It’s… ALIVE!


My email address, that is.

Color me sadder-but-wiser. For the first month or two of my job hunt in Atlanta, ben@benostrowsky.com was hosted on a site that was sending some very peculiar, non-SMTP messages to the MTAs that tried to contact me:

MAIL FROM: ostrowb@tblc.org
250 2.1.0 ostrowb@tblc.org... Sender ok
RCPT TO: ben@benostrowsky.com
alias([username redacted—Ben])
250 2.1.5 ben@benostrowsky.com... Recipient ok

Some MTAs had no problem with this. So when I tested the account, I was able to receive mail. Unfortunately, most people just got a cryptic bounce message.

I’m guessing that this has led to several potential employers deciding not to bother phoning me, especially since my cell phone still has a Tampa area code. (I’ve solved that problem by getting a local number from GrandCentral and having it ring on my cell phone—but all my circulating résumés have the Tampa number.)

Two nights ago I asked the readers of my personal blog to email me and post bounce messages as comments. Very few got through. Last night I repeated the experiment; lots of people got through and nobody has reported a bounce. So now I’m confident enough to email my potential-employers-thus-far and say “I’ve switched email hosts because of technical problems. Have I missed anything?”.

And this will be a good story for the interviews, when I’m asked to talk about lessons learned from mistakes.


  1. I looked at the GrandCentral website, and there’s no pricing information. How much does that service run you?

  2. It’s free (at least for now); it’s been bought by Google and is in beta.

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