Thursday, June 7, 2012

The International Language of ...

It's been a downer of a week, so I thought I would finish a posting that's been in the works for a while, and that speaks to our common humanity.

After living overseas in six very different countries on four different continents and picking up four extra languages along the way I flatter myself in thinking I've picked up a bit of the international language.

As any properly jaded expatriate will tell you, the international language is not love (the whole idea reeks of Hollywood and the "coca-colaization" of the world), nor is it sign language or even Esperanto.

Where cultures touch and we find our shared humanity of course is the language of SPAM.

Allow me to offer a small sample of my inbox from the Americas, Europe, and Africa which is a testimony to the creativity, tenacity and guile that unites all peoples,

Latin America

Estimado Beneficiario,

Cargill, que fue fundada en 1865 por W.W. Cargill, fue concebido con el objetivo
de crecimiento humano, educación y desarrollo comunitario. Tenemos el agrado de
informarles que como parte de nuestra promoción el año fiscal 2012.


bedrijven Advocaten, Vertegenwoordiger.
15C, Victoria Crecent Avenue Ikoyi
GRA Lagos.~~V

We zijn geraadpleegd en onze service behouden door de voormalige Group
Managing Director van Nigeria National Petrolum Corporation (NNPC), de
heer Livius Ajonuma (OFR) om uw participatie / samenwerking proberen de
Bewaring en investering van een bepaalde hoeveelheid geld Forstall
momenteel gedeponeerd in een Finance House.
(Dutch lawyers seeking investment partners for a Nigerian oil company, who knew?)
A Votre Aimable Attention, 

Nous avons le Plaisir de vous annoncez que votre adresse Email a été retenue par sélection informatique, et vous faites donc partie des heureux gagnants de l'année 2011 de la Compagnie HEINEKEN BEER. Ceci est une loterie portant sur les adresses Emails des internautes du monde entier. La valeur totale mis en jeu est de 180.000 000 Millions Euros et votre adresse a été tirée au sort par sélection informatique lors de notre tirage annuel

(The well-known French company Heineken Beer apparently has a high stakes lottery... 180 million euros)



Dear compatriot,

I shall be coming to your country for an official meeting this week and
i will be bringing your united nation endowment funds of (US$5,000000.00) 5Million US Dollars along with me but this time i will not go through customs because as an ambassador to Benin, i am a us government agent and i have the veto power to go through customs.

Dear Friend: Please Respond

It's me Nanthana Chansithipongse, I want to donate what I have to the needy.You Could be surprised why I picked you. But someone has to do it. I have been diagonalized with Breast and Blood disease which has defiled all forms of medical treatment and I have been told by my doctor that my days are numbered on earth. I have been touched to donate from what I have made from this World to charity through you for the good work of humanity, rather than allow my relatives to use my hard earned funds inappropriately after my death.

War scams - origin?


I am Dr. Cynthia Woodward from Newcastle , England . I am serving in United
States of America Military Hospital in Iraq . I am compelled to contact you
concerning a business deal which would be beneficial to us and will lead us
into partnership investment. I have some fund US dollars that i successfully
moved out of the country, It is an oil business money we did with Iraqi

Greetings in the name of Allah,

am the  wife of the late Libyan president Gaddafi who was killed by rebels on Thursday 20th  Oct 2011, please my life is in big danger and I would like to use you as my contact to move a huge sum of money and start living a free life in your country.

LOVE is in the air...


Am a young single girl never married seeking true love for a long term relationship with marriage potentials,i am happy to contact you because you cut my interest!

(my interest is cut also, but I don't see good potentials here...)


Accordingly, I was deeply touched and filled with hope when I received an email starting

 خاطرمان جمع شود

Peace be upon you...

Uncontrovertable proof that the internet cafes of Afghanistan are connecting with the broader world, and that progress - if that's the word - is  on the march...

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