Because I collect all kinds of ephemera, it's natural that I have some fantastic old letters in my collection. My favorite is a love letter from a suitor to his beloved named Florence Pettigrew (GREAT old name!) dated December of 1909. There is no name given for him - it's written on hotel stationery (see the photo, left). It's very sweet, and you can tell they were truly in love - the last line of the letter is, "Goodnight, my dearest. Oh how I love and want you! As with you the only thing that seems worthwhile is being with you. - Your Boy".
*SWOON*! Isn't that wonderful? But who writes like that anymore? Who writes anymore, period? It's been a very long time since I've gotten a love letter so I wonder - do people text their devotion now? These days, is it considered "formal" if the love letter is in the form of an e-mail?
To be fair, I've scrutinized my own writing and I am embarrassed to discover (well, I already knew, actually) that I use FAR too many emoticons.
It's an addiction, really. If you were to check my Facebook page, nearly every, if not all, of my status updates feature this guy: :D . It's my "I'm super happy!" emoticon, and it has become ubitquitous, perhaps even synonymous, with my posts. I checked back on my most recent status update, and here's how is reads, verbatim:
"Hooray! I made it to W5RAN again! :D Thanks D'Ette!!" (I won't even discuss my overuse of exclamation points.)
Now, it's not a put-on that I am actually quite thrilled that D'Ette Cole, proprietress of the website W5RAN.com, used another of my ATCs on her website. It's a fantastic site, and I'm very flattered that she likes my work. But couldn't I have just said that I was happy that W5RAN used my work?
Imagine if we had texting 400 years ago; maybe Romeo & Juliet look like this:
"Yo Ro - where U at - hate on my daddy & C U later!!! :P"
Doesn't have quite the same panache, does it?
I was going to do an experiement whereby I denied myself any smiley faces or exclamation points for a whole day, but I know I can't do it. If I'm commenting on someone's photo on Flickr, would the person rather see, "COOL!!! I love this!!!", or "Great photo."? I just can't convey my excitement over the Interweb without aid. The only place I can write well, it seems, is right here. And even that is questionable. :D