The Pastrami Bot

Don’t get me started on “bots” on Twitter. They’re the accounts run by computer programs that pick up any mention of, let’s say, apple computers in a tweet–and suddenly you’re getting lots of Twitter spam about entering fake contests for free computers. Some bots take over accounts and start spamming from them, which is pernicious and out-rightly evil. The abusers of social media do much to harm the joy of the interwebs give us, the ability to connect with friends, and even brands! (hi Black&Decker), in new ways. But then there are these other kinds of bots that sneak up on us on twitter and provide a good laugh. That’s what happened when the day I had a tweet from @theCardinalBot: Of course no one expects the Spanish Inquisition. I have watched the Monty Python skit enough times to know that. (If, by some chance you don’t know what I’m talking about, or if you just want to laugh yourself silly for the zillionth time, go here: and here: Then, another time when I was bemoaning the Twitter bots, suddenly I had a Tweet from the bot bot, (which doesn’t seem to exist any more). I smiled. Over the eight months I’ve been on Twitter (only that long! time flies), several of these bots have come my way. But none amused me so much as the appearance of the Pastrami bot last weekend. We had just come back from a few days away, and I was exhausted. So we decided to order in from Artie’s, A Jewish delicatessen just a few blocks away. We’d share a pastrami sandwich, a soup, some onion rings. My husband calls to place the order–and they’re out of Pastrami. How can that be? Really, Artie’s, out of Pastrami? Really? So I tweeted. And then came this: A PastramiBot? Well it looks like it. My friends retweeted things like that a Jewish deli not having Pastrami was “a shonda,” which is the Yiddish word for “a shame,” though veering more on the side of “a sin.” I tweeted back, “They’re dead to me.” Probably I should have gone on Yelp and given Artie’s bad reviews. Or on Zagat. But nothing was going to get me a Pastrami sandwich at that moment. The bot, though, it at least brought some humor to the dire situation of a nice Jewish girl unable to get pastrami!