Articles in Category: Essayammerings

Thoughts and feelings, dissected and plastered in an attempt to make the world a better place.  I failed.

Answering the Spammers

Deciding to interact with some of the ridiculous spammers who constantly fill my inbox.  Let’s hope one bites…

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. wrote:
Please pay attention to my excitement. But I think that today the right day to say about my intention personally to you.  I thought about it before but it was difficult to find the right words. But the interest to know you better - eating me up inside. And before you open up to me - I think it would be right to tell a little about me. If you are reading this letter - its mean that my courage has reached a level of impatience :) 

I want to find a man whom I’ll present the most intimate, the most precious thing a person has - my heart and soul! I maybe someone finds me attractive and sexy woman, but I want to know your opinion of me! Not every man can be happy with me - I’m not a girl for all. And I not chasing the crowd of fans. . 
real woman - is when a man is happy and sure in you 

I’m a woman who wants to take only the best from life and enjoy it till the end of time! Being a very hardworking and goal-oriented woman , I already have my own business which I plan to expand abroad also 

I think a real lady should also help her man financially! In such case they can reach even more together! 

I was born in a very happy family where love and care existed, but it didn’t last for long as my parents divorced. I understood my mother when she couldn’t forgive the betrayal of father. I couldn’t forgive it too! If a person betrayed once it will happen again and again and if it happened it means that there is no true and sincere love. Have you ever faced situations you couldn’t forgive? 

So, after experiencing it once in my life, I don’t want to face it again. I need a very strong family , where true love and positive emotions only will exist. I can give everything I have to my man , to my soul mate , so that’s why I’m here. 
I have not had a serious experience with men on the Internet. But to give up because I could not find someone - it is silly. Maybe you do not like silly woman - I’m not perfect, but I want to be special for my man. And yes, yes - I’m persistent. 

I’d like to make our meeting come true really soon! I feel we could reach it together! 

In spite of my young age,I already know what I want from life, so if you are serious in your search and intentions here , I will wait for your reply ! 

I hope for mutual communication. 

This is a serious and brave step for me - to write to you first. 

I hope that you would welcome the proposal to start something new today.

I’ll wait for your answer.
Best regards

Valeria ID557


Dear Valeria

I just paid attention to your excitement and I can honestly say that I was overwhelmed.

Never has paying attention to someone’s excitement enthralled me as much as yours most certainly did. Hearing the news that today is the right day that you will tell me about your intention personally to me has caught me off guard somewhat. Then hearing that you are being eaten up inside simply terrified me. Have you tried Alka Seltzer? Perhaps your courage, reaching the level of importance that it has, may stop you seeking medical advice; but please do go and see a doctor. He may well be able to help you with the most intimate and precious thing that you wanted to show me (I must confess, I initially thought you were referring to your little muffin - oh, how I smiled).

Asking my opinion of you, after just one email (albeit a very concise and well written one), is something I was surprised at. Obviously you are a very intelligent an articulate woman. Attractive and sexy, no doubt - as you said so yourself. Someone who (some) men aren’t happy with, not a girl for all and not chasing fans (you should underplay these references - they don’t sell you very well). I can’t offer much more of an opinion than that. I’m sorry Valeria.

However, I can offer you a solution to one of your problems. You say you want to be a real woman - and that this simply takes a happy man who is sure in you. Now, you obviously picked up from my email address (which is all I assume that you have in terms of information on me?) that I am a very happy man indeed. Part one taken care of! But, I am not sure in you. Some detractors would say I don’t even know you! So, am I the solution to your problem? Can I make you a real woman? Not really - but I know someone who can! My neighbour Geppetto had a son who yearned to be a real boy and, with a little help from his pet cricket and some fairy dust, he turned into a real boy! I will try to dig out his mobile phone number for you.

It’s all sounding very dismal isn’t it - like I’m not enchanted by your message. But, have no fear. Something you wrote caught my attention and I would like to discuss this further. Putting aside your globally expanding business and its need for financial input from your chosen man (please pick me, please pick me!), I notice that you dropped in the fact that you have the ability to live forever. 

Now if that isn’t worth investing in, I don’t know what is! You went on, after dropping in this bombshell, to talk about your family life (I’m so glad your mother understood your father; language barriers can be a nightmare!) and betrayal. To be fair, you did bleat on about that bit for a while. Blah blah blah. Cheating dad etc. Come on! You can live forever Valeria! Do you not see how important a thing that is? They say time heals. You are immortal! The medicine in your cabinet is never ending! Smile for fuck’s sake!

I’m so sorry about my language - most people who know me understand that I can be a bit brash sometimes. Back to your letter.

