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Just A Thought
by Vern Seward

MyDoom.Gloom From An "Unaffected" Mac User
February 9th, 2004

For cryin' out loud! PC people, patch your friggin' computers, why don't ya?

Every day for the past 2 weeks I've come home to 10 to 20 e-mail messages OS X's Mail app didn't filter, and they all have that stupid 'MyDoom' attachment to them. My Cube, like all Macs, is invulnerable to this particular digital infection, but, boy do I still suffer for it.

I come home, look at my Mail icon on the Dock and see 32 messages. I think, "Hey, how did I get to be so popular?"

Of course, after glancing through the list of subjects I realize that I'm not so popular after all. Do you have any idea what that does to a man's ego? Especially one who was never popular in school; back when I was in high school, being labeled a geek was not the babe magnet it is today.

(A bit of history: Original 'Geeks' were circus performers who did weird stuff, like biting the heads off of chickens and other defenseless animals. Now geeks own teams full of the jocks that use to harass them. Sort of poetic justice, and it's amazing how words transform as society morphs.)

Anyway, this MyDoom virus may not affect my Mac, but it sure affects me in other ways.

Fer instance; when I'm not getting MyDoom infected e-mail, I get a boatload of mail server rejects claiming that I sent them virus infected e-mail. So now, not only am I unpopular, but I'm getting rejected outright and being called the digital equivalent of Typhoid Mary.

Some of the e-mails from the server are nice, but others are downright nasty. In so many words, they call me an idiot for not having a virus scanner in place, and if I'm so feebleminded as to not understand how to fix my infected computer, then I should ask for help from my system administrator.

That's nuts, I am the system administrator of my humble network, and there's not a single PC -- virus infected or otherwise -- on it!

And you'd think that whomever manages these servers would realize that the bad e-mail they've received most likely did not come from me, that the address was most likely spoofed, and that sending out replies to all of the virus infected rejects only adds to the problem created by the virus in the first place. And you call yourselves system administrators! Hah!

What's worse is that I get e-mails from my PC using friends berating me for sending them a virus. Of course, I didn't send them a virus, but it looks like I sent them one. Most of them realize that I wasn't the culprit after I explain the situation to them, but one guy thinks I did it just to spite him. He claims that I'm jealous of his super-fast PC and the games he can play on it. I'm not, of course, but he has always made disparaging remarks about my Cube, so I told him that I did, indeed, send him the virus.

He's not speaking to me anymore, which is what I was hoping for.

The only other good thing about this MyDoom virus is that it emphasizes just how fragile my psychological makeup is. I never knew I was so neurotic. I see all of those e-mail messages, and I know that they are mostly MyDoom generated, yet I still feel obligated to check them. I feel like a pup in a Pavlov experiment.

I suppose I should be thankful that MyDoom is benign for Macs, but I'm just not feeling very thankful at the moment. MyDoom has caused my all sorts of headaches, and it doesn't look like it's going to stop anytime soon.

Excuse me while I schedule an appointment with my shrink, and check my e-mail.

is a writer who currently lives in Orlando, FL. He's been a Mac fan since Atari Computers folded, but has worked with computers of nearly every type for 20 years.

You can send your comments directly to me, or you can also post your comments below.

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