Posts Tagged ‘spam’

We were just having lunch, and discovered a yummy addition to our series on nouns gone bad.

Thanks to our friends at M&M’s®, we dedicate this post to fruitings everywhere … we say, as we remember the priceless line from the movie Mrs. Doubtfire, “Oh, the terrorists! They run that way. It was a run-by fruiting. I’ll get them sir. Don’t worry. Good waste of juice.” (Robin Williams as Mrs. Doubtfire sitting at the poolside bar after having thrown a piece of fruit at Stu.) But, we digress …

Here’s the newest accession to our ever-expanding list: “Strawberried” … from the new Strawberried Peanut Butter M&M’s®. OMG, they are a treat. Enjoy!

Enjoy our other posts in this series:

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(click here to read about SPAM®)

From The Writer’s Almanac 7-5-09

It was on this day in 1937 that SPAM came onto the market. The canned meat product from Hormel Foods Corporation was given its name by a contest winner; the prize for his ingenuity was $100. On one  occasion, a Hormel spokesperson said the name was short for ‘Shoulder of Pork and Ham’; on another, a company official said it was a conflation of the words ‘spice and ham.’ All sorts of parodic acronyms have circulated over the years, including ‘Something Posing As Meat.’ The  original recipe, still sold as the ‘Classic’ flavor, contains pork shoulder and ham meat, salt, water, sugar, and sodium nitrate. There’s a gelatinous glaze on top, which forms like that after the broth cools down.

Spam sold in the Americas is mostly produced in Austin, Minnesota — ‘Spam Town USA’ and home of the SPAM  museum. Hawaii’s residents consume more Spam per capita than the residents of any other state, and the canned meat has been nicknamed ‘The Hawaiian Steak.’ Spam is the main course in the Israeli Defense Force’s combat meal kits, but the pork is replaced by beef so that it’s kosher.

There’s a Monty Python sketch that came out in 1970 where the actors go into a cafe; and try to order breakfast, but almost everything on the menu contains Spam. One woman doesn’t want Spam in her breakfast and gets into an argument with the waitress, who tells her that the menu consists of ‘Spam, Spam, Spam, Spam, Spam, baked beans, Spam, Spam, Spam, and Spam.’ It’s from this Monty Python sketch that ‘spam’ acquired the use so familiar today: unwanted or unsolicited e-mail. The first recorded  use of the word in this way is in 1993. It’s also become a verb in the English language, for the action of sending out spam.

And the word ‘spam’ itself, untranslated, is now a noun in French, Portuguese, and Vietnamese. The verb ‘to spam’ in German is ‘spammen’; in Czech the verb is ‘spamovat’;  and in Italian it’s ‘spammare.’ There’s a new Monty Python’s musical, SPAMALOT, currently playing in San Francisco.

And now, for our word of the day:

Spam. noun, verb, spammed, spamming.

1. Trademark. a canned food product consisting esp. of pork formed into a solid block.

–noun 2. (lowercase) a disruptive, esp. commercial message posted on a computer network or sent as e-mail.

–verb (used with object) 3. (lowercase) to send spam to.

–verb (used without object) 4. (lowercase) to send spam.

Origin: (def. 1) sp(iced) + (h)am; 1990–95; referring to a comedy routine on Monty Python’s Flying Circus, Brit. TV series.

Be sure to see our related posts:

Sources: The Writer’s Almanac, dictionary.com

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Got this spam/phishing email a few weeks ago about unusual bank activity and a possible suspension of a bank account … yeah, right.

Anyway, the email is in need of the Grammar Police and Comma Clout, so here goes …

“Dear Bank Customer_ ,

Because of unusual number of invalid login attempts on your account, we had to believe that, their might be some security problem on your account…”

Comma Clout needed:

  • 1.remove the space before the comma in the greeting: “Dear Bank Customer,”
  • 2.remove the comma before the incorrectly-used “their” in the first sentence: “… we had to believe that …”

Grammar Policing needed:

  • their” should be “there:” “… we had to believe that there might be …”

See the Grammar Police blog post: “There you have it … ” for more on There vs. Their (and They’re).

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Here’s an interesting spam email subject:

“Fastest, easiest and most comfortable online pharmacy”

What comes to your mind?

Here’s what came to ours:

comfortable online pharmacy

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GrammarSpammers are at it again …

We saw this offer in an email:

“Need help booking your vacation but have no fudds?”

What comes to your mind?

Here’s what came to ours:


How many “Fudds” do you need?

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GrammarSpammers, again, preying on those they can …

An excerpt from an email reads:

“… with the whole passengers aboard …”

What comes to your mind?

Here’s what came to ours:


 And, we’re still wondering about those “non-whole” passengers!?!

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GrammarSpammers are at it again.

Here’s an excerpt from what we think is supposed to be a job offer:

“The following report, originally requested by the primal applicant …”

What comes to your mind?

Here’s what came to ours:


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Again with the spam … this time, a job offer.

Within the text was this gem:

“… unwrapping avocation related techniques …”

What comes to your mind?

Here’s what came to ours:

(Everyone has a different technique)


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Fun with email from a GrammarSpammer:

“…if only you can carefully read and digest the message below.”

What comes to your mind?

Here’s what came to ours:


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We were cleaning out the junk email today. This is something that usually takes just a few seconds. For some reason, this afternoon, we lingered on a couple of the messages, and it paid off.

Here’s to the GrammarSpammers for giving us something fun to write about on this Friday afternoon.

We swear, we could not make this stuff up!

“I wish I were in position to give you a detailed preposition.”

(Too bad. We would really like to see a detailed preposition. And, by the way, what posture would you have to be in to give it to us?)

“I am working as a consultant, with your sincere assistant and co-operation …”

(We wish we had a sincere assistant to give us cooperation.)

“… in spite of the economical crises …”

(It is good to know that some emergencies may be considered thrifty.)

And, finally, one for the “headline evokes image” category:

“Please pardon me for contacting you through this medium.”

What comes to your mind?

Here’s what came to ours:


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