Some day in the distant future, long after our civilization has disappeared, some archaeologist from another civilization will start digging around in the rubble to find out how we lived. Instead of trying to piece together old dinosaur bones and pottery, though, our future scientist will have an easier time of it. All he will have to do is find our old emails.
This has me worried. I’m not sure how the people of the future will interpret my old email files. They won’t know that a large number of the emails I get are unsolicited. They’ll probably think I asked for them.
I decided I had better check out my email account to see what my legacy will be. It doesn’t look good.
Let’s start with the “Senior Soulmates” email. First of all, I’m a little bit upset that I have been targeted by a “seniors” dating site. How did they get my name? It says in big letters, “It’s never too late for love,” apparently not even for old codgers like me. Fortunately, I have been married to the same woman for 39 years so I think I’m safe in this category.
But maybe not in the next one: an email for burial life insurance. They probably send you this one when you don’t respond to the senior dating email.
But they haven’t given up on me entirely: here’s an email that says “Pop the pill and watch it grow.” I am not going to read that one.
Our future scientists will be impressed that I know so many people overseas. Why, here’s a letter from my bank executive friend in Nigeria. And here are a couple emails from China. I know they are from China because they are written in Chinese. I have no idea what they say. I do wonder how they get all those little Chinese characters into their computers – they must have some really big keyboards in China.
It looks like I also am concerned about celebrity hairstyles. You can tell that is a big issue with me by looking at the picture that runs with this column.
How do they know that I have to get a dental implant? A few months ago I lost a tooth and my friendly neighborhood dentist has been digging around in there getting me ready for an implant. Then, all of the sudden, I stared getting emails about cheap Dental Implant Options. I don’t think that buying teeth on-line is the way to go.
I’m not sure about this one … it’s from Keranique and the tagline says “Get Your Confidence Back.” I think I know what it is, but let’s take a look. Ha! Made you look. Turns out it’s a secret ingredient that helps you regrow your hair. I guess it goes along with the celebrity hairstyles.
Also, for some reason, a bunch of people out there think I suffer from neuropathy, because I keep getting emails about a wonder drug that will cure me. I don’t even know what neuropathy is, so I guess it’s possible I do have it.
Here’s another wonder drug that tells me to “put down that snack and start eating healthy.” It’s a little late for that, now that I have burial insurance, but this drug also promises to reduce gas, bloating and constipation. I wonder if it cures neuropathy.
Then there are various emails from Major League baseball teams (no, they don’t want me to play, they want me to come to Bobble Head night) and stores (I can get an instant infusion beverage dispenser for 60% off! What a deal! What would I do with it?) Things like that make my deleted account interesting reading.
My future friend digging through my emails for his doctoral dissertation at the University of Mars will come to the deduction that I was a lonely, hairless, toothless, person who popped pills to change my physical appearance and who was constantly searching for companionship. I was, however, bilingual, speaking Chinese and the kind of English they speak in Nigeria, which pretty much is a foreign language. I had insurance for everything, including getting buried, and I had bad nerves and a bad diet and bad taste in emails.
Fortunately, I do have emails from friends and family to balance all this out.
On the other hand, now that I think about it, maybe it would be better if they didn’t find these emails. I’m looking through various communications from people I know and maybe it’s better that no one ever sees them. They would really give our friend some good stuff for his dissertation.
I guess there’s no way to actually obliterate these things unless you are a presidential candidate, so I’ll just have to live with the knowledge that someday, somewhere in a galaxy not far away, some history geek will be reconstructing my life … and hopefully get a good laugh out of it. I think I might throw in some emails about dinosaurs just to keep him off balance.
David Lindeman is a Troy resident and former editor at the Troy Daily News. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.