So, you are looking for a soul mate? A soul mate who you are prepared to give everything you have to (are we talking about your muffin yet? LOL. Smiley face). I can see that you have tried and failed to find men on the Internet (with your dextrous use of the English language, your normal demand in asking for money from strangers and your claims of immortality, that really does surprise me).

Well - you stumbled across the right guy! You want our meeting to come true really soon and feel we could reach it together (muffin time! ROFL. Smiley face). Yes, yes, yes. I DO like silly women. Silly, imperfect, persistent, young women who know what they want from life and are willing to do everything they possibly can (like write such a wonderful email and bulk send it out to horrible men who will just think it is junk) to get it! 

So, your wishes for mutual communication after your very courageous first approach have come true. I am writing to you to let you know that I am leaving my beautiful fiancée and coming to you to start something new today! I assume you are in Russia or Nigeria, so I will board the next flight to Moscow or Abuja (I’ll decide at the airport which city I will head for after getting a little drunk - I don’t like flying).

Could you forward me some cash for the flights please. I’m not very well off and I could do with some new shoes as well. I don’t want you to see me looking so shabby at the wedding! Maybe forward me your bank details and I’ll sort out the admin?

Anyway, I am rambling. I am so very much looking forward to meeting you, your muffin and your donkey and hope that you find me as equally gorgeous as I imagine you and your unhappily betrayed family are.

I love you so much.
Your prince, Benedict. x

A Social Experiment (or Fear & Loathing on Planet Earth)

Over the last twenty years, my faith in humanity has slowly been chipped away and my faith in the strength of our civilisation has been steadily eroded.  With each year that passes, new atrocities grace the planet and, more beguiling to me, our reactions to these events grow ever more habitually naive and ludicrous. As we try to find sense and protection from the horrors in the world, we close all the shutters with fear and lock out all sense and reasoning — and keep away all those who dare to be different to us.

With the recent headlines of our trusted national papers like The Daily Mail emblazoned forever in my mind, I decided I should conduct a social experiment, just to see how very much exclusionary, racist, xenophobic, homophobic and sexist our world had actually become.  The results of this experiment shocked even my hardened heart.

The day began just like any other.  I decided to get out of bed, look in the mirror and marvel and how truly wonderful I was.  Me; a white male.  Middle class and thoroughly proud of my British heritage.  The fact that I am a little bit brown, a bit camp, only middle class because I live near a Waitrose and have just a half of my genes that I can attribute as British are facts that are neither here nor there.  At least they weren’t here at the start of the day, nor there after I cleaned my teeth.  I looked on blindly and decided: “Today, oh beautiful one, you will get a job!”. But, I didn’t want to make it too easy on myself.  Today, I would get a job as a woman!

Sexism in the workplace is part of everyday news.  We see it on the headlines when some major male celebrity announces that they will match their wage with their female counterparts or when a minor female celebrity takes up equal pay issues, to less of a fanfare.  Aw, bless! 

I thought the time was right to prove to myself that this attitude could not possibly prevail in today’s society by getting myself a highly paid job in the City, with my employer under the impression that I was a female. Boy, was I shocked!  Sorry, getting into character…mmm, mmm, girlfriend (sassy, snap of the fingers in front of my awkwardly bobbing head), was I shocked!

Presenting the illusion of femininity was the easiest part of the process.  After all, as briefly touched upon previously, I’m fairly camp in nature and in touch with my female side. I’m also fairly hefty in frame, so the boobs are pretty much dealt with. So, I didn’t feel it necessary to go the full hog and engage in prosthetics and hours of make up and speech therapy to convince an employer that I was a woman.  All I needed was a wig and a make-up gift set from Argos for £14.99.  Within 30 minutes, I was ready to fool even my mother.

Within five minutes of stepping outside the house, I could already feel the burgeoning awkwardness that all women must experience on a daily basis.  As I walked down the street, pursing my lipstick engorged lips at passers by, I could see their unease.  Children on their way to school, laughed at my femininity — seemingly just because I was a woman.  I persuaded myself that this had to be a local thing.  Living in the suburbs, what more could I expect than a backward attitude to the grace and elegance that I was exuding with my divine femininity?  The long and arduous train ride towards London proved me wrong.  

