The strange thing is, I think I got this same e-mail, or one very much like it, and I think I am in a different field from Mark P, the person who submitted this to the Cover Letter contest as a slightly modified version of an actual e-mail.
Dear Mark P,
You must be enjoying your Merry Christmas at the moment. My best wishes to you and your family, and Happy New Year!
I am an international student applying for Ph. D program in your department, and I am very interested in your area of study， [fill in two sentences from my website, with the grammar connecting them in error]. Besides I have read your paper entitled [Title of a recent paper from our lab], the research is systemic and penetrating. You can't imagine how I crave for being a member of your group and do further research under your guide. Could I be one of your potential students next year? Archimedes once said, “Give me a place to stand and with a lever I will move the whole world.” But I say that given the opportunity, I will perform miracles.
The following is my resume which may be helpful for your consideration.I would be grateful if early reply is given.
Merry Christmas & Happy New Year!
Mr. cut and paste