I used to be really good about sending thank you notes to people, writing them out by hand, upon receipt of a box of candy from my grandmother, or a book as a birthday present, etc. (One of the first jobs I landed was because I was the only candidate interviewed who sent back thank you notes.) I’ve since slacked off. Sometimes I forgot (egad!) And when I do nowadays, it’s usually via email.
So I have little moral ground to stand on, but it does irk me when people don’t acknowledge they’ve received something from me. I’m not looking for a gushing thank-you note with a smarmy elaboration of how they’ll put my gift to good use (‘The fuzzy dice will look so charming hanging on my rear-view mirror!”) I just want reassurance that the darn thing arrived safely in your mailbox.
Likewise, I’d appreciate some acknowledgement when I send long and detailed emails on travel information, something I’m frequently solicited on. Maybe folks assume I’ve got stock answers and it’s cut and pasted in 5 seconds. Or maybe the advice I give them isn’t what they’re looking for, which is OK. But it feels dreadful when you put all that effort into tailoring the information, hit the ‘send’ button, and whoosh. You don’t know if the email disappeared into a black hole, because the intended recipient didn’t get it. All that effort wasted. Or were they simply too lazy to hit the reply button. I’m not looking for everlastiing gratitude. Just a mere ‘thanks, got it’ will do
Maybe I’m just too old-fashioned, my etiquette values being that of my grand-parents’ generation. Maybe I just shouldn’t expect thank you notes anymore. Maybe I don’t need to write them anymore. It’s a busy, busy world. Everyone has too much to do, errands to run, chores to take care of, who’s got time for writing thank you notes when we live in wrinkle free clothes, ‘coz we don’t even have time to iron? But you know what, thank you notes can really make someone’s day. In this mean, dog-eat-dog, survival of the fittest world, the civility and gentility of a note that conveys appreciation and gratitude is sweet.
Thank you for reading this rant, and letting me get this off my chest. Thank you, for reading my blog.