1998 Fools: Suspension of the Smile List :-(
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There are 3 messages totalling 361 lines in this issue.
Topics of the week:
1. ADMIN: Suspension of the Smile List :-(
2. ADMIN: Followup and additional cool info
3. CLEAN: Pappy and the Bell (warm fuzzy, not humorous)
Date: Wed, 1 Apr 1998 19:29:36 -0500
From: Adam Lasnik <adam@SMILEZONE.COM>
Subject: ADMIN: Suspension of the Smile List :-(
Dear Smile List members,
It is with great regret that I announce the (hopefully temporary)
suspension of the Smile List.
In summary, I am being sued by a Smile List reader for property
damages, personal injury, and emotional distress. If you'd like more
details, read on.
Apparently, this person was forwarded one of my Smile List mails a
few weeks ago, and was previously unaware of the type of content
contained within. During his reading of the message, he broke out
in spontaneous laughter, spilling coffee both in his lap and on his
new carpeting. After brief hospitalization for burns and after his
wife had the carpet replaced, he filed suit against me, my internet
service provider, and the person who forwarded him the e-mail,
claiming his injuries were overall no laughing matter.
In consultation with my lawyer, I was surprised to find out that I
was indeed liable for these damages because I failed to include a
prominent disclaimer on my mailings: "WARNING! Contents may be
My legal counsel has also advised me -- if I am able to restart my
list -- that I should include other clear disclaimers, such as:
-- "WARNING! Do not operate heavy machinery while reading this."
-- "WARNING! Printouts of this e-mail not to be taken internally."
-- "WARNING! Consult with a medical professional before joining
this or other potentially humorous e-mail lists."
At the moment, however, I am more concerned with preparing for my
court appearance in Washington state, and paying the mounting legal
Your support, of course, would be appreciated. Feel free to make
donations in any amount to the following address:
Adam's Legal Defense Fund
Eigenmann, Suite 352
Bloomington, IN 47406
Although I'm afraid your contributions will not be tax deductible,
nor will donations entitle you to an evening in my coveted dorm room,
you are permitted to donate more than $1,000 without fear of legal
I'm sorry for any distress the suspension of the Smile List has
caused you, and I assure you that I am committed to fighting this
case on behalf of all of you, and the concept of Free Humor.
Adam the Smile Guy
Date: Thu, 2 Apr 1998 02:02:51 -0500
From: Adam Lasnik <adam@SMILEZONE.COM>
Subject: ADMIN: Followup and additional cool info
1) Info on the Smile List (don't worry, it's not ending :)
2) Letters from the Smile Guy's mailbag
3) What's with this haphazardly random Smile List schedule?
4) Have fun AND support the Red Cross!
5) The Smile Guy's got his own toll free number
(what is this world coming to?!? )
*** APRIL FOOLS! ***
Okay, okay, so the joke's on me! I've gotten an AVALANCHE of mail
asking me about this 'lawsuit.' Serves me right, I suppose ;)
Check the date of the last mailing. April 1. :-)
I must say, though I was flattered by the responses of folks who
really thought the Smile List was coming to an end. Here are some
highlights from the mailbag tonight:
o Dear Adam, I just wanted to let you know I feel your pain!
o Hmm... maybe one of my lawyers could take a stab at that guy
who's suing you, er, I mean, a stab at the case...
o You'll be back!
Seriously, though, I almost feel bad for perpetrating this little
April Fools joke after getting such genuinely nice and supportive
notes from many of you who thought I was serious. Thank you :-)
But hey, while I have your attention, here's some other pertinent
(and yes, honest-to-God real) info for ya :)
o IS THE SMILE GUY LAZY, OR...?
My Smile List doesn't come out more often 'cause -- as much
of a self-admitted compu-geek as I am -- I still have a very
busy and fun life offline. I'm attempting to "live" as much
as possible during the last few weeks of my eight years in
college (yes, that includes grad school! :) And hopefully I'll
pass my classes, too ;-)
o SUPPORT THE RED CROSS! SMILE GUY TO DONATE UP TO $200!
