I received this as spam email. I loathe spam with a fierce, glowing hatred, and delete it all unread. But in this case something compelled me to read beyond the header. I reproduce the contents here because it is simply a classic. It is all wonderful, and I especially love the P.S.!
Interestingly, I received it a few days after I had put up my review of Tips for Time Travellers. Coincidence?
Being spam, it has no attribution. If you know it, could you email it to me for inclusion? Thanks.
If you are a time traveler or alien disguised as human and or have the technology to travel physically through time I need your help!
My life has been severely tampered with and cursed!!
I have suffered tremendously and am now dying!
I need to be able to:
I am in very great danger and need this immediately!
I am aware that there are many types of time travel, and that humans do not do well through certain types.
I need as close to temporal reversion as possible, as safely as possible. To be able to rewind the hands of time in such a way that the universe of now will cease to exist. I know that there are some very powerful people out there with alien or government equipment capable of doing just that.
If you can help me I will pay for your teleport or trip down here, Along with hotel stay, food and all expenses. I will pay top dollar for the equipment. Proof must be provided.
Please be advised that any temporal device that you may employ must account for X, Y, and Z coordinates as well as the temporal location. I have a time machine now, but it has limited abilitys and is useless without a vortex. If you can provide information on how to create vortex generator or where I can get some of the blue glowing moon crystals this would also be helpful.
Also if you are one of the very, very, few beings with the ability to edit the universe PLEASE REPLY!!!
Only if you have this technology and can help me please send me a (SEPARATE) email to:
Please do not reply if your an evil alien!
After I had decided to put this up on my Web site, I did a quick Google to find any other recipients who thought it good enough to mention. There are a few other sites, but the best one is at, which includes the following beautiful "reply" (enhanced by its links, only some of which still work)
I'm thinking about using this as a reply:
Well, here were are again. You have no idea who I am, don't you?
Not only am I capable of helping you, but I've done so twice already.
I can meet all your requirements except one -- the one where you retain your memories of everything's that happened to you up until now. Normally, it would be possible for you to remember the present (and all events leading up to it) when you go back into the past, but you kept insisting that you also want your aging to be reversed. I can only do that by reverting you to your past state, which means that events leading up to what you call "the present" wouldn't have happened. Which means you'd have nothing to remember. See the problem?
I was willing to let things slide when things went horribly wrong the first time. Initially, it looked as though you were going to live a long and happy life: you had a successful business, you were in the best shape of your life, and you had just married one of the supporting actresses from American Pie. However, you blew it big time when during your honeymoon in Honduras, you caught a butterfly. That butterfly's wings were supposed to trigger a hurricane that would have devastated the coastline of El Salvador, including the coastal village of La Libertad. Instead, the village was never destroyed, and as a result, a troubled and overindulged little boy grew up to become the Hitler of the 21st century. He managed to turn the eastern seaboard and much of Europe into the world's largest smouldering graveyards before he was finally stopped. I managed to retrieve you from that timeline -- you were under a pile of rubble and half-mad. I decided to try and send you back in time again.
While the course of your life has not been so catastrophic for the rest of the world this time around, you have still managed to make a mess of it for yourself. And this time, you're resorting to spamming in order to find a time traveller like me. That's really low.
The biggest shame of it all (and more so because you don't remember) is that your life wasn't as bad as you thought when you first came to me for help. You said you wanted to undo your so-called "terrible, terrible mistake". In retrospect, I should never have honoured your request. Yes, it was an embarassing situation, but "the incident", as you liked to call it, would have been forgotten soon enough. It's nothing that a public apology and a little plastic surgery couldn't have fixed. Besides, while that kind of thing was taboo once, it would have become socially acceptable a few short years later.
I am truly sorry, but I feel that you're one of those people who will do the same kind of thing over and over, no matter what kind of circumstances they find themselves in. Please do not contact me anymore. If you see me on the street, please do not approach me or speak to me. I will claim not to know you. I cannot be bribed; you will not be able to buy your way into the past again.
In closing, all I can do is offer you some advice: