I’d be lying to you if I said I wasn’t nervous. It had been 48 hours since I’d heard from Keath and I wondered if the joke was on me. Maybe I read him wrong. Maybe the man behind that Amazon review was someone entirely different than I imagined.
But at 7:50 AM this morning, I received my second email from Keath W. Otis and all my doubts and insecurities drifted away like an inflatable hot tub lost at sea. Keath was lost– but scattered inside the most beautifully crafted email of my life–he has been found.
Let’s analyze the text.
I have only one issue with the email and it can be found in the first salutation:
If you think like I do, then you associate the ellipsis (…) with some sort of tone. Some writers use it to foreshadow events for example, while others may use it for sarcasm. What did Keath mean with his ellipsis? Is he worried? Is he weary of my intentions? Who doesn’t use a comma there? I’ll have to ask him in the next email.
Keath did something with his email that should be done by every single person on earth. He mimicked my email’s exact format and answered only my questions. My first question attempted to politely ask him why the hell he would spend a year on a review and if he got paid. Here is his response:
Keath holds nothing back in defending his honor with why he would spend his precious time reviewing a hot tub for a year. He cites the fact that he is near a computer a lot so obviously he would spend a year on it. Classic Keath right there. Then he goes on to use the ellipsis AGAIN when asked if he got paid:
“No, I did not get paid…”
Again, we have some cleverly authored sentences from Keath. Is he sad? Ashamed he didn’t get paid? Great writers do this. Always leave the reader wondering. He bolsters his justification for writing an epic review by playing to consumer morality.
“…So I felt obligated to spend extra time to review the spa.”
For those at home who have not put in the due diligence I have, “extra time” here refers to over A YEAR. He uses Amazon a lot and wants to pay it forward to all the other reviewers that have inspired him along the way. I may be reading too much into this, but I think what Keath is trying to say here is that God compelled him to write the review.
Keath goes on to swoon me by using the same numbered-format I did in my email. His answers are thorough and so nice and dignified that I wonder–for a moment–if he’s trying to kill me with kindness. He did pen this email at 7:50 AM so I also wonder if it was the first thing he did this morning. It’s an absolute honor but did his kids get breakfast? Did he lock them out so he could give this email the proper attention? Again, I’ll have to ask him.
In answer #1, we learn Keath answers my question of why he would close up his hot tub as indicated by his final review update. Here, I learn that Keath may not be the enthusiast I am. He does not keep the tub open in the winter and in my humble opinion, that is a fucking waste. But to each his own and Keath explains that he may not have the money to support winter soaks. In my email, I asked him straight up if I should buy the inflatable hot tub. I needed to ask a practical question because I began by rudely asking about how much he didn’t get paid. So, in answer #2, Keath uses the ellipsis again and I’m still not sure if he’s worried or curious. But he says “give it a try” in regards to buying it. I’m a little bit bothered by this “give it a try” business, like he’s recommending some new TV show or something. Hey, Keath, love ya buddy, but you wrote a year-long review for the world to see and your suggestion to me is “give it a try?” I need more. I deserve more.
Answer #3 was a real bombshell. I asked him about Walmart and why he writes Walm**t like some undercover spy. He then goes on to humblebrag that he not only knows of software that filters reviews but knows how to “fool” it. He writes top-notch reviews and understandably he does not want “The Man” to censor them. Absolute power move by Keath and absolutely no surprise that he’s Amazon’s 24,640th rated reviewer.
I hope you didn’t miss the subtle “some sites...” line in that response. As in, multiple sites use this software. How do you know this? Keath, my friend, HOW MANY review sites are you on? There’s probably some really practical reason for having this much knowledge but again, I’m not Keath and don’t have all the answers. I do have his email, though.
I do have to think that the 819 “helpful votes” on his Amazon profile makes Keath feel good inside. At the same time, I don’t want to believe Keath is solely driven by superficial ‘likes’ and upvotes. The man already explained that God told him to write it and the 1-year commitment is all the proof I need on his intentions thank you very much.
So there you have it, guys. The second email is done and I have to tell you that Keath seems like the type of guy that would continue this correspondence for the rest of our lives. At some point I will ask him to hang out but we’re not there yet. If you have any questions for Keath, let me know. I do want to know if he’s proud that it’s Keath with an “a” and not Keith. It’s an extraordinary way to spell a name…for an extraordinary man.
(Ellipsis there meant to suggest an audible pause)