(and that's no joke!)
Signing up for the FREE PlanetAll service has always been a great
deal. You get a great way to manage and extend personal and
business contacts, I get frequent flier miles for referring you,
and now... I will donate $20 to the International Red Cross for
every 100 people who sign up for PlanetAll via my website during
the month of April! Visit http://smilezone.com/planetall
Please pass this URL on to your friends! :-) :-) :-)
o REACH OUT AND TOUCH... THE SMILE GUY? YES!
When plain text just won't do, give me a call. Whether you
really like (or really hate) a joke I've sent out, have comments
about the SmileZone, or just want to say hi, now I'm just a toll
free call away :-) Dial 888-724-6662, and when prompted,
enter in "SMILEGUY" (7645 3489) and you can leave me a voicemail :)
To my international members, I hope to have a toll-free # that you
can reach soon, too! A France number is definitely coming soon.
Your regular Smile List will return tomorrow, actually later today,
since it's now past midnight here in Bloomington, Indiana :-)
And in the meantime, have a great end-of-the week and weekend!
Adam the SmileGuy
Date: Fri, 3 Apr 1998 00:57:42 -0500
From: Adam Lasnik
Subject: CLEAN: Pappy and the Bell (warm fuzzy, not humorous)
If you're getting this second hand and want your own copy, e-mail
SL-JOIN@smilezone.com, or visit http://smilezone.com/smilelist
Other subscription information appears below.
ADAM'S SMILE LIST :-) -- Makin' the E-world a Smilier Place
Fri 4/3/98, Issue 242, 7332 subscribers in over 80 countries
Humor, music, chat, pics, personals, and more at the SmileZone!
---> http://smilezone.com/ <--- Visit today! :-)
Into the woods without delay / But careful not to lose the way
* PENSIVE LYRICS FOR THE DAY *
And you think of all of the things you've seen,
And you wish that you could live in between,
And you're back again,
Only different than before
After the sky.
[ First person to tell me the exact date of the original cast
recording release of this musical wins a personal SmileZone
e-mail address (i.e., email@example.com)
HINT: Info's available from my site somewhere ;-) ]
* * *
* NOTES FROM THE SMILE GUY *
Hope you all have a great weekend :-) Take care...
* * *
* PAPPY AND THE BELL * (warm fuzzy story :-)
Pappy was a pleasant-looking old fellow. He had the whitest hair
which he kept neatly cut and combed. His eyes were blue, though
faded with age, and they seemed to emit a warmth from within. His
face was quite drawn, but when he smiled, even his wrinkles seemed to
soften and smile with him.
He had a talent for whistling and did so happily each day as he
dusted and swept his pawnshop; even so, he had a secret sadness, but
everyone who knew him respected and adored him.
Most of Pappy's customers returned for their good, and he did not do
much business, but he did not mind. To him, the shop was not a
livelihood as much as a welcome pastime.
There was a room in the back of his shop where he spent time
tinkering with a menagerie of his own precious items. He referred to
this back room as "memory hall." In it were pocket watches, clocks,
and electric trains. There were miniature steam engines and antique
toys made of wood, tin, or cast iron, and there were various other
obsolete trinkets as well. Spending time in memory hall delighted
him as he recalled many treasured moments from his past. He handled
each item with care, and sometimes he would close his eyes and pause
to relive a sweet, simple childhood memory.
One day, Pappy was working to his heart's content reassembling an old
railroad lantern. As he worked, he whistled the melody of a railroad
tune and reminisced about his own past as a switchman. It was a
typical day at the shop. Outside, the sun illuminated the clear sky,
and a slight wind passed through the front screen door. Whenever the
weather was this nice, Pappy kept the inner door open. He enjoyed
the fresh air--almost as much as the distinctive smell of antiques
and old engine oil.
