My temporary Aunt Sherry

Anyone ever received an email from someone they don’t know because the sender made a small mistake in the email address? I have a period mark seperating my (reasonably common) first and last names in my gmail account, other people use an underscore, or a hyphen, or nothing. Sometimes mistakes are made with nice results all-round.

One day a few years ago I received an email from an older couple who shared my family name, and the email was entitled “Wedding Photos”. I had no idea who the people in the photos were, but thought I’d send back a reply anyway. I said “Thanks mom, Sure looks like everyone had a great time. Wish I could have been there”. I got a nice little reply and just left it at that. But “mom” must have passed my email address on to other people because a few days later I receive the following.
Hi Tom,

Welcome to Chicago! Your mom said you got a job and left right away to move here. I can imagine how ready you were to do that. : )
I’d love to hear about the job and how you like being in the city, etc. Have you found an apartment yet?
We’ll have to get together soon!

Aunt Sherry

Hi Aunt Sherry! (laughs)
Yep, here I am in the Windy Apple. Boy is it good to be here – Sure beats life back in the old sticks. How is the family?

You’ve probably heard all about my new job so I won’t bore you with the details – suffice it to say that its just nice to be back working with proper villains again.

I have found an apartment already in Little Italy. Actually my boss found it for me and its working out great! I may not be able to meet up with you so soon, because work has me really running around flat out (as my boss says “These packages ain’t gonna deliver themselves!”) – but let’s keep in contact by email and I’ll let you know when I’ll be free for a get together!


Hi Tom,

Your job and your boss sound like fun! You mom didn’t tell me anything, so when you get a minute and the inclination send me the cliff notes version J

I’m glad you’re settled in an apartment and it’s working out well. I assume Little Italy is close to where you work…

Isn’t it great to be able to say your job’s keeping you busy!? Thanks for keeping in touch.

Aunt Sherry

Hi Sherry,
Thanks for getting back to me so soon!

Re: work, I guess if I had to give the ‘20-words-or-less’ version of what we do then I’d say we repurpose best-of-class collaborative networks, implement open innovation and leverage insights to pipeline real-world solutions in out-of-the-box markets and frictionless niches. Frankly, I’m surprised mom didn’t tell you that.

Wow. If you’d have told me 2 years ago that some day I’d be pipelining solutions to frictionless niches, I’d probably have looked at you like you were crazy or something. Sounds like a dynamic workplace doesn’t it? But mostly we just sit around at meetings and drink espresso, that is, when the boss isn’t beating me mercilessly with his palm-pilot.

So how are things with you, Sherry? I think I recall mom telling me that you were looking for a change of career too, possibly something that was a little more ‘hands-on’ than your current job. Any truth to that rumor? (smile) I guess you’re still living in the same place too (near that park), but let me know if you’ve moved. Thanks.


Aunt Sherry? …


You’ve been a very bad boy and you’re not my favorite nephew any more.

Aunt Sherry


Nice. At my last job I had the same first and last name as a buyer in (coincidentally) Chicago. From time to time I would get emails for him and I would just reply back saying they got the wrong person and gave them the correct address.

Then I got wise and started messing with them.

I would get a request to order several pallets of Doritos, for instance, and I would write back saying that I could really go for some of those right now, I want to order 50 and have one pallet sent to my house. No, TWO! Vendors would ask me which type of produce I wanted, so I wrote back that the public needs to fend off scurvy, so order only citrus fruits and jicama. Because it was work related and I was rather fond of my job, at the bottom of the email I would always tell them they had the wrong person and gave them the correct email address/contact info.

Once someone wrote asking about some info we’d taken down in a meeting. I responded back along the lines of saying “Ah yes, I remember that meeting well. You were wearing the most hideous tie ever to come from the sweatshops in Borneo. It was as if ToonTown had had a case of nausea in a tie factory.” Of course I did say that he’d emailed the wrong person and told them who to talk to. Good thing too, as I later looked up who that guy was, and turns out it was a Vice President! :eek:

I wonder whatever happened to that guy.

I’m the domain owner for a domain with .org. Say, The ISP used to have it set up so that anything going to the domain, which didn’t have a legit email, got forwarded to my “real” address (which was at the ISP’s domain).

So - got sent to got sent to got sent to

So every now and then, I’d get an email that seemed to be legit, but was discussing business matters. I figured out these were probably intended to go to mydomain.COM. So I always did a polite reply to the sender, suggesting they had probably mistyped the address. One particularly thick sender re-sent the email, several times, finally including a plaintive intro (showing my “I think you meant it to go to…”) saying “I don’t know why I keep getting this reply!”.


Here’s a clue, fool: try actually READING WHAT THE REPLY SAYS!!!

I did actually email the person at mydomain.COM, letting him know that I kept getting these emails from people attempting to contact him and that he might want to remind his contacts of his correct address. It happened a bit less after that.

I was the first to get my first initial+last name on AOL, so I get emails for others almost daily. I always reply with a polite: I’m sorry, but you have an incorrect email address. Good luck finding the correct one.

A few times in the past it has gotten more complex. Like the one girl who copied me on everything and didn’t read my response. I finally got her attention when I replied to all (well, I also narced on her for blowing off her parents for a kegger.) It pissed her off. Several people emailed me to apologize on her behalf.

One guy couldn’t understand what I meant by incorrect email address. He responded: Incorrect email?

I responded: Yes.

He responded: How can it be incorrect if you got it? Got ya!

By then I was bored and told him that I was only trying to be polite, especially since sensitive private legal documents were involved, but I didn’t care if he ever figured out the correct email address as long as he stopped emailing me.

I have also gotten naked pics from people, both male and female. Again, I always reply politely and let them know that it is the wrong email address.

Heh, I’ve had a friend send email to me that went to some other “Celyn”. I did not receive it and he eventually worked out that he had got the address wrong. It referred to a photograph I had sent, (thankfully there was nothing naughty about the photgraph) but I suppose the actual recipient would have been a bit confused to be told “No, you look fine, you don’t really look like a terrorist”. :smiley: