Sunday, May 16, 2010
Blind Carbon Copy
I can't remember the first e-mail I ever sent. Somehow this should have lodged into my brain, but it didn't. I always preferred letters, and I still stand by this although I don't write them as frequently as I used to do. Mostly I find myself writing letters when I'm on a plane, pouring my heart out on crappy notebook paper with squigglies on the side. Don't get me wrong; I love e-mail, both sending and receiving, even if I do get behind. But letters are a chance for reflection. You never regret pushing send too fast on a letter whereas with e-mail you often long for a switch to shut your computer off if you are in an altered state -- angry or drunk or armed with too little information and too much time. The list goes on and on. But letters are a different story. You have to pause to get a stamp. There is a lag time.
And the content of the two forms is very different. In e-mail, I often am writing to communicate, the way one eats merely to satisfy hunger. The audience expectation is different. In a letter, I must work to be entertaining, charming. Make connections, transitions. While a letter might not be worthy of keeping for the ages, it at least has to seem as if you put some thought into it. And another plus -- I've never sent a letter to the wrong person by accident. In the information age, things move awfully fast. Not a lot of time for contemplation. So I turn it over to you, dear reader. What's the last letter you got? Ever regretted sending a letter or e-mail? Tell all. In fact, why don't you write me a letter? (or a comment would be fine -- see you tomorrow!)
Michelle's Spell of the Day
"Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy." Matthew 6:21
Short story collection suggestion: Miracle Boy Pinckney Benedict
Benedictions and Maledictions