As he was polishing his newly restored lantern, he heard the tinkling
of his bell on the shop door. The bell, which produced a uniquely
charming resound, had been in Pappy's family for over a hundred
years. He cherished it dearly and enjoyed sharing its song with all
who came to his shop. Although the bell hung on the inside of the
main door, Pappy had strung a wire to the screen door so that
it would ring whether the inner door was open or not. Prompted by
the bell, he left memory hall to greet his customer.
At first, he did not see her. Her shiny, soft curls barely topped the
counter. "And how can I help you, little lady?" Pappy's voice was
"Hello, sir." The little girl spoke almost in a whisper. She was
dainty. Bashful. Innocent. She looked at Pappy with her big brown
eyes, then slowly scanned the room in search of something special.
Shyly she told him, "I'd like to buy a present, sir."
"Well, let's see," Pappy said, "who is this present for?"
"My grandpa. It's for my grandpa. But I don't know what to get."
Pappy began to make suggestions. "How about a pocket watch? It's in
good condition. I fixed it myself," he said proudly.
The little girl didn't answer. She had walked to the doorway and put
her small hand on the door. She wiggled the door gently to ring the
bell. Pappy's face seemed to glow as he saw her smiling with
"This is just right," the little girl bubbled. "Momma says grandpa
Just then, Pappy's expression changed. Fearful of breaking the little
girl's heart, he told her, "I'm sorry, missy. That's not for sale.
Maybe your grandpa would like this little radio."
The little girl looked at the radio, lowered her head, and sadly
sighed, "No, I don't think so."
In an effort to help her understand, Pappy told her the story of how
the bell had been in his family for so many years, and that was why
he didn't want to sell it.
The little girl looked up at him, and with a giant tear in her eye,
sweetly said, "I guess I understand. Thank you, anyway."
Suddenly, Pappy thought of how the rest of the family was all gone
now, except for his estranged daughter whom he had not seen in nearly
a decade. Why not, he thought. Why not pass it on to someone who
will share it with a loved one? God only knows where it will end up
"Wait...little lady." Pappy spoke just as the little girl was going
out the door--just as he was hearing his bell ring for the last time.
"I've decided to sell the bell. Here's a hanky. Blow your nose."
The little girl began to clap her hands. "Oh, thank you, sir.
Grandpa will be so happy."
"Okay, little lady. Okay." Pappy felt good about helping the child;
he knew, however, he would miss the bell. "You must promise to take
good care of the bell for your grandpa--and for me, too, okay?" He
carefully placed the bell in a brown paper bag.
"Oh, I promise," said the little girl. Then, she suddenly became very
still and quiet. There was something she had forgotten to ask. She
looked up at Pappy with great concern, and again almost in a whisper,
asked, "How much will it cost?"
"Well, let's see. How much have you got to spend?" Pappy asked with a
grin. The child pulled a small coin purse from her pocket then
reached up and emptied two dollars and forty-seven cents onto the
counter. After briefly questioning his own sanity, Pappy said,
"Little lady, this is your lucky day. That bell costs exactly two
dollars and forty-seven cents."
Later that evening as Pappy prepared to close up shop, he found
himself thinking about his bell. Already he had decided not to put up
another one. He thought about the child and wondered if her grandpa
like his gift. Surely he would cherish anything from such a precious
At that moment, just as he was going to turn off the light in memory
hall, Pappy thought he heard his bell. Again, he questioned his
sanity; he turned toward the door, and there stood the little girl.
She was ringing the bell and smiling sweetly.
Pappy was puzzled as he strolled toward the small child. "What's
this, little lady? Have you changed your mind?"
"No," she grinned. "Momma says it's for you."
Before Pappy had time to say another word, the child's mother stepped
into the doorway, and choking back a tear, she gently said, "Hello,
The little girl tugged on her grandpa's shirttail. "Here, Grandpa.
Here's your hanky. Blow your nose."
* * *
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End of SMILE-L Digest - 29 Mar 1998 to 5 Apr 1998