Sitting opposite what can only be described as a football hooligan, I truly felt at my most awkward. The leers and stares as he undressed me with his eyes not only made me feel insecure and worthless, they made me feel terrified for my life.  He sat there in his Chelsea football top, looking at me from head to toe. Working his way over my bare legs (which I kind of wish I’d shaved before I had left), up over the Mighty Meaty sandwich, precarious placed on my groin, over my burgeoning, bare bosom tops (again, regrettably not as hair-free as I now desired), across my now over-pouting lips and beard and into my sultry, smokey eyes.  I had picked up quite a few make-up tips from an actress called Jenna Jameson, whom I haven’t seen much on TV, but she’s all over the Internet — so I knew I looked really sexy. But I made myself sexy for me, not the pervert sitting opposite me. Enough was enough, I wasn’t going to put up with this misogynistic, chauvinist and passive-aggressive bullshit. So I stared directly back at him and told him in no uncertain terms to fuck the fuck off. The power of woman fought back and won.  He looked up at his young dad who was sitting next to him and burst into tears. Feminism 1 : Sexism 0!

After I was kicked off the train, I figured that perhaps I was too convincing as a woman and my tactics needed to be changed to ensure the social experiment that I was conducting wasn’t going to be too easy.  After all, I needed something to write about.  So, I stopped off at the nearest Asda to find me a new disguise.  Today, I was going to get a job. Not as a woman; but as a dwarf.

Dressing up as a tiny person was as easy as it gets. After all, my formative years were emblazoned with little people on the television, so I had plenty of material to chose from. Tattoo from Fantasy Island, all the Time Bandits, that chap inside R2D2, Snow White’s mates, the creepy little woman from the exorcist, the even creepier killer dwarfette killer from Don’t Look Now.  My inspiration was pretty much endless. However, I couldn’t see a common dress code between any of them — so I opted for one and decided to dress up as him.  Wee Jimmy Krankie from The Krankies it was to be.  I would convince my employer that I was a dwarf by dressing in the traditional dwarf outfit of a 10 year old Scottish schoolboy.

Now, having been kicked off the train and told I couldn’t return to the station either, I had to change my plans a little.  The big job in the city would have to wait, I would need to find employment in the environs of this store. I would also need to be assured that, if I didn’t get offered the job, it was only based on my dwarf-like characteristics and nothing more. So, having purchased and pimped myself out with the shorts, shirt and blazer, I marched directly to the nearest primary school.

Sitting in the headmaster’s office brought memories flooding back.  The incredibly tight shirt, the now buttonless shorts (which had by then fallen around my knees) and the eyeliner from the previous experiment slowly running down my face caused recollections of youth to fill my mind and brought tears to my eyes.  I knew, as I sat there looking at all the pictures of smiling children on the walls, that this was a place that I could excel.  As Head of Year 2, I would be in my element — even as a dwarf.  The police were not so convinced.

As I was escorted into the patrol car, the memories of school-day bullying came flooding back.  Just because I was a little person, I was being forcefully ejected from the school.  I tried to put on a brave face as they drove me off the premises.  Pressing my face agains the window and waving at the small children I had tried to befriend in the playground, offering free sweeties for inside advice on the job, before I was marched to see my potential employer. I could see that they were crying too.  They were obviously equally as appalled by the discrimination they were witnessing. I could feel the pain of all those small people across the world children and dwarfs.  I was one with them, drowning in inequity but flying so very high in solidarity.  

Today was proving to be more of an eye-opener than I thought.

After I had explained my science experiment and plight, I was finally released from yet another station with just  a caution. I decided that I needed to explore what other discrimination could possibly be flung in my direction if I took on the role of another minority. Whilst trying to fix my now clown-like mascara with my reflection in a camping store window, I found my next cause.  There, adorning a bobble-hatted mannequin, was a fine example of a red & black chequered lumberjack shirt.  With my soiled make-up and that shirt, my next task was thrust upon me. I was going to get a job on a building site as a lesbian.

As I had already known before I turned up for the interview, I wasn’t going to be made welcome.  The foreman was less than polite when I arrived and I loudly proclaimed that “us sisters had every right to work on a house build as much as the next man and could do so equally as well, ball-sack or not”.  Initially he was dumb-founded and couldn’t muster the worlds to combat my prevailing sense, intelligence and clarity; oh, but this mask soon fell when I told him not to worry about me using the same lavatories as his male workforce because I liked a bit of fanny, not builders’ cocks.  Despite my equal strength, my aptitude for the job and my unmatchable work ethic, I was beaten shitless.  All because I was a lesbian.  I could barely believe it.  As you can by now imagine, my view on the world was fast becoming jaded.

Bruised and battered and looking like my day was to end jobless, I retired by taxi to my local Irish-themed bar, O’Neill’s to nurse my wounds with a well earned pint of Guinness. Needless to say, within seconds of sitting at the bar, I was out on my arse.  Despite my now mixed status of a heavily beaten, transvestite, dwarf with lesbian tendencies — the bouncer made me feel truly unwelcome.  Why? Because I wasn’t Irish perchance? Strange indeed, as the evening’s live band were playing a Foreigner track quite loudly.  Xenophobia was alive and well in my home town and the anti-English anthem was blaring loudly from the Home Counties.

