Like most computer uses, I have a built-in spam filter. Every now and then I check it to make sure I haven't missed anything important, such as a receipt for a purchase, a letter from a reader or a diagnosis from my doctor.

I hadn't done this in several months, so I took a day off from work to read through my spam and see if that check from Publisher's Clearinghouse had somehow ended up there. No such luck. But I did find lots of emails waiting for me that I thought were just as important. If I hadn't checked, I would have missed the following:

  • Dr. Oz Weight Loss Reveal. Boy do I need this. If famous Dr. Oz wants to reveal weight loss information to me personally, I must really need it.

  • Urgent Message from Mongolia. Doesn't "spam" know that the word "urgent" means I need to see this message right away? Especially one from Mongolia. Maybe a dear friend is stuck there and has lost her luggage and passport and all her money and needs me to send her a sympathy card.

  • "Girl" Finder. I can't print the actual word that was used instead of "girl," but suffice it to say, I'm not looking for a date at this time. Maybe later.

  • Eighty percent-off Viagra. Eighty percent off! I can't pass up a deal like that, even for a product I don't really need. Now if only they had 80 percent off Breathe Right strips. My husband could use those.


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  • Learn Your Credit Score. I'm going to pass on this one. The less I know, the better. I plan to continue using my Visa as if there is no tomorrow.

  • Earn Your Degree. Who wouldn't want another degree in this economic climate? I'd like to get my doctorate in massage therapy or cooking. And a degree in liberal studies would certainly come in handy.

  • Congratulations Dear Lucky Winner! Finally! I've never won anything in my life before this! I wonder what I won. A new car? A vacation in Hawaii? A ShamWow? Can't wait! All I have to do is send them a check to let them know I really want this.

  • The Very Worst Food You Can Eat! I'm not sure I want to know. I've eaten a lot of junk over the years, so it's probably too late. Especially if chocolate and cupcakes and cookies are on the list. Delete.

  • Luxury replica watches! No one wears a watch anymore, now that we have smart phones that tell us the time, remind us to take our meds, and wake us up in the morning. But I'd like to buy a bunch of fake Rolexes and give them as gifts to older people.

  • Dr. Oz Fat Buster -- Drew Barrymore lost 24 lbs. Another one from the TV doctor! I love how Dr. Oz has taken a personal interest in me with all these emails. And I could really use a Fat Buster, since I look a lot like Drew Barrymore when she was 24 pounds.

  • These so-called spams are just the tip of the iceberg. I have so many more to read to make my life better. Time's a-wasting, according to my new fake Rolex.

    Reach Penny Warner at www. pennywarner.com.