Got an e-mail this afternoon. It was from the mother of a guy I used to work with until about six months ago, forwarded by another ex-colleague.
Apparently the guy (call him 'D') was involved in a road accident on Tuesday, and died in hospital from loss of blood. The details of the hospital, the morgue and the funeral (next week) were all given.
I phoned a couple of mutual acquaintances, and forwarded the e-mail to a few more. I thought of phoning his wife, but I've only met her once, her English is poor, so I thought I'd save the respects bit for the funeral.
Then, a few hours later, I got a call from one of the people I'd phoned earlier. Apparently D isn't dead. It's all some kind of sick, elaborate hoax.
What disturbs me is my own reaction - I felt anger for the hoax before I felt relief that he wasn't dead.
Stiff drink needed.