It’s on the cards

There are various ways of measuring your standing in the world, and I think that one of them probably is how many Christmas cards you get. I know it’s really trivial, but for the past ten years every December cards flooded in and soon took up every available space in my office. Last year I put up some 200 or so cards, and that’s not counting the ones I just threw away (including any that came unsigned, because I cannot see any sincerity in a card that has been part of a mass mailing that never even got as far as the purported sender’s desk). For the past three years I also had three people heading important organisations who sent me two identical cards each, and again I kind of concluded that that couldn’t have meant very much.

Anyway, that was then and this is now. As I look around my study I can see five Christmas cards. Five. That’s it. I have myself sent 35 (and will post one last batch tomorrow), but who’s counting? So there you are, I have faded into merited obscurity and insignificance.

Regarding Christmas cards, I am always torn two ways with them. On the one hand, notwithstanding the fact that an alarming number come with very little sign of any personal input by the sender, they do represent something of a statement of community, a recognition of people we value, that we mean something to others and they to us. On the other hand, sending them is too often just a bulk operation with little sign of real engagement. I have a practice that I never send a card with just my signature: I’ll always ad at least one little personal comment, more if I can. And yet in the end, I actually value even the ones I get with just a signature. And so I am most grateful to the brave five who have remembered me this year. Bless you!

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5 Comments on “It’s on the cards”

  1. Dan Says:

    Happy Christmas, eh..what’s your name again? From anonymous blog contributor, Dan

  2. Miguel Says:

    It was pretty receiving christmas cards with its stamps.
    Nowadays it is too easy send an email.

    • anna notaro Says:

      not the medium that always counts, it’s the thought behind it, I’d say..

      • Miguel Says:

        Of course Anna, you are right, but I was just remembering when we used to post traditional cards with their collectable stamps and so on.
        I liked those pretty cards.
        The emails always finish in the litter.
        Merry chistmas.


  3. I send proper cards and I refuse to stop. I receive proper cards from people who know the value of a Christmas card.

    One important function of my card list is to call to mind someone not seen in a long time but remembered. Then the card is sent to tell them so. A signature is sufficient as the message is obvious.


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