The art of the long-form letter is dead.
Or, if not dead, being kept alive only through artificial means;
Against the express wishes of its DNR.
A friend of mine collects pen-pals.
In this day and age.
They hand-write their letters and send each other chocolates from across various oceans.
I don’t know where to buy stamps.
I’m not saying I couldn’t Google it, I’m just saying I’d have to.
When I was young, I was fascinated by handwriting analysis.
You can tell so much about a person by the way they push the tip of a pen across paper,
And I was always so desperate to glean insight into humanity.
I prefer typing.
It’s not that I want to hide my nature,
It’s that I’d rather be judged on what I deliberately state,
Rather than on what I subconsciously imply.
There’s no stopping that, of course, but the illusion of control is important.
I would have sent you a letter,
If I had your address,
Or knew where to buy stamps,
And doing so wouldn’t be so bizarre.
So instead, there's this.
I’ve been dating occasionally.
It’s not terribly enjoyable, since I don’t like people.
I can like a person.
There are several persons whom I enjoy very much.
People, though, are terrible.
I wish them well, but well enough away from me.
We talk, but nothing is said.
There’s a wellspring of near infinite passion within everyone.
Any passion within them, they don’t share with me.
Everything is flat and empty.
Sometimes I equate it to juggling handfuls of pudding.
It’s cold, messy, and I’m not sure what I expected to get out of it.
I feel it important to note that I’m sympathetic.
I’m not an easy person for most people.
To those closest to me, I’m an open book;
Incapable of the slightest subterfuge.
Others can never quite seem to put their fingers on me.
Which is a shame;
I rather like people putting their fingers on me.
No, what I truly dislike is the duplicitousness of the dance.
I’m told that a great time was had,
Through a strained smile beneath hollow eyes.
My face mirroring theirs.
Then we proceed to never again speak,
And I feel vaguely unclean.
You’re a layer of fiery charisma and pop-culture references,
Stretched paper-thin over a skeleton of terror,
And a shameful history with macaroni and cheese.
Just like me.
There was a time when I was frustrated,
Not angry or resentful,
But frustrated that you wouldn’t allow me one proper date to conjure up what I was sure,
In my hubris,
Would have been a glorious connection.
But you said no;
You said it in clear, simple, respectful words.
You were honest and open.
And let me tell you,
Because it’s the point of this letter,
That’s still the best experience I’ve had with dating in a long time.