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Spam, spam on the Range

I waste a good amount of time on reading and posting to the rec.arts.books newsgroup aka RAB. From time to time I snag some of my immortal words and put them on web pages. It’s harmless, keeps me off the street and all that. In our bright and shining new era of electronic spam, however, some odd things happen.

Recently I received a bit of email spam that read as follow:

This report reflects your web sites standing within the top 100 listings on the following search engines: AltaVista, Lycos, Magellan, Excite The keyword(s) used for the search are: [BUSINESS CATTLE]
Your web sites URL: http://www.tiac.net/users/cri/raven.html
AltaVista 068
Lycos 000
Magellan 000
Excite 000

Now this is curious, I thought to myself. It’s a terrible thing, here, that my poor page does so poorly on the ratings. There’s this little bit, though, that has me in a puzzlement. What is this page called raven.html? You might be thinking that I would know what pages I have on me web site. Not so. My theory on building a web site is that if I put up enough crap I won’t remember what’s all there and I will get pleasant little surprises when I go poking through it. Think of it as a really sick memory book.

So there I am, afire with curiosity, or at least modestly warm as is my fashion. Have I written a page on Poe that I’ve forgotten about? Do I have an article about a business called Raven Enterprises that’s in the cattle business? So I goes to my browser, I does, and looks up this page to see what’s there and what do I find? A page entitled

Ravens, Writing Desks, Cattle Chutes, and Literary Theory

which is a copy of a piece that I did in one of the flareups of “Literary Theory is Crap” disease [It’s a chronic ailment of RAB – sort of like a cross between having aching joints and a loathsome skin disease] in which I rambled on about Lewis Carroll and Cattle Chutes in the course of hasslin’ Silke about some fool question or another.

And that’s how RAB got in the cattle business.

This page was last updated October 25, 1997.