useful comments which might help me work out this thoroughly twisted skein of scary stuff. Unless you're name's Olga.
_______________________________________________________________________
Sab Will is Course Director at TEFL Paris, a TEFL Certificate Teacher Training Centre

Wednesday, 6 January 2010

Come On Toshi, Come On.. (You're so good)!


This video is so delicious and so obviously directly linked to language teaching that I was desperately tempted to post this on my TEFL Paris Teacher Training Blog, but ultimately refrained.

The high point has to be her conjugation of the second phrase in the first, second and third person - an flawless example of simple, clear and unambiguous language teaching - she's sooo good...

A close second comes the cheesy music which punctuates the various lessons and 'Let's use it constructively' practical examples.

An extremely honorable mention should go to the hapless Toshi, and we shall perhaps never know if he actually ever 'Came on' or not, which does lead to a certain frustration but the magic of the video remains intact.

The comments on the video are also priceless, but, alas, few of them are reprintable here: Toshi, I think she likes you; and I WANT TO BE TOSHI, are about the only ones I dare repeat.

And finally, I'm sure the parents, relatives and indeed grandmother of this fine lady must be duly proud of her You Tube entrepreneurism. My teacher training blog readers may never know what they are missing. Here's hoping her students' everyday lives will be immeasurably enriched, and that Toshi holds out for just a little longer...

Come On Toshi, Come On...



Comments on the SNAIL Blog, as ever, are very welcome.
_______________________________________________________________________
Sab Will is Course Director at TEFL Paris, a TEFL Certificate Teacher Training Centre
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