Or maybe not.
My understanding, based on TV and movies, is that in America it is federal offence to tamper with the mail in any way, shape or form. Basically, while you might own the pen, the paper, the envelope and most certainly the intellectual contents, once you pop that letter in the mail it is no longer yours. It belongs to the mail people until they get it delivered to your intended recipient, then I’m not sure who it belongs too.
I am not so sure it’s a criminal offence, here in South Africa, to tamper with the post. Probably but it’s late and I am too tired to check. But this being South Africa, and the Post Office not always being the most efficient of institutions, there exists a chance that your letter would never get to where you intended to go in the first place. On sure, accounts and TV license reminders aways make it to your post box, but letters and invitations, not so much.
But hell, who’s using paper nowadays anyway?
Not me, not my mother, not your mother either I’d guess. We all use e-mail because it is just so convenient and cheap.
It is also instant.
I just sent a very angrily worded reply to an e-mail my mother sent me. For a split second I hesitated to send, thought about sleeping on it for the night but then my anger shorted out the thinking part of my brain and I hit send.
And now, just over half an hour later I am regretting it. Had I taken my fuming and angry self off to bed and waited until tomorrow to send a reply, I would have rethought my words. I’d still be angry, probably, but I would have been more eloquent and honest instead of the knee-jerk reaction I had.
I could, I suppose, send her a follow up e-mail and say, sorry, I was angry, righteously pissed off and I didn’t want to think of the consequences to my response. If I am lucky, she will read that before she reads my original reply. But my original reply will still be in her inbox and she will read it.
And maybe she will forgive, maybe she won’t. I don’t really know.
What I do know is that as I am writing this, gmail is open in another tab.
My mother titled her e-mail “A Mother’s Love”.