Anger Management

mad kidMaria Konnikova’s piece in the New York Times,The Lost Art of the Unsent Angry Letter,” delineates one of the steepest downsides of instant communications: hitting the send button too swiftly and too often. Citing examples from Abraham Lincoln to Harry S. Truman, Konnikova reminds us that some things are better left unsaid—or at least unsent. Many an angry letter was written but filed for posterity to read, not its intended target.

I still sometimes vent frustration by penning notes with each letter scrawled on top of the one preceding it. My message quickly turns into a dark blot in the middle of the notepad, maybe with a hole in the center where the paper thinned because I was REALLY miffed and needed a lot of stacked words to explain why. I’ll never hit the send key by mistake. No one will unearth it from my computer’s buried memory. I’ve said what I needed to say, but not what anyone else will read. Occasionally, communications works best as a one way street.

3 thoughts on “Anger Management

  1. Terry Lim Diefenbach says:

    I am rather forgetful and disorganized (an unrecognized ADHD adult?) and have found unmailed letters of my own. Though not necessarily filled with frustration or rage, they have been great reminders of where I was at the time in my life!

  2. Phoebe Conn says:

    One of my favorite movies is LETTER FROM AN UNKNOWN WOMAN with Louis Jordan and Joan Fontaine. It’s a heartbreaking romance. I had the VHS copy, so I’ll look for a DVD. The lovers are torn apart, and when the woman of Louis’s dreams returns, he is so lost in her memory, he doesn’t recognize her until it’s too late. It’s a great weeper of a film, black and white from the 1940s.

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