“As long as there are postmen, life will have zest.”
– William James
Okay, so we all know that we can dispense with most practical letter writing. We can check our bank balance on our phone, pay bills online, apply for jobs in paperless portals– we’ve gone digital.
But to receive interesting letters, you must write interesting letters. That’s what this event is all about.Don’t worry if you feel like you “don’t have anything to write about” — cause it ain’t true. We all got shit on our minds– put it in a letter and send it away.
join us between 6 and 8pm at CAFE MUSTACHE on Wednesday 2/3 FOR A NIGHT OF LETTER-WRITING
Make a little time in your day for correspondence and SPOC will bring lots of envelopes and blank note cards, a shit load of pens, collage materials, rubber cement, and good old-fashioned loose leaf paper.
Here’s a list of things you might want to come prepared with:
- STAMPS – I’m not a damn post office.
- ADDRESSES – Find out where people live, and write it down. (It’s less creepy than it sounds.)
- STATIONERY – If you’re really into this sort of shit already, please bring all your kitschy, consignment-bought envelopes and postcards, your art museum gift shop stickers, and your sealing wax kit, and just shame us all with your glory.
The act of composing a letter is an exercise in representation. A letter has the power to act as your stand-in for a host of situations. Lillian Eichler Watson (author of The Standard Book of Letter Writing) committed ample time to developing a taxonomy of correspondence, supplemented with passages of advice concerning how to compose letters to suit the situation (rhetoric) and why the method is considerate to the reader (etiquette).
While past purposes for letter writing have fallen away, their power to enrich lives can’t be over-stated. As a vehicle for self-expression, they serve a cathartic function for the writer, but as a direct and personal message, they have the ability to sustain friendships over periods of separation. A glimpse of famous correspondence.