I had learned my lessons and learnt them hard. If I was a minority group, I would have to pay the price of total exclusion from general society.  The tutorial was hard, the education taken was hurtful and my learning was painfully complete.  Or was it?  

Wiping my tears clean with a discarded front page of one of Britain’s most revered and educational broadsheets, The Sun, I realised this master of disguise had one more minority to thrust upon the world.  Religion was my last target.  I would get my job, but this time as a Muslim.  But how could I convince a stranger that I was a devout member of said flock if I knew none of their teachings to prove myself?  I reached for the rest of the newspaper in search of a clue on how to pass myself off as a true follower of Islam.  

Dressed in a burka and a suicide belt, I knew from The Sun that this was exactly how all Muslims dress (at least 1 in 5 anyway).  The burka helped to cover my bruises and emotional scars.  I’m still not convinced that the bomb strapped to my waist did much for my hips, but I thought I could still get away with it.  I am writing this essay in the full knowledge that I did indeed get away with it and get away with it good.

Reflecting on my experiments, overlooking the prison yard, I can ponder and contemplate that perhaps my application for the position of Archbishop would have been better placed in writing than during evensong prayers at the crowded Cathedral, shouting in mock-Arabic tones that I had picked up from the news. But, this gave no excuse to the fact that I wasn’t even considered for this appointment, out of hand.  Just because of my religious beliefs.  Even an institution as free from disgrace such the Christian Church proved itself to be intolerant when it came to equal employment opportunities.  I was dismissed under the full force of a SWAT team, simply because I was a Muslim.

My experiment started as one of hope.  I desperately wanted the exclusion and intolerance I had heard about to be a fabrication, enforced by the media in an attempt to sell papers and news stories across the globe.  But the truth is there.  The conclusion was clear. Be you gay, female, small, foreign or religious — you are an outsider and will never fit in.  They kindly let me keep my wig, make-up kit, school boy uniform, burka and lumberjack shirt but, due to the obvious bigotry and prejudice of the warden, my suicide belt was confiscated.

If it wasn’t for enlightened publications like The Sun, I would be blinded to how horrific this world can sometimes be and I would probably be walking the streets — free, but dumb to the real world.  Perhaps I wouldn’t now be the play thing of Frankie “Face-Fucker” Fairchild if I hadn’t read the painstaking researched articles that they print on a daily basis, but I would be happy in a blissful cloud of ignorance. Who could possibly want that?

I sign off knowing that maybe you will read and learn from the hardships that I, as several minorities, experienced. As the heavyset and erect shadow appears at my prison cell door, I urge you to continue reading papers like The Sun and The Daily Mail and learn. Learn from their teachings and know. Know that everyone hates you and wants to kill you, whoever you may be.

One World Rant

Majorly tired of all the chest-beating, hypocritical rants against anyone deemed slightly browner than themselves. So, here’s my abridged (yes, this is abridged!) pennyworth…

1) Putin really isn’t a leader you should laud just because he gives a battle cry louder than Cameron. A toddler’s fart can do that - so give your moral support and back that gust of wind - as it’ ain’t a maniacal dictator bent on wiping out all civilised human rights across it’s fair land.

2) If you are stomping around, bleating that refugees being let in to Europe caused the terrorism, then maybe you want to send the Scots back across the border - because stealing all our slightly better weather than theirs and causing more pub fights than us tea-sipping conservative English peace-makers can handle. Next time a psychopath enters your house, kills your pets, members of your family, destroys your world and you go beating on a neighbours door asking for help and shelter - don’t be surprised if your attitude has filtered through and they say no and blame you for the world’s atrocities. Humanitarian aid is not a choice - it’s an obligation.

3) ISIS (or “so called ISIS” as the BBC likes to air-quote them) are a cohesion of psychopathic marauders bent on destruction. They are not representatives of any major religion, club for bearded people or brown-skinned unibrows - they are just rampaging murderers who managed to coalesce under a united banner of bullshit. Blame Muslims for Paris, you may as well blame yourself; because it’s likely that, due to your blind ignorance, you have more in common.

4) If, after the attacks across the globe, committed under the banner of IS, ISIS, ISIL (or whatever you fancy calling them), you deem it necessary to pick out anyone based on their colour, creed, religion, sex or sexuality - you may as well ship out to Syria and Iraq because I hear there is a group that are recruiting people whose CV sounds very similar to yours.

