Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Christmas in July

Why do people send those stupid e-mails, you know the ones about how you can receive cash or gifts or answered prayers or good luck forever just for forwarding e-mail to people, or some sick kid with cancer who gets three cents every time you pass on her hard-luck story to some friend with more compassion than common sense. It seems people just can't wait to buy the biggest bunch of bull they can find.
More to the point, why do they send them to me, when they know I'm going to do what I always do, hit "reply all" and send them the relevant link debunking all that nonsense. What's weird is most people don't care it's true or not. I got one last night from somebody wanting me to sign an e-mail petition to Congress to stop them from voting to give Social Security to illegal aliens. I sent her the Snopes link, explained that wasn't what Congress was voting on -- and she writes back to tell me "It doesn't hurt to send 500 (or more) emails to them just for a reminder of how the American public feels." I think Congress already thinks we're gullible idiots, we don't have to e-mail and confirm them in that opinion.
Anyway, this brings me to one of my favorite e-mails. Around Christmas last year they had one going around about some little girl with cancer wanting to meet Santa, getting money for her treatment from from some omniscient billionaire who evidently watches everybody in the world and gives the little girl a couple pennies everytime sometimes forwards her e-mail. (What a chintzy billionaire, why can't he just pay for the kid's chemo without cluttering up my inbox?) I debunked it over and over, and a former co-worker sent me the following, which absolutely cracked me up.
(The modern attention span being what it is, I doubt you'll be to make it all the way through the following -- you probably even skipped some of my intro, didn't you? -- but you ought to at least read enough of the beginning to get the gist of the BS and then skip down to the red parts. If you want to read it all, feel free, of course.)

Happy Holidays!

This is touching, prayers can do miracles...

I cried a few tears over this maybe you will also. Love you and Merry Christmas.

Always believe in MIRACLES!!Three years ago, a little boy and his grandmother came to see Santa at Mayfair Mall in Wisconsin. The child climbed up on his lap, holding a picture of a little girl. "Who is this?" asked Santa, smiling. "Your friend? Your sister?"
"Yes, Santa," he replied. "My sister, Sarah, who is very sick," he said sadly.
Santa glanced over at the grandmother who was waiting nearby, and saw her dabbing her eyes with a tissue."She wanted to come with me to see you, oh, so very much, Santa!" the child exclaimed. "She misses you," he added softly.
Santa tried to be cheerful and encouraged a smile to the boy's face, asking him what he wanted Santa to bring him for Christmas.
When they finished their visit, the Grandmother came over to help the child off his lap, and started to say something to Santa, but halted. "What is it?" Santa asked warmly.
"Well, I know it's really too much to ask you, Santa, but .." the old woman began, shooing her grandson over to one of Santa's elves to collect the little gift which Santa gave all his young visitors. "The girl in the photograph... my granddaughter well, you see ... she has leukemia and isn't expected to make it even through the holidays," she said through tear-filled eyes. "Is there any way, Santa…any possible way that you could come see Sarah? That's all she's asked for, for Christmas, is to see Santa."
Santa blinked and swallowed hard and told the woman to leave information with his elves as to where Sarah was and he would see what he could do.
Santa thought of little else the rest of that afternoon. He knew what he had to do. "What if it were MY child lying in that hospital bed, dying, "he thought with a sinking heart, "this is the least I can do."
When Santa finished visiting with all the boys and girls that evening, he retrieved from his helper Rick the name of the hospital where Sarah was staying. He asked the assistant location manager how to get to Children's Hospital.

"Why?" Rick asked, with a puzzled look on his face.Santa relayed to him the conversation with Sarah's grandmother earlier that day.
"C'mon.... I'll take you there," Rick said softly.Rick drove them to the hospital and came inside with Santa. They found out which room Sarah was in. A pale Rick said he would wait out in the hall.Santa quietly peeked into the room through the half-closed door and saw little Sarah on the bed. The room was full of what appeared to be her family; there was the Grandmother and the girl's brother he had met earlier that day. A woman whom he guessed was Sarah's mother stood by the bed, gently pushing Sarah's thin hair off her forehead. And another woman who he discovered later was Sarah's aunt, sat in a chair near the bed with weary, sad look on her face. They were talking quietly, and Santa could sense the warmth and closeness of the family, and their love and concern for Sarah.
Taking a deep breath, and forcing a smile on his face, Santa entered the room, bellowing a hearty, "Ho, ho, ho!"
"Santa!" shrieked little Sarah weakly, as she tried to escape her bed to run to him, IVtubes intact. Santa rushed to her side and gave her a warm hug. A child the tender age of his own son -- 9 years old -- gazed up at him with wonder and excitement. Her skin was pale and her short tresses bore telltale bald patches from the effects of chemotherapy. But all he saw when he looked at her was a pair of huge, blue eyes. His heart melted, and he had to force himself to choke back tears.
Though his eyes were riveted upon Sarah's face, he could hear the gasps and quiet sobbing of the women in the room. As he and Sarah began talking, the family crept quietly to the bedside one by one, squeezing Santa's shoulder or his hand gratefully, whispering "thank you" as they gazed sincerely at him with shining eyes.
Santa and Sarah talked and talked, and she told him excitedly all the toys she wanted for Christmas, assuring him she'd been a very good girl that year. As their time together dwindled, Santa asked Sarah if there was anthing special he could do for her.
She turned to Santa and said "Yes, could you shove a lump of coal up Robert Loy's ass for me, that fucker has been telling people that I don't exist and the 3 cents that I get for every e-mail that gets forwarded for telling my story has gone down a bunch. I bet that granola munchin, beer swilling, son-of -a-bitch will even edit this e-mail, if I wasn't so tired from my chemo I'd kick his ass myself.
So Santa went and told one of his reindeer to put a "Contract" out on Robert Loy. And the last anyone heard, the proctologist was pulling antler splinters from Robert Loy's ass. And everyone, but Robert Loy, lived happily ever after.

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