I got a dinosaur in the mail the other day.
No, not a T-Rex or my favorite, a George the stegosaurus (from the best-ever classic kid’s book, “The Shy Stegosaurus of Cricket Creek”).
I mean a letter. A real letter. A letter written by a human being, sent by a human being, through the U.S. Postal System, which, unless I’m mistaken, is run by human beings.
Anyway, it was a letter, polite, typed, mailed in an envelope, hand-written address and all, with a little square of art, I believe it’s called a stamp, in the upper right corner, return address in the upper left, and the address right smack dab in the middle.
At first I wasn’t sure what it was. I mean I know mail. I get literally hundreds of letters a week that in the course of my work that I have to open, read, sort, discard, use, ignore, respond to, whatever. Hundreds.
Not one of them has a stamp. Not one has a hand-written address. Not one is delivered by a human being.
So this…this…dinosaur, this letter, an actual throwback, an anachronism, this out-of-place/out-of-time square of paper and stamp and ink…well, it threw me.
In a fitting bit of irony, just as I was writing this, I got another thank-you in the mail – an email, but still, a thank you. It was lovely and heartfelt and meant something to the writer who sent it and to me for getting it. I guess anytime you sit down to write to someone – on a typewriter or on pad and paper or at a computer – it means you care enough to take the time to do it.
And that’s just special. Only thing better would be if George the stegosaurus delivered it.
read the entire article in the May issue of South Coast Insider