Old Wives' Tales
Radio & TV
Toxin du jour
Claim: A teacher wants you to add your name to a growing list of first names for a school science project.
Origins: Our first sighting of this e-mail was in March 2000, and we've encountered it sporadically since. There was no mention of a teacher in those early incarnations — those who had this request land on them were entreated to "DON'T ASK JUST PLAY!" with the rest of the
There is no unnamed teacher collecting names for her daughter for some unstated purpose — this is but an attempt to get folks spamming each other. No one is collecting or correlating the list, and the names aren't going anywhere.
At first blush the collection procedure looks workable because those who fill out the survey and pass it along to ten others are asked to also send a copy back to the person who passed it to them. But a quick look at this will point out its problems.
Let's say Elizabeth sends it to Darlene who sends it to Carla who sends it to Betty who sends it to Anne. Anne adds her name to the list, sends it on to ten of her friends, and flings a copy back to Betty. Luckily for all concerned, Anne's 'friends' can't stand her so none of them fills out the darned thing, let alone inflicts it on any of their acquaintances. Meanwhile, in addition to Anne's copy, Betty also receives copies from the other nine people she chose to bestow the survey upon. Betty now has ten
It is at this point we pause to bless Anne's lack of social graces because it saved us from having to go any further with this example. To recap, we have:
Anne:         no e-mails
Betty:       10 e-mails
Carla:       100 e-mails
Darlene:   1,000 e-mails
Elizabeth: 10,000 e-mails
Quite the inbox log jam, isn't it?
If, however, our madcap band of forwarders instead chooses to follow the
In December 2007 we encountered a version of the leg-pull that requested folks add their wedding anniversaries to an
We are sending this to all of our friends who have managed to stay married to date. Since fewer and fewer couples remain married for a long time, we think we should congratulate ourselves.Those still holding out hope that there is a pony hidden in this steaming pile on the basis of "Put your name in the subject box! You'll see what happens to you...it's kind of cool!" are instructed to read our
365 Anniversaries. This is kind of cool! Out of all the billions of married couples in the world, there has to be a couple married on each date of the year. We're going to try to accomplish the task of seeing if we can fill the calendar with an anniversary on every day of the year.
Add your and your spouse's 1st names only (NO LAST NAMES, PLEASE),
The year you were married, the state or province next to the date you were married on the list below.
Then send it to all your married friends, plus the person who sent it to you!
DON'T BE A SPOIL SPORT! ADD YOUR NAME TO THE LIST.
All you have to do is hit forward, add the information then send it to all your friends and family that are also married or will be soon....;} don't forget me! If someone has already put names in the date of your anniversary, please just add your names below theirs and DO NOT DELETE THOSE COUPLES' NAMES!
[List of 365 days elided for the sake of sanity]
Barbara "still no free launch" Mikkelson
Last updated: 5 December 2007
This material may not be reproduced without permission.
snopes and the snopes.com logo are registered service marks of snopes.com.