April has been designated as National Card and Letter Writing Month, which Etiquetteer is very pleased to celebrate.
Once upon a time, of course, there was no need to designate a month to celebrate handwritten correspondence, because there was no other way to correspond. From the beginning, though, correspondents have always wished for a way to speed up communications. Necessity being the the Mother of Invention, we now have the Internet and text messaging to share instantly thoughts, actions, and opinions - not only with individuals, but with the world. It's marvelous, valuable, helpful - and increasingly thoughtless and skilless, and certainly not as elegant as a liveried footman. Just look how our spelling has deteriorated. Look at the decline in fine motor skills since cursive writing stopped being taught in schools!
For the sake of convenience, too many people are ready to leave behind anything handwritten as being slow, pokey, and dull. Old-fashioned, and therefore bad and wrong. Etiquetteer begs to differ - surprise! What handwritten correspondence lacks in immediacy is more than made up for in thoughtfulness and attention. Recipients recognize that something more than just zipping off a text or email has taken place, and appreciate that extra effort has been taken to express emotion and attention to them. This remains especially important for expressions of gratitude, which is why Etiquetteer feels so strongly about Lovely Notes of Thanks - especially from Notoriously Ungrateful Brides.
So let's not jettison all that beautiful stationery just yet! Take the time this month, and every month, to send a few loved ones some special word written in your own hand. It will certainly make a difference, not only to the recipients, but the the general level of Perfect Propriety in the world. Etiquetteer hopes you’ll take the time today.