Wednesday, February 25, 2009

The Rewards of Using an E-Mail Automatic Reply System

I have configured my personal email account to automatically respond to emails from ex-girlfriends with a very nice, heartfelt response from me, and send the original messages directly to my spam folder so that I need not be bothered with them. I think it's a good way for me keep my present uncomplicated, while celebrating my past. After all, these ex girlfriends might mean absolutely nothing to me now, but at the time I dated them, they must have meant something to me. Otherwise, I wouldn't have dated them in the first place, right?

Every year, during the last week of February, I clean out my spam email folder. Last night I was going through the spam and realized I had several emails from one of the exes for whom I set up the heartfelt automatic reply email system.

Her first email to me:

hey ricky,
i don't know if you remember or not, but you still owe me $57 from that poison show at universal amphitheater 4 yrs ago. let me know when you want to pay.
hope you're well.
[redacted]


To which my email automatically replied:

Dear Ex-Flame,
Thank you so much for your wonderful email. It was certainly an unexpected treat to hear from you. Unfortunately, however much we might hope otherwise, the past cannot be regained, and we both need to move forward with our lives. I treasure every memory we shared, and I hope you can continue to do the same.
Please take care and have a wonderful life!
Sincerely,
Ricky Sprague
PS This email was as difficult for me to write as I'm sure it was for you to read. I wish you well.


So that should have been the end of it, right? But no, my ex wrote back:

what the hell was that? i send you a request for the $57 you still owe me and you respond with some bs about moving forward with our lives? i have moved forward with my life- i'm married, you re-re.
I WANT MY MONEY!
[redacted]


Of course the following response went out:

Dear Ex-Flame,
Thank you so much for your wonderful email. It was certainly an unexpected treat to hear from you. Unfortunately, however much we might hope otherwise, the past cannot be regained, and we both need to move forward with our lives. I treasure every memory we shared, and I hope you can continue to do the same.
Please take care and have a wonderful life!
Sincerely,
Ricky Sprague
PS This email was as difficult for me to write as I'm sure it was for you to read. I wish you well.


Her reply:

i know you can be a real dick but this is too much. one ticket to see poison at universal amphitheater, plus service charges, plus one glass of beer. 57 bones, on the line, right now, or i am going to sue your ass.
[redacted]


I probably don't need to tell you this was my reply:

Dear Ex-Flame,
Thank you so much for your wonderful email. It was certainly an unexpected treat to hear from you. Unfortunately, however much we might hope otherwise, the past cannot be regained, and we both need to move forward with our lives. I treasure every memory we shared, and I hope you can continue to do the same.
Please take care and have a wonderful life!
Sincerely,
Ricky Sprague
PS This email was as difficult for me to write as I'm sure it was for you to read. I wish you well.


One would think that would put an end to the situation. Alas, my ex responded a few days later:

okay, even you are not this clueless. you probably set up some kind of auto-respond on your email. are you out of the country? you better hope you are, or in some kind of coma or something because if i find you somewhere and you are conscious i am going to kick your ass up and down cahuenga blvd, you jerk.
AND YOU STILL OWE ME $57!
[redacted]


Can you guess at my reply?

Dear Ex-Flame,
Thank you so much for your wonderful email. It was certainly an unexpected treat to hear from you. Unfortunately, however much we might hope otherwise, the past cannot be regained, and we both need to move forward with our lives. I treasure every memory we shared, and I hope you can continue to do the same.
Please take care and have a wonderful life!
Sincerely,
Ricky Sprague
PS This email was as difficult for me to write as I'm sure it was for you to read. I wish you well.


Didn't put an end to it, as evidenced by the following email a few days later:

ricky,
i find it hard to believe i ever dated anyone as messed-up and cruel as you. keep the money, i don't ever want to have anything to do with you ever again. i'm sorry we ever met. i do not treasure every memory we shared. please fall under a bus and have a rotten, painful life.
[redacted]
ps writing this email has been cathartic and was worth the $57. i hope that you've learned something about yourself from reading it. goodbye forever, buttmunch.


And of course my email responded, as it always, dutifully does in such cases:

Dear Ex-Flame,
Thank you so much for your wonderful email. It was certainly an unexpected treat to hear from you. Unfortunately, however much we might hope otherwise, the past cannot be regained, and we both need to move forward with our lives. I treasure every memory we shared, and I hope you can continue to do the same.
Please take care and have a wonderful life!
Sincerely,
Ricky Sprague
PS This email was as difficult for me to write as I'm sure it was for you to read. I wish you well.


There have been no other emails. Thankfully, my email account's automatic reply system has done its job, helping me to avoid the sticky issues that come from dealing with ex-girlfriends. I highly recommend setting up your own automatic reply systems. I'm thinking of setting up another one for family members!

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