'Spam' by Ben Matthews

Spam – don’t you just hate it in all its forms? As food it is inedible, in email form it’s a time consuming nightmare. Spam fritters, who thought of those? The texture of Tiger Wood’s odour eaters and all the flavour of polyfiller. I know that during the war there was a need for it but they were still serving it to me when I was at school.  

But the worst kind is the kind cluttering up yours and everyone else’s inbox, acres of tempting Viagra offers, do they really believe we will buy anything from such people. 

There are some fairly scary statistics about the amount of spam circulating on the Internet such as:

In 1999, the average consumer received 40 pieces of spam. By 2005, the total is likely to soar to 2000.

AOL estimates that spam already accounts for more than 30% of email to its members – as many as 24 million messages a day.

However you must always bear in mind, 32.88% of people don’t believe statistics and 23.6% of statistics are made up on the spot. It’s about time someone did something to rid us of this virtual avalanche of rubbish, just imagine the number of hours wasted reading and deleting these irritating messages but…

… every now and again a little gem pops into your inbox, something you want to forward to a mate just to prove you have a “real good” sense of humour. Well I don’t have any mates so I’m going to show a couple to you instead. 

The first was sent to me by my brother who happens to live in Houston, Texas. It was just after the farcical attempt of George “www” Bush to kid us that he really was elected and that he didn’t cheat in the slightest by moving the goal post several times to suit his campaign. It still makes me laugh when I read it now, the very reason I kept it in the first place. NOTICE OF REVOCATION OF INDEPENDENCE
To the citizens of the United States of America

In the light of your failure to elect a President of the USA and thus to govern yourselves, we hereby give notice of the revocation of your independence, effective today.

Her Sovereign Majesty Queen Elizabeth II will resume monarchical duties over all states, commonwealths and other territories. Except Utah, which she does not fancy. Your new prime minister (The rt. hon. Tony Blair, MP for the 97.85% of you who have until now been unaware that there is a world outside your borders) will appoint a minister for America without the
need for further elections. Congress and the Senate will be disbanded. A questionnaire will be circulated next year to determine whether any of you noticed.

To aid in the transition to a British Crown Dependency, the following rules
are introduced with immediate effect:

You should look up "revocation" in the Oxford English Dictionary. Then look up "aluminium". Check the pronunciation guide. You will be amazed at just how wrongly you have been pronouncing it. Generally, you should raise your vocabulary to acceptable levels. Look up "vocabulary". Using the same twenty-seven words interspersed with filler noises such as "like" and "you know" is an unacceptable and inefficient form of communication. Look up "interspersed".

There is no such thing as "US English". We will let Microsoft know on your behalf.

You should learn to distinguish the English and Australian accents. It really isn't that hard.

Hollywood will be required occasionally to cast English actors as the good guys.

You should relearn your original national anthem, "God Save The Queen", but only after fully carrying out task 1. We would not want you to get confused and give up half way through.

You should stop playing American "football". There is only one kind of football. What you refer to as American "football" is not a very good game. The 2.15% of you who are aware that there is a world outside your borders may have noticed that no one else plays "American" football. You will no longer be allowed to play it, and should instead play proper football. Initially, it would be best if you played with the girls. It is a difficult game. Those of you brave enough will, in time, be allowed to play rugby (which is similar to American "football", but does not involve stopping for a rest every twenty seconds or wearing full kevlar body armour like nancies). We are hoping to get together at least a US rugby sevens side by 2005.

You should declare war on Quebec and France, using nuclear weapons if they give you any merde. The 98.85% of you who were not aware that there is a world outside your borders should count yourselves lucky. The Russians have never been the bad guys. "Merde" is French for "shit".

July 4th is no longer a public holiday. November 8th will be a new national holiday, but only in England. It will be called "Indecisive Day".

All American cars are hereby banned. They are crap and it is for your own good. When we show you German cars, you will understand what we mean.

Please tell us who killed JFK. It's been driving us crazy.

Thank you for your cooperation. 

The second, I was assured, are actual logged maintenance complaints by pilots and the corrective action recorded by mechanics. Taken from a major airline, I won’t tell you which one but it would be a half decent Scrabble score.

P stands for the problem the pilots entered in the log, and S stands for the corrective action taken by the mechanic;

P: Left inside main tyre almost needs replacement.
S: Almost replaced left inside main tyre.

P: Test flight OK, except Auto land very rough.
S: Auto land not installed on this aircraft.

P: Something loose in cockpit.
S: Something tightened in cockpit.

P: Dead bugs on windshield
S: Live bugs on backorder.

P: Autopilot in altitude-hold mode produces a 200-fpm descent.
S: Cannot reproduce problem on the ground.

P: Evidence of leak on right main landing gear.
S: Evidence removed.

P: DME volume unbelievably loud.
S: DME volume set to more believable level.

P: Friction locks cause the throttle levers to stick.
S: That's what they're there for!

P: IFF inoperative.
S: IFF always inoperative in OFF mode.

P: Suspected crack in windscreen.
S: Suspect you're right.

P: Number 3 engine missing.
(Note: this was for a piston-engine airplane; the pilot meant the engine was not running smoothly)
S: Engine found on right wing after brief search.

P: Aircraft handles funny.
S: Aircraft warned to straighten up, fly right, and be serious.

P: Radar hums.
S: Radar reprogrammed with words.

P: Mouse in cockpit.
S: Cat installed.

Lastly it’s time to test your sense of humour. I was recently looking at some photos from the Loser video shoot and came across this one. It is just crying out for a humorous caption, so email your answers to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and I’ll try and figure out a small prize for the best one. Best of luck. 

(Please note that the caption competition is now closed. Read the winning entry below - Thinny)

The winning caption by John D:
Thinny: 'So when will I get my cheque for running the website lads?'

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