Chain Letter Panic Disorder

We’ve all gotten them. We dread receiving them. We dread sending them out, but we are compelled to. They are usually worded something like this:

This letter is being sent to you to bring you good luck. This letter was blessed by a Buddhist monk on his death bed and he imbued the letter with the last of his life-force. This letter has brought good luck and countless blessings to people the world over. This letter was started before the beginning of time. Within 72 hours of receiving this letter you must forward it to 20 of your closest friends or the chain of luck with is broken. The last person who broke the chain had all their limbs fall off in excruciatingly painful fashion. I, myself, forwarded it to all my friends and within days I won a billion dollars. None of my friends will talk to me anymore, but now I can buy new friends.”

I recently received such a letter in my work e-mail. It’s very nice to be friendly with co-workers, but sometimes all that gets you is added to their e-mail list so you can receive chain letters and adorable pictures of dogs sitting on the toilet. I’m convinced that the Black Plague that wiped out half the population of Europe around the year 1000 occurred because Julius Caesar forgot to forward a chain letter. Why do you think Brutus stabbed him? The great economic depression that occurred in the United States in the 1930’s was caused by millions of workers who stopped what they were doing to forward an e-mail chain letter they had received. The chain letter I received today implied that it had started in 1953! I scrolled all the way back to the beginning. The first name on the list was Elvis. I guess things worked out OK for him. It must be real then. When I’m elected President, or Sexiest Man Alive, whichever comes first, I’m going to pass a law against chain letters. But that won’t help me today.

So here I sit, with a chain letter in my inbox. Do I ignore it as silly superstition? The clock is ticking. I have to make up my mind. Do I boldly break the chain, or do I give into my anxiety that just maybe there is something real and magical to this? If I break the chain am I willing to risk catastrophic tragedy? The clock is ticking…Are there any volunteers to help me keep the chain intact?

24 responses to “Chain Letter Panic Disorder

  1. Those are almost as bad as the countless emails I receive from african widows asking me if tey can stash their 20 million in my bank account.

  2. I get a lot of crap in my inbox. I can tolerate spam somtimes and even the stupid jokes. But stuff that tells me I am going to have bad luck unless I stand on my head and say the alphabet…that I can’t stand.-N

  3. Break the chain, Man! Take a chance! LOL

  4. ughhh I hate those! They are like ticking time bombs and I dont want to one day get the chain letter that acutally WOULD bring me good luck but then ignore it cause I dont want it to be all embarrassing sending it to friends. Chain Letters = the devil! 🙂 HEHE With that said – I would ignore it. Then again that could cause too much anxiety…can you hande it? LOL

  5. Chain letters just scare me – I’m a terrible wuss. I can’t help but forward them on, even though I feel sorry for the people I’m sending them to.Sometimes, I try to send them on to people who always send them to me, because they deserve it. Other times, I guiltily forward them to the people I like the least.How harsh is that?I’ve never admitted that to anyone. Lol.

  6. be a rebel – break the chain…i have to say, there is one thing worse – chain text messages…2 friends sent me the same one on the same day… i told both of them that if they ever did it to me again i would cut THEM out of my life

  7. Im so totally not superstitious. I delete all forwards that come into my mailbox and dont even bother opening them.Did you know that the stupid children’s song Ring around the Rosie, was written about the Black Plague?

  8. I never bother with the chain letter stuff and have no problems breaking them, on the flip breaking a mirror worries me a heck of alot more.P.s. phil I haven’t seen your face on my blog in a while. I think my posting my web shots of me scared you away.

  9. Ugh..Hate those as well. I’m superstitious so of course u know what comes next. :X

  10. Break it! I never send those things on, they just annoy people and fill up inboxes with more trash. Funny post as always.

  11. Phil, I’ve been struck with inspiration – could this be sent by or related to your recent Monk Encounter at the blood lab??

  12. i just had to sing Ring around the Rosie to remember how it goes. i wondered why they all had to fall down.dang, i remember the one time i actually photocopied some crappy letter, stuffed them in envelopes, paid good money to annoy 20 friends. i think i was 12. p.s i’m SO glad you don’t have my email.let it go man.

  13. passing through…HELLO!!!!I get those to and I just ignore them, I’m not in to supêrstition….

  14. Print it out and stuff it in all your neighbor’s mail boxes.. then watch the chaos begin! Muahahahahaha

  15. Ignore it, or send it back to the person who sent it to you 300 times.Explain to them that you like them soooooo much you really wanted them to be blessed with good fortune :o)

  16. She Geek- Can I stash 20 mill in your bank account? And I think you’re right about the Monk connection.Natalia- So I should send this right on to you then right?Attila- No way. I can’t break it. What if it’s true?Rachel- So do you want me to forward it to you or not?

  17. Girl Like You- So you’re saying I can forward it to you?Question Girl- So I guess I definitely shouldn’t forward it to you.Princess- Then get ready because you are definitely one person who needs this chain letter! Did I mention that it was animated?Quinn- Not only will I visit your blog, I will also show my grattitude to you by sending you a chain letter that will bring you good luck.

  18. Heidi- Say no more. The letter is on it’s way!McKay- I can’t let it go. What if this is the one true good luck chain letter?Fancy Face- It’s not superstition!Dayngrgrl- Good idea, but my printer is broken. If I send the e-mail and get good luck then I’ll be able to afford a new printer!dzeni- Thank you, but as much as I respect your opinion, I’m not going to break it.Michelle- The first thing I did was to send it back to the person who sent it to me.

  19. um… phil… the SMW would NEVER cave to peer pressure…..

  20. The only things that come from my breaking chainspam are the VERY negative thoughts I send to the people who sent them.On occasion there are sweet or funny things and I just copy and paste the cool part and delete the crap at the end to send to friends.Okay the best word verification ever:anpehiWe’ve all done that!

  21. Question Girl- I’m not caving to peer pressure. Everyone here is pressuring me to break the chain and I refuse to do it.Geewits- You’re right, they usually do have some nice parts, but that often gets overlooked in our annoyance with them.

  22. i’ve never passed on a chain letter since the 2nd grade when i was leaving a letter on someone’s desk and my teacher saw me and said that “would not be tolerated”. i didnt know what the word meant, but i was pretty sure it was not good.not only have i not forwarded chain letters, but i still have all my limbs in tact.phil… you need to grow a pair and delete the message =)

  23. The only time I can ever bear to even read these suckers is when there is something I am really really hoping for. Usually, I hit delete immediately, kind of like I think if I don’t read it, I couldn’t possibly break it.If I were you, I’d comply. Just think of what may happen to your fate as President or Sexiest Man Alive if you don’t. Are you willing to jeopardize that?

  24. Absolutely, Phil – stash away. The only condition is that it has to be all rolls of quarters and you have to bring it over to the Left Coast yourself 🙂

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