The card problem

American card, circa 1940
American card, circa 1940 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I have a love hate relationship with greetings cards of all varieties. There’s nothing better than getting an unexpected birthday card in the post, but there’s also nothing more irritating than having a random Christmas card from a colleague you barely know dumped on your desk on the 15th December every year.

Even for those cards that are meaningful, one is then faced with the difficulty of what to do wtih them subsequently. I used to keep all cards, invitations, letters, orders of service, and thank you notes I was ever given. It seemed somehow wrong to throw away something that was a privilege to receive. The result of this was four huge crates full of bits of paper, which I stored under the bed. One evening, I donned the buddhist mantle (possessions are bad for your soul), and threw more than half away. I kept only the letters, one condolence card and some wedding invitations. It was a wrench, but eventually a good thing as it does feel less burdensome.

Last Christmas, I sent quite a few cards, which resulted in a good collection of received cards, as well as a bunch of birthday cards – we of the December birthdays are lucky if we receive separate cards and gifts.

This morning, I threw the whole lot in the recycling, without sorting through them. The pleasure was receiving and reading them, and it is not lost simply because I’ve decluttered.

2 thoughts on “The card problem

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  1. Totally agree on that one! How can anyone ever cherish a ton of paper – for example after retirement – when you might have (or not have) the time to look at all those cards again…

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