Lori Borgman finds the funny in everyday life, writing from the heartland of the US. Now, if she could just find her car keys...
As texting takes over, our columnist Lori Borgman bemoans the loss of letter writing.
One of the most frequent requests from our grown children is for a postage stamp. Their generation doesn’t buy stamps because they rarely use stamps. We rarely use stamps either, but we keep buying them. Habit, I guess. Who writes letters anymore, right? I recently read the biography of a man who lived 150 years ago. It was a fabulous page-turner, thanks to marvellous research the author had done utilising the subject’s vast archive of personal letters and diaries.
Pity biographers years from now looking for research material on us. The only trail of crumbs we are leaving is electronic. Text messaging is now the most frequently used form of communication. Even email is becoming so last century.
Based on my trail of texts, I’m confident nobody will be doing a biography on me.
Many of my texts are about arriving, departing and how far away I am from a destination. ‘Almost there.’ ‘Leaving in 10.’ ‘Running late.’ ‘Meet you at 3.’
Plus, based on the number of times I send directions to myself via SMS, it is also clear that I am direction-impaired.
The best-case scenario is that a biographer would package all those tidbits and conclude, ‘She was well travelled and always on the go.’ But someone might also deduce, ‘The woman couldn’t tell east from west if the sun was setting.’
I also send a lot of texts about food. It’s not that I’m obsessed with food, but I often plan for big get-togethers.
The title of my biography would be, ‘She Came, She Cooked, She Ate.’ It wouldn’t be entirely inaccurate.
I was wondering if anybody writes personal letters anymore when I received a lovely email from a reader written in the form of a personal letter. It began with a salutation, had a breezy introduction, mentioned the weather where she lived, and commented on a column I’d written.
It was so old-school that I mentioned it to the husband and speculated that the woman must be elderly.
‘Nobody writes letter-style anymore,’ I said.
I responded to the woman’s email and she replied thanking me and noting, ‘Supposed to be 102 on Sunday.’
‘I’m right!’ I told the husband. ‘The woman who wrote letter-style is going to be 102! Unbelievable!’
But why did she write, ‘Supposed to
Pity BIOGRAPHERS years from now looking for RESEARCH material on us. The only TRAIL of crumbs we are leaving is electronic. TEXT MESSAGING is now the most frequently used form of communication.
be 102 on Sunday’? Did she think she wouldn’t make it past Saturday?
Rereading our exchange, I realised she wasn’t talking about her age – she was talking about the temperature. It was supposed to be 102F on Sunday.
It was even more amazing – someone younger than 102 still knows how to write letter-style.
For all you know she has stamps in a drawer somewhere, too.