Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Etiquette Wednesday: The Art of a Proper Thank You

I've alluded many time to my penchant for the written word and the craft of letter writing. Here I'll discuss the meaning of a handwritten thank you. Not much can be said beyond this wonderful article that discusses the whys of a proper hand-written letter, however, my personal sentiments are twofold. I believe that the main difference between email and putting an actual pen to paper is the idea of one spending their own time and physical energy in crafting a piece of gratuity.  Unlike the computer, we must really think about what to say since we cannot easily back track and delete. That alone is reason enough to continue this craft.  My second point rests in what the letter becomes once it is written. I often find handwriting very interesting and very telling of a person. We give a part of ourselves and our personalities when we offer a letter which we have written with our own hands. It becomes something for the receiver to have forever-something that makes us permanent and allows them to have a piece of us that extends beyond our mortality. Marcel Proust used to write his mum hand written letters and then slide them underneath her bedroom door. Recently, a letter from Francis Crick to his son explaining his scientific discovery of the DNA double helix and its context just sold through Sotheby's for $5.3m. I know that presents and things come and go in my life, but things I tend to keep are the letters and cards that I have received from friends. Just something to think about and not to mention, a handwritten letter almost always adds a touch of class.

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