Tuesday, 18 January 2011

Emails... are like Marmite!

... you either love them or hate them!

They've revolutionised the way we communicate on a work and personal level.

Two things have sparked me pondering this... The first was a conversation yesterday with someone about the sheer volume of emails we received on a daily basis - it almost approached 'bragging rights' status. "I've had over 70 emails since we started this meeting 3 hours ago" "Really? I can't beat that!"

Then this morning my attention was drawn to one of the Poems on the Underground - have you ever noticed them whole travelling by Tube in London. I always look out for then as they invariably cause me to react. The one I saw this morning was called "Loving the rituals" a translation by Tony Harrison of a verse by Palladas, a 4th century Alexandrian schoolmaster;

Loving the rituals that keep men close,
Nature created means for friends apart:
pen and ink, the alphabet,
signs for the distant and disconsolate heart.

Isn't that delightful... I found myself overwhelmed by a little tsunami of nostalgia. I love getting letters and have generally found that other folk like receiving mine

Emails still utilise the alphabet and they are with you in the blink of an eye - more often than not! But how many times have you tapped out a rapid reply and pressed send only to regret it and wish it back... Somehow the process of composing a letter was - and is still - never quite so fraught with the potential to be misunderstood...

And don't even get me started on the "reply to all" button!! (That's for another day when I feel more "up to it"!)

There is something beautiful about receiving a handwritten letter, something that says you're being thought of... cherished...

1 comment:

  1. As someone who once sent an e-mail to the wrong person, that one's close to my heart! I agree that there's something special about a handwritten letter. How often does anyone get anything enjoyable in the post these days? I have a couple of packs of Simon Drew postcards; they never fail to make me smile. Every now and again I'll have a flick through my address book and inevitably see the name of someone I haven't spoken to for a few months. It takes around five minutes to write a few words on a postcard and pop it in the post.

    By the way, tsunami of nostalgia-I love that!