Spam Spam Spam Bacon and Spam

This is my favorite kind of spam at the moment — what I call the “randomly generated story spam” and what spammers call, “A really effective way to trip up Bayesian spam filters.”  (A Bayesian spam filter is one that checks messages for certain words that are identified as being typical for spam messages and decides a message is spam if it contains a certain number of those types of words.)  Randomly generated story spams are  created by software that just throws a bunch of “legitimate” words together.  I think the software is even attempting, based on my own observations, to construct relatively grammatical sentences by mixing in a balance of verbs, nouns, etc.  But anybody who has ever really looked at these spams knows the sentences never turn out quite right — they never truly make any sense.

That said, there are almost always little nuggets of fascinating word combinations and I always read these spams when they come in and get a chuckle from them.  For a long time, I’ve been thinking I should try turning them into little vignettes, so today is my first attempt.  Almost all the words below are from such a randomly generated spam message (see the original text here), but I’ve cleaned out some extra words, restructured sentences, made names more consistent, and attempted to shape it into an actual story.  Damn, it was fun, too, even though I recognize the result here doesn’t make that much more sense than the original, really!

THE DINNER PARTY

“Personally, I think that makes you potentially delusional.  It’s science,” Benny shrugged, then turned back to his books on soft religious extremists.

Nancy’s face flushed and looked forsaken, then paled. “I’ve had an abortion, and I think wine was the right thing to do!”

“I guess that potato was a good idea. . .” Cliff interjected, trying to change the subject back to dinner to keep Nancy and Benny from ruining the whole party once again with their incessant arguments.

While Meg, the wine elitist, cringed at the thought of drinking a two-hundred-dollar merlot for the purpose of abortion recovery, Cliff again tried to distract, this time by asking Benny when had first discovered the notion of hand synergy.

He had applied its positive aspects to understanding his two cousins, Benny replied, who had both been suspected several times of being local arsonists.  “Well, they finally got caught,” Benny continued.  “My uncle is a county sheriff and played host to the whole thing.  He had the tendency the blame their mother, but her only reply was that she wished he wouldn’t drink before going to work.”

All this miserable party needed was for Benny to get into his car, Meg thought to herself, picturing him zooming wildly around the curves of the hill below, drunk as he was on the same wine Nancy had been chugging all evening to assuage her guilt.  She paused then, filling her own glass and deciding it was time to assuage some guilt herself.

“Well, Meg, my pretty, early girl,” said Arthur, patting her neck. “We’ll have a glorious warm canter tomorrow morning.”

“Oh yes,” said Hetty, Arthur’s rather jealous wife, hastily turning ‘round and reaching irritably towards Meg.  “Poor child!  Poor nervous child!  He is beseeching you, and, fragile, you don’t listen to him!” she said sarcastically, clearly suggesting that Arthur had ulterior motives for the morning’s horseback ride with Meg.

Meg relaxed.  “You think earrings are appropriate?” she asked Hetty with a sneer.

“No, sir, I canna’ say as they stung,” came the booming Irish voice of James from the hallway, joining the dinner party late, as usual. “But there’s no knowin’ what’ll come, if we were t’damage the boat.”  Preacher Ron was right behind him, and responded with a non sequitur as usual: “I remember one Sunday when I sternly walked glove-to-glove with Brother Marlowe, who was an aged man and one of the local preachers. . .”

“Remember when we were theorizing about how Bush’s brain works?” Benny asked James, when the Irishman took a seat next to him as Preacher Ron continued telling his odd story to no one in particular.  “We don’t really jolly know what’s going on up there, or, for that matter, what the political temperature might be.”

“Nay, your honor, I donna’ see how that encephalic step-child of a squid can even be President,” James replied with a chortle.

“Outstanding!” Roshni blurted. James’s comment about Bush had caught her completely by surprise and she laughed in her melodic, needy way. In exchange, Cliff smiled.

“Saki? No, that’s Japanese,” Meg said, responding to yet another wine question from the now quite tipsy Nancy.  “In a box?  Well, I suppose it depends on how unsightly the Chinese manufacturer wanted to make it.  But personally, I’d never drink saki, or anything else for that matter, that came from a box.”

The party eventually wound down, with each guest leaving to get into their cars.  As the always-practical and thus frequently dull Cliff drove off, he decided he’d better pull into a gas station to fill up before getting on the freeway.  Benny and Roshni got out of poor Nancy’s way as she stumbled towards the car the three of them had arrived in together.  Her eyes began to fill with tears, her great red cheeks and lips becoming tight.  “You’ve just learnt how to kill a human being,” she said to Benny as she walked by him, still hurt by his comments from earlier in the evening.  “I hope your uncle puts YOU boastfully in jail.  You know,” she continued, turning to face him, “I had exactly ONE fetus removed from my womb. It was not a human being. It hadn’t even developed a smile.”

“On the plus side,” Benny said cruelly, “the judge let you keep the dear thing in a jar. . .”

“That’s it for me,” Nancy thought, harrumphing and flouncing away. “Benny will have to find someone else. There’s no real way to go on.  People tend to think the Amish are all completely honest and respectable.  It’s just not true.”  The young woman snorted and muttered, “The Amish. . .” then she got into her car and drove off, leaving Benny and Roshni to find their own way home.

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