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E-Tales From the Crypt

November 24, 2003

Never mind leaving a will, there's a new way to create a lasting, touching and timely message for loved ones: e-mail them after you're dead. Mylastemail.com allows subscribers to register a final, confidential electronic missive, whatever you want to say to family, relatives and exes -- spouses, partners, friends. Then it will automatically be sent after you've been deleted from society.

On first glance, this new kind of parting thought seems strange. Maybe second glance, too. It costs $9.99 to store a final message for three years. There is, however, no $3.33 refund if your life is canceled after two. You pay the e-mail company's fee, type the message you've been meaning or hesitating to say all this time, add the recipients' e-mail address and your words are preserved better than you'll be.

And not in some desk drawer either, with unrecognizable crumbs and rusting paper clips to be found and read while you're breathing. No, sir, your words will be in a distant e-mail server sworn to secrecy.

You die, and, click, the message goes out. It could create a lasting memory of you, chock-full of warmth, your true feelings about someone and how you regret those snotty words at dinner that night. They could recount the depth of your love and best wishes for that person's eternity.

Or they could be the incredibly snotty words you couldn't say that night, how your love was as false as their hair color, how only now from the depth of 6 feet do you fully comprehend your hatred and what you hope happens in that person's future down there. This could give Webster's a new aspect for defining passive-aggressive.

To be honest, there's a chance your first and last heartfelt zombie message, your momentary personal rebooting as it were, could be buried by spam filters. But on third glance, Mylastemail.com also offers a unique opportunity for a delicious crowning joke. In the message's subject line put: "Good News -- I'm Back Briefly!!" Then the text: "Forgot to tell you something. Impt! Meet me usual place this evening. Wait if I'm late. :) "

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