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The written word is beautiful

Parker Knox
Published: Thursday, December 19th, 2013

One of the best parts of the day during this cold December is running to the mailbox once I have seen the mailman's little truck go by.
Yes, I run to the mailbox for two reasons: first, because at this age I am still able to run, and, second, because I love the mail that comes in December.  Well, most of it anyway.  The usual bills are a bore.  So are the fliers the pizza places send and the men's wear catalogs which offer me a colored dress shirt for $95. (Do some men actually pay that for a shirt?)  
But the envelopes that obviously contain Christmas cards that come spilling out of the mailbox are what make my day in December.
I really enjoy all of them—the cards that show photos of families, those that show wintry scenes from the moutains and the prairies, those that include letters reciting all of a family’s activities of the past year, even the cards that contain absolutely nothing but a signature. Keeping in touch, if only once a year, with relatives, people with whom I went to school, former colleagues, former students, friends from other towns where I've lived and even folks I know only by name is one of the highlights of the Christmas season for me.
I don't blame people who don't or can't take time to write in each of their Christmas cards. Many of them are young people burdened with jobs and youngsters and a hundred other responsibilities.
But one or two, maybe even three, of the Christmas cards I receive this year will be unique in that they contain a message written by hand. You know—pen on paper? The old way?  
I realize that these days none of us have time to do that. It's so much easier to type a message, hit a button and away it goes, we assume, to the addressee.  We're swamped with shopping, December events, our kids' and grandkids' activities, each day's work, each day's chores. Who, for heaven's sake, has time to write—I said "write"—a letter!

One of the best parts of the day during this cold December is running to the mailbox once I have seen the mailman's little truck go by.

Yes, I run to the mailbox for two reasons: first, because at this age I am still able to run, and, second, because I love the mail that comes in December.  Well, most of it anyway.  The usual bills are a bore.  So are the fliers the pizza places send and the men's wear catalogs which offer me a colored dress shirt for $95. (Do some men actually pay that for a shirt?)  

But the envelopes that obviously contain Christmas cards that come spilling out of the mailbox are what make my day in December.

I really enjoy all of them—the cards that show photos of families, those that show wintry scenes from the moutains and the prairies, those that include letters reciting all of a family’s activities of the past year, even the cards that contain absolutely nothing but a signature. Keeping in touch, if only once a year, with relatives, people with whom I went to school, former colleagues, former students, friends from other towns where I've lived and even folks I know only by name is one of the highlights of the Christmas season for me.

I don't blame people who don't or can't take time to write in each of their Christmas cards. Many of them are young people burdened with jobs and youngsters and a hundred other responsibilities.

But one or two, maybe even three, of the Christmas cards I receive this year will be unique in that they contain a message written by hand. You know—pen on paper? The old way?  

I realize that these days none of us have time to do that. It's so much easier to type a message, hit a button and away it goes, we assume, to the addressee.  We're swamped with shopping, December events, our kids' and grandkids' activities, each day's work, each day's chores. Who, for heaven's sake, has time to write—I said "write"—a letter!

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