Eoin Butler: writer, journalist and Mayoman of the Year

Tripping Along The Ledge


Any amusing email / text / social media faux pas you’d care to share?

blue super soaker
“How do you wake up the President?” wondered Slate’s twitter feed last month. The tweet linked to an old article I’d read before, concerning the protocol that surrounds when and how the commander-in-chief is roused from his sleep for an emergency briefing.

It was a Friday evening. I was babysitting my niece. On a whim, I retweeted the original question (“How do you wake up the President?”) along with a tongue-in-cheek suggestion of my own. (“SUPER-SOAKERS!!!) For some reason, the image of Obama’s Chief-of-Staff bursting into the presidential bedroom with a florescent pump-action water blaster just amused me.

When I refreshed the page a few minutes later, I had 25 fewer Twitter followers. What I didn’t know was that a devastating tsunami had struck Japan that morning. Tens of thousands of people were assumed dead and a possible nuclear catastrophe was looming. The whole world was in shock. This was the context in which Slate had retweeted that old article about waking the president. And this was the context in which my ‘supersoaker’ joke was received.

I’d been working on a deadline all day. Somehow I just hadn’t heard.

If you’ve got a similar horror story involving Facebook, Twitter, email or text message please contact me at the address below and let me know. If possible please include a contact telephone number. The more awkward, embarrassing and/or amusing the better.



March 31st, 2011.

11 Responses to “Any amusing email / text / social media faux pas you’d care to share?”

  1. John Braine Says:

    Here’s a doozie. Someone my missus kinda knows online tweeted that she was going to strangle her daughter if she didn’t go to sleep. This was in Tenessee, and as sure as she had some humourless Twitter followers, the cops were soon banging her door down to check her daughter hadn’t yet been strangled http://vomitcomit.wordpress.com/2009/01/04/stoplinking/

  2. Tony Says:

    I once sent my mate a long private Facebook message. Except it wasnt a private message i posted it on his wall where all our friends could see it by accident. It wasn’t mortifying or anything but there was personal stuff in it and it was up for a few days before I found out everyone could see it.

  3. Andreas Says:

    My cousin recently decided that she wanted to see what her ex was up to. Typing his name into Facebook she was disappointed to discover that her search returned no results and went off to conduct her day in a more constructive manner. Two days later she logged back on to discover that she had actually typed his name into the status update box on her profile and that her status for the last 48 hours had been her ex-boyfriend’s name. Morto.

  4. EoinC Says:

    I had always assumed that this was an urban legend until I was dealing with mail for a recently bereaved colleague. Supposedly it happens all the time – assuming LOL stands for Lots Of Love, and putting it in a mass card.

    “We’re very sorry to hear about your tragic loss. Thinking of you. RIP. LOL”

  5. JohnP Says:

    They that shall remain nameless had a facebook wall post left by a friend that went “This day last week we were in Sweden.Were you talking to yer man since? How are your bites?”

    Ive been informed that it was referencing mosquito bites but the post was scrubbed a few days later.

  6. Eoin Says:

    One more of my own I gotta share. I once worked in an insurance company called Scottish Provident. Me and three other guys had an email quiz going. We’d take turns being the quiz master.

    Quiz master would email a question to the other three. Each respondent had to Reply All, so there’d be no arguments about who answered correctly first.

    I found that if I activated the Preview Pane function in Outlook Express, I could read the question without having to open the email. This gave me a split second advantage over the others.

    Anyway a question arrives. “Who played Annie Hall in the film of the same name?” In a flash, I click Reply All, “Diane Keaton” and hit Send. Whole thing took a fraction of a second. That’s how shit hot I was at the game.

    Now Scottish Provident was owned by Abbey National in the UK. Which was in turn owned by the Spanish giant Banco Santander.

    Thing was, in the microsecond between the moment I read the question and hit Reply All, another email popped into my inbox. It was from Banco Santanders worldwide head of operations.

    And it was addressed to 100,000+ employees worldwide. Needless to say….

    [P.S. The next comment is by an old friend of ours called Dan. If you have a funny faux pas story you’d like to contribute, please, don’t be frightened away!]

