i wish people still wrote letters. i just finished going through a bag my mom kept from the house. in it i had letters from fourth grade all the way up until my freshman year of college. first off, i had a lot of friends! damn!
but before the advent of email, we all wrote letters to each other. how wonderful. some of the later cards and letters allude to the start of email, but the time capsules that are a lot more interesting include the mention of tapes, new kids on the block, and how much we hated christie young in the fourth grade.
it's so funny to see what we worried about as time went on. in 4th grade we got excited that the newest installment of the babysitters club was about to come out. in junior high we laughed about our gym teacher, mr. jones. and in high school we stressed about AP tests and whether our scores would get us into the colleges we hoped for.
it's funny too, the personality cues you can pick up from your past. i remember myself as an incredibly happy child, someone practically oblivious to the problems going on in my own home, and without a care in the world. but, perhaps unsurprisingly, i was quite a snob, even back in the day. i had a penchant for gossip, enjoyed shared hatred, and found inclusion in groups by excluding others. i guess i didn't really forget that part, but it's funny to see it expressed outright.
jackie's letters were probably the best, but that's also probably because we're still friends. she sent one letter that was partially indecipherable because it was written in pencil almost 20 years ago. but apparently we started something called the "call me club" and she mailed me my membership card. from the letter, i can't quite understand what we did, except she felt it necessary we have an advertisement [ which she also included ] and that certain dorks like karyl goldstein couldn't be a part of it. hahahahaha
i'm going to have to scan some of these gems in. that, and some of the old worksheets and writings i found. they are precious! my ode to money and my "sometimes i like you" card are unbeatable. that will most definitely be my next blog.
it has been so fun to travel down memory lane. it pains me to throw some of these cards and letters out. but what am i going to do with them? put them in a closet for another ten years?? i'm keeping a few select ones and parting with the rest. i'm keeping all of the letters megan moskwa sent me, but haven't gone through them all. they're just funny because she was such a spaz. i wonder if she ever calmed down at all. megan and i wrote letters to each other most often though, because after 8th grade, she moved to illinois. so after that, our entire friendship took place in letters. i'm interested to see what i find in there, but, as i mentioned, she's a spaz, so her letters are long winded and it's far too late to delve into illinois high school drama at the moment. maybe on the plane:)
i know that we have emails and they probably are much better for archiving, but there's something so charming about a stack of letters. they feel more intimate, they have more personality. the fact that we used to decorate them with stickers and doodles really show how much thought we put into each one. we'd tell people where we were at the moment [ bored in physics class, at governor's school, at grandma's house in wisconsin ], we'd answer questions that were asked in previous letters, we'd get lost in stream of consciousness, and we'd say things that we probably never would in person, or even in email. i'm kind of pleasantly surprised at how many times people told me how great a friend i was, how funny i was, or how much they missed me. sure, i barely remember some of those people now. but it still makes me feel like i must be pretty all right.
as the new year approaches, i'm definitely resolving to lose weight, eat better, and all the usual stuff. but i think i'm also gong to make a concerted effort to write more letters. i hope those i write to will resolve to do the same :)