Not that I’d ever give up email, chat, or text (difficult as the latter two are, with my lupus slo-mo fingers), but I think the world lost something goofy and charming–and touching–when we lost snail mail. No more margin notes. No more silly drawings. No longer a cache of mom’s old love letters left behind for the children to discover that there was more to mom than they ever knew.
Here are traces an old boyfriend left behind in hardcopy. Perhaps, were we dating today at the same ages we were then, our e-communications would be even richer. I doubt it.
(On the night of his birthday:)
I am still awake and I am 18 and you are only 17. Nyeah Nyeah. I can see dirty movies and drink in bars—what can YOU do?
(Before his driving test:)
I never used hand signals—what if he makes me? I’ll say the window is broken, or my hand is dirty. Should I bring a gift for him? Oh dear.
(After landing his first job:)
How rich I’ll be in twenty or thirty years! You are probably wonderin’ what it is that I do. I help big, important people make big, important decisions. How do I do this, you ask? Well, you see, when big, important decision-makers have to make big, important decisions, they like to be alone without distractions. Sometimes, they find the most conducive place is the employee washroom. This is where I come in.
Enough of this foolish charade, I can’t bear to go on dissembling, I must let the truth be known!
I am but a humble janitor boy junior assistant trainee.
I once received a charming envelope from this creative boy. He had sewn it out of blue-and-white ticking on his mom’s antique Singer treadle machine.
In those days, the U.S.P.S. would deliver differently-crafted items like that.
The outside of the envelope held a puzzle: A tiny sticker cut out from the Dick Tracy comic strip:
After I finished reading the letter inside and reached the definition below, the crude but amusing intent of the envelope’s outside sticker become clear:
In a sad case of foreshadowing, this is the boy who later raped me. But aside from his behavior that day, he was a sweet, witty, creative, and fun boyfriend, and I thought it fair to show you that side of him.
This post was a result of my continuing attempt to reduce, reuse, and recycle–my LIFE! Out with those old papers! On the blog, out the door 🙂
Earlier posts that issued from the murky depths of those dusty boxes:
The Summer of the Naked Bear and
I Once Knew a Girl Named Maria.