December 22, 2000
Some things you can’t be taught, you’ve just got to figure them out all on your own. Like, Don’t lick a flagpole in the winter, for instance, and, Never get drunk at a company party. And, also, Don’t send a private, potentially humiliating note of a sexual nature in an email to a person whom you don’t (or shouldn’t) fully trust not to forward that email to friends who will, in turn, forward it to approximately one million people all over the globe. Now, those may all sound nice and abstract but it’s a pretty solid bet that the last lesson is one that Claire Swire won’t soon forget.
No doubt you’ve heard of poor Claire by now. She’s the twenty-six-year-old P.R. agent for the London-based MagicButton.net who emailed her boyfriend and a few others a dirty joke a while back nothing hysterical, just something about a fellow forcing his lady to drink a few samples at a sperm bank so she’d see that “it’s not so bad.” The real trouble started when she then sent her boyfriend what she presumed to be a private note explaining that he wouldn’t have to go to such extremes because and these are the words that will haunt this poor girl for eternity because “yours was yum.”
Naturally, Claire’s oh-so-classy boyfriend felt compelled to share the compliment with his mates, who each apparently felt obliged (actually, “honour bound,” as one of them put it in his forwarding note) to pass it on to their buddies, setting off a chain reaction of the sort usually reserved for toothless e-petitions. Within hours, Claire’s touchingly eager-to-please note had landed in more than a million in-boxes worldwide; within days, Claire Swire and Brad Chait (or “Brad the Cad,” as the tabs have tabbed him) were front-page news throughout England. The incident has sparked a nationwide furor, with a legal debate about online speech thrown in for good measure, since Brad and his boys may lose their jobs at the Norton Rose law firm for abusing company email. There are even reports that it may cost Ms. Swire her dot-com job, though that axe has yet to fall.
Death to Goosers!
Brother, these are difficult times for sexual pests difficult times indeed.
We know plenty of ways to raise money for a worthy cause. You could sell magazine subscriptions, for one, or perhaps hold a recycling drive. Or you could sell boxes upon boxes of thin mint cookies to sedentary Web columnists (mmm, thin mint cookies . . . ). Honestly, there are probably dozens of options. But ham-rubbing, well, that’s a new one to us.
Apparently, it’s a new one to the Myrtle Beach Fire Department too, or so they would have us believe. For the uninitiated (and we presume that’s most of you), “ham-rubbing” involves women dancing on a stage while their bare breasts are, well, rubbed with a ham. According to the Myrtle Beach Sun News, the beach-side nightclub Revolutions hosted a ham-rubbin’ last week to benefit the local firefighters, who are trying to raise $8,000 to buy a computerized talking fire truck to use in fire safety demonstrations. And in fact, the club’s porcine par-tay netted $2,400 for the firefighters, but the department was reportedly forced to turn down the donation when the fund-raising method was made public. Said a clearly shocked City Manager Tom Leath, “I can’t believe this. I guarantee this will be the last ham rubbing they have for the fire department.” For their part, fire department officials insist they had no idea what kind of party the folks over at Revolutions were planning a somewhat dubious claim given that the event was billed as “The Fourth Annual Ham Rubbing.” Explained Craig Smith, the owner of Revolutions and a corporate partner with the department’s public education program, “It was a private party where an individual rented the club. Men took off their shirts and did a little dance, pretending they were having a good time.” Um, pretending?
Quotes of the Week
“Yours was yum and very good for me too!”