My BF and my lovely friend P. always send a handwritten note after a supper at our house, or after being given a prezzie...and I always do the same.
Sometimes I fail to meet proper etiquette rules and don't manage to send my 'thank you' within the correct form of three days, but I do always send one.
I don't often manage to write something erudite, but hopefully my thank you notes always sound sincere, because they are.
Let's face it most of us do actually appreciate somebody going to the trouble of cooking supper for us, or choosing a thoughtful gift....and sending a thank you is a good way of saying - wow, that was absolutely lovely / delicious / fun...I really appreciated your effort / thoughtfulness / creativity.
Recently, after a supper party (which was big on effort due to the dietry needs of one guest) only one of the four couples wrote to say 'thank you'....and that was by TEXT!
I apologise if this sounds ungrateful, but for goodness sake, how little effort is involved in actually sending a text message?
Answer: very little indeed!
Is there a widespread problem of paper and pen allergies?
Worse still, this evening we received a 'Christmas card' from one of the husband's oldest friends...this 'card' was by email...and this is what it was -
In line with many of our friends this year we are trying to trim our ever growing list of Christmas Cards Recipiants, so for all those that we are in email contact with, we are using this medium to send this years Seasons Greetings!!!
We hope that you have a Happy Christmas and a Great New Year whatever you are doing.
With Much Love
no amusing pictures sent with it, no photo of them...nothing....whatsoever...or in their case "whatever"!
Here is our reply -
"What, no card with an ickle robin perching on a frosty branch?
What, no hyperlink to a website containing your family as animated dancing elves?
What, no three page newsletter?
You little rebels!"
...Do you think that they will politely get the message?
When they receive my carefully chosen card, with it's handwritten message, do you think they might have a pang of guilt about their missing manners...for they jolly well weren't brought up that way!
I relayed this abomination of manners to my Mother in Law, who writes a personal message in each of her Christmas cards - she thought it acceptable to send 'e cards' only as long as they were like one she recieved last year which was an animated snowman, who moved his snow-manly 'dangly bits' to shoot down snowballs...the mind boggles, but at least it was very amusing!
...and there we are, back to the crux of this subject...it's all about effort, and if you're not prepared to put in a little effort...perhaps it's better not to bother at all, rather than offend old friends by covertly saying you really can't be bothered to put pen to paper?
I write this after writing 80 cards for friends and family and another 90 for the husbands company Christmas cards...and look my fingers are still fully functioning, if a little stiff...and I've written 'Christmas' so many times it's beginning to look weirdly abstract.
But it's done for another year....and that only leaves me with a new quandry...what do I do for those lovely bloggers who I think are witty and clever...in the real world I would send them a Christmas card...but what does one do when you only have an email address...answers on a postcard please!