Personally, I think that they’re great, although this is somewhat of a biased opinion as I have been quite a prolific letter writer in the past and I actually really like the modern day digital equivalent. I look forward to getting to my inbox just as much as I have always enjoyed receiving an epistle in the post (not those with windows on them though!) I have written all kinds of letters in the past, probably the most commonly written would have been those notes of amour to past girlfriends. All the serious ones have had letters written to them in some form or other; Sue the art student was the most prolific pen pal lover though, as part of our relationship was long distance. She stayed in Kings Lynn to finish the college course she was doing whilst I went for an offer of work and a place to live in N Yorks, as Kings Lynn had done me no favours whatsoever! Probably the worst place I have ever tried to live in and two out of the three places I laid my head were actually squats. Anyway, we used to scribe to each other every day, sometimes twice in a day, and would still find the time for phone calls too, pre mobiles at that! Even today in our technological digital age there are still three people that I communicate with, via the tried and tested epistle, although only one of them is fairly regular, the other two usually come up with the same old excuse that seems to be a mantra in these modern times! (We’ll get to that!) Consequently that means that I am a little out of practice myself these days.
I have always tried my best to help people in the past too, always great to get the pen onto paper so any excuse; therefore if any of my mates that could converse well enough, but hated writing (never understood that one!), found themselves in a position that a letter had to be scribed, then I would offer my services! I just put down on paper what they wanted to say in English that we wouldn’t normally speak in everyday conversation. After all, none of us speak how we write, do we? Letters for friendship, for lurve!, for jobs (often with accompanying application forms), for the bloody social (why so many questions with them? Oh yeah, they’re Big Brother ain’t they?!!?) and let’s not forget complaints! Always a challenge and great when they work (make sure you’re clear what you want as compensation!), as you can get something out of the firms so they don’t lose your custom and more importantly you don’t sue them!
Now for me at least, it seems to have come to mind that even with our new fangled, technological and digital ways to communicate in the millennium, that people just don’t seem to do it! Even if they admit that they love to receive a letter in the post, they then turn round quite often and say that they don’t write them! Why? I often venture a possibility that surely it is easier now with email, as after all this is just a digital letter, which goes straight to somebody’s inbox, without even needing a stamp! Now when I get to this great excuse that I have heard so many times, then I bet my bottom dollar that most people reading this rant will actually agree, and may even say they have heard this inane excuse too (hopefully not used it!) I will attempt just a few lines of conversation here just to really try and drive this home, and again I do think that quite a few will say to themselves that yes there definitely is some kind of pattern emerging here!
“Here’s my email address, drop us a line, you’ll be guaranteed an answer.”
“I don’t really do email, don’t seem right!”
“But it’s just a digital letter, you just told me you like letters!”
“It’s not the same though is it?”
“It’s probably a bit better actually, none of that foul glue on stamps and envelopes and cut the middle man out and send it instantly!”
And here (for me at least) is the absolute kicker!
“I haven’t got the time really!”
Are we really as busy as we try to make out? We certainly would like to think that and for sure no one really wants to be thought of as lazy, but let’s just think of some of the things that appear to take up so many people’s time. I’ve certainly come across many that spend absolutely hours on Facebook! They claim that it is sociable, you can make friends, there’s even email facility on it and yet it is so virtual it’s untrue! How many of these friends actually keep in touch? How many of them could be trusted? How many could be relied on for one of life’s favours? And how many times have we heard of someone posting that they are going to the toilet, or something else just as boringly mundane? In fact I believe that Facebook equals “I cannot think of anything to do and there are thoughts coming into my head so I’m going to post it!” They sure as hell aren’t thinking about it when they do post are they, otherwise they would never do it! I think another favourite is people saying they’re too busy and you find out that they play games all night long on the Xboxes, computers, etc. (And my laptop actually recognised Xbox there and corrected the small x!) Twitter, internet porn, chat-rooms, dating sites, we can just keep on going here really, thinking of all these ways that people fill up their days, to make themselves really BUSY! And yet in our modern world we are surrounded by many, many labour saving devices! This so that we can enjoy our leisure time better! Now I am going to be a little blunt but I hasten to add that to some degree I myself am included! It seems that we are all actually becoming a touch lazy in the modern day! We could keep in touch more, I mean how long does it take really? My guess is a ball park figure of half an hour for one letter (or any modern day equivalent!) and at that rate then surely anyone could feasibly write to seven people minimum in a week. Is that stretching it? Will those seven write back though? Surely half of them would but if we’re doing it regularly then it’d catch on, hopefully. Best to get them online then! It should be easy to find them, just go onto facebook, twitter, chat-rooms internet porn, any gaming site, you see a picture here then? I doubt if they’re actually talking though, this is a virtual world, one which may prove difficult to prise them away from as interacting with a real person has become something of a lost art, like that of letter writing.