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Mailing It In

Submitted by Tommy Hardin on Tue, 02/06/2018 - 09:12am
mail letter

It seems like every day, everywhere we look, there are new ways to communicate: email, texting, Facebook Messenger, Instagram, Snapchat…will the list ever end?

But sometimes in a high-tech world, it’s important to remember that there are still low-tech aspects around us. 

Last summer, my 16-year-old’s then-girlfriend left for the United States Air Force. During her time in basic training, she had no access to electronics. If you wanted to write to her, you had to do it on paper. My son, eager to keep the communication going, wrote out a very nice letter and put it into an envelope. A few hours later, my wife happened to see it hanging on the mailbox and grabbed it to take back inside.

“You’re going to need a stamp on that,” she said, “or the post office will bring it back.”

“A stamp? What do you mean?” he asked.

We realized that our teenager had likely never mailed a letter himself. We had mailed things for him, and he knew all about typing messages on a computer or a cell phone, but when it came to the mechanics of how to send “snail mail,” he hadn’t a clue.

So we sat down and went over with him how to address an envelope, where to put the return address, where the stamp goes, etc. It was something we learned from our parents and in school, so I suppose it was only right that we taught him the basics—once we realized there was a gap in his experience.

Mid-Continent Public Library has plenty of tools available to help you write everything from letters and resumes to reports and business propositions, even short stories, and novels. For a glimpse at some of the resources out there—including research databases, online learning, Square One Small Business Services, web resources, and homework help—just visit

Or, you could skip the high-tech and just ask your friendly local librarian. We’re always happy to help!

Eric C.
Excelsior Springs Branch

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