I think we are in the sweet spot of the thank you note practice. So few people write them that if you don’t get around to penning one, you’re in good company with the other negligent people. If you do write one, you’re the paragon of politeness, the champion of civility, the essence of etiquette (or maybe I feel a biiiit too inflated when I write one). Perhaps older generations disagree, but it seems like something where you’re given many bonus points if you do it and deducted nothing if you don’t.
Growing up, that was not the case. I remember the profound dread that filled me after each birthday and Christmas as I was given the list of various family members to whom I needed to send thank you notes. I pleaded for those awful fill-in-the-blank notes “Dear ____, Thank you for _____. It’s exactly what I wanted. Love, ____” to make the process less grueling. I have no idea why it was such a shuddersome endeavor, because really, a good, thoughtful note can be jotted down in under 5 minutes. For whatever reason though, looking at the long list of people (who had KINDLY, GENEROUSLY given me presents), was beyond depressing.
Leah Dieterich felt similar resistance towards writing thank you notes, but her mom encouraged her relentlessly, and she’s clearly a very good daughter because now she writes a thank you note every single day on her blog, THX THX THX. These notes don’t go to Uncle Sal or Great Aunt Elsie but rather to inanimate objects and abstract ideas.
THX THX THX has been so popular that Leah recently compiled all the notes and put them into a book that you can buy here. It’s nice to see someone who finds reasons to be grateful everywhere, and her site is a positive, creative place on the internet
*Also, as an additional layer, THX THX THX confirms #10 on the widely circulated and wildly accurate 15 Things White Girls Love to Do on Facebook.
(Images via THX THX THX)