• Uncle Catherine

A good way to get in touch with old friends is to have your e-mail account hacked, as mine was in the predawn hours Saturday—between 3:01 and 3:08 AM.

When I woke up that morning and checked my personal e-mail, I was thrilled at first. My inbox was overflowing. Then I noticed that almost all the messages were from that reliable bearer of bad news—MAILER-DAEMON—and the cheerful subject was “Failure Notice.”

Uh-oh, I thought. I hadn’t sent many messages the day before. I opened one of MAILER-DAEMON’s notes. It concerned a message sent from my account that fortunately hadn’t gotten through to all: “Only for you hot proposal right now! Be quick!” With, of course, a link to click. This had gone to most of my contacts whose e-mails begin with the letter “J.”