I did something on Friday that I haven't done for several weeks. No, it wasn't buy a drink in the pub before you smart arses out there comment (although my good friend Gary the Hibby will testify I did purchase at least one pint of foaming ale last night) No, the unusual event in question was that I posted a letter.
The letter in question was my publishing contract for next year's blockbusting best selling book Hearts Greatest Games (cough, splutter, cough again...) I'll be blatantly plugging this tome all too frequently over the next 12 months so beware...However, the reason I feel the urge to blog about posting a letter is that it seems letter writing is fast becoming a dying art. It's bad enough that many people no longer make the effort or feel they have the time to put pen to paper - but even worse is the abbreviations that have crept into today's communication world.
I received an email at the office the other day and at the end the sender had put the letters KR before her name. Next year I will reach my half century (health permitting and that's not looking particularly clever right now with a hospital admission due next month - but I won't bore you with the details...) so my brain does, on occasion, take a wee but longer to digest certain things. And KR had me stumped. So I used an old fashioned way of communicating - I walked across the office and asked her what it meant. She smiled and said it was 'kind regards'.
Similarly, another colleague sent me an email with the initials BW at the end. Taking my cue from 'kind regards' I eventually worked this one out for myself. 'Best wishes'.
Courtesy is even more of a dying art than letter writing these days so I don't want anyone to get the impression I didn't appreciate both these sentiments. But it's a sad reflection on life today that some people can't be bothered to write their intended sentiments in full - as if writing the words 'kind regards' was too much of an effort. If so, why bother in the first place?
I blame the explosion of text speak in the last 20 years. My two daughters already bamboozle me with some of their text messages and postings on the dreaded Facebook. Although I did gather, quite some time ago, what they meant when they texted me with WTF - what the f**k?
Sadly, it's the way of the world these days.