COLUMN: Email is a funny thing…

You can have conversations with people anywhere in the world, and develop a social relationship...

Email is a funny thing.

You can have conversations with people anywhere in the world, and develop a social relationship without ever seeing their faces or hearing their voices.

Carol is such a person.

I’ve known her in the digital communication sense for quite some time.

She sent an email the other day, advising me that she had read my latest column and it did not make her laugh.

I explained that sometimes, there is serious stuff going on that requires editorial comment, like politics and homelessness and such, which can suck the humour out of a drunk circus clown.

She was unimpressed. She wanted to laugh, and suggested I ought to get to work on reconnecting with my inner mirth the following week.

I explained that I was actually going to be away on a fishing trip with a buddy.

She emailed back that she hoped something funny would happen, and I could write about that.

(Carol can be a bit of a taskmaster.)

So I said I’d be sure to tell my fishing partner, although I imagined it could develop into a peculiar conversation:

Hey Roger…

– Yeah?

Carol wants you to do something “funny.”

– Who’s Carol?

A lady I chat with online. She likes to laugh.

– Chat with online … like a dating site?

No, no. Email.

– Well, how did you meet her?

Actually, I never have met her.

– Umm… isn’t that a little weird?

I don’t know, you’d have to ask Carol. But my wife has met her.

– Oh dude, now that is weird. So what does she do?

Who, my wife?

– No, this Carol!

She sends me legal stuff for work, and we kibbitz back and forth by email. She has a good sense of humour.

– How long has this been going on?

A couple of years now.

– A couple of years??! Does your wife know about this?

Oh yeah.

– And how does she feel about it?

I’ve never asked her. But I’m sure she’s OK with it.

– Do you ever intend to meet this person?

Who, my wife? I’ve met her.

– Oh fer … no! Carol!

Yes. I really should. Her office is not far from mine.

– So why haven’t you?

That’s a good question. You know how you can be emailing with someone you’ve never met, but after awhile it just seems like you know them? Sort of like cyber-friends?

– Uh, no…

I guess it’s hard to explain.

– Is she married? And if you say ‘Who, my wife?’ I’m going to whack you with a paddle.

Yes, I believe she is. But you’re getting the wrong idea.

– Oh gosh, no. How could I get any wrong ideas? You have an online chatty relationship with a married laughing woman who sends you legal stuff, whom you have never met but your wife has…

Yeah, that’s pretty much it.

– I would like to get out of this boat now… my head hurts.

OK. But don’t forget, Carol wants you to do something funny.

– Oh, there’s something funny here, all right. As in funny strange, not funny ha ha.

I’ll email Carol and tell her you said that. It’ll give her a laugh.

 

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