Tuesday, January 18, 2011

On Letter Writing and a Fourth Grade Me

Recently a friend of mine was sent an anonymous mean letter.

It was nasty and immature, and really, showed more how crappy the person writing it was.

I should know because I am a recovered nasty letter writer.

I was not always the mature bastion of wisdom and benevolence I am today.

Hard to believe, I know.

In fourth grade I went on, what can only be described as, a nasty letter writing spree.

My first foray to the darkside of nasty letter writing was writing a horrid note to a friend when I was worried she was mad at me. This was probably the worst one I wrote. I am still embarrassed by it and sorry for it to this day. Luckily we got to be friends again.

My next trip down letter road involved me convincing half the girls in my class to write a mean note to a poor girl who was not well liked. We all got called out into the hallway by our teacher when she reported us and were told if we kept it up they would call our parents. That was enough to set me straight at school.

Finally (and perhaps the most funny) was a note I wrote to an older neighbor girl after she did something I didn't like. Ironically enough, my partner in crime in writing this letter was the friend who I wrote the first letter to.

One day my friend and I were playing in the front yard with my brother and a neighbor girl.

We were playing happily enough when who approached us but our friendly neighborhood thief/bad news bear/arsonist (he really was arrested and convicted of arson a few years after this).

We told him to go away, but he refused and continued to ride his bike back and forth in front of our house. He really was doing nothing but annoying us. No threats were made.

Neighbor girl's parents were not home, but she was being watched by her older sister. My mom, however, was home. In retrospect, the smart thing to do would have been to call my mom and have her tell this kid to go away.

Hindsight is always 20/20. Instead, our 4th grade minds thought it would be a good idea to scare him away with baseball bats.

So armed with our bats we chase Bad News Bear around our yard and the neighbors yard with baseball bats attempting to hit his tires. Lord of the flies I tell ya.

Eventually neighbor girl's bat made purchase with the tire and Bad News Bear skidded on his bike and skinned his knee.

At this point, neighbor girl's sister came out and yelled at us. I can't imagine why we would deserved such a scolding. Neighbor girl was made to come inside and our pre-bad news bear fun was ended.

Now, this should have ended here right?

Nope. Friend and I decided to express our anger at neighbor girl's sister at having our play date cut short. How could we do this?

We decided the best route was an anonymous nasty letter.

We went to work. We decided that while we wanted to use swear words, we were not sure if wanted to commit the full sin of actually spelling them out. So we used dashes to edit the swear words a bit. Therefore the letter was written it looked something like this:

Dear So-and-So,
You are ugly. We think you smell like sh-t. Dog cr-p smells better then you.
Love, Anonymous

Super mature and nice right? There could not possibly be repercussions for that letter. Who would ever trace it back to us?

We ding dong ditched the letter at their door and went about playing Barbies.

Later that day my friend looked out the window and saw a horrific sight. The mother of the girl we had written the letter to was marching over to my house! And she did not look happy.

Thinking fast, my friend and I decided to barricade ourselves in my mom's bathroom. We were not coming out without a fight! This did keep us from having to face the mad mother of the neighbor girl, but it did not help us from escaping my mom.

Our punishment was the cancellation of our sleepover.

And so ended my nasty letter writing campaign.

When sleepovers are at stake, it is just not worth it.


  1. I think I can name almost all of the parties involved. Haha!