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It’s the classic modern fairytale: you meet a guy who’s just your type—an arrogant fancy-boy who has read at least one book. Dreamy. So you exchange postcodes, and soon you’re penpals. But, can a heterosexual female and a heterosexual male really ‘just’ be penpals? How do you put pen to paper to put genital to genital? Is it even possible to seduce someone through snail mail? All common quandaries of the modern singleton looking for love. Unfortunately, I have no answers. All I have is a horrifying, haunting tale of how I lost all my romantic dignity by doing something that makes double texting look cold and aloof—double snail mailing.
The tale itself is quite short. I wrote. He wrote back. I may then have fallen just a little bit in love with him. I wrote back. He never wrote again. Where did it all go wrong? Surely it was not the letter’s actual content, it’s never about actual content. And to proudly toot my own horn, my handwriting is great. Some can sing, some can dance, I can appear really hot through cursive. The paper was also fine—I stayed away from the heavier stocks, anything above 60gsm and you are screaming “please marry me” (which I was, but I wanted him to scream it first). Which leaves only one thing that could have sealed my romantic downfall, and quite literally so—the wax seal. A wax seal! On just the second letter! What was I thinking! I may as well have thrown my entire self at him while wearing a wedding dress, with a long list of gender fluid baby names ready for discussion. I wish the wax seal was where it ended. But, no. I went on holiday overseas and love-foolishly believed there’d be a reply by the time I got back, so I sent him a postcard, par avion international. But, to my absolute horror, there was no letter. There would never be another letter. I had double snail mailed! I double snail mailed and was ghosted by a penpal who wrote me a total of one letter. Find me a more tragic embarrassment, and I will pay you $20.00.
Yours with love,
Single Sad Postgrad
* There is one small redeeming point to this tale, and that was later finding out that my ex-penpal had gotten back together with an ex-girlfriend sometime after he wrote to me. The redemption lies in the possibility that our letter writing did have some sort of intimacy, enough for it to be inappropriate to continue correspondence while in a relationship. Perhaps I wasn’t completely delusional after all. Of course there’s also the possibility that his brief glimpse into the world of the desperate single people directly led him to retreat back to the familial safety and sanity of an old lover, but let’s pretend it’s not that. Let’s pretend I reacted super normally and super chill to his one letter. After all, on paper, he was perfect.