5) Je suis Diesel?! Just no.

Yes, feel angry about all the atrocities that terrorism across the world is inflicting. But don’t lose sight of the fact that it’s happening everywhere - at the hands of despicable sub-humans like ISIS (and lets not forget most major governments) - to everyone.

Aligning a minuscule percentage of humanity’s psychopathic behaviour and attributing it to a generally peaceful belief system or on whereabouts it was on the planet that someone’s dad knocked up their mum is a dangerous thing to do. Because you there will be plenty of history to show that your ancestry is equally, if not more so, malevolent.

I am vehemently atheist, but I do my best not to interfere in how another person choses to deal with the hardships in their life and the prospect of their and their family’s exit from this planet; if that’s what they want to believe. I may get a bit narky when someone tries to do the sell on their beliefs - but I do the same when someone tries to sell me any kind of crap. If you like the taste of it, feel free to eat it - but please don’t force feed me. Believe what you will and peace be with you. And in the case of ALL major religions, that’s where it’s at.

At the end of the day - we’re all here trying too share the same small piece of land for a horribly short time. Why not just fucking get on before we’re all gone?

Je suis moi-même et je pleure pour le monde.

Do Not Repost

This is a hoax. Please forward to everyone you know to prove how stupid you are. This must stop now. 

Yes, my friends. This is a hoax. I can’t state it any more clearly than that. How do you know it’s a hoax? Firstly, because I said so, but more importantly, because I asked you to forward it to everyone you know. Thirdly, I am the lawyer for the ex-president of Nigeria and want to give you $5m in cleared funds if you give me your bank details, PIN and full access to any savings you may have. Another reason is that I am Bill Gates and want to give you $5,000 for nothing. Because I’m like that. 

What will you get if you do forward it? 

Well, that jackpot prize for the competition you didn’t enter. As a bonus, you will also get a much larger penis and be able to satisfy every woman you ever meet with your 500% increased ejaculation volume. Even if you are a woman. On top of that, your entire Facebook profile will become so private, that even you won’t be able to see it.  Not even Facebook themselves will be able to decipher the posts through the privacy wall that you will install, simply by re-posting this message.  A kind of über-laser-wall of security will wrap up the musings of how far you ran today, mind-blowing photos of what you ate and those adorable pleas for attention through minimal words or emoticons. Sad face :(

How will I know if you have forwarded it on? 

Well the Red Cross email tracking system (that has never existed and will never exist) will spot if you have re-posted this on Facebook or sent it on as an email. You will then be able to work from home for upwards of $3,000 per day for just buying some shitty office equipment from me.

What will happen if you don’t forward this on? 

The results will be catastrophic. A woman will stop at a service station in a place that is spookily close to you, and fill up her car. While she is paying, someone will get into the back seat of her car, wait until she drives away then do some very unspeakable things. As a result, no TV station or news channel will report on it - they will rely on YOU sending this email to your friends because you are stupid and didn’t check on your facts before you did. It’s in the public interest that breaking news stories like this are handled via Facebook. It is also a distinct possibility that Morgan Freeman, Will Smith or Jeff Goldblum will die and have their families announce it via social media, issuing superinjunctions to all credible news sources to prevent obituaries being published before you get a chance to spread the word of their secret demise to your friends.

What can I do afterwards?

After you have finished forwarding this to your friends, feel free to pop out to somewhere like KFC, where you will probably be served by beakless, mutant chickens that have been farmed for their “nothing like a chicken”-like appearance - something that Kentucky Fried Chicken needed to pay heed to when they renamed themselves (under pressure of the law) to Kentucky Fried Beakless Mutated Chicken Things or KFC. I think they made the best choice of the two. If you are more of a MacDonald’s fan, go pick up some chicken nuggets, that started their life as pink ice-cream - or before it hit this hoax public-service announcement, was in fact beef. You could also try clicking on those videos that people post on their Facebook walls that offer a tantalising view of some celebrity’s tits or even a beheading. This will compound the view that you are a porn addicted, gore-obsessed moron by simply reposting said video on your own wall because it is malware, designed to expose you and your habits. 

Will there be another scam that I can forward on after this one? 

Yes indeedy! I have thousands of heart-wrenching stories that I will post about dying children, that I will ask for your help in sending to Disneyland or to maybe even cure them - simply by clicking “Like”. Modern medicine has failed them, but Zuckerberg won’t!

All I ask is that you send this on to your friends, repost or simply “Like” this so other people can stop this practice of making themselves look more gullible than you. All it takes is one person to make a difference.

All Works Copyright © 2017 Benedict Francis

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