You know that quotation, "Ever notice how 'what the hell?' is always the right answer?" Last night I used that wee bit of guidance after being at work for about nine hours, and took an hour-long bus-ride across the city to hang out with my husband and his oldest friends for a holiday party. We had an ornament exchange, which included some fun Merry Spitemas moments of everyone stealing each other's ornaments just to get a rise out of each other (it's tradition!) and a good time was had by all, including myself.
Though this morning, before I headed into work, I was a wee bit annoyed at myself for heading out past midnight on a work-night. Oof. I'm not twenty anymore.
In playing catch-up, I had a moment of commiseration with one of my husband's best friends over how easily it was for tone to be lost in an e-mail and how easy it was to mis-step in sending an e-mail and getting in trouble for it - but also how cowardly and annoying it is when someone replies to more than the sender, roping in other people to create more drama.
Which brings me to my next story of discussion...
"Noughts and Crosses: an unsent reply," by Steven Heighton
Ah, this story.
Again, the tales in Friend. Follow. Text.:#storiesFromLivingOnline have this wonderful way of finding new approaches and angles with which to tell a tale. Here we have a brief e-mail from one person to another that is pretty much a digital Dear John (though there's room for interpretation on the weight of the finality).
The tale itself is actually just the receiver's deconstruction, line by line, of the e-mail that has been received, but in doing so, a rich narrative of their relationship appears in flashes and starts. There's more depth to what at first appears merely to be bitterness, and there's a nice quiet slice of humour running throughout as well.
I really liked this story. It was a unique idea among an anthology full of really unique ideas, and it was an excellent reminder of just how much information can be imparted to a reader without being direct.