Today I got an email from Mohammad. And yes, he has a deal for me.
Unlike many of these kinds of emails, I actually read this one. The fact that he only gave me one name made me a little curious. Generally when someone uses just one name, he is implying that we know each other. In this case, this person apparently wants me to think we used to pick olives together.
So here’s the wording of his message exactly as it came to me, misspellings and all:
“Hello, my name is Muhamad and i am residing on a temporary political asylum for reasons i will let you know wshen i hear from you I have got a Huge business proposal for you and would like you to get back to me so i can give you more detail. Thanking you for your time and hope to hear from you as soon as possible. Regards, Muhammad.”
I don’t plan to get in touch with Muhammad because I didn’t ride in here on load of pomegranates.
I get emails every day that are scams. Sometimes I’ve won lotteries I haven’t entered, or some nephew of some former African general has a duffel bag full of cash he wants me to help him get out of the country. The bottom line, of course, is that they want me to send them money to get the process rolling or else they want access to my bank account so they can make deposits. Hee! Hee!
Now given that these things go out to thousands and thousands of people, I’m assuming that occasionally someone must fall for this stuff. I have trouble perceiving of someone who would be so gullible, but there is a theory that if you shoot in the creek often enough, you’re bound to hit a fish.
Having seen a lot of these scams, I would give Muhammad a few tips. First, I’m thinking he probably lives in New Jersey and his real name is Louie. Don’t try to make me think that you are a long lost sheik, and you just want to get to Nashville to meet Ray Stevens and have him autograph your copy of “Ahab the Arab.”
Also, the name Muhammad is too general in a Middle Eastern sense. That’s like getting a letter postmarked Mexico from Jose. Throw in a Habib or a Babar.
Also, never lower case the word “I.” It’s always capitalized. And why did you capitalize “Huge” in the middle of the sentence? The word “huge” does not imply that you should make the first letter so “huge.” If I had written this poorly in Miss Puckett’s English class, I would have had to seek asylum as well.
Let me point out that you closed your letter with “Muhammad” spelled with three “m’s.” In the body of your letter you have only two “m’s.” If you can’t spell your own name, why would you expect me to go into business with you?
So are you trying to suggest that you are some kind of royalty, like maybe you are a descendant of the famous prophet? I’ll tell you right up front that I’m not a big fan of royalty. I’m not even going to watch the “royal wedding.”
And I won’t be needing any “details” as you say you will provide. I realize gas prices are going out the roof, but I’m not going to invest in camel futures or a sandlot football league.
Yep, just another day at the office where I hear a lot about flim flam and scammers.
On that note, I recently advised a friend of mine that the next time he wants to invest $10,000 in a Ponzi scheme, to give it to me instead. Then in six months, I’ll give him back half of it, and he will only have lost half as much as he did in that pyramid deal.
Walden is editor/publisher of The Moultrie Observer and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.