I enjoy partaking of the services of the United States postal system. Now, I’ll grant you that I pay most of my bills electronically now, but I’m a fan of the hand-written letter sent sporadically throughout the year. Just a little something to give someone a surprise to brighten their day. I enjoy doing that until it comes to Christmas time, then you have the people who get cards and the people who get cards and letters. And then there are the people who you aren’t sure should get the Christmas letter, but you send it anyway just in case. And there are the people you don’t send the letter to, but in hindsight you probably should have. I have prepared forty-three cards and card/letter combinations this afternoon and I’m not finished, I just ran out of cards. I also didn’t hand-write much of anything other than Mr. Muse’s and my names, and maybe a little note here or there.
Then, there is the Christmas Card List. You know how it works, you create a list of people, friends, acquaintances, family, to whom you want to send a Christmas card, then you end up tallying who you got cards from and who you didn’t. When a card arrives from someone you didn’t initially send a card to, you hurriedly dive for the stash of leftover cards and scribble out an obligatory greeting and pop it into the mailbox with a swipe of your brow with the back of your hand as if you got that out just in the nick of time. You carefully track the days and the number of greetings that roll in with the mail and you mentally keep track that the Smiths haven’t sent a card this year and you made certain to write a nice note into their card. Miffed, at the end of the holiday season, their name is struck from the list along with anyone else who failed to reciprocate your goodwill. Afterall, you think, how hard is it to pop a card in the mail?
Darn those Smiths! They aren’t getting invited to the backyard cookout next summer and they can just forget about the fall cocktail party. Just who do they think they are snubbing you and your Christmas cheer!?
Of course, when you include a Christmas letter, you have other things to worry about, like your double- or triple-life you’re leading and how much you should share with people who get a letter from you once a year. In my case, I leave out the modeling, the gluten-free issue, blogging, writing and participating in nudist cruises. It’s just safer that way.
So, to the USPS, you’re welcome for the $20 I’ve spent on postage so far this holiday season – more will be coming your way. And to those who are getting a card – you’re welcome; despite my dread, I like you enough to send you a card.
Do you send out Christmas or Holiday cards?
Do you keep track of who sends cards to you?
What do you think about those Smiths anyway?
Right, hand on heart, I used to send out loads of Christmas cards, then a few, then I waved a bit, nodded as I passed in walking, and then ceased all Christmas communications with people I only talk to at Christmas. My daily or weekly friends get something but those people you wrote to once a year. I lost interest. The only amazing thing that happened this year, for the first time ever, is I received a card from a Blogger from the States. That really blew me away. Perhaps it is the thought that counts
That could very well be. Some people I genuinely like, such as my parents neighbors whose kids I played with growing up or whose older children babysat me. Some family members and so on.
To be fair, Facebook and social media in general, has complicated the matter. Relatives who snub you on social media make you less inclined to send them a card at Christmas, let alone a card and a letter. I have taken on the “Well, if they didn’t want to connect with me on Facebook, then they don’t want a Christmas card either”. Illogical? Perhaps. Time will tell.
And you seem to be a person worthy of receiving a card, even if it wasn’t from me.