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Tony Grist

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Christmas Cards [Dec. 13th, 2009|12:42 pm]
Tony Grist
We're not sending Christmas cards this year. Ailz says it's because she wants to give the money we'll save to a deserving charity. I say it's because I just don't want to.

Christmas cards belong to an age before there were Facebook and Twitter- and the telephone- and all those other new-fangled ways we have of keeping in touch. The sending of cards has become a socially-enforced ritual. There's very little joy in it.

Ailz's mother says we should at least send cards to family. I say family- the people with whom we're most frequently in touch- are the last people we should bother with.
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Comments:
[User Picture]From: mummm
2009-12-13 02:32 pm (UTC)
I must say that I disagree completely, but I guess that's okay... right?
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2009-12-13 02:39 pm (UTC)
Of course. :)
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[User Picture]From: haikujaguar
2009-12-13 02:37 pm (UTC)
I love to send cards... love it. But I won't do it unless I have the time to paint my own and compose the poem on the inside. Sending storebought cards gives me no pleasure.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2009-12-13 02:39 pm (UTC)
What you're doing is completely different. You're not sending cards, you're sending gifts.
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[User Picture]From: haikujaguar
2009-12-13 08:55 pm (UTC)
I had not thought of it that way. Hmm!
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[User Picture]From: zoe_1418
2009-12-13 03:19 pm (UTC)
I disagree but not completely. (How's that for showing my Anglicanism? ;-D)

A lot of the people I know who do send cards are not on FB, Twitter, etc. -- or even using computers, some of them -- folks my parents' age. My aged parents love to get cards in the mail. BUT -- and here's where I think I agree -- if there's nothing written in the card except the signature of the people sending it (sometimes pre-printed!), it makes me sad. Might as well be a Facebook "poke." Cards with meaningful notes -- particularly if they're beautiful cards -- are very nice.
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[User Picture]From: halfmoon_mollie
2009-12-13 03:33 pm (UTC)
"WRitten" is the word that matters most here. I REALLY don't like those newsletters that tell you everything but the bathroom habits of the people who sent them. But I like getting cards, very much. Still.

And I haven't sent mine yet.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2009-12-13 05:15 pm (UTC)
There was a well-known English journalist who produced an anthology of those Christmas newsletters. I'll bet that got him crossed off a lot of lists.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2009-12-13 05:12 pm (UTC)
A personal note makes all the difference. Then it's not so much a card as a letter.
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[User Picture]From: lblanchard
2009-12-13 03:48 pm (UTC)
I like to receive cards, especially ones with notes in them. We've pared way back on our list -- about 70 people. For an older couple with far-flung family and a number of dear friends picked up over the decades, that's not an unreasonable number.

I've automated the parts of it that are drudgery -- I keep the address list in a spreadsheet. That leaves more time for writing notes.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2009-12-13 05:13 pm (UTC)
You take the writing of cards a lot more seriously than I have ever done. I agree it makes a world of difference if the card contains a personal note.
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[User Picture]From: lblanchard
2009-12-13 05:26 pm (UTC)
Roy was at one time working in an industry in which sending large quantities of preprinted cards was de riguer, and I got in the spreadsheet habit. Now I also track who gets my annual crocheted snowflake. [Edit: that's so I know when I can stop making the damn things.]

Edited at 2009-12-13 05:27 pm (UTC)
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[User Picture]From: silverhawkdruid
2009-12-13 04:58 pm (UTC)
I'm down to close family and close friends on my list, because I don't see the point in exchanging umpteen cards with people you never hear from outside of Christmas. If I can make the cards myself, I do, but this year I didn't have time to cross stitch them so I opted for cards sold by our local hospice. Helps a good cause, and a short note in each card tells friends and family that we are thinking of them.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2009-12-13 05:39 pm (UTC)
We've been cutting down and cutting down until there's nothing left to trim.
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[User Picture]From: veronica_milvus
2009-12-13 05:36 pm (UTC)
I hate it! My husband will write most of them this year. The exception I make is to my former PhD supervisor, who gets cross if I don't send him a card with a letter saying what I've been up to all year. LOL I should get him to join LJ!

Everyone else can go hang. If like them, I will get a present to them or wish them Merry Christmas personally over a drink.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2009-12-13 05:40 pm (UTC)
Phew- at last someone who agrees with me! :)
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[User Picture]From: karenkay
2009-12-13 09:03 pm (UTC)
I agree with you about sending cards to the people we are most frequently in touch with. I sent Christmas cards last year, and I'm planning to send them this year--but for most of my life, I haven't sent them.

In other news, I think you might find this interesting: http://languagelog.ldc.upenn.edu/nll/?p=1957
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2009-12-13 09:23 pm (UTC)
That's interesting.

Few writers continue to publish into their eighties. When they do there's almost always a marked decline in quality.
Has any very old writer written a masterpiece? I certainly can't think of one.
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