Elder daughter-in-law (EDIL) says she has noted that there is a decline in sending the traditional Christmas card by the the under 30’s. This tradition we believe dates back to the Victorian era and is rumoured to be another trend set by the Queen’s consort, Prince Albert to go with his other cultural contributions of a monochrome checked cloth and some rather questionable personal metallic adornment. I wonder if the Christmas card will be next to follow the personal handwritten letter and the holiday postcard into the semi-retirement of stuff only old people do. The Royal Mail doesnt help of course pushing up the cost of even second class year by year moving the silent majority to notch up minor amounts of civil disobedience or rebellion by refusing to pay their ransom.
That same majority would also secretly that the whole business is a chore. The cards need to reflect your taste standards, show a donation to a worthy cause or charity( this is the one item you wont find the guilty middle classes bulk buying in Aldi or Lidl). You then have to embark on the esoteric rituals of sending reciprocal cards , the organised and anal have a list, the rest of us just wish we did. Keeping an emergency stock at work , behind the counter or in your bag can also avoid reciprocity embarrassment together with furtive after dark trips to hand deliver to unexpected addresses and so on.
What can replace them? Those saddened by the decline in the art of letter writing must gain some comfort from the phenomenal support and impetus for the written word given by the growth of emails and text , even allowing for the latter’s evisceration of the language. But you cannot put a text message on your mantel, displaying the numbers of emails in your inbox will not enhance your social status or reinforce your quiet sense of self worth. We are in a period of transition, perhaps someone will invent an App for that.
So this blog post can do double duty today as both some observations on the world and as a greeting to all family and friends together with all my subscribers, followers, readers and others. The wired world is a broad church and my circle comprises many members from different worlds in both time and space. So a very happy Christmas to you all and a happy new Year ( Tridekaphobics should ignore the last two digits!)