I’m really sorry I haven’t called/texted/responded to your e-mail/written you a letter on the cute stationery I keep buying and then shoving guiltily in a drawer, where it stays hidden from the light of day until Addie unearths it and uses it to write letters to her boyfriend Alex (and by letters, I really just mean pictures of them dressed as ninjas and riding unicorns over a rainbow). Don’t worry, it’s not you. I am failing everyone equally.
I used to be the poster girl for Keeping In Touch. I once wrote an embarrassingly long and heartfelt letter to my second grade student teacher and gave it to my dad to mail it, despite the fact that I didn’t have the woman’s address or first name. My dad, rather than attempting to track her down and hand-deliver the missive, as a TV dad might do, chose to hoard this letter for twenty years and then present it to me one unsuspecting Christmas, alongside the response I got to an ill-fated fan letter to Mark Harmon that just read “rude is rude and I don’t reward it”, so that I could suffer maximum retroactive embarrassment in front of the highest number of family members. This is why my dad is infinitely cooler than TV dads, even though our soundtrack was more out of control laughter than AWWWWs.
Even after these ignominious failures, I kept on pursuing my mission of being The First Person to Never Lose Touch With Anyone She Ever Knew, Ever. Some of you may remember this phase– there were a lot of letters with quotes from Billy Joel songs in them, plus long phone calls in which we lovingly dissected the plots of each Harry Potter book in turn. I was a wiz at texting on the T9 format, and I may or may not have had a text message signature.
But somewhere along the line, I started running out of things to say.
I don’t know if it was the arrival of my first smartphone– presented with a device that allowed me to call, text and e-mail from one convenient location, I proceeded to freak out and use it solely as a method of playing bootleg Uno against strangers for hours– or my full-time job, or my children– but over time, I realized there are only so many ways to say “I went to work, I drove home, I microwaved some dinosaur-shaped chicken and read five thousand books about cats, and then I went to sleep” before your audience starts losing interest.
Deep down, though, I have remained that overeager yearbook signer begging everyone to KIT! So I hope all of you will consider this form letter to be my first volley into a successful re-ignition of our communications:
Dear [YOUR NAME HERE],
I am so sorry that I fell off the face of the earth and stopped responding to your e-mails. The truth is, while you were off being awesome and doing your [Cross-fit/volunteer work/pro-bono cases involving cute monkey defendants/writing and directing a successful Broadway play about the life and times of Spiro Agnew/other cool hobby here], I have been very busy barely remembering to shower and spending an uncomfortable amount of time reading quizzes on Buzzfeed.
As you may have heard, I am spending 2016 trying to better myself, and also learn Spanish and maybe start drinking more than a pity cup of water every day, and so, I would love for us to get back in touch. I promise I will write you witty repartee about my day, and ask questions that really matter, like “do you put your dirty dishes IN the sink, or on the counter NEXT to the sink?” You think that question has an obvious answer, but ask around. You’ll be surprised.
So [YOUR NAME HERE], what do you say? Are you ready to enter into the magical world of electronic communication? Also, do you promise not to save any embarrassing e-mails I write and forward them back to me in 2036? That’s kind of a dealbreaker for me.