The following are strange error messages you can get Unix to generate.
They were culled during the summer of 1988 from rec.humor. As we all know, real error messages have two parts: a message code, and a return code. Ideally, the message code is hexadecimal, the return code is octal, and the manual explaining the error messages uses decimal. But Unix (tm), in keeping with its characteristic lexical confusion, produces error messages which, although designed to make the system appear sentient, and conversational, ultimately make the system seem as stupid as it is. Note that the '%' prompt indicates that the command should be issued from the C shell, and the '$' prompt indicates the Bourne shell. Enjoy.
% rm meese-ethics rm: meese-ethics nonexistent
% ar m God ar: God does not exist
% "How would you rate Reagan's incompetence? Unmatched ."
% [Where is Jimmy Hoffa? Missing ].
% ^How did the sex change^ operation go? Modifier failed.
% If I had a ( for every $ Reagan spent, what would I have? Too many ('s.
% make love Make: Don't know how to make love. Stop.
% sleep with me bad character
% got a light? No match.
% man: why did you get a divorce? man: : Too many arguments.
% ^What is saccharine? Bad substitute.
% man woman No manual entry for woman.
% %blow %blow: No such job.
% (- (-: Command not found.
% sh $ PATH=pretending! /usr/ucb/which sense no sense in pretending!
$ drink <bottle; opener bottle: cannot open opener: not found
$ mkdir matter; cat >matter matter: cannot create