breakup by mail server

Whenever I get a bounced e-mail from a mail server running qmail, I wonder what the developers were thinking when they wrote the following message:

Hi. This is the qmail-send program at
I’m afraid I wasn’t able to deliver your message to the following addresses.
This is a permanent error; I’ve given up. Sorry it didn’t work out.

With a few slight modifications, it could serve as a breakup letter:

Hi. This is Bob from Brooklyn.
I’m afraid I’m not going to be able to date you anymore.
This is a permanent condition; I’ve given up. Sorry it didn’t work out.

Even though I’ve seen it dozens of times, every time I get a bounce from qmail I feel like it’s trying to let me down easy.


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  1. I love it!

    Comment by Meredith on June 23, 2005 @ 12:53 pm
  2. Had qmail *really* been trying to let you down easy, it would have added, “It isn’t you. It’s me.”

    Comment by Jan on June 23, 2005 @ 3:52 pm
  3. Jan: Oh so true.

    Comment by dan on June 23, 2005 @ 4:05 pm

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