  7. Thomas Häßler Says:

    Needless to say is right-and needless to say this this is needless to say too
    facebook/twitter the bigger picpic

    The Social Network
    by Lou Der

    A pub,a fella is talking to a girl about the hostages of war he is wearing a sort of penn state thing that has gone out with the flood.
    “rowing crew” is it?
    wags ear and proceeds to rub his palm over the entire bottom of his face like a disbled frigid eyes akimbo until an eye that is raised
    so i says
    “and we’re keeping the the!-
    and if you buy his or my bird appletinis or flirtinis or whatever the fuck it is again
    ill cut your dick off,attach it to a keyring and give it out free in more magazine!
    timberballs youre head’ll be getting bowled through that window in two seconds if you dont get out of my sight now,(buteyko)jaysus eduardo youll have to try harder in fairness now he made a show of you.
    “C.I.A. bitch” says i making an gun sign,a sine gun sign.
    but he’s wired in-is he?because he’s typing no faster then the bunk i said the bunk i said (100/10)((!!!!)+!)
    but thats that anyway unrelated enough
    but am,
    oh facebook yeah,
    facebook i’ll be honest is beneath me.kevinstory of my life.
    do you know twitter is as bad?
    type the name of your town into twitter and what do you get?
    you get gobshites and worse types than gobshites.
    This kind of thing;
    were running a sort of clown college next weeked ,and anyone that wants to come is free to show up.
    ¡. what happened?
    toms black pudding confit made me randy @sliceofpaul
    thisiz pure paul dirac sentence.
    wow gorse fires are so beautiful ((going to see a film tonight thatll prob be beautiful too! :-))
    naming our baby “Hunter” reception at st. pauls half seven after “a mass”,will be playing janelle monae,neutral milk hotel bitches aint shit by ben folds five and a tape of louis ck god louis is a class act :-0 .¡.
    @gtcost grinds?
    @vincentgallo you’re a fake i pity for your followers they have no sensitivity tall at all
    @vincentbrowne who is this!
    i want austin kehoe burried.
    can only do four solos of my boot #hatetoadmitit
    juxtaposing idioms with high talk is the cowards way out see below ->
    no exit-sartes in a bit of trouble so,it’ll be a nauseating night for him!(this is a no)
    ill be leaving off stinkbombs in barred pubs around town this weekend read the green lantern all ye want #twbb.
    st john benson makes the best duck confit in kildare @sliceofmark
    ~this is called a tilda,yeah. .¡.
    tl;dr @notesonthefront
    just got a basket of ham and lamb and what have you,pears @sliceofmark,will be down to you this weekend on my helicopter.
    raotflmho look
    i said zeitgeist to a twenty five year old-no idea what i was on about
    my friend had his hand lobbed off in a sharecropping accident in oz,the bird is delighted. #whoisthisbelladonna #stayput
    \ /\
    / \
    / |
    gatting with @seanmoncrief and a human being with feelings,Columbo likes the nightlife but this fella cant even vomit! #quarebedfellows
    a nice lie in in the morning yummers! @lisapisa
    im eating coco pops im so depressed and am a woman so coco pops is about the pits for me
    all the milk has turned choclatey already because im eating so slowly
    siting catatonic like a kind old lady now,crying?
    i eat what i can find now @sliceofmark
    looking forward to the great limerick run #arseingear
    mmm xmas fresh pud!
    arse has turned black
    anyway thats the whole twitter facebook “there’ll be fog tonight on the zuider zee” thing as i see it and the people who use it and what goes on.this reads like fairy poetry that youd see in a hemp shop.

  8. Duckula Says:

    About ten years ago I accidentally outed my friend to his entire mailing list- large Indian extended family included. Still can’t see the funnyside but maybe some day i will.

  9. Eoin Says:

    More importantly D, did your friend ever see the funny side? Could you email me at the address above?

  10. Lisa Says:

    When we were teenagers a friend of mine sent a text message to her dad (was meant to be for her boyfriend) promising him a blowjob…

  11. gueuleton Says:

    Calling Dr Freud, calling Dr Freud.

Leave a Comment